Thunderbolts on a Roll
By Matt Hughes (NRL Vic Media)
The Victoria Thunderbolts under 20s will be aiming to cap off a successful two months of footy, with a win over the North Sydney Bears on Sunday at North Sydney Oval.
The Thunderbolts are fresh off a 20 to 10 win over Manly Sea Eagles last week, which was their third win in six games. That six-game stretch also included two draws with their only loss in that time coming against the Sydney Roosters.
The Manly win was one of the Victoria’s strongest of the season and highlighted the side’s strength in attack as well as their much-improved defence.
After winger Antonio Sanele crossed in the fourth minute for the first points of the match, the Victorians piled on another three tries to the Eagles’ two. The New South Welshmen did have their chances, however the Thunderbolts defence stood tall to limit their scoreboard impact.
At the 58th minute mark when Jamie Lawler scored for the Eagles’ final points, the scoreboard read 18 to 12 with only a converted try the difference. Seven minutes later the Thunderbolts were awarded a penalty for a dangerous tackle and Matt Stimson stepped up for a clutch penalty goal, which all but sealed the deal.
In this week’s game against the Bears the Thunderbolts will go in somewhat confident, after they walked away with a two-point victory in their round 14 clash at Gosch’s Paddock. In that game Josese Waqalevu was the star, scoring a hattrick for the home side.
A win at North Sydney Oval will be a tougher ask for the Victorians, but they will be boosted by the return of fullback Chase Aporo who was sidelined last week with an injury.
The game kicks off at 3pm.