Hela Wigmen force draw in Kundiawa

Main Stories, Sports

The National, Monday, May 9, 2011

By ZACHERY PER in Kundiawa
KONGO Coffee Warriors and HelaWigman fought out an even battle before a packed crowd of supporters in Kundiawa to end 4-4 yesterday at Dixon Oval.
Prior to the kick off, the crowd of spectators, officials and supporters held a minute silence in respect to   Kundiawa-Gembogl MP Joe Mek Teine who passed away a fortnight ago.
Warriors skipper and new recruit Kumul forward Sigfred Gande, veteran prop Paulus Mondo and livewire centre Garnet Auwo added fire to Warriors in both attack and defence.
Auwo was the only try scorer for the host in the 38th minute leaving Warriors to take a shaky 4-0 lead into the break.
The Wigmen boosted with experienced hands in the likes of skipper Larsen Marabe, Nixon Kolo, Benny Pamunda, Johnson Kuike, Jessie Joe Parker , Charles Onguglo, Michael Mark and Richard Kambo could not crack the Warriors resolute defence  and the match looked headed for a homeside win.
Warriors managed to dominate Wigmen in territory for most part of the first half, however they failed to convert the opportunity into points.
A neat 40-20 kick by Warriors five-eighth Francis Paniu in the 36th minute saw Auwo go in after some  enterprising play in the opposition 20m zone.
The conversion attempt by fullback Joel Ambrose failed.
Warriors, who are in their second year of the intercity competition,  played solidly despite having lost several players in the off-season and matched the more illustrious names in the Wigmen team.
Halftime brought some respite for the visitors and also saw Lands and Physical Planning minister Lucas Dekena presenting K20,000 to Warriors management.
The presentation was complemented by a Chimbu music sensation Tom Lari who performed live, singing Warriors theme song.
Wigman were finally saved by Onguglo when he crossed over in the corner for an unconverted try 55th minute to tie the scores at 4-4.
Wigmen’s strong comeback in the second half was repelled by Warriors determined and desperate defence by Ambrose, Auwo, Sonny Daing, David Jones, Paniu, Thomas Kumgi, Mondo, Nathan Hoyato, Gande, Otto Sam and Andrew Sipil.
Warriors chairman Jerry Kapka commended his boys performance saying they were playing against a side full of Kumuls.
He predicted that this was a sign of a successful season ahead for the Warriors.