Morobe sevens feast attracts 16 teams

Normal, Sports

The National, Friday 12th April, 2013

 LAE’s SCRUM main field comes alive  tomorrow and Sunday as the Morobe Rugby Union host the annual trans-Highway 7s.

Competition coordinator Robin Tarere said 16 teams had been listed to compete with defending champions Kimbe Rebels headlining the tournament.

The national sevens champions are the only genuine heavyweights in the competition and are expected to feature prominently on day two.

Tarere said the tournament was delayed by several weeks due to logistics and funding but with the support of SCRUM (Supporters Club Rugby Union Morobe), the annual fixture would go ahead.

Tarere said a total prize pool of K10,000 was on offer with the cup winners to recieve the largest share.

He said that the aim of the Trans Highway 7s was to generate interest in the rugby community as well as attract more talent to have a taste of the sport in the shortened format.

“The Lae teams are well-prepared for this and have been counting down the days to this event so it should be a good one,” Tarere said.

“Kimbe Rebels will start as favourites but there are plenty of teams here that would be happy to knock them off.

“We are anticipating another great show and we will also have the presence of national 15s and 7s coaches Allan Manning and Warren Jennings, so that will add to the weekend of rugby.”

Taere said the SCRUM annual luncheon would be held today at the Lae Golf Club, starting off a great weekend of rugby for the city.

He thanked the sponsors for making the event possible and said Morobe Rugby was lucky to have companies willing to help the code.

Seeto Kui Group of Companies, Prima Smallgoods, Lae Biscuit Company, Lings Freezer, Trukai Rice, Niugini Tablebirds and Albion Engineering were the businesses that are helping in cash and kind to stage the event.

In latest news, Oro and Bougainville pulled out of the tournament and will be replaced by Mendi 2 and Goroka 2.

Port Moresby, normally a participant will not send a team this year.

The teams that will compete in the Trans Highway 7s are Lae-based teams Defence, Sapers, Royals, Hope Warriors, Sagasec (Markham), Harlequins, Pirates, Morobe Development side, Viking  and Dogs.

The visiting teams are Goroka 1 and 2 (Eastern Highlands), Mendi 1 and 2 (Southern Highlands), Kimbe Rebels (West New Britain), Madang Madgauns (Madang) and Kapu Polu (Central).

The competition is divided into four pools of four with the round robin fixtures tomorrow and the plate, bowl and cup playoffs on Sunday.