By MELTON PAIS
The 67th grand final of the Port Moresby Rugby League will be staged at the National Football Stadium on Sunday.
The decider sees the foundation club Paga Panthers and recent additions to the competition Hohola Flies battle it out for the right to be called champions of arguably one of the country’s leading leagues.
The Panthers last made a grand final in 2010 but the Flies head into their first finale after entering the competition six years ago.
The Paga Panthers, which took their name from Paga Hill in Moresby’s town area, was established in 1949, and is one of the foundation clubs of the nation’s capital according to PRL committee member David Silovo.
Silovo said the club had a proud history having produced Kumuls and even had a hand developing cuurent Hunters and Kumuls coach Michael Marum.
“Players in the likes of current Panthers backer Richard Wagambie and Kumul coach Michael Marum were once Paga players,” Silovo said.
“At the moment Paga have a pretty good line with the likes of Hunters star Stargroth Amean as well as Roger Laka and Joe Bruno, who are with the Hunters coaching staff.
“It’s a case of the old versus the new, with the well-established Paga against the Flies from Hohola.”
The women’s grand final takes place on Saturday an will be part of the lead-up fixtures to the PNG-Australia PMs 13 clash.
Paga take on defending champions Royals in a match that will be played infront an expected full houise at the 15,000 seat facility.
In the Under-20 final on Sunday, Brothers defend their title against Souths.
PRL chairman Dr James Naipao said the weekend’s game at NFS main oval would see all seats in the stadium be filled by city league fans coming to watch the A grade final with tickets selling at K5 for the outer stands and K10 for the grand stand. “We anticipate a great day of football and hope the fans turn out in numbers to celebrate rugby league and the positive effect the sport has had on the communities in the city,” Naipao said.
He said with the clubs committed to having a trouble free final he was confident their fans and club officials would conduct themselves in the best possible manner.
Naipao thanked all the stakeholders and sponsors of the competition for their support.
By MELTON PAIS