BARLA Lions Tour (Fiji 2018) - Match Report - BARLA Lions 22 West Fiji 20

BARLA Lions came from behind to claim victory in their first game on tour.

The game kicked off with the mercury hitting thirty degrees and humidity also an issue, it was testing for everyone, however, the side stuck to their guns and emerged victorious thanks to a try five minutes from the end by York Acorn's Reece Rushworth.

The Lions made the best possible start after just three minutes when the ball came down the right and Mark Tyson (Askam) got around his man to score. Sadly skipper for the day, Andy Hullock (Hunslet Club Parkside) missed the conversion.

Fiji West roared in to action and made the most of a handling error when winger Veresa Tuqovu swept up and blazed 55 metres to the other end. Jona Varomusu couldn't add the goal and the scores were locked after eight minutes.

Fifteen minutes in, Fiji West struck again when a powerful run from big Luke Narara saw him cross the line with a couple of players hanging off him. This time Varomusu goaled to hand West a six point lead.

After the drinks break BARLA hurried their hosts and Tyson was rewarded with a second try after intercepting from forty metres to claim his second score. Jamie Fields goaled to level up. Before half-time the Lions lost possession thirty metres form their own line. This was cleaned up by loose forward Esira Dokini who finished the try. Skipper Josateki Savou landed the goal to edge West ahead 16-10 at the interval.

West had a poor start to the second half when halfback Nasoni Naseru was sinbinned. Almost immediately BARLA attacked and Thatto Heath man Jack Jones popped the ball out at the right time and Luke Tagg (Castleford Lock Lane) touched down. Fields levelled the score and both teams had half chances before Rushworth finished the vital play five minutes from time and Fields added his third goal nudge the Lions ahead.

Despite late efforts from Fiji West, BARLA claimed the game by the narrowest of margins.

18  Lee Postlethwaite (Millom)
8   Kevin Hoban (Ellenborough Rangers)
2   Jack Clark (Cockermouth Titans)
24  Mark Tyson (Askam)
14  Sam Jones (Barrow Island)
5   Jordan Gibson (Haydock)
11  Andy Hullock (Hunslet Club Parkside)
16  Andy Lea (Thatto Heath Crusaders)
4   Dean Gambles (Featherstone Lions)
6   Aidy Gleeson (Rochdale Mayfield)
21  Reece Rushworth (York Acorn)
23  Luke Tagg (Castleford Lock Lane)
10  Jack Howdle (Beverley)

Subs:  (All Used)
7   Matt Henson (Egremont Rangers)
13  Jack Jones (Thatto Heath Crusaders)
20  Craig Savage (Castleford Lock Lane)
9   Tom Hopkins (Askam)
17  Marcus O'Brien (Egremont Rangers)
12  Ian Jackson (Featherstone Lions)
19  Johnny Goulding (Cockermouth Titans)
3   Jamie Fields (Hunslet Club Parkside)
1   Ryan Chalkley (Shaw Cross Sharks)

Tries: Tyson (3, 23), Tagg (48), Rushworth (75)
Goals: Hullock 0/1, Fields 3/3.

West Fiji

1  Apisalome Mulas
2  Seremaia Nasau
3  Taniela Gaunavou
4  Kelevi Ralulu
5  Veresa Tuqovu
6  Nasoni Naseru
7  Jona Varomusu
8  Josateki Savou
9  Apisai Bakanu
10 Sikeli Qauqau
11 Kemueli Tuamalevu
12 Esira Gonebale 
13 Esira Dokoni
Subs (All Used)
14 Esala Kamunaga
15 Jone Kurisamo
16 Apakuki Camaitoga
17 Kiniviliame Labala
18 Josua Soronakavu
19 Luke Narara
20 Manasa Kalou.

Tries: Tuqovu (8, 59), Narara (15), Dokini (59)
Goals: Varomusu 1/3, Savou 1/1 
Half-time: 10-16

Sinbinned:  Naseru (persistent offending).