THE Papua New Guinea National Rugby League competition will introduce microphones for match officials in the 2018 season.
Manager Stanley Hondina, pictured, confirmed this at a press conference last Thursday.
Hondina said the microphones would be trailed during the PNGRFL National Super League Nines at Goroka over the weekend.
He said following the national 9s, the system would be used in the semi-professional Digicel Cup competition which starts next month.
Hondina said the system was costly but the benefits would be immense in helping improve referees and match officials ability to control fixtures and making the best decisions.
The electronic devices will be used by referees, touch judges and match officials as a quick clear line of communication when deliberating decisions and confirming plays in a quick and efficient manner.
“This is a big investment for our match officials which will help them make fairer decisions on the field,” Hondina said.
“These will help both the refs and touch judges to communicate through these wireless devices during the games.
“We are trying to raise the standard of the competition and we want to ensure that the games officials are equipped with these devices to also improve their duties and responsibilities.” PNGRFL chairman Sandis Tsaka said that any PNGRFL-sanctioned competition would only involve one referee following the International Rugby League Federation rules.
Tsaka said the two referees controlling the match was only used in Australia’s National Rugby League. The National
THE Simbu Warriors franchise is still holding out hope that it can make this year’s Digicel Cup season.
Warriors chairman Sam Goiya is a man on a mission, with the Chimbu provincial government-sponsored side awaiting the final decision of the Papua New Guinea National Rugby League Board meeting on Saturday in Port Moresby.
He said the Warriors board had not received any notification on their expression of interest hence their positive out-look.
But the chances of the Warriors being included in this year’s Digicel Cup appear unlikely, with the draws not having any new franchises in it.
Goia claimed the relocation of the TNA Simbu Lions from Kundiawa gave prominence to the Warriors’ bid which had met the requirements to participate in the semi-professional competition.
The chairman said that a 30-man squad was already training at Dickson Oval in Kundiawa which was the home ground of the Warriors.
Goia said designs for merchandise were complete and a contract woukld be awarded to a Fijian company for competition uniforms, training wear and requirements for fans including caps, polo shirts and umbrellas.
The Simbu Governor Noah Kool, a former Kumul, was pleased with communications to date with the PNGNRL board and was positive that team would be given the approval as a founding team from the Inter City competition in 1990.
Kool spoke to Warriors team management and technical officials at Vision City on Easter Monday saying the franchise would require more than K1 million to compete in the competition. The National
DIGICEL Cup champions Agmark Gurias have named former Pukpuk Billy Torea among several star acquisitions for their campaign this year.
The rugby union No 8, who has represented Papua New Guinea in sevens and 15s, joins fellow Pukpuk backliner Jacky Marcus, who has been named in the Gurias squad.
Marcus was part of the Gurias squad in 2013 and 2014.
The other big name inclusions in coach Steven Nightingale’s 25-man squad are former Kumul centre Francis Paniu and Hunters winger George Benson.
Both men took time off from playing last year to focus on work and family commitments.
Paniu, who was part of the Kumuls squad to the 2013 World Cup, was to have taken up a contract with Super League side Hull Kingston Rovers at the conclusion of the World Cup, but the deal fell through after 26-year-old and fellow Kumul Enock Maki had difficulty obtaining a visa for the deal.
Benson, was a member of the inaugural Hunters in 2014 but chose to complete his training as a police constable, thus pulling out of Michael Marum’s squad last year.
Former Mendi Muruks half Stanley Olo is the other notable acquisition is Nightingale’s squad.
The Gurias have lost a host of talent from last year’s squad with Hunters acquisitions in John Ragi Jr, Watson Boas, Edward Goma and Tuvi Lepan leaving a sizable hole in playing stocks.
Ragi, who was released by the Hunters before the Q-Cup season started, has opted to stay in Port Moresby to join brothers Sebulon and Quinton playing for the Port Moresby Vipers.
“We have yet to name our co-captains soon, with the board yet to announce that,” Nightingale said.
“But training is going on well and we are all looking forward for the season.
