FORMER PNG Hunters utility Albert Patak appointed Agmark Gurias Coach

FORMER PNG Hunters utility Albert Patak has taken a more subdued role this year as coach of the Agmark Gurias in this year’s nationwide Digicel Cup competition.

In a new decision by the Gurias board, they have moved last year coach George Tobata back to his old position as head trainer.

Patak, who is more accustomed to answering Hunters coach Michael Marum’s call to put his body on the line off the bench in Queensland’s Intrust Super Cup, will now be barking the orders.

The wear and tear on the body has taken its toll on one of Marum’s ‘go to men’ who played a cameo role with fellow utility players Lawrence Tu’u, Noel Zeming and the ‘Wapenamanda mac truck’ Willie Minoga in a swashbuckling opening season.

The man from Nangananga brings to the team a wealth of experience with trusty assistant Stephen Nightingale, Marcus Kaugla and Tobata on his coaching staff.

The Gurias are currently into their fourth week of pre-season training in Kokopo.

Team Manager Mapua Tamtu said they have retained a bulk of their 2014 squad. "The current 26-man train-on team includes a crop of Guria Academy players plus several from the winning PNG Games nines team that won the gold medal at last years PNG Games," he said. "To maintain consistency a majority of the players have been retained," he said.

Cabramatta-bound Clement Kilengit, John Ragi Jnr and Watson Boas are also members of the squad.

Jimmy Peter Jnr who had a short stint with Gulf Isapea the previous season has come back to the side with Kavieng import Lance Kuveu, who had a shortened stint with the TNA Lions last season.

Tamtu said more players will likely be picked up from the current Agmark 9s competition and later the Trukai Nines, before they settle with their final 22 players.

Post Courier/ONEPNG
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