Thursday, August 29, 2013

Pratten Park Magpies Club Person of the Year

It is with great pleasure that I announce Mr Leo ‘Ledge’ Epifania as the winner of the prestigious Pratten Park Magpies Club Person of the Year Award.

Leo’s playing career is well documented but tonight we celebrate his achievements as Head Coach of various Wests Magpies teams.

Leo was appointed head coach of our Jersey Flegg side in 2004 and remained in that position until 2006.  He had great success during those years developing the skills of the young men under his care and more importantly he helped them become better individuals.

In 2007 Leo was appointed Head Coach of our NSW Cup side.  He remained in that position until the end of the 2011 season.  Leo’s boys reached the semi finals each year, with the exception of 2011.  

In 2008 and 2010 Leo’s boys reached the grand final qualifier before going down to Newtown Jets and Canterbury Bulldogs respectively in close encounters.

In 2011 the team missed out by a single point of making the semi finals.

In 2012 Leo was appointed as an Assistant Coach of the newly formed Wests Tigers NSW Cup Team.  He took on this role as our Club wanted equal representation within the coaching ranks.  Leo provided invaluable assistance to the Head Coach Paul Fletcher.  The team marched into the 2012 Grand Final before going down to the Newtown Jets 22 points to 18.

In 2013 Ledge returned to the Magpie nest to coach Wests Magpies Ron Massey Cup team.  With one round left in the regular season the Magpies are guaranteed a spot in the semi final series.  The highlight of the season to date is undoubtedly winning six games in a row with five of those wins against higher placed teams.

Leo possesses many outstanding qualities’ including –
Loyalty, integrity, honesty, the ability to build up trust in his team mates, commitment, never say die attitude, not being prepared to accept a ‘close enough is good enough’ attitude in areas of team performance, training facilities or team building.  Leo will never turn his back on his team or his friends, no matter how difficult the situation.  His record shows that he has turned good rugby league players under his charge into NRL regulars.

I am sure no one appreciates the fact that Leo spends countless hours, often into the early hours going over every aspect of his team’s performance before coming up with ideas and solutions to make things better.  He sits down with individual players to improve their skills.  His hand on approach to coaching is legendary which ensures he enjoys the respect of his peers.

Leo’s record as a head coach should be celebrated.  He has worked unbelievably hard to develop players and raise the image of our great Club.  His understanding of the game is second to none.  His tactical knowledge is up there with the best of them and we all hope that one day he is given the opportunity of progressing to the elite NRL level as no one deserves the opportunity more than Leo.  We should all do more to make this happen.

In closing, I would like to paraphrase the comments of a couple of Magpie individuals who stated (when referring to Leo’s role as Head Coach):



Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you our 2013 Pratten Park Magpies Club Person of the Year’, Mr Leo Epifania.


 The 2013 Western Suburbs Magpies Presentation Night was held on Wednesday the 28th of August 2013 at Wests Ashfield Leagues club. The award winner were...

Bill Carson Award
Wests Magpies Ron Massey Cup 2013
Best performed local in grade
NATHAN WATERS - Presented by Mike Bailey

John Donnelly Award
Wests Magpies Ron Massey Cup 2013
Best import in grade
SONI PASSI - Presented by Rick Wayde

Rookie of the Year
Wests Magpies Ron Massey Cup 2013
SONNY BRISTOW - Presented by Warren Mc Donnell

Alan Ridley Memorial Award
Wests Magpies Ron Massey Cup 2013
Most tries in grade
Sam AIGA - Presented by John Hardgrove

Jack Ashley Memorial Supporters Club Perpetual Award
Wests Magpies Ron Massey Cup 2013
Most consistent performer
JEROME MOSE – Presented by Denny Burgess

Bobby Fisher Memorial Supporters Club Perpetual Award
Wests Magpies Ron Massey Cup 2013
Player displaying attitude and discipline to training and preparation at a high standard.
JAKE PEARCE - Presented by Tony Andreacchio

Magpie Fanatics Supporters Award 
Best and Fairest player
Tom Morrison.  
Runner up - Dean Rysko

Best and Fairest player.
Wests Magpies Ron Massey Cup 2013
TOM MORRISON - Presented by Mick Liubinskas

Leagues Club Player of the Year
Wests Magpies Ron Massey Cup 2013
DEAN RYSKO - Presented by Leo Epifania

Presented by Mick Pinkerton and 2012 club person of the year winner Bob Cairns

Ball Boy’s
Zac Moore
Dean Woodley
Ryan Topolski
To be presented by Valerie and David Mc Ewan.