Gurias: Adrian Baungas, Albert Patak, Billy Torea, Boas Ruru, David Punion, Eliakim Lukara, Elipas Pidik, Emmanuel John, Ezra Gotuno, Francis Paniu, George Benson, Ila Alu, Jacky Marcus, Jason Missian, Jimmy Peter Jr, Joe Tabutabu Jr, Konie Bernard, Longinus Daungia, Lucas Kapinias, Nelson Daplen, Nelson Wak, Philip Nerius, Pidi Tongap, Samuel Hamari, Stanley Olo.
PAPUA New Guinea Hunters captain Israel Eliab will play for the London Broncos next year after agreeing to a one-year contract last Friday.
Former Hunters winger Gary Lo has also penned a deal with English the second division side, Sheffield Eagles.
Eliab, who completed two seasons with the South Pacific Brewery-sponsored Hunters in Queensland’s Intrust Super Cup (ISC) competition, has opted to play in the English second division but according to Hunters coach Michael Marum, the five-eighth would be looking to eventually move up to the Super League.
“I think Izzy will do well at that level. The English second division is probably not the same as the Queensland Cup.
“I’m sure he’ll perform and then who knows maybe get a chance in the Super League,” Marum, pictured, said from Kokopo yesterday.
“We only started talks with them (Broncos) last month but things were confirmed last week.
“I exchanged a few emails with the London Broncos coach (Joe Grima) and along with Izzy’s manager Sam Ayoub, who’s based in Sydney, they all agreed to the one-year deal.
“They’re just completing the paper work but I expect Izzy to be in the UK (United Kingdom) by late next month or early January. In the mean time, he’ll still train with us (Hunters) when we start our pre-season training this week in Port Moresby.”
A dangerous ball-runner, Eliab, 24, has represented the country at the last World Cup (2013), won a Digicel Cup title with the Port Moresby Vipers in 2012, played for the PNG Prime Minister’s XIII side (2012-2014), played for the Kumuls in a test against Fiji on the Gold Coast in May and led the Hunters to second place on the ISC ladder and their first finals in only their second year.
He also won the ISC five-eighth of the year for 2014 and 2015.
On Lo, Marum said he had been in constant contact with his former charge and was happy he was getting a second chance with the Eagles after spending a year with the Hagen Eagles in the Digicel Cup “learning some valuable lessons”.
Marum admitted it would be hard to replace Eliab but said he was sure there was talent in the 36-man squad named last Thursday.
“Of course it’s going to be tough replacing a player like Israel but we’ve got experienced guys in the squad that we’ve retained and there are some young prospects coming through as well,” Marum said.
“The good thing is that the Hunters programme is giving our players opportunities in Australia and now England.
“When these guys get contracts and move out their places are then taken up by players coming up from the Digicel Cup so instead of waiting two or three years for a chance in the Hunters they get their chance sooner.
“Everyone – the players getting contracts and leaving and those coming into the Hunters – has been told that the work doesn’t stop now that they are in the team. They have to keep on working hard, developing their careers because it just keeps getting tougher.”
Marum said Eliab’s contract as well as Lo’s move to Sheffield, the “trial and train” stints that Kato Ottio (Canberra Raiders) and teenager Warren Glare (Cronulla Sharks) had secured, and forward Willie Minoga’s move to the Townsville Blackhawks boded well for PNG rugby league heading into the 2017 World Cup. The National
The PNG Prime Minister XIII squad for 2015 was announced on Monday.
The side is dominated by Digicel Cup players with champions Agmark Rabaul Gurias and Minor Premiers Snax Lae Tigers contributing five players each.
Only one player was picked from the zone championship. Tigers Mentor Stanley Tepend was selected as Head Coach, to be assisted by James Kops of Wamp Nga Mt Hagen Eagles.
The annual match against Australian will take place at the SJGS on September 26 under lights.
The full squad is:
Watson Boas (Agmark Gurias),
Radley Brawa (TNA Lions),
Sydney Fred (Lae Snax Tigers),
Benjamin Hetra (Hela Wigmen),
Andrew Ipi (Hela Wigmen),
Chris Jerry (Agmark Gurias),
Noel Joel (Lae Snax Tigers),
Philemon Kimisive (Goroka Lahanis),
David Loko (Lae Snax Tigers),
Sam Maniai (Northern Confederate),
Isaac Mell (Mendi Muruks),
Moses Meninga (Mt Hagen Eagles),
David Missian (Agmark Gurias),
Justin Olam (Lae Snax Tigers),
Daniel Pai (Agmark Gurias),
Sebastine Pandia (SNS Port Moresby Vipers),
Albert Patak (Agmark Gurias),
Junior Rau (Mt Hagen Eagles),
Enock Sine (TNA Lions),
Charlie Simon (Lae Snax Tigers).
