The NRL All Stars match delivered a thriller yet again, with the Maori side edging past the Indigenous outfit 16-10 at the CommBank Stadium in Sydney.
Laurie Daley’s Indigenous side was littered with NRL stars like Nicho Hynes, Andrew Fifita, David Fifita and Will Kennedy. Josh Addo-Carr captained the team, with former Hull KR and Hull FC half-back Albert Kelly also featuring.
David Kidwell’s Maori team was stacked with a number of international players, including Jordan Rapana, Chanel Harris-Tavita, James Fisher-Harris and Kodi Nikorima.
The Indigenous side opened the scoring after a David Fifita break saw Jesse Ramien score.
Andrew Fifita and Rapana were sent to the sin bin in the first quarter after a melee. Braydon Trindall then extended the Indigenous lead with a penalty goal.
New Zealand international Kodi Nikorima brought the Maori back into the game in the 25th minute thanks to a superb offload from Joe Tapine. Patrick Herbert’s conversion levelled the score at 6-6.
HT: Indigenous All Stars 6-10 Maori All Stars
In the 57th minute, Ramien was sin-binned for holding back Kenny Bromwich.
The Maori took full advantage of having the extra man on the pitch. New Zealand international Tapine bulldozed his way over the line from close range to stretch his side’s lead further.
Tyrell Sloan pulled one back for the Indigenous All Stars in the 67th minute, but the Maori team held on to seal an impressive 16-10 win in Sydney.
Tapine won the Preston Campbell Player of the Match following an incredible display in the middle.
HT: Indigenous All Stars 10-16 Maori All Stars
Indigenous: Kennedy; Tabuai-Fidow, Ramien, Naden, Addo-Carr; Hynes, Trindall; A Fifita, Cotter, James, D Fifita, Fuimaono, Curran. Subs: Kelly, Smith, Taunoa-Brown, Kerr, Cobbo, Sloan, Mitchell.
Tries: Ramien, Sloan Goals: Trindall 1
Maori: Rapana; Harper, Walker, Smith, Herbert; Harris-Tavita, K Nikorima; Tapine, Clark, Fisher-Harris, K Bromwich, Nikora, Tevaga. Subs: Marsters, Hunt, Robati, Proctor, Hau Tapuha, J Nikorima, Greig.
Tries: K Nikorima, Marsters, Tapine Goals: Herbert 1, K Nikorima 1