Wests Magpies Ron Massey Cup 2013 Volunteers.
To be presented by John Donnellan and Russell Smith
David Mc Ewan
Valerie Mc Ewan
Horrie Jowsey
Bryan Schafer
Arleen Schafer
John Harbon
Charlie Tuxford
Jeff Aplitt
Stephen Hartas
Keith Topolski
Tim Foulcher
Ed Topolski
Bruce Moschner
James Mc Whinnie
Alma Mc Whinnie
Craig Woodley
Kevin Montgomery
Con Spanos
Kirsten Tulloch
Daniel Wainwright
Graeme Szynal
Scott ‘The Magpie’ Morris

Monday, August 26, 2013

Photos: Golf Day + Pratten Park + More

Here are a collection of photos from the Western Suburbs Magpies recent Golf Day, Pratten Park Reunion and some match day photos.

Magpies Golf Day

Pratten Park Reunion

Match Day Photos

Rnd 21 - Ron Massey Cup - Match Review

Five tries in 20 minutes allowed Wentworthville to skip away with a 38-12 victory Western Suburbs at Campbelltown.

The Wests Tigers injury curse struck Western Suburbs, with another match for the team from Campbelltown being completed with only two men on the bench.

Wenty opened the scoring after six minutes, with hooker Simon Greaves drifting across field before straightening to go through the Wests line and go 20 metres to touch down. Brendan Waters missed the kick, Wenty up 4-0.

Wests responded ten minutes later, a towering Nathan Waters bomb found the ground and bounced everywhere where the players weren’t, with Seffa Silafau coming from the clouds to power on to the loose ball and score. Michael Stevens added the extras, with Wests up by two after 20 minutes.

Wests dominated the next fifteen minutes and were duly rewarded from a scrum win, with Sam Aiga speeding around the Wentworthville defence, his momentum too much for a desperate effort by Daniel Penese. Michael Stevens was on target to Put Wests ahead 12-4.

Wentworthville needed a lucky break to stay in the game and that was exactly what they got on the last play of the first half, with a Simon Greaves grubber deflecting up into the arms of the kicker, who offloaded for Brendan Waters to go in under the posts. Waters converted his own try and, despite having almost none of the game, Wenty went to the interval only down by two.

Wentworthville came out after half time breathing fire and took four minutes to retake the lead, with a flat face ball at the line finding Taunaola Kei, who burrowed his way through the smaller Wests defence. Brendan Waters converted for a 16-12 lead.

Wenty were in again four minutes later, as Jason Strickleton burrowed over from dummy half. Waters was successful with the shot, Wenty out to 22-12.

Eight minutes passed before Wentworthville found the stripe again, as Brendan Waters was the beneficiary of a break down Wenty’s left side. Waters was unable to convert his own try, leaving the score 26-12.

Wenty finished their twenty minute blast with Jason Strickleton on the end of another left side raid by Wentworthville. Brendan Waters was on target on this occasion, Wentworthville going from 12-4 down 60 seconds before the break to leading 32-12 with 20 minutes to play.

Wests looked to strike back, but Tom Morrison was knocked senseless in a strong tackle by Valu Nasio, referee Adam Cassidy having zero hesitation, once Morrison had been escorted from the field by trainers, in sending Nasio for an early shower, Wentworthville down to 12 men for the final 16 minutes.

While Wentworthville were content to grind down the clock, Wests could not take a trick, with desperate Wenty defence, a series of dodgy bounces and a handful of passes barely wide of the mark preventing the home team from reducing the margin.

