Local Scene NZRL National Premiership 2018

Discussion in 'NZ Domestic Rugby League' started by Defence, Sep 16, 2018.

  1. Defence
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    Defence 1st Grade Fringe

    Rehashed New Zealand Rugby League National Premiership to be televised
    21:30, Jul 28 2016
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    FIONA GOODALL/PHOTOSPORT.NZ
    Counties Manukau's Sione Feao in action against Canterbury last year.
    League fans will be able to watch the new-look New Zealand Rugby League National Premiership from the comfort of their own home when it kicks off in September.

    All seven games in the premiership, which will feature the Akarana Falcons, Wellington Orcas, Counties Manukau Stingrays and Canterbury Bulls, will be televised live on Sky Sport.

    The rehashed competition kicks off on September 11 with a double-header at Auckland's Mt Smart Stadium.

    Wellington will play the Akarana Falcons in the opener, before the defending champion Counties Manukau Stingrays play the Canterbury Bulls.

    Each team will play the other three sides once, before the top two go head-to-head in the final at Mt Smart Stadium on October 1.

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    The revamped national programme will also see four teams - Northern, Central, Southern and a development team - compete for the second tier championship.

    The championship winning team will play the fourth-placed premiership side for promotion next year. It will also be televised.


    NZRL Premiership draw
    September 11: Akarana Falcons v Wellington Orcas, Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland, 2pm; Counties Manukau Stingrays v Canterbury Bulls, Mt Smart Stadium, 4pm.
    September 16: Akarana Falcons v Counties Manukau Stingrays, Mt Smart Stadium, 7.30pm.
    September 18: Canterbury Bulls v Wellington Orcas, AMI Stadium, Christchurch, 4pm.
    September 25: Wellington Orcas v Counties Manukau Stingrays, Wellington, 2pm; Canterbury Bulls v Akarana Falcons, AMI Stadium, 4pm.
    October 1: Grand final, Mt Smart Stadium, 6pm; Promotion/relegation
     
  2. Defence
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    ROCKCOTE BULLS EDGE STINGRAYS IN OPENING-ROUND THRILLER
    September 16, 2018 / Link has been hidden. Please Register to view.
    The Rockcote Canterbury Bulls have kicked off their 2018 NZRL National Premiership campaign with an outstanding win, edging out Counties Manukau Stingrays 20-18 at Mount Smart Stadium.

    Canterbury led by two points at halftime but needed a late try from barnstorming winger Ben Ilalio and an ice-cool conversion from captain James Baxendale to snatch a vital result and take a huge step towards the October 6 final.

    The Rockcote Bulls got off to a flying start, marching downfield on the back of an opening-minute penalty before 19-year-old halfback debutant Brad Campbell fired a beautiful long ball out for centre Will Tafua, who used his big frame to power over out wide.

    Baxendale drilled a booming conversion from the sideline for 6-0.

    The Stingrays wasted little time replying, with burly prop Connor Purcell muscling over form close-range, but the Rockcote Bulls regained the lead through a Dene Grace try in the 11th minute, the Hornby centre slicing through off a deft pass from wily Linwood five-eighth Toi Sepuloni.

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    The Bulls celebrate Dene Grace’s first-half try.

    Baxendale edged his side out to 14-6 with an 18th-minute penalty as Canterbury continued to dominate territory on the back of excellent go-forward and the precise kicking of Campbell and Sepuloni.

    Counties Manukau struck back through lightning fullback Geronimo Doyle and the southerners began to have trouble with their opponents’ second-phase play.

    Both sides tightened up their defence at the back-end of the half and the scoreline remained an evenly-poised 14-12 in favour of the Rockcote Bulls at the break.

    Canterbury had several attacking opportunities on the Counties line early in the second half but failed to cash in. The Stingrays’ poor handling ensured the Rockcote Bulls were put under little pressure, however.

    But it was the Stingrays who broke the impasse in the 63rd minute and took the lead for the first time in the match. Rangy winger Edward Kosi flew high to catch a high attacking kick and dive over for a spectacular try.

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    Canterbury regroup after conceding the lead for the first time with 16 minutes left.

    Time appeared to be running out on Canterbury as Counties found their rhythm, but Stingrays winger George Edwards’ fumble of a regulation catch allowed Rockcote Bulls opposite Ilalio to streak away for the leveller against the run of play.

    Baxendale calmly slotted the angled conversion to put the Rockcote Bulls in front 20-18 with six minutes left.

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    Bulls winger Ben Ilalio runs away for the match-winning try.

    Canterbury had a couple of chances to seal the result but came up just short, before repelling a late Counties raid to clinch a momentous first-up victory.

    There were outstanding contributors across the park, but none were better for the Rockcote Bulls than feisty No.7 Campbell, whose busy running game, support play and grass-cutting defence proved a thorn in the Stingrays’ side all afternoon.

    Versatile tyro Cyrus Timo-Latu also had a blinder off the bench for the victors.

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    Canterbury halfback Brad Campbell, 19, takes a well-earned drink during an outstanding debut display.

    The Rockcote Bulls play their remaining round-robin games against Waikato (September 22) and Akarana (September 29) at Christchurch’s Rugby League Park, giving them a handy advantage in their bid for a spot in the NZRL Premiership final.

