ALIPATE Ciba scored a decisive try as Lautoka stunned Suva 30-23 to win round five of the Digicel Cup competition at Churchill Park yesterday.
The replacement winger calmly collected a long range kick inside Suva's territory to put the nail on the coffin despite Lautoka leading 25-23 in the dying stages of the game. It was a simple ball handling error that resulted in the try.
The home team though had a lot of composure and played to the final whistle, scoring two tries in the last few minutes. Lautoka coach Sireli Bulicokocoko said they should not rest on yesterday's win.
"I'm impressed with the performance of the players. It was a close win and to secure a bonus point is a plus for us," he said.
He said they needed to lift their game to another level.
"A lot of weaknesses was exposed today (yesterday) and we need to get back and better our preparation in time for the next game. Our plan was to keep the big Suva forwards off their feet and play a fast game," Bulicokocoko said. He attributed the win to the Almighty.
Suva started the game with a converted try and a penalty from nippy playmaker Kaminieli Neiqisa to lead 10-0 before the home team replied with a try to blind side winger Iliavi Satala.
Neiqisa orchestrated Suva's attack well with a cunning chip kick above the first line of Lautoka defenders, gathered it neatly before feeding James Brown who crossed over.
Neiqisa converted the try for a 17-5 lead. Maroons skipper Apakuki Vuaviri narrowed the deficit with another try to trail 12-17 before Neiqisa added another three points for Suva to lead 20-12 at the break.
Lautoka fullback Taniela Rawaqa and Neiqisa traded penalties in the second spell as Suva extended its lead 23-18 with less than 10 minutes on the clock.
Vuaviri touched down his second try before Ciba had the final say with his winning try.
Suva team manager Samisoni Waqatu said it was a tough game for them. "Today (yesterday) is history to us. We need to work hard before the next game. We committed lots of errors and we hope to bounce back next Saturday," he said.