Wentworthville rounded out the scoring for the afternoon, with Francis Tuigamala driving down low through the Wests defence. Brendan Waters converted from in front and held Wests at bay in the last four minutes to run out 38-12 victors.

For Wentworthville, Brendan Waters and Simon Greaves dictated terms all day, with impressive support from Francis Tuigamala, while for Wests, Dean Rysko, Sam Aiga and Nathan Waters led the way in a valiant effort.

Wentworthville’s win ensured they will play either Mounties or Cabramatta in week one of the finals in one of the qualifying finals.

For Wests, the result left them relying on other results, however at the time of writing, two wins to Asquith in the final two weeks is the only realistic threat to Wests qualifying for the finals due to a far superior points difference, Wests’ century against Kingsgrove proving to be immensely valuable.

Next weekend, Wentworthville will do battle with Guildford at Ringrose Park on Sunday, while Wests will make the short trip up the Hume on Saturday to visit Cabramatta, their third match against a top four team in the last month.

WENTWORTHVILLE 38 (Brendan Waters 2, Jason Strickleton 2, Simon Greaves, Taunaola Kei, Francis Tuigamala tries; Brendan Waters 5 from 7) def WESTERN SUBURBS 12 (Seffa Silafau, Sam Aiga tries; Michael Stevens 2 from 2)

Penalties: Wests 5 Wentworthville 6

Halftime: Wests 12 Wentworthville 10

Western Suburbs

1. Sam Aiga
2. Sean Connor
17. Michael Mate
12. Tom Morrison
5. Amanono Tovio
6. Michael Stevens
7. Nathan Waters
22. Soni Paasi
9. Dayne Craig
10. Sonny Bristow
21. Adrian Haangana
15. Mason Talolua
8. Dean Rysko

11. Seffa Silafau
13. David Atuau
18. Frederick Tevaga
20. Daniel Rakvin


20. Matthew Collins
19. Henry Raiwalui
21. Mark Tuatti
11. Daniel Penese
5. Arthur Takapu
7. Brendan Waters
2. Matthew Place
8. Francis Tuigamala
9. Simon Greaves
10. Nathan Armit
17. Bradley Partington
12. Valu Nasio
13. Mitchell Stanfield

16. Jason Strickleton
22. Tyrone Viiga
23. Jerome Mackenzie
24. Taunaola Kei

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Please Remember your Manners


I respectfully request that each of you adjust your comments towards on field match officials on game days to reflect a more even approach to their performances. I do not always agree with their decisions, but I am sure they are doing the best job they can. Please remember referees are an integral part of our game. We encourage 'FRIENDLY BANTER' but do not support any real or perceived abuse of those officials.

I am sure that you are aware that anything you say is heard by those officials and I would hate to think that those abusive comments have a negative impact on our team.

Lastly, support your team as loudly and often as you like, but please temper your comments so that we are not seen in a negative light.

Be Loud, Proud and Dignified!

Magpies forever!

Vale Sharlon Taki

It is with great sadness that the Western Suburbs DRLFC advise the passing of one of our 2012 NSW Cup players, Sharlon Taki who lost his battle with cancer last month aged just 25.
Sharlon played 3 games for the Magpies early last season in the NSW Cup and was also a member of our team at the International Nine's Tournament held at Cabramatta.
Sharlon played in the St George junior rep teams and also for the Southern Sharks Jim Beam Cup side (now called the Ron Massey Cup) where he was the competition's leading tryscorer in 2008 with 18 tries. He also had stints at Mounties and Collegians in the Illawara League.
The directors, staff, volunteers, supporters and players of the Western Suburbs Magpies football club wish to pass on their condolences to Sharlon's family and friends.

Blood is thicker than Waters and the feathers are set to fly

After having won six of their last eight games to resurrect their season, the Western Suburbs Magpies face a possible do-or-die clash against Wentworthville this weekend in the ‘Battle of the Birds’.

With just the two rounds remaining in the Ron Massey Cup before the 2013 Finals combatants are decided, Western Suburbs Coach Leo Epifania believes that despite losing their last two matches, his side is well placed to make amends and secure their place in the top-eight.

