The National, Tuesday, May 17, 2011
TOYOTA Enga Mioks’ defence was the deciding factor of their first victory in the 2011 Digicel Cup challenge on Sunday.
Pinning the Lae Snax Tigers in their own 20m zone in the first 20 minutes and posting a try through five-eighth Sova Milfred in the fifth minute was a massive turnaround in form to eventually walk away crunching Tigers 30-18.
Tigers had themselves to blame with their poor ball handling and missed conversions for vital points.
The loss is the second at home turf.
The first one was against Structural Bridging Systems Ltd (SBSL) Mendi Muruks the previous weekend.
As in their maiden clash against Mendi Muruks, the clash against Mioks proved to be another toothless performance for the Tigers patriotic crowd of over 4, 000.
The defence on the far corner, near the Tigers billboard was ono-existent as two ranging tries emerged through that end to give the visitors the last laugh and shattered any hopes of Tigers getting a home win.
Things looked promising for the Tigers but they gave away too much territory and possession to the Engans in the second half who scored four tries to one with Mioks Lae-resident own Junior Balkawa prove too much for his home town boys.
Sova Milfred and skipper David Loko collected a try each in the first half and extended in the second half through Balkawa, David Inagafa (twice) and Charles Philip.
They crossed over for a total of six tries while hosts bagged four with three in the first half.
The first half tries were through hooker Dama Philip and centres James Meninga and Mark Mexico.
Mexico’s visit to the try line brought back a little confidence when they were trailing 18-24 but when Inagafa sprinted 60m, it brought the whole house down.
Tigers were sent packing when Philip cross-over under the post to give coach Timothy Lepa a valuable win away from home.
Lepa said the road from Wabag to Lae was windy and they had to negotiate many steep hills but it paid off well with their first competition points.