Drua's hopes for playoff spot still alive after 28-19 win over Reds

Drua's hopes for playoff spot still alive after 28-19 win over Reds

By Mosese Raqio
Saturday 18/05/2024

The Swire Shipping Fijian Drua's hopes of making the playoffs of the Shop N Save Super Rugby Pacific competition are still alive after defeating the Reds 28-19 at the HFC Bank Stadium this afternoon.

The home side had the backing of a very vocal crowd and also was extraordinary in their defence that helped them claim the much-needed win today.

The Drua took an early 7-0 lead after they were awarded a penalty try following a foul play by Reds winger Suliasi Vunivalu that prevented flanker Kitione Salawa from scoring a clear try from a clean line break.

The Reds were reduced to 14 men after Vunivalu was yellow carded for that infringement.

The Drua continued their onslaught and scored another try 3 minutes later to captain and hooker Tevita Ikanivere with the conversion unsuccessful to extend their lead to 12-0.

The Reds replied in the 10th minute with a converted try in the corner to trail 12-7.

In the 12th minute, the Drua extended their lead to 15-7 after Isaiah Armstrong-Ravula converted a penalty kick at goal.

The visitors scored their second converted try in the 24th minute to close the gap to 15-14.

At the stroke of halftime, the Drua extended their lead to 18-14 after reserve back Kemueli Valetini, who came in for centre Waqa Nalaga due to injury, converted a penalty kick at goal.

The Drua started the second half strongly as captain Ikanivere scoring his second try of the match in the 45th minute with Ravula adding the extra 2 points to extend their lead to 25-14.

The Reds were reduced to 14 men again after winger Vunivalu was shown a red card following his second yellow card of the match for the same foul play he committed in the first half.

It took the visitors 35 minutes of the second half to score a try which was unconverted to trail the Drua 25-19.

Ravula put the final nail in the coffin for the Drua by converting a penalty kick at the stroke of full-time to claim the win.

Match Updates: by Alipate Narawa

The Drua perfom the iBole for their second last home game of the season

Isaiah Armstrong-Ravula kicks things off

2" Lawson Creighton overcooks that kicking it full out

3" Salawa fumbles the ball on, ref checking on trip by Reds winger

Yellow Card!!

Suliasi Vunivalu is out for 10 minute and the Drua are awarded a penalty try


6" Drua throw in 27 metres from Reds line


Ikanivere busts through the defence after a few patient phases from the team

DRU 12-0 RED conversion unsuccessful

10" Reds keen to get their hands on the ball, so they can eat up the time till Vunivalu gets back on

11" Ref playing advantage to Reds, cross kick to Floyd Aubrey

DRU 12-7 RED

13" Penalty to Drua, Reds not releasing

Ikanivere points at the posts

DRU 15-7 RED

16" Druas scrum

17" Penalty to the Drua, Reds angling at the scrum

18" Reds scrum after forward pass from Ravutaumada

19 Free kick to Drua

They opt for a scrum

Reds TRY!!

23" Lawson Creighton slips through the defence and straight under the sticks

DRU 15-14 RED

1 minute water break

26" Drua steal the lineout, run it a few phases before knocking it on

28" Drua throw in

31" Penalty to the Reds, Nasilasila off his feet

34" Free kick to the Reds

35" A lot of scrambling around but scrum to Reds after Kuruvoli fumbles at the base of the ruck

Kemu Valetini kicking from 52 metres out

Valetini stretches the lead for the Drua with a penalty conversion


DRU 18-14 RED

Reds kickoff the 2nd half

41" Armstrong-Ravula boots it into touch safely from inside his 22

43" Reds get advantage inside Drua 22 metre

44" Lineout stolen by the Drua before Valetini boots it to halfway


TRY stands for Ikanivere while Vunivalu gets another YELLOW CARD!!

Which means it is now a RED CARD

DRU 25-14 RED

51" Penalty against Kuruvoli

Reds down to 14 men for the next 16 minutes

52" Drua get out of jail after the Reds knock it on 5 metres from Drua try line

53" Throw not straight by Reds, Drua have been stealing the Reds throws all game

50-22 for the Reds

Ball stolen again by the Drua, Seru Uru penalised

55" Reds penalty, Ravutaumada offside

56" Reds on Drua 5 metre, ref playing advantage

58" Drua get warned by the ref

59" Drua get out of jail by turning the ball over

63" Penalty to the Drua, Reds illegal wheeling at the scrum

67" Penalty to Reds, now Drua get it back

71" Reds go into rolling maul from lineout before Ravutaumada bundles the Reds hooker into touch

75" Valetini boots it into touch

Reds penalty, Drua player off their feet

TRY!! George Blake gets it in

DRU 25-19 RED, conversion unsuccessful

78" Drua win the penalty

Minute and a half to go, Drua opt for the posts

Advantage to Drua

Armstrong-Ravula converts!!


The Drua have done it, playoffs still within reach

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