Caption: Butler Morris and Nickson Borana
By FIDELIS SUKINA
IT ISN’T often you meet someone who you grew up with and parted with at a young age, again at an elite level of sports.
Things would have gone differently for rugby convert Butler Morris if he had stayed on with his rugby career, but the opportunity to play with the SP PNG Hunters has bought success and the meeting of an old friend.
The duo of Nickson Borana and Morris who are now team-mates at the SP PNG Hunters were good friends at a young age at the Papua Compound in Lae, Morobe Province.
Both players chose different paths in sports – Butler played rugby union while Nickson played league and both excelling in the junior levels and now at the most elite level in PNG rugby league.
They played alongside each other for the first time last week against the Northern Pride; Nickson had been out injured limiting his game time this year, while Morris is making the most of his opportunity at the Hunters so far, playing well on the wing.
“We had fun growing up playing with each other and against each other we went into mischief and all that, during our days at the Papua Compound, until me and Butler parted ways, when my family moved out of the area,” Borana said
“Yeah Nickson was like family back then and one time I actually challenged him in a rugby union match at Lae, I was playing for the Harlequins and Nickson was playing for the Pirates,” Morris said.
Nickson said he was happy to see his old friend Butler getting into the Hunters camp this year and was grateful that they both were on the same team.
“When I first saw Butler walking into the Hunters mess hall I knew who he was and I am happy we are both on the same team, after I went on to reach Junior Kumls level at the schoolboys, Butler was also playing well in rugby union making his way into the Junior Pukpuks and eventually the seniors,” Borana said.
Both men are happy about the opportunity to play for the SP PNG Hunters and for Butler he has taken this opportunity to live the dream of playing rugby league.
“I am a rugby union player but I love rugby league as well, when I was small I always watched rugby league on television and as the number one sport in the country I wanted to play it as well, when the Hunters gave me this opportunity I knew it wouldn’t come twice and I had to make it count;” Morris said
Borana’s injury is still a concern as he pulled out of training on Thursday but he is named on the starting line-up and Marum has given him till warm up on game day to be fit to play.