Manurewa finish on a high as the Tigers claim minor Premiership
02 Dec, 2020
The Manurewa Raiders have finished their season on a high with an historic win over the Waitakere Magpies.
In the remaining games, the North Shore Tigers have claimed the Minor Premiership as they defeated University, while Mt Roskill thumped the Howick Hornets.
North Shore vs University
The North Shore Tigers wrapped up the AAFL minor premiership with a hard fought win against reigning premiers University.
With a home semi final already locked in, the Tigers were looking to go one better in front of their annual Ladies Day crowd.
Conditions were wet and windy for kick off resulting in a low scoring opening quarter. Both teams struggled to get clean hands on the footy and neither team were able to capitalise.
The rain eased in the second and the pressure was constant in the midfield. Both teams kept a tight lock on ground balls. Josh Cunliffe and Dale Johnson were always under pressure but were well supported by ruckman Robert Harris and forwards Justin du Toit and Mitch Ryan. Still very close at half time with less than a kick between the 2 sides.
Ben Hick and Seb Serrano were the two standouts for University.
The Tigers came out with a renewed energy and looked to get the game in their terms. The Tigers backline that has performed well all year held strong and were able to shut down the majority of attacks. Taylor Potter and Xavier Bryham both had stellar performances while Mitch Ryan continued to move around the ground and create space.
The Tigers came out the better of the teams in the fourth looking to stretch the 5 point lead. 3 quick goals into the wind and the game was wrapped up along with the minor premiership. Xavier Rice was everywhere in the last and every Tiger dug deep to get the win.
Tyrone Stubbs’ (University) battle in the ruck for most of the day was impressive considering his lack of experience in that position.
“Great game against Uni today and good for us to get a win over them. It’s been a big 8 days with 3 games so happy to take 12 points from those games.
Semi’s next week against the Magpies who will be hurting after losing to Manurewa but we’ll go in with confidence after sealing the minor premiership. Thanks to all our supporters for getting behind Ladies Day.” Dan Pearce, Captain North Shore Tigers.
“Shore have proven themselves the team to beat for much of the season. Congratulations to them on achieving the minor premiership. Hopefully we see them in a couple of weeks time for the big one.” Chris Mundell, University.
Howick vs Mt Roskill
Mt Roskill got off to a slow start against Howick as the Hornets kicked the first goal of the game after 30 seconds.
That was the highlight for Howick as Mt Roskill got themselves into gear and ran away with a big win kicking goal after goal for the next three quarters.
Saint’s midfielders Matt Dalla-Libera, Mitch Weir, Tristan Burnett and Michael Boyce were winning all the ball in the middle and delivering nicely to Dan Archer, Andy McKenzie and Brendan Clark in the forward line.
The Hornets were restricted to only 4 goals for the game as the Saint’s defence in Al Maisey and Tommy Burke worked hard all game.
“Great to finish the regular season with a big score. We’re looking forward to see how the other results have gone today and who we will play next weekend in the semis.” Patrick Gibbs, Mt Roskill.
Manurewa vs Waitakere
The Manurewa Raiders were pumped up for their final home game at Mountfort Park and boy did they deliver.
The Raiders had a set game plan from the first bounce and kicked an early goal through Tou Dodds. Small forward Jeevan Croft followed it up with his first for the game as the Raiders were hot early on.
With the wind swirling, the Raiders worked this well to kick 2 goals in the 2nd quarter to take a 2 goal lead into half time. King Vuniyayawa had a strong first half in the midfield.
The Raiders maintained the 2 goal lead in the 3rd quarter and wanted to finish strong.
In the final term, Waitakere kicked an early goal to bring them back into the game before Lachlan Collier stretched the Raiders lead back to 2 goals.
The Magpies were attacking hard but were unable to reduce the lead as the Raiders claimed their second win of the season.
Manurewa wanted everything more than the Magpies and it showed on the scoreboard at the final whistle.
“What a way to finish the season. Much deserved after the work that the guys have put in this season. Good way to finish 2020 and the standard has been set for 2021 now for the momentum to continue. Cheers to Waitakere for the game and good luck with the semi-finals.” Jordan Thompson, Manurewa.
“Never good to lose a game of football, but it was a hard game, played fair and with plenty of players getting a good run. We didn’t adapt as well as we should have with the conditions, but good to learn from it. Some brilliant football from Manurewa and congratulations to them. Looking forward to next week. Shore have been an incredibly well drilled team under the tactically shrewd Sean Mayes and they will be very tough to beat.” Steve Howard, Waitakere Head Coach.
Story – AAFL.co.nz