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Eels stage comeback to win

Tuesday 26 July 2011 | Published in Regional


The weekends CITC main match of the week was a classic game of two halves between long time rivals the Avatiu Eels and hosts the Arorangi Cowboys, where the Eels launched a comeback in the second half to strangle the Bears 29-25.

The Cowboys were the sharper and hungrier looking of the two teams and this resulted in the Cowboys posting a healthy 20-0 lead at the halftime break after well-orchestrated tries early the first half.

Avatiu on the other hand lacked direction and structure in the first half earning them some tough words at the half time break chat from coach Cedric Toru.

As predicted the loose forward trio for the Eels played an important part in the final outcome of this match.

After the flat start, the Eels seemed to shift into another gear with an improved scrum and some positional backline adjustments which saw Ben Maaka revert to the pivotal first 5/8 position after starting at fullback.

The injection of reserve players from the Senior B grade, who had already played their game before the Senior A match, made visible impact in the Eels pack who seemed to pick up intensity while the backline began to operate with more cohesion.

This resulted in 4 brilliant Eels tries that had the yawning Eels supporters on their feet.

The Eels backline tries came via 18-year-old winger JJ Nicholas, speedy centre Duane Gukisuva and the energetic loose forwards Lee Ponini and Eliza Toru.

The intensity of the game was at an all time high in the 70th minute of the game where the Eels were forced to defend their try line as the Cowboys set up camp in the Eels 22 meter zone for the final 10 minutes of the game.

Cowboys try scorers were Katini Heather with two tries, Rouru Une and Cosma Bell.

In other games at the weekend the Tupapa Panthers continued their winning way be defeating the Titikaveka Bulls 32-16 at Victoria Park while the Ngatangiia-Matavera Dragons demolished the Takuvaine Reds 43-21.

Looking ahead to round 7 the Cowboys will host the Bulls in Arorangi and the Eels will host the Dragons at the Swamp.

The Tupapa Panthers will head to the Happy Valley to play the Reds. - Ruck and maul

Full results: Cowboys vs Eels (Cowboys scores first) Senior A grade-25 vs 29, Senior B grade-7 vs 5, Under 19 grade-12 vs 20, Under 16 grade-38 vs 10, Under 13 grade-17 vs 27.

Panthers vs Bulls (Panthers scores first) Senior A grade-32 vs 16, Under 19 grade-12 vs 19, Under 16 grade-85 vs 7, Under 13 grade-50 vs 0.

Reds vs Dragons (Reds scores first) Senior A grade-21 vs 43, Senior B grade-28 vs 12, Under 16 grade-22 vs 3, Under 13 grade-7 vs 34