NASINU Secondary School's second-five Kaveni Dabenaise was the saviour for his Nasinu under-18 side as he kicked the winning penalty to take his team to the Coke Zero Deans finals next week.
Dabenaise's winning kick bundled out former Deans holders Ratu Kadavulevu School at the final whistle 16-15.
While Dabenaise could be hailed as the hero for Nasinu, it was the combined effort of all players in defence which laid the platform in the narrow win.
Throughout the match Nasinu forwards had the numbers at the breakdown and when RKS tried to open up the game, the Nasinu backs brought them down with sure tackles.
The boys from Lodoni had themselves to blame for the loss as they failed to utilise quality possession which they could have turned into points.
Three times in the first-half the RKS backs were on the front foot attacking deep inside the Nasinu half but the last pass failed to connect and Nasinu recovered. Poor decision making from the RKS backs also saw them trying to run a ball from deep inside their 22 metre line but the fast and determined Nasinu defence managed to turn the ball over and in the next move managed to gain a penalty for a high tackle.
RKS was leading 15-13 at that moment with less than 10 minutes remaining.
But Dabenaise, who had earlier kicked a conversion and penalty nailed the penalty to give Nasinu that narrow victory.
Nasinu manager Eremasi Levu said they knew they had to dig deep to win the match as RKS had lifted their game in the second-half.
Levu said the message to the team during the break was to continue to lift their game in the second spell.
"We're happy that the boys managed to do what was told to them at half-time and we thank God for everything that we've achieved here today (yesterday)," Levu said.
"It was a tight game but we still have some weakness that we want to improve on before we come for the finals next week."
Nasinu wing Inosi Navukula scored the first try of the game which Dabenaise converted. He also nailed a penalty to see Nasinu in the lead at half-time 10-0.
RKS scored two tries in the first-half both were not converted by first-five Livai Driu.
Second-five Livai Torau scored RKS's third try in the second-half.