“We’ve been playing some good footy, but there are a few things we need to correct,” Epifania said.

“We’ve been making a lot of unforced errors and that’s been really hurting us over the last two weeks.

“We were a little unlucky against Mounties. We lost two players to injury in the first 20 minutes and there were a couple tries scored completely against the run of play… I’m not making any excuses, but I think our form has been pretty good despite losing our last two games and I think we can make amends.”

With a remarkable run of six-consecutive victories that had a combined score line of 304-66, Western Suburbs showed they have the potential to cause plenty of headaches for their opposition, but Epifania warned it takes more than potential to be successful.

“You need a little bit of luck leading into the finals. Every team has lost players and has others struggling with injury, but at the end of the day our future is in our hands and we have the players to get the job done.

“Wenty are always a strong team to play against. They don’t make many errors, and they punish any mistakes that you make, so you have to work hard, be clever and execute your game plan.

“This weekend is a vital game in the context of our season.”

A feature of the match will be the clash between the Waters brothers, with Nathan lining up for Wests and Brendan potentially lining up for Wentworthville.

With both brothers’ vital components of their respective sides, Epifania admitted there will be more than two competition points up for grabs this weekend.

“They’re very close and they’re very competitive.

“I don’t think there will be anything personal between them but I wouldn’t want to be the one on the losing side on Saturday night.

“There would be quite a few bragging rights up for grabs and it’s a nice little addition to what should be a great game.”

Western Suburbs take on the Wentworthville Magpies at Campbelltown Sports Stadium on Saturday, August 24th. Kick off will be at 1pm with the VB NSW Cup match between the Wests Tigers and North Sydney Bears to follow at 3pm.

Adam Kidd
21/08/2013 2:00:00 PM

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Rnd 20 - Ron Massey Cup - Match Review

Guildford kept their finals hopes alive with a flowing 42-34 victory over Western Suburbs at McCredie Park.

The Owls opened the scoring in the sixth minute through winger Halaufua Lavaka, who showed considerable strength to touch down despite plenty of black and white attention. Peter Irwin added the extras to put Guildford ahead 6-0.

Thanks to handling errors and penalties, neither side could find much rhythm, one of the penalties awarded to Wests for a late lifting tackle, however the Magpies’ Adrian Ha’angana was dispatched for ten minutes for retaliation.

Wests scored what is starting to become their customary sevens style try after 24 minutes, when a bomb from Nathan Waters was marked by Amanono Tovio, the ball finding its way through four sets of hands before Dayne Craig grubbered in behind the line, Seffa Silafau steaming onto the ball to touch down. Michael Craig sliced the kick, Guildford still up by two.

Two minutes later the Magpies reclaimed the lead as Adrian Ha’angana atoned for his stint in the sheds, following through to back up Dayne Craig after a wonderful offload from Sonny Bristow. Michael Craig again pushed the kick wide, Wests leading 8-6 after 27 minutes.

Guildford retaliated by almost blowing the game out of the water with three tries in the last ten minutes before oranges to Nathan Davis, Luke Fahey and Asipeli Lavaka. Peter Irwin added two conversions and, after trailing by two with ten minutes to halftime, Guildford went in ahead 22-8.

Despite Soni Paasi bulldozing his way through the Guildford line on a 50 metre break to start the second half, it was the Owls who opened the scoring, with Nathan Davis picking off a long pass from Wests to race 80 metres to touch down under the posts. Peter Irwin added the extras and Guildford were up by 20 just four minutes into the second stanza.

Wests needed to find the line quickly and did so with Soni Paasi, who drifted across the field before singling out the smaller Guildford defence to push his way over the line. David Atuau was unable to add the extras, Guildford ahead 28-12.

From the kick-off, Wests marched downfield with Sam Aiga breaking through the line, a grubber from Aiga being grounded by Nathan Waters for four points. Michael Stevens potted the goal and Wests were suddenly back to within ten points with half an hour to play.

