Northern Union 18 NZ All Golds 25: Morley on report as Kiwis gain edge

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The Independent Online

Adrian Morley's place in the Great Britain team to face New Zealand in the First Test on Saturday is in danger after he was placed on report for a high tackleduring the Centenary International at Warrington last night.

The match, to celebrate a hundred years since the first overseas tour, was a display of enterprising rather than overly intense rugby, but Morley, who played an 80-minute captain's role got himself into potential trouble when he flung out an arm at Arwen Guttenbeil shortlyafter half-time.

Danny Tickle was also put on report for a high tackle on Nigel Vagana, a case which will also be dealt with on Mondaynight, but the Great Britain coach, Tony Smith, will be more concerned about Morley's availability. "He did 80 minutes leading from the front and young Sam Burgess was outstanding as well," said Smith.

The Bradford forward was voted man of the match and was one of the fringe players to enhance his Test claims. It was his break and Danny McGuire's juggling catch that produced the game's first try after 13 minutes.

McGuire's Leeds team-mate Ali Lauitiiti changed the course of the Grand Final last week and he did it again last night, scoringtwo tries in as many minutes to put the All Golds ahead. When Greg Eastwood managed to spin out of two indecisive tackles before half-time, it seemed the tourists might be on their way to a comfortable victory, but McGuire brought the Northern Union back into it with anotherspectacular try.

After 53 minutes they were level when John Clarke wrestled his way over and Kirk Yeaman put them ahead, at the cost of an ankle injury that forced him off the pitch when he took Terry Newton's long pass. A set move that looked to have been dredged from somewhere deep in the game's history contributed to Louis Anderson's try to put the visitors back in front.

Stacey Jones then set up a three-point try for Clinton Toopi with a reverse pass. It was one of the quirks of the evening that the 1907 points-scoring system was enforced.

Northern Union: Platt; Hodgson, Gleeson, Yeaman, Raynor; McGuire, Rooney; Morley, Newton, Lynch, Tickle, Wild, Burgess. Substitutes used: Clarke, Moore, Sykes, Coley.

New Zealand: Perrett; Kenny-Dowall, Vagana, Toopi, Tupou; Leuluai, Jones; Price, Faiumu, Wiki, Kidwell, Louitiiti, Anderson. Substitutes used: Eastwood, Lauaki, Guttenbeil, Stanley.

Referee: A Klein (Keighley).