GREECE A vs THAILAND
BY TERRY LIBEROPOULOS
at Krabang Rugby Stadium, Bangkok.
Former Super League and NRL player Michael Korkidas led Greece A to a
record 90-0 demolition of Thailand in Bangkok.
While Korkidas led by example, it was former Penrith Under 20s player
Jamie Theoharous who was the star of the show, scoring four tries and
having a hand in just as many as well as being ruthless in defence.
The Greeks opened the scoring after just two minutes of play when
full-back Adam Bouris scored out wide.
Matt Constantinou followed soon after and it was 16-0 after a quarter
of the game when Blake Lazarus scored after Theoharous burst through
the middle to create the gap.
The Thailand side, playing their first full international with Thai
heritage players, tried hard to break through for a try but were met
by strong defence.
Jake Vrahnos scooted away from dummy half before sending Nathan
Hughes on his way to a 40-metre try. It was followed by another try to
Lazarus after lead up work from Bouris and Constantinou. Lazarus
converted his own try to give Greece a 28-0 lead after 26 minutes of
Korkidas split the defence and then off-loaded the ball. It was
allowed to roll around the ground before Vrahnos collected the spoils
and raced away to score under the posts.
Despite the hot and humid conditions, the Greeks continued their
attacking flair with Lazarus putting away Theoharous to score. Lazarus
was spot on with the conversion and the visitors were cruising at 40-0
at the interval.
Korkidas barged over just two minutes into the second half to plant
the ball adjacent to the posts before Theoharous raced over to score
in the 51st minute after he raced down the sideline and then stepped
back inside to plant the ball under the sticks.
Three minutes later, Terry Constantinou went over in the corner and
when Theoharous recorded his hat trick, Greece led 62-0.
Thailand were struggling and were met by some ferocious tackling from
Greece. Thailand centre Narong Khamluechai had to be assisted off the
ground after being crushed in a tackle from Matt Constantinou and
Kristian Aroutsidis raced 60 metres down the sideline and then palmed
off Thailand full-back Kevin Hucker to score in the 62nd minute. Three
minutes later, Liam Sue-Tin raced 30 metres to score after a great
off-load from Adam Kambouris.
Theoharous recorded his fourth try when, from a a scrum win, he beat
four defenders before running 30 metres to score under the posts.
With three minutes remaining, Liam Sue-Tin Katrotis carved up the
opposition up the middle. He bounced off an attempted tackle and then
sent Khan Salamalikis over for the four pointer. Sue-Tin Katrotis
failed to add the extras but Greece were ahead 84-0.
It looked like that would be the final score after the Thai boys held
out another attack from Greece. But they knocked on close to the line,
giving the Greeks one final chance to add more points.
And that’s exactly what transpired. From the scrum win, Theoharous
put in a well executed short kick that sat up perfectly for Lazarus to
score under the posts. Sue-Tin Katrotis had no trouble with the
conversion to finish the scoring for the game.
Thailand tried hard to break through for their first ever
international Rugby League try but couldn’t break through the rock
solid Greek defence.
It didn’t help matters that Thailand played the game with just 14
players after a number of participants did not show up. That was
partly due to the fact that the Thai Rugby Union scheduled a play-off
match at the same time.
Greece A 90 (Jamie Theoharous 4, Blake Lazarus 3, Adam Bouris, Matt
Constantinou, Kristian Aroutsidis, Nathan Hughes, Terry Constantinou,
Khan Salamalikis, Liam Sue-Tin, Michael Korkidas, Jake Vrahnos tries;
Lazarus 8, Sue-Tin 5 goals) d. Thailand 0 at Krabang Rugby Stadium,
King Mongkut Institute of Technology, October 12. Referee: Peter
Anton. Penalties: Thailand 6-4. Half-time: Greece 40-0. Crowd: 183.
Goal-kickers: Blake Lazarus (Greece) 8 from 9, Liam Sue-Tin (Greece) 5
from 7. Man of the match: Jamie Theoharous (Greece).