18/06/17 | 11:31 PM

Eagles maintain their momentum

Peter Bidwell from Dompost reports: -

HOBM 36 WAINUI 14

Hutt Old Boys Marist 36 (James O’Reilly 3, Tomasi Alosio, Brandyn Laursen tries; Sheridan Rangihuna 4 con, pen) Wainuiomata 14 (Bevan Clark, Ben Tupuola tries; Frae Wilson con, Jason Love con). HT: 17-7.

Best and fairest: 3 points: James O’Reilly (HOBM hooker); 2 points: Sheridan Rangihuna (HOBM halfback); 1 point: Cameron Cross (Wainui flanker).

Venue: Hutt Recreation Ground.

What happened: Hutt Old Boys Marist pushed themselves forward as a leading Jubilee Cup contender with their second victory. They laid a strong platform in the first half, and were able to limit Wainui’s concerted raids after the interval to a converted try.

The final score perhaps did not reflect the difference between the sides, such was Wainui’s overall commitment. 

In the absence of the injured Justin Va’a, the Wainui scrum was overwhelmed in the first half. It contributed to them being pinned deep in their own territory and falling behind 14-0.

It didn’t help either that Wainui fullback Fa’atau Mamea was injured in the 29th minute, and remained lying on the ground till eventually taken to hospital by ambulance. As a result the game had to be stopped and it resumed on the No.2 field.

The big play: It developed from the 50th minute when Wainui conceded a penalty, and Hutt first five-eighth Sheridan Rangihuna’s lengthy punt for touch took play to a few metres from the Wainui line. HOBM then drove from the lineout, and from close range James O’Reilly was unstoppable as he crashed his way to a hat-trick of tries. With Rangihuna’s conversion HOBM were just about out of range at 24-7.

Who stood out: The blonde-haired O’Reilly certainly did. The Hurricanes squad member exhibited the difference between his rugby environment and those of the essentially amateur players that inhabit the competition. He was a picture of fitness, and his runs with the ball and intensity on defence were outstanding. Rangihuna continued to set high standards with his all-round skills, and calm under pressure.

Wainui captain and flanker Cameron Ross led by example, long-haired centre Isaiah Mamea posed problems for Hutt with his midfield charges, and team-mate Frae Wilson was strong at halfback

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