Team officials are:
Stanley Tepend – Lae Snax Tigers (Head Coach),
James Kops – Mt Hagen Eagles (Assistant Coach)
George ToBata – Agmark Gurias (Trainer),
Toua Kohu – Southern Confederate (Assistant Trainer)
Jacob Angra (Manager)
THE Goroka Lahanis edged a better Agmark Gurias side 30-28 in “extra time” at the National Sports Institute in Goroka yesterday.
The match allegedly continued for five extra minutes, which saw Bernard Tatsim score the match-winner.
The match was an even-tussle in the opening 25 minutes as the visitors showed the Bintangor-sponsored team that they would not be soft touches.
It was Lahanis right wing Felix Tatsim Jr, who got his side on the board with a four-pointer.
Lahanis went in for another try after forward Steven Supa broke the line and an interchange of passes saw Spirro Mikaive score under the posts. Halfback Robin Soga converted for a 10-0 lead.
Gurias tightened their play and worked their way into Lahanis’ territory and a set later half John Ragi Jr scored an unconverted try his side to trail 10-4.
Soga scored his side’s third try off some individual brilliance. The No.7 chipped and picked up the scraps after a fumble by a Gurias player to race away.
Tatsim Jr converted and the Lahanis found themselves 16-4 in front.
Ragi Jr dragged his side back into the contest with his second four-pointer to narrow the gap to 16-10.
Konie Bernard got his side on level pegging with a try and Jason Missian conversion.
With the scores locked at 16-16, the home side was starting to doubt themselves.
An infringement by Gurias in their 22 saw Soga step up to slot the easy two on offer for an 18-16 lead.
Gurias captain Albert Patak got his side in front for the first time in the match at 22-18, with a try off the back of a strong forward surge.
Lahanis replied through Tatsim and Soga's boot to take back the lead 24-22.
Patak replied for the Gurias with a crucial try to reclaim the lead 28-24.
Soga pulled out a last-gasp play with a chip into open space for Tatsim to regather and score for a somewhat controversial 30-28 win. The National
LAE Tigers’ solid defence contributed to their 16-14 victory over the Port Moresby Vipers in their Digicel Cup Week 7 fixture at the Murray Barracks Oval yesterday.
The loss is the capital city side’s fifth in the season and keeps them winless and rooted to the bottom of the Eastern Pool.
The Vipers had added some topshelf talent for the home game with the inclusion of SP Hunters Adam Korave, Sebastian Pandia and former Kumul Glen Nami.
That counted for little as a high error rate put paid to any enterprising play the Vipers wanted to put on for their fans.
Stanley Tepend’s Tigers put on a commendable performance, showing a mix of enthusiasm and good execution in their sets to stay ahead of the Vipers.
In front of several thousand fans, the Lae Biscuit Company-sponsored side committed their own share of mistakes but had the sense to take whatever opportunities on offer while defending strongly over the course of the match.
Tigers’ second-rower David Loko played a vital role in the win, taking hit-ups in every set and defending aggressively to inspire his younger teammates to a valuable away win. The former Kumul and Hunters player was backed up well by his captain Sydniy Fred, Wei Mogi Junior, Bernard Lama, Ishmael Balkama in the visitors’ pack.
Tigers’ hooker Noel Joel was the unsung hero, with virtually every attacking play originating from a pass, a dummy or a call by the classy rake.
In the backline halves, Mafu Kales and Charlie Simon were solid with their enthusiastic three-quarters in Chris Martin and Pasu Awani.
Vipers’ trio Korave, Pandia, Nami and captain Richard Kambo at centre, toiled hard and put themselves in good positions throughout the match but continued to shoot themselves in the foot with errors.
Telix Kawage, Sebulon Ragi and fullback Ben Wemin tried hard but faced a committed and well-organised Tigers defence in the dying minutes.
Tigers were first to score when winger Robert Vuai went over in the corner, having out-paced a covering Pandia to get his side to a lead after 10 minutes.
