In sultry and often blustery conditions today at Bert Henham Park in Auckland, the local Sea Lions team beat the Waicoa Bay Stallions 38/10 in the penultimate round of the Lion Foundation NJC Foundation Cup.
Despite having a try disallowed in their first set, the Sea Lions fairly quickly gained the upper hand. Racing out to a 16/0 lead early in the game, it looked like it was going to be one way traffic. Waicoa Bay, however, were not going to give up easily and with two quick tries, pulled it back to 16/10. One of their tries had been a cracking 80 metre intercept to their very quick Full Back. The local side scored on the half time hooter and the break saw the score at 20/10.
The Auckland team had certainly had the better of the half, but I had the distinct impression that they were not fully committed. They were gaining fairly easy yards off the ruck, despite the fact that Referee, Greg Piva, was keeping a fairly skinny 10 metres.
The second half started in a very scrappy manner with the first five or six sets being incomplete. The Sea Lions, however, managed to settle it down, scoring three more tries and keeping the Stallions scoreless for the entire half.
There had been some good individual efforts from the Sea Lions, but none better than big Second Rower, Rusty Bristow. This guy had an absolutely outstanding game, scoring two tries and defending like his life depended on it. If he has not been picked up yet, it won't be long