Wests were in again five minutes later as Sonny Bristow showed some deft footwork to touch down. Stevens was on target, Guildford holding a slender 28-24 lead.

A penalty to Guildford for a late challenge swung the momentum in their favour and Dylan McKeown took full advantage to score on the right side. Peter Irwin pulled the kick wide, the Owls leading 34-24 going into the final quarter.

Nathan Davis registered his hat –trick three minutes later, putting on two left foot steps after a long backline movement. Peter Irwin was off target again, Guildford restoring their 14 point buffer.

Wests found their most successful play was to terrorise the Guildford defence by sending Soni Paasi forward as often as possible, and Paasi notched his second try through a simple straight run as first receiver. Stevens added the extras and Wests hit 30, still eight in arrears.

Wests had plenty of opportunities to add to their tally but Guildford’s defence held firm and, with Wests’ focus understandably more on regaining possession than completing the tackle, Nathan Davis crossed for his fourth of the afternoon. Peter Irwin failed to convert, although the game was out of the reach of Wests at 42-30 with three minutes remaining.

The Magpies, though, would have the final say with Dayne Craig burrowing over from dummy half, Atuau unable to convert, leaving a final score of 42-34.

Guildford dominated through big performances from Nathan Davis, Mark Daoud and Chris Saab, while for Wests, Soni Paasi was incredibly damaging with ball in hand, as was Nathan Waters, with Amanono Tovio shouldering a big workload.

Guildford face a tough challenge against Mounties next weekend at Mt Pritchard, while Wests will be desperate to sew up their position in the finals when Wentworthville travel to Campbelltown.

GUILDFORD 42 (Nathan Davis 4, Halaufua Lavaka, Luke Fahey, Asipeli Lavaka, Dylan McKeown tries; Peter Irwin 5 from 8) def WESTERN SUBURBS 34 (Soni Paasi 2, Seffa Silafau, Adrian Ha’angana, Nathan Waters, Sonny Bristow, Dayne Craig tries; Michael Stevens 3 from 5, David Atuau 0 from 2)

Penalties: Wests 6 Guildford 8

Halftime: Wests 8 Guildford 22

Western Suburbs
1. Sam Aiga
3. Fusi Toutai
19. Michael Mate
16. Jerome Mose
5. Amanono Tovio
6. Michael Stevens
7. Nathan Waters
10. Sonny Bristow
9. Dayne Craig
8. Dean Rysko
15. Seffa Silafau
12. Tom Morrison
20. Adrian Ha’angana

13. David Atuau
14. Todd Makejev
18. Fred Tevaga
22. Soni Paasi

1. Asipeli Lavaka
2. Halaufua Lavaka
3. Nathan Davis
4. Peter Irwin
5. Richard Williams
6. Jadon Vidal
7. Mark Daoud
8. Charlie Farah
9. Luke Fahey
10. Casey Ellis
11. Dylan Mckeown
12. Chris Saab
13. Tepai Tepu Smith

14. Suliasi Suli
15. Jarrod Azar
16. Michael Luong
17. Willam Siali

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Attention: Current & Past Wests Players + Officials

Western Suburbs are seeking all past and present players and officials to join the Western Suburbs Rugby League Past Players Association.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Magpies 2013 Presentation Night

Western Suburbs Magpies  2013 Presentation night will be held on Wednesday, 28th of August at Wests Ashfield Leagues Club. We ask people to arrive at 6:30 for a 7pm kick-off.

The event will cost $45 per person for a two course meal + tea and coffee.Other drinks will be at Club Prices.

So come along and honor the players and volunteers that have kept the Magpies going strong in 2013.

Rnd 19 - Ron Massey Cup - Match Review

Western Suburbs went down 36-22 in a fiery clash against Mounties last weekend at Leichhardt Oval, but perhaps took away a psychological advantage.

Down to 15 men due to injury after 20 minutes, the Magpies dug deep against the competition front runners in a performance which was not done proper justice by the scoreboard.

Mounties opened the scoring for the afternoon in the second minute, a looping pass to the right missing all comers, with Nick Kassis on hand to scoop up the crumbs. David Farkas slotted the conversion, Mounties ahead 6-0 after three minutes.

