By ELIZABETH VUVU
PNG rugby league legend Marcus Bai has challenged Agmark Gurias coach, Michael Marum, club administration officials and sponsors to provide the Kumuls team next year with five players from New Guinea Islands region.
Speaking during a radio interview from Gold Coast on Wednesday, he said Marum had to employ players from rural areas in the NGI who had a lot of speed and the Agmark Gurias club was in place for this exact reason.
He said if he could do it from a local competition in West New Britain, then Marum should take on his challenge seriously to realise something positive.
He gave an example of Boas Ruru, who was a fast player but questioned how smart and aggressive he could play.
Bai, who expressed disappointment with Marum’s selection of players in the Gurias team which did not include a lot of boys from the New Britain island, questioned their whereabouts.
Utility forward Pidi Tongap was the only native New Guinea islander to make the Kumuls this year but Bai felt there should have been more representation from the region.
He said Gurias needed players not only with real pace and size but who could score tries when given the slightest chance.
He said Gurias needed more players like ex-Kumuls Lipirin Palangat known for his speed and James Kapia and looking at the Kumuls team for this year, he did not see many NGI players.
Bai said he was frustrated as he wanted to contribute his knowledge and skill with PNGRFL but could not due to family obligations but has planned to ask WNB governor and administrator to form a team to help Rabaul Gurias.
He said leaders had asked him to form a team in Kimbe, due to the population but he was still looking for club administrators.
Bai said he admired the Gurias on how their administration worked which was why they were well set up with great support the corporate community.
He said in WNB, support was excellent but there was no good club administrators.
Bai said he was willing to leave his family to travel back to PNG and coach but things had to be run professionally.
He said before clubs were established, there had to be a junior development programme such as in ENB.