By KEITH PUARIA
GULF Isapeas captain Moore Evara does not remember Papua New Guineas remarkable performance at the World Rugby League 7s in 1993, and the star of that tournament.
He was born about a month later that same year.
But this Sundays Digicel Cup round six match against three-time intercity cup winners Rabaul Gurias will see Evara lead his side with the star of that 93 tournament a part of his team.
Yes. It is official. The struggling eighth-placed Isapeas have taken arguably the biggest gamble in the history of the premier league tournament, resurrecting 40-year-old Tuksy Karu.
We havent found the direction in our halves, but we have Tuksy Karu, chief selector Jacob Ivaroa revealed yesterday.
Hes been a part of our preparations since the first season.
Ivaroa said the idea was borne a couple of weeks ago, when the halves issue again came to the fore with yet another loss.
Team manager Bosco Kose had reminded Ivaroa of Queensland Maroons coach Wayne Bennetts gutsy call to drag retired Queensland great Allan Langer back from England for game three of the 2001 series where he played a leading role at the advanced league age of 35 years in their series win, and it kept ticking on his mind, as the losses piled up.
It has been seven years and 10 months since Karu reluctantly hung up the boots mid-season in 2004 for personal reasons and although he may have lost several metres in pace, the same cool, calm and collected playmaker will be in the middle of the park directing play.
His last outing in the SP Intercity Cup was as part of the premiership-winning Enga Mioks side of 2000.
Whether he is out on the paddock for short spells or a longer stretches, or it may not turn out like the Bennett-Langer story, but a little Karu inspiration is sure to lift a side struggling to find their next win.
Im ready. No nerves, Karu said with a smile yesterday at Isapeas training.
People will have their own opinions. They will expect big things or they will say that Im finished and past it.
But I know why I put my hand up. This is a very good team. Hopefully I can add some direction, something I know that I can contribute.
I am not promising anything but to try my best for this team, the former Vipers and Kumuls maestro added.
Ivaroa said that the board had given its full blessing for the five-eighth known for his exciting style.There was no money involved, we didnt pay him anything to come into the team.
He is a Gulf rugby league icon and he comes in with his heart.
We want to restore lost pride. We want to establish an identity. Gulf has its own style of football and we want to bring that back, Ivaroa said.
Karu e, I like ta sound of tat. Tats my poi. Ko Kulf Isapeas!!!!!