After their century against Kingsgrove, Wests were happy to get into a good grind and both sides used their possession well in stretching the opposition defence, with Mounties dominating the kicking game through sheer distance, Wests looking the better with ball in hand.

The dominance of the kicking by Mounties was turned on its head, though, with just four minutes to the break, after a decisive break down the left hand side by Wests’ Sean Connor. Nathan Waters followed up with a towering bomb, batted down by Amanono Tovio to David Atuau, who showed excellent patience and footwork to manoeuvre Tovio back into an onside position. Tovio then took the pass and beat the cover to touch down in front of a vocal Wests crowd. Michael Stevens slotted the touchline conversion, Wests drawing level with three minutes to the interval.

A penalty to Mounties for a lifting tackle allowed them to have the last attacking play of the half, and they made it count with a barnstorming run by Uiti Baker allowing an offload for Jason Green, who juggled the ball all the way down the ground before controlling it for the try. David Farkas added the extras and Mounties fortuitously went to the break up 12-6.

With Mounties registering their final try against the run of play, Wests sought to atone for their six point deficit, but, when your luck’s in your luck’s in, and a neat run around play from Wests rebounded to Vinnie Uelese, who outpaced the cover to go 75 metres to touch down. David Farkas converted to put Mounties up 18-6 with 32 minutes to play.

Mounties were muscling up in a tense and physical contest and with half an hour left, Pat Galea came up with a dubious challenge on Wests’ Nathan Waters. However, the referee instead dispatched Waters to the sin bin for fighting, incensing the Magpies outfit.

In a display which revived memories of the old fibro days, Wests played with such intensity and determination that one could have been forgiven for thinking it was Mounties who were a man short, and posted two tries in Waters’ absence to level the scores, with Mosese Pangai bullocking up the middle to score, and then Dayne Craig burrowing over from dummy half. Michael Stevens converted both tries and when Waters returned with 20 minutes to go, the scores were locked at 18-18.

Mounties were stung into action and regained the lead after a sweeping backline movement to the right found Danny Galea, Galea matching Jason Green’s juggling act as he touched down. David Farkas had no problems converting from touch, Mounties back in front 24-18 with 15 minutes remaining.

Wests began to dominate the forward battle and, with perfect timing, Brett Lahey stepped up, literally, with two left foot steps, the first through the Wests line, the second past Magpies fullback Sam Aiga, to register Mountie’s fifth try of the afternoon. Farkas converted and Mounties entered the final ten minutes with a 12 point break.

Wests were desperate to get back into the game and a series of long passes to the left found Mosese Pangai with a two man overlap as he was tackled. However, in a cruel twist, Tim Tautuaa stuck out his hand and the ball somehow stuck, Tautuaa outlaqsting the Magpies’ cover over 100 metres to wrap the match up. David Farkas added the two, Mounties ahead 36-18 with five minutes to go.

Wests refused to go away and, after a penalty for a shoulder charge, immediately spread the ball right, Amanono Tovio the beneficiary of the quick passing chain. Michael Stevens rejected the opportunity to convert, more concerned with registering another try, although to no avail, Mounties running out 36-22 winners.

Magpies coach Leo Epifania summed up his team’s efforts by pointing out that, with 15 men for the final hour of the game and with four tries for Mounties against the run of play, the win just wasn’t meant to be for Wests.

For Mounties, halves David Farkas and Brett Lahey guided the side around the park well, with Uiti Baker causing plenty of consternation for Wests with his ample frame. For Wests, Dean Rysko was fantastic with his go forward, ably supported by Sonny Bristow, while Nathan Waters played a game reminiscent of Geoff Toovey’s glory days.

Next week, Mounties host Blacktown at Aubrey Keech on Saturday at 3pm, while Wests travel to McCredie Oval on Sunday to face off against Guildford at 3pm.