    NZRL NATIONAL PREMIERSHIP ROUND 1 – Rockcote Canterbury Bulls 20 (Will Tafua, Dene Grace, Ben Ilalio tries; James Baxendale 4 goals) defeated Counties Manukau Stingrays 18 (Connor Purcell, Geronimo Doyle, Edward Kosi tries; Drew Radich 3 goals) at Mount Smart Stadium, 2pm, Sunday, September 16.

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  3. mt.wellington
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    mt.wellington TRUST THE PROCESS? Contributor

    Jeez I didn't even know this was on. Could have been watching some live footy today.

    Anyone hear about the region of origin concept???
     
  4. razzrillinger
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    razzrillinger 1st Grade Fringe

    Yeah seems like the Auckland/NZ rep stuff gets lost in the post at times.
     
  5. Defence
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    Defence 1st Grade Fringe

    Would help if these threads showed up on the main page- if this comp can't get any promotion on a site like this it's got no show in the general community.
     
  6. Defence
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    ROCKCOTE BULLS PUT WAIKATO TO THE SWORD IN ROUND 2 ROMP
    September 22, 2018 / Link has been hidden. Please Register to view.
    The Rockcote Canterbury Bulls ran out emphatic 52-6 winners over Waikato in Round 2 of the NZRL National Premiership, putting an error-strewn period behind them to pile on six tries in the last 20 minutes at Rugby League Park in Christchurch.

    After upsetting Counties Manukau six days earlier, Canterbury’s landslide victory puts them in the box seat for a spot in their first final since 2015.

    The home side led 16-0 in even time but a lack of discipline with the ball at the back-end of the first half and the start of the second half made for a scrappy spectacle. However, the Rockcote Bulls’ sizzling finish to the game provides confidence ahead of next Saturday’s blockbuster against Akarana and a likely rematch with the Falcons in the October 6 decider.

    Halfback Brad Campbell was again magnificent, fullback Tauvale Tauvale was a constant menace to the Waikato defence and scored two tries and set one up, Ben Ilalio notched a barnstorming double in a strong performance, and Paul Sauni had two try-assists while fellow forward-pack veterans Rulon Nutira, James Baxendale, Alex Todd and Alani Kakoi all had big games.

    Canterbury withstood an early attacking barrage from Waikato, stoutly defending a couple of sets on their own try-line.

    The Rockcote Bulls drew first blood in the eighth minute when a beautiful cut-out ball from the 19-year-old Campbell put Ilalio into space. The giant winger put his name on the scoresheet for the second straight week with a pair of fends and outstanding footwork.

    The hosts raced to a 12-0 lead in their ensuing set, Paul Sauni slicing through the line and putting away Tauvale for the try.

    Tauvale had a brace at the 17-minute mark, producing a great step and a powerful fend to leave the Waikato defence in ruins.

    But weight of possession eventually told for the visitors, responding through fullback Duane Sykes on the back of a third line dropout and a penalty.

    The remainder of the first half was dominated by errors from both teams, but the Rockcote Bulls struck a crucial blow in the 37th minute to take a 22-6 advantage into the break. Dynamic interchange hooker Cyrus Timo-Latu beat five defenders on a stunning dummy-half run to the try-line.

    Handling let Canterbury down badly in the opening 20 minutes of the second stanza but Waikato were unable to capitalise on a torrent of possession in good field position.

    The Rockcote Bulls regrouped in the 61st minute via an Alani Kakoi try, the Linwood rake barging over from close-range. Baxendale’s fourth conversion made it 28-6.

    Waikato’s defensive floodgates reopened from that point as Canterbury crossed with their next possession. Slick short-side passing from Kakoi and Paul Sauni produced a try for Matt Sauni, who came into the side at centre for Dene Grace (family bereavement) in the only change to last week’s line-up.

    Will Yeow dotted down with 11 minutes to go off a brilliant cross-field kick from Toi Sepuloni, before Baxendale capped a wonderful performance with a strong solo try.

    The onslaught continued in the 76th minute when Tauvale made another searing break and positioned the livewire Campbell for a well-deserved four-pointer. Ben Ilalio chalked up the Rockcote Bulls’ half-century by backing up a Kakoi dart and reaching out for his second.

    A win by the Falcons over the Stingrays in Saturday’s other Premiership clash would guarantee the Rockcote Bulls’ passage to the final with one round remaining.

    Rockcote Canterbury Bulls 52 (Tauvale Tauvale 2, Ben Ilalio 2, Cyrus Timo-Latu, Alani Kakoi, Matt Sauni, Will Yeow, James Baxendale, Brad Campbell tries; Baxendale 6 goals) defeated Waikato 6 (Duane Sykes try; Hayden Karena goal) at Rugby League Park, Christchurch. Halftime: Canterbury 22-6. Referee: Chris McMillan. Touch judges: Manu Varney and Jason Wilson.
     
  7. ramraider78
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    ramraider78 1st Grade Fringe

    The new jersey sets look good on the players, not a bad crowd on day 1 and day 2. A few dead rubbers this week in the grades, overall the new concept/format is better than what they had in the past IMO. A few of the grades are drained of rep players because of the different fixtures coming up e.g. Nat comp in rotorua and NZ Res 18's vs Toa 18's.

    TBH I think if Counties play Canterbury again they should beat them, the back line slicker IMO one thing I gave the Bulls was the grunty forward pack they have. I was suprised Counties beat Akarana but it's that old saying, It's when to win lol