Fleet cruise home
Article Published: Sunday 23 September 2007
Edited by: Sports Digital Media
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For the first time this weekend there were no surprises in the Australian Rugby Championship (ARC) when the Sydney Fleet crushed the East Coast Aces 40-7 at the North Sydney Harbour on Sunday.
It was once again the experienced Morgan Turinui, who took center stage in his man-of-the-match performance, helping the Fleet keep their semi-final aspirations alive.
It wasn't always an exciting game, however as both teams got off to a slow and even mundane start. The players struggled to find their rhythm early on and as is always the case in matches such as these, one try was all it required to set the game alight.
Ironically it was the visitors that scored first courtesy of a Ben Mowen try in the 18th minute, putting the Aces in the lead.
The Fleet responded shortly after when wing Alfi Mafi crossed the line. The rest of the match then belonged to the Fleet with Junior Puroku and Tom Azar scoring in quick succession following some great work in the back-line.
The tries secured a first-half lead of 21-7 for the Fleet and from thereon end it was no turning back for the home team.
Full-back Gavin Debartolo scored the bonus point try for the Fleet early in the second-half, before Turinui finally got himself on the score-sheet after playing a significant role in the tries prior to his.
The hopeless situation for the Aces was aggravated when pivot Ben Lucas was handed a red card for his spear tackle on Fleet Scrum-half Nathan Sievert just six minute into the second stanza.
The Turinui try was a result of the overlap in the Aces back-line.Turinui capped another phenomenal performance when he set up the Fleet's final scoring movement,
The outside-center sprinted 70 meters before off-loading to Arthur Little, who finished another good day at the office for the Fleet.
The win placed the home team in good stead going into the final round of the ARC round-robin stage next week. But the Sydney team will be severely handicapped by the fact they will contest that final game against the Central Coast rays away from home.
Tries: Mafi, Puroku, Azar, Debartolo, Turinui, Little
Cons: Debartolo 5
East Coast Aces7
Red Card: Ben Lucas (Aces)
Sydney Fleet15 Gavin Debartolo, 14 Alfi Mafi, 13 Morgan Turinui, 12 Tom Azar, 11 Junior Puroku, 10 Daniel Halangahu, 9 Nathan Sievert, 8 Tim Davidson [c], 7 Patrick McCutcheon, 6 Dean Mumm, 5 Adam Byrnes, 4 Will Caldwell, 3 Dayna Edwards, 2 Atonio Halangahu, 1 Jeremy Tilse
Replacements 16 Sam Zlatevski, 17 Sean Baker, 18 Matt Whittleston, 19 Ed Brenac, 20 Danny Kroll, 21 Anton La Vin, 22 Arthur Little
East Coast Aces15 Marshall Milroy, 14 Andrew Walker, 13 Waitai Walker, 12 Charlie Fetoai, 11 Liam Bibo, 10 Ben Lucas, 9 Curtis Franks, 8 Ben Mowen (c), 7 AJ Gilbert, 6 Dan Ese, 5 Josh Afu, 4 Will Munsie, 3 Rodney Blake, 2 Jade Ingham, 1 Tama Tuirirangi
Replacements16 Joe Tufuga, 17 Lloyd Campbell-McBride, 18 Rob Simmons, 19 Bo Paraha, 20 James Kriukelis, 21 Quade Cooper, 22 John Dart
Date: Sunday September, 24
Venue: North Sydney Oval, Sydney
Referee: James Scholtens
Touch judges: George Ayoub, Damian Mitchelmore
Television match official: Bradley Wahl
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