By ROCKY ISSOU
THE SP PNG Hunters will get to test out its new and old combinations in their one and only hit out against Northern Pride before the Intrust Super Cup Rugby League season.
Hunters coach Michael Marum has named a strong side to take on the Northern Pride of Queensland with returning Hunter Willie Minoga to play in the centers in a surprising selection.
“Willie has returned to us after a season in Queenland playing for the Black Hawks his selection at centre is one which I want to try out he may only play 20 minutes there before he moves back into the forwards but this is one of the few things I want to try out before the season start,” said Marum.
The old combination of Ase Boas and Israel Eliab will again come to the fore against the Pride, however, Marum said the trial match will not be an easy one with the Pride also looking at getting away to a good start at the start of the new season.
“The Pride have a new coach and some big forwards so we won’t be taking this game lightly however this game will allow us to work out our combinations and also to try out a few new things,” he said.
After training hard for over 9 weeks the Hunters players are keen to get some much needed match time alluded to by vice captain Wellington Albert.
“The boys have been training very hard for the past 9 weeks we just want to get out there on the paddock and put the work we have done into practice,” Albert said.
Marum was adamant the 20-member squad will have a run during the trial which will prove invaluable for the Hunter as they approach the start of the Queensland domestic competition.
“The first quarter we are going to try different half combinations and centres paring second quarter changes their and then some other stuff I have in mind so everyone will have a run,” he said.
Meanwhile Eddie Goma who has been with the Hunters for the last three seasons has asked for a release from the Hunters because of family issues and will return to Rabaul where he will join the Rabaul Guria for the 2017 Digicel Cup season.