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The Sydney Airport Jets claimed their first win of the Premier League season in defeating Manly-Warringah 30-16, in the match played at Brookvale Oval on Easter Sunday. This might not have been the prettiest of wins, but the final score probably understates the extent to which Newtown dominated the game. Newtown led 12-4 at the break, after the Sea Eagles had opened the scoring with a soft try in the sixth minute. Taffy Nicolas and Alf Duncan scored the Jets first half tries, in a session where the Sydney Airport Jets had failed to capitalise on several other scoring opportunities. The Jets parcelled up the match in the third quarter of the game, with centre Luke Hession scoring his try on the end of terrific leadup work across the backline, and through further well-engineered tries to Duncan and Nicolas. Leading by 28-4 with seventeen minutes remaining, the Jets appeared to bundy off, allowing Manly to narrow the margin to 28-16 with eight minutes to play. No doubt at this point many Newtown fans had unpleasant flashbacks to the infamous Manly match at Henson Park last year. A late penalty goal to Troy Barnes saw the Jets home by 30-16. The Sydney Airport Jets forwards laid the groundwork for this victory, with quality performances from Bill Najarrin, Zoran Ilijoski, Tabua Cakacaka, Troy Barnes, Lee Trasler and Aaron Trinder. Chris Williams tormented the Sea Eagles defences with his dashes from dummy half. Alf Duncan maintained his terrific form in 2003, bringing his try scoring tally to five in two rounds. Shaun Laurie, Taffy Nicolas and Nathan Marles also impressed. While no one would deny there were many rough edges and areas for improvement in this performance, it was still very gratifying to claim this away win. The Jim Beam Cup match set down against The Entrance on Saturday was postponed to a date to be announced, due to the waterlogged state of Henson Park. The Sydney Airport Jets travel to the south western and north western extremities of the metropolitan area for their away games this week.
In the Premier League, Newtown plays Western Suburbs at Campbelltown Stadium on Sunday, April 27, with the kick off timed for 2.30 pm. In the Jim Beam Cup, Newtown meets Windsor at the Windsor Sports Complex on Saturday, April 26, with this match due to start at 7.00 pm.