Jeff Dickinson-Fox reviews the campaign which saw Melbourne Storm crowned premiers in 2017.
3 days ago
Grey Lynn Park was the venue of a try fest on Saturday afternoon when Marist Richmond and Manurewa met in round 7 of the Bartercard Cup.
In all sixteen tries were scored in an expansive game of rugby league. In what was expected to be a reasonably close encounter, the home side proved to be far too strong for the Manurewa Marlins, scoring twelve of those tries to the visitors four and running out winners by 63 - 18.
Marist Richmond produced a game of football that had power pace and a plethora of ball skills that moved them into third place on the table.
Standout performers for the winners were front rower Alistair Karaka, second rower Karl Guttenbeil and half Jamie Cook who controlled the game perfectly in the second half.
Sixteen-year-old Marcus Perenara also had a significant role to play at stand-off and was well rewarded with two tries of his own.
Manurewa opened the scoring in each half with tries but were no match for the Brothers team in full flight.
With a 30 -12 lead by half time it was basically all over for the Marlins who fought gamely throughout but on the day were no match for the winners.
On Sunday at Ericsson Stadium Hibiscus Coast were back to their usual form when they beat a game Glenora side by 32 - 18. The Raiders welcomed back fullback Daniel Floyd to the fold after he missed their previous game, which was their upset loss toTaranaki two weeks ago and produced three tries for his team.
Meanwhile Mt Albert traveled to Christchurch to take on the Canterbury Bulls. The last time Mt Albert were down there they game away with a good old fashioned hiding. This was on the minds of the management in their preparation for this game.
However the Lions were able to confirm their place on top of the ladder as they went to the half time break 18 - 0 in front and turned up the pressure in the second half by racing away to a 48 - 0 win in impressive style. The Bulls didn't lie down and defended their line gallantly to no avail.
Highlight of the day for Mt Albert was utility back Kelvin Wright turning out for his 50th appearance in the Bartercard Cup. That means Wright has played in every game of this competition since it was incepted. A remarkable effort from this player.
Next week we see the battle of the top two teams, Mt Albert and Hibiscus Coast, in what could be a forerunner to the grand final later in the year.
This should be a top class game of footie between these two very good sides.