MOUNTIES 36 (Nick Kassis, Jason Green, Vinnie Uelese, Danny Galea, Brett Lahey, Tim Tautuua tries; David Farkas 6 from 6) def WESTERN SUBURBS 22 (Amanono Tovio 2, Mosese Pangai, Dayne Craig tries; Michael Stevens 3 from 3*)

*Conversion attempt rejected for final try

Penalties: Wests 6 Mounties 6

Halftime: Wests 6 Mounties 12

Western Suburbs
1. Sam Aiga
2. Fusi Toutai
3. Jerome Mose
4. Trent Jennings
5. Amanono Tovio
6. Michael Stevens
7. Nathan Waters
8. Dean Rysko
9. Dayne Craig
10. Sonny Bristow
17. Mosese Pangai
12. Tom Morrison
13. David Atuau

15. Sean Connor
16. Chris Standing
18. Richard Ene
22. Fred Tevaga

1. Theo Leato
2. Tim Tautuaa
23. Nick Kassis
4. Vinnie Uelese
20. Shannon Chapman
6. David Farkas
7. Brett Lahey
8. Uiti Baker
9. Sam Brunton
10. Adam Tangata
15. Fred Pakatoa
12. Pat Galea
13. Tim Baldwin

14. Tere Glassie
18. Tunui Maurangi
19. Daniel Arona
22. Jason Green

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

A few more Pics

Everyone loved our last picture sharing excercise, so here are a few more to check out. Click on them to see larger copies.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Rnd 18 - Ron Massey Cup - Match Review

Western Suburbs threw down the gauntlet to the top echelons of the Ron Massey Cup with a blistering 104-4 demolition of Kingsgrove last weekend at Beverly Hills Park.

Backing up for their third match in eight days, Wests opened the scoring after four minutes with Shane Lalogafau showing a pretty handy left foot step at the end of a backline move. Michael Stevens converted for 6-0.

Wests were in again four minutes later, with Dayne Craig going down the short side after the Kingsgrove markers went the open to score untouched. Stevens split the uprights for 12-0.

From the next set, Dayne Craig put on a glorious ball for Sonny Bristow to draw Colts fullback Brett Manning and send Sam Aiga on his way. Michael Stevens slotted the simple conversion, the Magpies up 18-0 after ten minutes.

Three minutes later Wests grabbed their fourth try, as David Atuau steamed onto an inside ball from Michael Stevens and pushed his way through three Colts to touch down, destroying his 15 jersey in the process. Stevens iced the cake for a 24-0 lead.

Sam Aiga notched up his second four minutes later as he was on the end of a Gidley-esque flick pass from Tom Morrison. Michael Stevens was having a day out to make the lead 30-0.

There was no let-up from Wests as Tom Morrison added his name to the scorers list after a short side raid. Stevens made his points tally an even dozen as Wests led 36-0 after 21 minutes.

The black and whites immediately added to the score, as Jerome Mose grabbed his second of the season after a Tom Morrison break. Stevens potted the goal from in front to push the lead to 42-0.

The Magpie fans in attendance offered their headwear to Sam Aiga six minutes later as the Magpies custodian notched his hat-trick from a Shane Lalogafau pass after the back rower busted through the Colts line. Michael Stevens added the extras to extend the black and white’s advantage to 48-0.

The Magpies raised their bats a minute later as Wests threw caution to the wind, going wide early, with Shane Lalogafau beating seven with sheer strength on his way to the line. Michael Stevens added the two for 54-0.

Three minutes later Wests made it an even 60 as Sam Aiga turned provider for skyscraping prop Todd Makejev, who grabbed his first try for 2013. Michael Stevens put the goal away, Wests cruising at 60-0.

Kingsgrove had made a habit of grabbing early tries the last few weeks, but changed tack to notch a try right on half time, with Clarrie Moore drifting to the right before turning the ball back inside for Thibaud Braconnier to register the Colt’s first points. Sam Madah pushed the conversion attempt wide, the Magpies going to half time ahead by 60-4.

David Atuau opened the second half scoring with a bullocking dummy half run to touch down two minutes into the second stanza. Michael Stevens put the conversion away for a 66-4 lead after 42 minutes.

