season after losing 18-16 to the Hela Wigmen, while the Enga Mioks-Goroka
Lahanis match ended in a 22-22 stalemate after extra time. The Wigmen will
proceed to meet minor premiers Lae Tigers next Sunday in Lae, while the
Mioks-Lahanis rematch is expected to take place in the middle of the week, with
details yet to be confirmed by officials.
The Vipers, played the 2014 season without a home venue because their home ground, Lloyd Robson Oval, is being redeveloped by Oil Search to be a 20,000 capacity venue in 2016.
The main match between the Lahanis and Mioks ended in controversy after Lae rugby league officials and team officials from both sides rejected an earlier call by Papua
New Guinea Rugby League general manager Hubert Warupi after the extra time to
continue on playing in another second extra time set.
It took around 30 minutes before the match was officially called off despite the Mioks claiming to be the winner because they had been the first to score.
That match started off strongly and the lead seesawed throughout, keeping the fans at the fully packed Lae rugby league ground on the edge of their seats.
Winger Elvis Loko scored the first try within 10 minutes for the Mioks but that was not
Lahanis halfback Robin Saga replied with two points from a penalty.
Wawe Paul was the next winger to score for the Mioks, and their lead
extended through the conversion by halfback Willy Guambo, pictured right, who
minutes later added another two points with another penalty to make it
Lahanis centre Kevin Ingafa then made a chip kick and re-gathered to
score their first unconverted try to trail by 16-6. David Loko, pictured, who
for the first time returned to the Mioks camp after months away with the PNG
Hunters playing in the Queensland Cup, set up younger sibling Elvis, who dived
over for his second try, right on halftime.
Guambo converted the try to take
the Mioks 18-6 ahead.
A determined Lahanis returned with a bang through
fullback Charlie Oliver, whose effort was not complimented by their kicker, to
Lahanis captain and prop John Gand charged through a gaping hole
in the Mioks defence to close the gap with a try that Soga converted to close
the gap to 18-16.
Before the Mioks could recover from that, Ingafa ran in
again for his second try to put the Lahanis on top 22-18 after the conversion by
But before the Lahanis could relax, Mioks replied in similar fashion
through Elvis who went in for his third try.
That was not converted. The
extra 10 minutes saw both teams failing to kick a field goal or score a try.
The first match was a blast for Vipers fullback Josiah Abavu, pictured far
right, who scored two tries in the first half however lock Stanley Torato failed
to convert the second try before Wigmen centre David Laria scored an unconverted
try to see the Wigmen trail 12-6 at halftime.
The Wigmen forced a tie when
halfback William Mone scored on a favourable bounce of the ball that winger
Dickson Paul converted.
Vipers took the lead through second-rower Elijah
Riyong, who charged through for their final but un-converted try.
capitalised through five-eighth Kewa Kili whose try was converted by winger
Dickson Paul. The National