Brothers Win Division 2 Reserve Grade Grand Final
Congratulations to our Ressies team for taking our the 2019 division 2 Grand Final, defeating Southern Lions 29 to 27 in a game that saw multiple lead changes and another storming come back late in the game from our boys.
The game started with Southern Lions crossing the line early however a swift hit back from a well-run scrum move saw Connor Allen run 40 meters to score in the corner. Taane Phillips kicked the sideline conversion to make the score 7 to 5 to the Brothers. Some great work after a Lions error saw the Brothers counter attack shift into top gear with some great work from Maikali Rabaro and Connor Allen setting up Heinrich Rass who broke through multiple tackles and out sprinted the cover defense to score in the corner. Brothers lead 12 to 5.
Lions struck a big blow with a long range try of their own as their outside backs continued to cause the Brothers defense headaches and bring the score to 12 to 10. At the 23 minute mark the Southern Lions flanker was red carded for a very nasty tip tackle that saw the brothers captain Ryan King flipped upside down and driven head first into the turf. Errors were starting to creep into the game and would see the game go back and forth, on the stroke of half time the Lions struck a mighty blow with a long range try which saw the Lions take the lead 15 to 12 at the Break.
With the breeze at their backs and against a 14 man Southern Lions team, Brothers were very confident of a positive result but they knew it would be a battle against a very determined Lions outfit. Lions were first to put points on with a try under the posts, the conversion was successful and the Lions now held a commanding lead 22 to 12 and had the momentum as they continue to mount pressure on the Brothers. The Brothers set piece had been dominant all game and this was the catalyst for the momentum swing back to the Brothers with a solid line out win and strong maul, the Brothers shifted the ball wide to Porikapa Tukaki to create a half break & with quick recycle for Taane Phillips to crash overflow the line for a much needed try. The conversion was un successful Brothers were down 22 to 17. Lions struck back with a well worked line out move that saw their prop crash over in the corner. Lions re-established a 10 point lead Heading into the final 15 minutes of the game. Brothers lifted to another level as they started to take charge, their defense had lifted, led by Dylan Ngatai, & Cyahn Tukaki as they wrestled back momentum. Another dominant Line Out win put the Brothers on the front foot as they made the gain line with multiple phases and strong carries from Glenn Potoi, Tamati Timoko, Porikapa Tukaki & Tiago Valentim. The next phase found a barnstorming Tamati Timoko who broke through the Lions defense to run 35 meters and crash through the cover defense to score a critical try and bring them within striking trailing 22 to 27 with 10 to play. The Brothers forwards had taken control of the game through set piece and with some powerful carries. Rickus Strauss broke the line and charged 35 meters down field to have the Brothers back on the attack deep in the Lions half. More quick ball had the Lions defense in tatters and infringing at the breakdown. A quick tap and a determined run from Glenn Potoi who broke tackle after tackle as he drove to the line and score a fantastic try to draw level. Sam Commins stepped up to slot the conversion and give the Brothers the lead with 5 minutes to play.
Errors from both sides saw possession change hands and with the Lions now moving up the field, Brothers discipline needed to be perfect so they didn’t give away penalties in range. Lions controlled possession well as they mounted raid after raid on the Brothers line, evey time being met by determined defense, the game was there to be one. Lions took the ball into contact and with bodies flying in from both sides it became unplayable and a scrum was awarded to Lions. This would be the last play on the game and an opportunity for the Brothers scrum to win the tight head and win the game. Brothers dominated the scrum driving the 7 man Lions pack backwards however as it wheeled the ref blew for a reset. One last effort to dominate their scrum was required & the Brothers loaded and drove the Lions pack backwards as they destroyed their scrum and were rewarded with the penalty. Connor Allen took the penalty and immediately kicked the ball out to end the game. Congratulations to captain Ryan King, coach Antonio Gerber, team manager Clive King and to the entire playing squad.