Nigel Hukula

Kuk to captain Orchids in Pacific Test match

The 24-year-old, originally from Western Highlands Province, becomes only the second captain of the National Test team after Cathy Neap.

Kuk will lead a new-look Oil Search PNG Orchids Team with 13 debutants in the 18-woman side currently in Sydney.

“She brings that leadership, and she brings together the players who are based in Australia as well as the PNG-based girls, by speaking Tok Pisin and also having that understanding of where we are in women’s rugby league and where we want to go,” coach Hukula said from Sydney.

More players released from Hunters squad

SP Hunters assistant coach, Nigel Hukula, said the three players – Melvin Paul, Messac Wellen and Abel Rami – were released after failing their time trials.

“We are happy with their contributions and are now looking at ‘time trials’ which the trio did not meet,” Hukula said.

The three latest releases leaves 42 players.

The squad is expected to be trimmed to 30 by December 23.

The 30 players will take a break for the festive season and return on January 3, 2019, to resume their pre-season preparations for the 2019 Intrust Super Cup season.

Hunters maintain focus on defense

Hukula said Coach Michael Marum has been emphasizing on line speed, which the team has been successfully implementing.

Line speed involves players or defenders working together as a straight line.

Discrepancies in speed will create gaps that the attacking team can easily exploit.

The SP PNG Hunters have won their past 4 games because of strong defense. 

Speaking to this newsroom after their round 21 match in Brisbane, SP PNG Hunters Assistant Coach, Nigel Hukula, said: “It was good to see consistency over the last couple of weeks, in particular with defense.

Hunters squad named for round 1 clash

Captain Ase Boas is back after being given the green light, while fullback Stargroth Amean has been ruled out of the opener due to injury.

Forward John Andy will become Hunter #54 after being named in the starting side.

"Stargroth is still nursing a rib injury and also has a chest infection so Adex Wera comes in for him at fullback," said Assistant Coach, Nigel Hukula.

"John is a dynamic player and brings a lot of aggression to the game, earning him a call up."

On the return of Boas, Hukula said the star halfback is fit and will be back at his best.

Hukula: Hunters have a lot more to offer

With three wins on the trot, the Hunters will take on the Norths Devils this afternoon hoping to make it four from four.

“It’s always good to start off strong. But I think the feeling is that we have a lot more to offer.

“It’s going to be a long season with a good 11 or so home games left, so we’d like to make sure that we’re consistent in our systems and processes and working strong in places like our defence,” said Hukula.

This afternoon’s game at the National Football Stadium kicks off at 3pm.