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Jersey Flegg Match Report: Comeback win

A stunning second half comeback carried the One New Zealand Warriors to an exhilarating 28-24 win over Melbourne in Sunday’s 12th-round Jersey Flegg Cup (under-21) clash at Te pā o Rarotonga.

The vastly-changed home side fell 6-20 behind at the interval but responded superbly in the second term with a run of 22 unanswered points in 18 minutes to lead 28-20 with 13 minutes to go.

The Storm came back within four points with an unconverted try but the Warriors, despite having a player in the sin bin, held on impressively to close the contest out for their third win of the season.

The points-scoring spree started with a try to winger Raphael Sio four minutes after halftime before hooker Jeriko Filipi-Talisau surged across nine minutes later to close the scoreline up to 18-20.

The Warriors now had the momentum and took advantage of it in the 51st minute with fullback William Puliu over wide out to give his side a 22-20 lead.

It seemed only a matter of time before the now-rampant Warriors would extend their lead, which they duly did in the 57th minute through a try to powerhouse prop Toby Crosby.

There were some anxious moments over the last 10 minutes as the Storm fully stretched the Warriors’ goal line defence but couldn’t find a way through.

The Warriors remain in 12th spot on the ladder but they have won three and drawn one of their last six matches after a rocky start.

Acknowledgement of Country

The New Zealand Warriors honour the mana of the Indigenous peoples of Aotearoa, Australia and the Pacific. We acknowledge the traditional kaitiaki of the lands, elders past and present, their stories, their traditions, their mamae and their mana motuhake.

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