Hungary overcome valiant Vanuatu

Day two of the Rugby League Emerging Nations World Championship continues at St Mary's Leagues Club in Sydney, Vanuatu kicking off to Hungary to start the 4th game of the day

Off some hard tackling, Vanuatu force the first of many errors, giving the ball close to the line. A short side dash ends up with a grubber. Hungary dropout is pretty short but Vanuatu’s return leads to a knock on, this hints at the game being a stop start affair.

The first penalty of the game goes to Vanuatu with Hungary players offside. This gives Vanuatu great field position. Andrew Kaltongga steps through only to be held up over line after slipping up in the wet conditions. Both teams easing into the contest. Quite a few little handling errors from both sides. Not long after Alehana Mara missed a penalty goal.

Driving tackle defense from Vanuatu puts Hungary on the back foot, but Hungary manage to survive the initial onslaught. The first chance down on the Vanuatu line, the Hungary almost scored from a tunnelling run close to the line. Not long after a Vanuatu get close to the Hungary line, Hungary turn defense into attack with a breakaway almost scoring but for a knocked down last pass from Vanuatu.

The Hungarian team scored through a great wide play to Nathan Farkas, converted by Jared Farkas. Hungary looking the most likely to score out of the teams even with Vanuatu having the higher possession in the first half. Quick play the balls from Vanuatu leads to big runs at the Hungary line, but Va are struggling to break the Hungarian defense. Hungary huge return kicks pushing Vanuatu back to their line winning the field position battle

Hungary get into position, down the blind side almost leading to their second try, gaining a penalty and repeat set. They then move to stretch Vanuatu and Hungary scores in the corner through Jason Garret. The conversion is unsuccessful

Vanuatu get the ball back off an Hu error from the kickoff. Vanuatu so close to the line, short side play but Alehana Mara was held up, the kick from Vanuatu scooped up while they attempt to hold Hungary in there half. The kick is returned to the Hungary half within a few tackles only for another error to hand the ball to Hungary. Not long after Vanuatu is penalised for a high tackle. Hungary spread the ball side to side and eventually get a penalty right in front. Halftime sees Hungary leading 12-0

Hungary kick off the second half, Vanuatu pushed back with 3 up defense, Vanuatu make it to halfway and chase their kick to attempt to pin Hungary down in their danger zone. Hungary don’t manage to get their kick away giving Vanuatu position before a high shot gives Vanuatu a penalty within 20m. A great little kick gets Vanuatu a repeat set. Vanuatu is now camped on Hungary line. Another Hungary mistake hands the ball back to Vanuatu putting pressure on Alehana Mara who tried another short side stint but a wayward pass let Hungary off the hook.

Big hit-ups from Max Taleo lead the way, but a short pass leads to a mistake too close to the Hungary defensive line. An apparent dangerous tackle by Vanuatu gives Hungary a leg up to halfway. Tarehaki’s kick return is the first free run even though it was sideway. A Hungary injury causes another stop in play with Vanuatu surging forward.

Hungary put on a flash with a great kick through the line, toed on by Jared Farkas almost pinning Vanuatu in the corner, but a second effort from Jared Farkas leads to a penalty to Vanuatu. Vanuatu returns in kind from a kick through the line, just unlucky with the bounce.

Vanuatu turn defense into attack, with Amani Arutahiki dashing down the sideline. Vanuatu were setup on the Hungary 30m until another error leads to a scrum. A Hungary error from the scrumbase invites Vanuatu to try again. Almost immediately Vanuatu score from a barnstorming run from James Wood, shrugging off one tackle taking 4 Hungarian over the line with him. Andrew Kaltonga converts to make it 12-6

With their tails up Vanuatu are back on the attack and go end to end, with Amani Arutahiki scoring from a series of beautiful catch and pass down the sideline. Andrew Kaltonga converts to bring the scores level. Just as Vanuatu look likely again, an error gives them the ball and handed back to Vanuatu. Just 20m out and Vanuatu spill the ball. A comedy of errors as both teams seem to be getting ahead of themselves.

Alehana Mara puts Vanuatu in front easy as you please with a drop goal. From the restart, Hungary manage to sneak the ball over the sideline, getting the ball back on the Vanuatu 30m line. Paul Ivan barges over in the corner against Vanuatu carrying 2 players over with him. Alehana Mara converts from the sideline the drama intensifies with the back and forth of both errors and scoring.

Hungary spill the ball again and Vanuatu rush to pack the scrum. Vanuatu fail to get to their kick which meant Hungary shut Vanuatu’s last play down. Hungary then proceed to slow the play down to run down the clock and kick the ball into touch to take the game 18-13

A stop start affair with a lot of errors on both sides, but equally impressive sparks of brilliance. The conditions played their part in the ball handling and errors nevertheless both teams showing great potential with ball in hand.  

  • Jeremy





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