Tigers aim up for title defence


THE Digicel Cup season will kick off on Sunday with double-headers in Port Moresby and Lae while Goroka’s Sir Danny Leahy Oval and Aipus Oval in Wabag will host a game each.
Moni Plus-sponsored Port Moresby Vipers and Gulf Isou will host Mt Hagen Eagles and Waghi Tumbe respectively at the National Football Stadium.
Defending champions Lae Tigers will host Central Dabaris while Mendi Muruks faces Kimbe Cutters at the Lae Rugby League Ground.
The 2020 premiers Hela Wigmen will face a tough battle against the Bintangor-sponsored Lahanis who will look to get their season off on a winning note. It will not be easy for visitors Rabaul Gurias when they face Enga Mioks in Wabag.
Lae Tigers captain Roy Kela said during the season launch at the National Football Stadium yesterday the Tigers were ready to kick off their premiership defence with a win.
“We have been training since January and the players are ready to face the Dabaris,” said Kela, who has won four premierships with the Lae Biscuit Company-sponsored side so far.
“It’s a new era for us with premiership-winning coach Stanley Tepend joining the SP Hunters as an assistant coach.
“But I am confident in the leadership of new coach Oscar Tonga.
“Our preparations have been good.
“We are confident that we will finish well in the new season.
“As always, we will not be an easy team to beat because our goal this season is to retain the title.
“We are looking forward to facing the Dabaris on Sunday.”
Meanwhile, Papua New Guinea Rugby Football League manager Ora Gairo said capacity crowds would be allowed to attend matches, but they would need to adhere to strict Coronavirus protocols.
Fixtures: Sun, April 24 – Muruks v Cutters, Tigers v Dabaris, Mioks v Gurias, Lahanis v Wigmen, Vipers v Eagles, Isou v Tumbe.