PNGRFL thanks Kumuls

“On behalf of the PNGRFL Board and management, our corporate partners, sponsors and all the fans and supporters throughout PNG, let me congratulate Captain Rod Griffin and the players, Coach Michael Marum and his technical staff, for the outstanding performance and win and for representing our national sport and country with pride and honour,” said Tsaka.

Tigers on top

Stanley Tepend’s men opened their season with a 40-0 thumping of the Agmark Rabaul Gurias at home in Lae.

Round two of the competition saw the Tigers hold on to beat a gutsy Kroton Hela Wigmen side 20-16 yesterday at the Sir John Guise Stadium in Port Moresby.

Meanwhile, six other teams are all tied on two points with points for and against separating them.

The NCDC Port Moresby Vipers are the only team yet to register a win.

The current standings after two rounds:

Crawford wins PNG Open in six hole playoff

Crawford checked in as clubhouse leader after 72 holes at 10-under par and faced an agonising wait for Brett Rankin to finish his round, who was also 10-under, in the group behind him.

Rankin had the chance to seal victory in regulation but was only able to make par on the 18th, forcing a playoff for the second year in a row at Royal Port Moresby Golf Club.

The pair could not be separated through five playoff holes on the par-3 18th, both making par on all attempts.

NPL completes round three

In the Southern Conference matches played at the Sir John Guise Stadium in Port Moresby, Hekari United FC def. Admiralty FC 2-1, PKA Rapatona FC drew with Erema Gulf FC nil all and Papaka FC def. Gigira Amoana FC 7-1.

To the Northern Conference matches at the Sir Ignatius Kilage Stadium in Lae, Laiwaden FC def. Bulolo FC 1-0, Markham FC def. Lahi United FC 2-1 and Nawae FC def. Morobe United FC 1-0.

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Digicel Cup double header in POM

PNG National Rugby League Competition Manager, Stanley Hondina said the first game to kick off at 1.30pm will see the NCDC Vipers host PRK Mendi Muruks.

Both teams lost their opening clashes last weekend and will be vying to register their first competition points of the season.

The second match of the day is between the reigning premiers Lae Snax Tigers (who had a comfortable win over Agmark Rabaul Gurias) and Kroton Hela Wigmen.

“This shapes up to be the match of the round,” said Hondina.

Birdie blitz gives Marchesani PNG Open lead

Firing a first round 7-under 65, Marchesani looked in fine form from the get go, racing out of the gate with three birdies on the first three holes. 

A bogey on four stunted his momentum but he was able to quickly re-gather composure with three more birdies to close the front-9.

“It was a nice start, especially out here it’s always nice to get a few birdies early,” Marchesani said following his opening round.

“It gets your confidence going on the greens and you’re able to try and wiggle a few in.”    

Twilight Basketball to start this afternoon

Following on from the program’s huge success late last year, the second instalment of Twilight Basketball will once again see the Hoops for Health (H4H) initiative being delivered.

More than 2,000 people participated throughout the program’s six-week operation in 2016, with some Friday night’s drawing crowds of more than 400.

The free program is open to all ages, with 5V5 games for children aged 15 & under taking place from 5pm to 7pm and 3X3 matches for those aged 16 & over happening from 7pm to 9pm.

Pandia, Put and Butterfield to debut for Kumuls

The other debutants are Tommy Butterfield (280) and Nixon Put (281) who will both come off the bench.

PNG LNG Kumuls coach, Michael Marum said the trio have been playing well for their Intrust Super Cup teams and have been rewarded with a Test call up.

“Richard will start on the wing with Adex Wera moving to the centres,” said Marum.

Marum added that Wellington Albert and Israel Eliab will start off the interchange bench.

Chairman of the PNG Rugby Football League, Sandis Tsaka will present the jerseys to the debutants at the team hotel tomorrow evening.

Griffin is captain, Minoga out, Eliab in

The 30 year old from Wabag, Enga Province made his debut for the Kumuls as a 20-year-old in 2007 against Wales. He is Kumul #218.

It will be a memorable occasion for Griffin when he runs on for the Kumuls for the 11th time, but first as captain.

“I thank Coach Michael Marum for giving me the honour to captain PNG in this test.

“It’ll be great to lead the boys out on Saturday. Captaining your country, there’s nothing like it.

Marum: Kumuls side selected from four competitions

Marum, who is also the chairman of selectors, said any player taking part in a lower level competition is not eligible.

“These are the only four competitions we are selecting players out from. There are a lot of players playing overseas but when we start picking players from different competitions, it’s going to be a total mess.

“I’ll give an example of Israel Eliab who went away and played with the London Broncos. He came back struggling.

“We started last year with the players we picked and they provided the result," said Marum.