Papakura chase key early season victory

Papakura chase key early season victory

A new and hardened Papakura will chase a key early season McNamara Cup victory when they host Bombay at Massey Park in Papakura on Saturday.

There was a lot of buzz about Papakura during the pre-season – based on their talented young core that announced themselves last year, good recruiting and numbers at training and some impressive performances in non-competition games leading into last week.

The Jarrod Firth/Mark Thomas coached side performed well against Patumahoe last week but will rue conceding a couple of early tries in an otherwise tight affair.

They face a Bombay side who had to sit out last week with the bye and who are looking to establish themselves this season at the friendly confines of Massey Park.

“It was frustrating last week to let in some easy tries and against good teams like Patty, you can’t afford to give them a head start like that,” Firth told Counties Sports Hub.

“I am looking forward to the opportunity to put in a more polished performance against Bombay.

“We have been working hard on new systems both on attack and defence so would be great to get some points on the leaderboard.

“There is plenty of belief in the side, but at the moment we are focusing on performance based metrics.”

Pukekohe heads to Mountfort Park to face reigning champions Manurewa in a game they might have circled when the draw was announced.

It was Manurewa that knocked Pukekohe over in the semi-finals after Michael Porter’s side had topped the round robin standings last year.

Impressing in their week one demolition of Ardmore Marist, Pukekohe will get a much tougher challenge when they face a Manurewa side that lost a close game to Karaka.

A couple of late tries blew the score out but there was little separating Jeremy Clark’s side and Karaka.

Patumahoe travels to Bruce Pulman Park to face Ardmore Marist in week two action. Ardmore Marist will look to bounce back from a tough opening week against Pukekohe and will be better for the hit out.

Patumahoe meanwhile will look to improve to 2-0 after a hard-fought win against Papakura last week.

Karaka has the bye.

Two impressive week one winners run into each other in the Sid Marshall Shield when Te Kauwhata travels to Maramarua for the annual Gum Boot Game.

The two rural clubs were sharp in their opening game and a terrific contest looks set to play out.

Weymouth, who enjoyed a big opening week win, will head to Drury to face the defending champions who were beaten at home by Maramarua.

Onewhero will look to bounce back from a first-up loss when they host Waiuku, Puni travels to Tuakau in a battle between two winless sides while Manurewa heads to Te Kohanga.

Pukekohe begins the round hosting Puketapapa on Friday night at home while Ardmore Marist hosts TKO (Tuakau, Te Kohanga and Onewhero combined side) in Bright Cup U19 action.

Waiuku plays their first match of the season when they host Manurewa at Rugby Park while Pukekohe will host Auckland’s Puketapapa Roskill Sports.

Weymouth has the bye.

In U85kg competition, last year’s champions Waiuku head to Te Puru Park to play Beachlands Maraetai, Patumahoe hosts Drury while Pukekohe travels to Karaka.

Onewhero has a bye.

Manurewa Premier Women open their Emma Jensen Cup campaign on Saturday when they host North Shore at Mountfort Park.

The local outfit had a bye in the opening round.

In the Women’s Development grade, Karaka plays their first game when they travel to College Rifles.

First week winners Patumahoe are away to Massey, Pukekohe travels to Waitakere while Papakura is on the road at Eden.