Five-eighth Simon slotted the goal for a 6-0 lead.
Leonard Tarum’s side hit back in the 15th minute with a try to Pandia after a well-worked set move but Ragi missed the conversion and the home side trailed 6-4.
In the 23rd minute, Tigers reserve Nao Boge wrong-footed the defence to crash over for another four-pointer and Simon added the extras and lead was stretched to 12- 4.
The Vipers showed glimpses of their potential with a backline move in the 31st minute ending in Kambo forcing his way over the line.
Ragi kicked the goal to bring the margin to two points at 12-10 at halftime. The second 40 saw neither side put on the afterburners to break away.
Instead, the game descended into a series of mistakes brought about by poor ball control, stinging defence and a lack of focus.
A try a-piece had Tigers Awani crashing over in the 50th minute but the Stop n Shop-sponsored city franchise stayed within striking distance, with Brendon Gotuno giving his side a sniff with a try but Ragi missed the conversion that would have tied the scores. Results: Northwestern – Wigmen 34 Lions 14, Muruks 26 Mioks 24, Tumbe 11 Eagles 10; Eastern – Lahanis 30 Gurias 28, Vipers 14 Tigers 16. Bye: Isapea. Standings: NW – Lions 11, Muruks 10, Wigmen 8, Eagles 5, Enga Mioks 4, Waghi Tumbe 4; E – Tigers 12, Gurias 12, Lahanis 10, Isapea 8, Vipers 4. The National
THE opening round of the Digicel Cup saw the Enga Mioks beat defending champions the Hela Wigmen 18-14 in an evenly-contested match at Aipus Oval in Wabag yesterday.
Despite fielding an under-strength side the Wigmen competed well for most of the match and led 10-12 for most of the second half before being run down by a fast-finishing Mioks side urged on by the crowd.
Wigmen coach Andrew Andiki’s fears that his depleted side would struggle in the intense atmosphere of Wabag were unfounded as his men gave a good account of themselves and were led well by former Kumul Larsen Marabe.
In Kokopo, where the competition’s official kick off took place, the Agmark Gurias were a class above their Gulf Isapea rivals, winning 22-18 at Kalabond Oval.
The game was all but in the bag, with the Steven Nightingale-coach side 18-0 halfway through, but the Crocodiles proved their quality in 2015 with a comeback that nearly got them over the line.
Winger Chris Jerry was a standout for the home side, while Isapea hooker Junior Arova sparked the fight-back with a double early in the second half.
The game was the curtainraiser to the Queensland Cup clash between the PNG Hunters and the Mackay Cutters and did not disappoint the fans, with both sides giving as good as they got.
But in the end it was the East New Britons’ better execution and skill level that got them home.
In Mendi, a Muruks team packed with unknowns — their only name player was halfback and captain Joshua Molsi — handled the Mt Hagen Eagles featuring star winger Gary Lo 28-16, in an entertaining clash at the Joe Keviame Oval in Tente.
Lo, who had been drafted back into the Hunters squad earlier in the week, travelled to Kokopo on Friday to be assessed by coach Michael Marum and his staff for possible re-inclusion in the team.
The 22-year-old returned to the Eagles on Saturday and he, along with former Kumul forward George Moni, led the Western Highlands side to the Southern Highlands capital.
The pair played well but were held in check by a determined Mendi side, on the back of a man-of-the-match performance by prop Jackson Undi.
In Minj, Jiwaka got its first taste of semi-professional football in 15 years, with an estimated 3500 fans packing Minj Rugby League Oval to watch the Waghi Tumbe take the Simbu Lions.
The Lions came out victors, beating a Jiwaka side led by former Australia and New South Wales forward Anthony Lafranchi, 22-14.
The 34-year-old endeared himself to the Jiwaka fans with a try and several strong surges, while Governor William Tongap was reportedly pleased with the overall effort from the Tumbe.
Lions franchise owner Gerard Philip was said to be happy with the start his side made and tries to Andrew Sipi, Sonny Daing, Samuel Kapil and Charlie Kaipel set up the win. In Goroka, the Lahanis’ lack of experience was laid bare by the visiting Lae Tigers, who beat the Eastern Highlanders 28-12 at the National Sports Institute in the provincial capital, Goroka.
