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Jim Beam Jets
break through for their first win
The Sydney Airport Jets Jim Beam squad, many of whom would qualify to play in an Under 21 competition, won their first match of the season last Saturday. The Jets defeated Central Coast outfit Ourimbah 27-26 in a drama-packed encounter, with players on report from both teams. The Newtown boys battled courageously to hang onto their narrow lead with only eleven players on the field at one stage, and proved they will be of real nuisance value in the remaining competition rounds.
Teenage front-rower Aaron Sweeney, rapidly becoming somewhat of a cult figure in the Jim Beam Cup, was voted players' player for his fearless and vigorous display. Former Bulldog Clayton Sellings collected two tries and calmly slotted over the long range field goal that proved to be the difference between the two sides. Wingers John Sinisa and Dicky Veramu and centre Matt Rose also impressed in the Jets' backline. The win was a great credit to coach Trevor Schodel and his team who have all worked so hard in recent weeks.
In the NSW Premier League, the Sydney Airport Jets faced a tough assignment travelling to Canberra to take on the Raiders, the competition leaders and red-hot premiership favourites. Despite being decimated by injuries and fielding a makeshift backline, the Jets scored early in the game through some precision work between captain Craig Field and big Tabua Cakacaka. With an even share of possession in the first half, Newtown added three more tries to lead 20-10 at the break.
The Jets led 26-14 ten minutes into the second half, but with the Raiders beginning to dominate possession, the home team's quick play the balls and relentless roll-on style took full command. While the final score was 45-26 to the Raiders, Jets coach Col Murphy was quick to praise the fighting efforts of his patched-up side against a team of full-time professionals, and that the final margin was not a true indication of the genuine contest between these teams. Best for the Jets were Cakacaka and Field, hooker Luke Sant, forwards Bill Najarrin and Joe Lichaa, and backs Ben Tickle and Dean Loder. The Sydney Airport Jets return to Henson Park this Saturday (July 12), taking on The Entrance in the Jim Beam Cup match at 1.15 pm, and the Sydney Roosters in the NSW Premier League at 3.00 pm.