Hunters meet Dolphins

Coming off a big 42-20 win over the Townsville Blackhawks last Friday, the Hunters will take plenty of confidence into this weekend’s match up. Middle forwards Sylvester Namo and Emmanuel Waine were standouts in that win, combining for three tries, 264 running metres and 12 tackle busts through the middle of the field. 

PNG Hunters: Cup gains and losses for 2022

Head coach Matthew Church announced the squad this week and expressed his excitement for the season ahead.

“It is my absolute pleasure to announce the final squad of 26 for the upcoming 2022 season,” Church said.

“We have an exciting mix of returning and new players from PNG’s premier rugby league competition the Digicel Cup, and there is a real hunger within the group to perform, challenge each other and strive towards a better season in 2022.”

Church also confirmed the PNG Hunters’ leadership model for the 2022 season.

Hunters Confirm Trials

Hunters Coach, Matt Church this week confirmed the two trial matches against Fiji Kaiviti Silktails and Central Queensland Capras are happening as scheduled at the end of February and early March.

The trail matches are crucial for the team moving forward as they will provide a platform for coach Church to assess and test out the team’s structural play, combinations and understanding of the new rules ,in real game situations before the season kicks off.

Isaac Ready For Hostplus Cup

He is regarded as one of the most senior members of the current training squad that will be finalized on January 26, 2022 before the team travels down to Queensland on the 28th.

Isaac was recruited by former Hunters coach Michael Marum in 2018 while playing for the Gurias. He proved to be a consistent member of the team until he got injured.

Isaac’s rugby league future was under a serious injury cloud after he was diagnosed with a rare spinal issue that forced him to seek urgent medical treatment while doing studies at the same time.

Wartovo Granted Leave

PNG Hunters Coach, Matt Church clarified that Puara had asked for some extended leave to sort out family issue that requires him to remain in PNG for an indefinite period until he’s ready to rejoin the team in Queensland later.

Church is hopeful all goes well for Wartovo and his family with issues sorted out once and for all so he can rejoin the playing group down in Queensland.

The ‘huge’ Slater advantage that should have NSW fearing QLD revival

Both of his former Storm teammates insist Slater, who has a three-year deal on the table from the QRL to succeed departed coach Paul Green, would do an outstanding job in the role.

NSW Blues forward Finucane, when asked if he was concerned about the prospect of Slater guiding the Maroons, said, “Oh yeah, certainly.”

“I know how much attention to detail Billy has with a team,” Finucane said.

“Even as a player, he was a coach. From a tactical point of view he will have a high expectation of what he expects from everyone.

Queensland competitions called off this weekend

It was determined this weekend’s Intrust Super Cup (Round 16) and Hastings Deering Colts (Round 13) fixtures will be postponed.

While the QRL will “explore all options” to ensure as many games are played as possible, the league is waiting on further information before making a final determination on whether the fixtures originally set down for this weekend will be rescheduled.  

This outcome follows the decision to cancel all of last weekend’s Round 15 Intrust Super Cup and Round 12 Hastings Deering fixtures due to the COVID-19 outbreak in Queensland.

Sawyer Is Q’land Rugby League CEO

Sawyer, who has worked with the QRL since his appointment as Chief Operating Officer in 2018, will now transition into the CEO role with Robert Moore to formally wrap up his duties in October. 

Hunters to host semi-final

PNGRFL CEO, Reatau Rau, said this confirmation was received yesterday after the Hunters claimed the minor premiership following their 28-22 win over Wynnum Manly Seagulls on the weekend.  

“QRL Competitions Manager, Dave Maiden, in an email advised that the week 2 semi-final will definitely be held in Port Moresby,” said Rau.

“The SP Hunters opponents could be either be the Redcliffe Dolphins or Easts Tigers. This will be determined after the final round this weekend.”

Hunters trailing 6-4 at break

It was a tough first fifteen minutes with both sides having nearly equal chances to score.

Several visits to the Falcons half were fruitless for the Hunters as they failed to turn their chances into points.

The Falcons stuck first right on the twenty minutes mark after Thomas Murphy dummied and ducked his way past three Hunters defenders to score near the posts.

The score was 6-0 from the boot of Joe Stimson.