With the Port Moresby Vipers set to play their first match next week, the Digicel Cup opener in the Pacific Games year pushed up several names for the national nines squad with Jerry, Arova and Lions’ Sonny Daing and Undi putting in strong performances.
Results: Mioks 18 Wigmen 14, Muruks 28 Eagles 16, Lahanis 12 Tigers 28, Tumbe 14 Lions 22, Gurias 22 Isapea 18. The National
THE Lae Tigers engraved their name on the inaugural National Super 9s Cup after beating the Mendi Muruks 22-18 in the final in Lae yesterday.
The Tigers walked away with PNGRFL Chairman’s cup and K15,000 in prize money.
Tigers coach Stanley Tepend, pictured, said the win was the best way for the side to build up to the 2015 Digicel Cup season which starts next month.
In the plate final, Aroma Coast side Rovanama beat an experienced Enga Mioks team 12-10 in a closely contested game to win the plate final, while Wantoks Irupara Gaiva Kala stole the show beating invitational side, the Queensland Kokomos, in the bowl final when Steven Gia scored the match-winning try in the extra time for an 18-14 victory.
“We are happy with the result,” Tipend said.
“We went through the pool phase undefeated and finally taking out the inaugural cup by beating the Mendi Muruks is a great feeling,” tepend said.
Tepend said the national super nines concept was a great concept put out by the PNGRFL and the sponsors to get the top tier league started.
Competition manager Hubert Warupi said the biggest winners were the local leagues and associations around the country who got involved and worked hard to give their players a chance to be involved in a national competition over the last four weeks.
“The Digicel Cup competition is the highest level and the players are very good but for the last two days and four weekends before that the players from local leagues had shown that they have potential to match Digicel cup players,” Warupi said.
He said the PNGRFL initiative was a success and they would try to make it a permanent part of the calendar. The National
THE Mt Hagen Eagles have named their 30-man squad for the Digicel Cup.
The players are in camp in Mt Hagen preparing for the semi-professional competition.
Eagles chairman Bob Pakindi said he was excited by the talent in the side and was confident that 2015 would be a big improvement on their previous year, when they finished second last.
“I’m confident even though this year will be challenging but we have the talent to be competitive,” Pakindi said.
He said the Eagles had not been to the playoffs in three seasons but he was hoping for a change this year.
He commended coach James Kops for picking the province’s best talent and was sure the former Kumul would have the side firing for the Digicel Cup campaign in March.
Pakindi said with the support of major sponsor Wamp Nga Holdings and minor sponsors, the Eagles would rise to be one of the premiership contenders.
Kops said it was important the side played a different brand of football in 2015 and used the speed and talent it had in the back-line.
“We have been a finishing in the bottom half of the competition over the past seasons but I think this year will be different for us,” Kops said. Eagles: Daniel Wapa, Scott Francis, Elijah Peter, Junior Rau, Richard Andrias, Ali Kiku, Solo Kumin, Joe Joshua, David Kawage, Stanley Bata, Benzie Wakupa, Danny Aaron, Mosley Tika, Andy Jason, Alex Apa, Rex Opa, Noel Roika, Moses Meninga, Willie Guambo, Lionel Onki, Bryan Noki, Jason Mawa, Ken Wai, Micah Pia, Francis Bob, Justin Nentepa, Oks Jacob, Steven Dos, Robin Kerua, Nixon Put.
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Downer Rugby League 9s World Cup
- PNG Kumuls 0 Australia 26
- PNG Kumuls 18 New Zealand Kiwis 18
- PNG Kumuls 23 USA Tomahawks 10
Pacific Test Results
201 9 - PNG Kumuls 28 Great Britain Lions 10
2019 - Fiji Bati 22 PNG Kumuls 20
2019 - PNG Kumls 6 Samoa 24
2018 - PNG Kumuls 26 Fiji Bati 14
2017 - PNG Kumuls 32 Cook Islands 22
2016 - PNG Kumuls 24 Fiji Bati 22
2015- Fiji Bati 22 PNG Kumuls 22
World Cup Results
Round 1 : PNG Kumuls 50 Wales 6
Round 2: PNG Kumuls 14 Ireland 6
Round 3 PNG Kumuls 64 USA 0
Quarter Finals : PNG Kumuls 6 England 36