After playing the first 25 minutes with just two sets of six, Kingsgrove finally got hold of the ball and placed the Magpies defence under some pressure, which in turn allowed Kingsgrove to place Wests under pressure when the black and whites were in possession.

Wests, however, continued on their way after 58 minutes, with Nathan Waters scoring after a break by Sam Aiga, who offloaded despite heavy attention from Brett Manning. Michael Stevens added the two, Wests leading 72-4 after an hour.

Six minutes later the Magpies were scoring again, with Amanono Tovio on hand to collect the scraps after Jake Pearce kicked infield, the ball pinballing around before finding its way to Tovio. Stevens made it a baker’s dozen, the Magpies up 78-4.

Three minutes had elapsed before Jake Pearce got in on the tryscoring action with a grubber by Michael Stevens sitting up for the Magpies winger. Stevens proved he was human after all by slicing the conversion attempt.

Two minutes later Sam Aiga made it four for his afternoon’s work, capitalising on a Fusi Toutai break. Stevens got back on track to make it 88-4 with ten minutes to go.

Wests received a penalty for a steal with eight minutes on the clock and Fusi Toutai took advantage by zipping around a gallant but hurt Brett Manning. Stevens missed conversion attempt number sixteen of the afternoon, Wests by 92-4.

Four minutes later, David Atuau claimed a hat-trick of his own after a magnificent offload from Shane Lalogafau. Michael Stevens added the extras, Wests developing a spring in their step as they went in search of triple figures.

The Magpie faithful roared their approval when, with 90 seconds to play, Shane Lalogafau made it a hat-trick and hat-tricks for the Magpies with Michael Stevens turning an inside ball to put Sam Aiga clear before Lalogafau showed too much speed for the cover. Michael Stevens slotted the goal and Wests ran out 104-4 victors.

Magpies coach Leo Epifania said he was pleased that his boys turned up with the right attitude and refused to go easy, their resolve strengthened as Kingsgrove muscled up in the second half. Epifania also said he was pleased to see strong defence early, given Kingsgrove’s knack for grabbing early points.

Despite the scoreboard, Kingsgrove kept turning up in defence and never took a backward step in attack.

For the home side, Braeden Bastiste, Petros Thanos and Thibaud Braconnier were best, while for Western Suburbs, Sam Aiga was unbelieveable at the back, Sonny Bristow and Shane Lalogafau also playing out of their skin.

Kingsgrove will look to restore some pride and register their opening win for 2013 next weekend against Guildford, while Wests, as the competition’s form team, will take on ladder-topping Mounties in, arguably, the match of the year so far at Leichhardt Oval.

WESTERN SUBURBS 104 (Sam Aiga 4, David Atuau 3, Shane Lalogafau 3, Dayne Craig, Tom Morrison, Jerome Mose, Todd Makejev, Nathan Waters, Amanono Tovio, Jake Pearce, Fusi Toutai tries; Michael Stevens 16 from 18) def KINGSGROVE 4 (Thibaud Braconnier try; Sam Madah 0 from 1)

Penalties: Wests 4 Kingsgrove 3

Halftime: Wests 60 Kingsgrove 4

Western Suburbs

1. Sam Aiga
21. Sean Connor
2. Fusi Toutai
11. Jerome Mose
5. Amanono Tovio
6. Michael Stevens
7. Nathan Waters
13. Dean Rysko
9. Dayne Craig
10. Sonny Bristow
14. Shane Lalogafau
12. Tom Morrison
15/19. David Atuau

16. Chris Standing
17. Jake Pearce
18. Jordan Mose
22. Todd Makejev


1. Brett Manning
22. Sam Madah
6. Misieli Vaikeli
18. Daniel Mooka
24. John Murdaca
7. Guy Kenjar
23. Braeden Batiste
8. Zac Wedesweiller
14. Clarrie Moore
17. Mitch Mamary
25. Tuiala Togatasi
21. Matt Baker
13. Petros Thanos

4. Daniel Hansell
9. George Keates
10. Temata Rangi
16. Thibaud Braconnier