By Jake Bull
The Illawarra Cutters were defeated 26-10 by the Newtown Jets in the Tom Kirk Cup fixture at Henson Park, Marrickville on Saturday.
The Cutters, featuring prop Russell Packer, had their opportunities to win the game but ultimately let their chance slip.
After trailing early, they were able to draw level, but a late flurry from the Jets allowed them to come away with the two points.
It was a tense opening 20 minutes with both sides having an error in their game but in the 24th minute the home side took the lead.
A play through the hands ended with winger Daniel Abou-Sleiman scoring in the corner for a 4-0 lead.
Ten minutes later Newtown had their second try when a cross-field kick towards the posts found an on-rushing Nesiasi Mataitonga to score next to the posts.
Todd Murphy added the extras for a 10-0 lead at half-time.
The second half started with a bit more gusto when in the 48th minute NSW Cup leading tryscorer Yaw Kiti Glymin stepped a couple of defenders to score out wide to reduce the gap to 10-4.
Four minutes later and the visitors were right back into the game.
A break down the middle saw fullback Justin Hunt streak away to score under the posts.
Shannon Crook converted to bring the game level at 10-all.
A penalty goal in the 63rd from Murphy made it 12-10, before a double from Jacob Gagan blew the game out to 22-10.
A try late in the game from Jets centre Blake Ayshford sealed the win for Newtown as they took home the Tom Kirk Cup.
Illawarra Cutters 10. Tries: Glymin, Hunt. Goals: Crook (1/2).
Newtown Jets 26. Tries: Abou-Sleiman, Mataitonga, Gagan (2), Ayshford. Goals: Murphy (3/6).