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Pepsi Capital Rugby Union Grand Final Preview, KA Brothers VS CC Harlequins – Premier Division

After 15 rounds of intense rugby union played at the home of PNG Rugby, Bava Park, the stage is now set for the 2023 Pepsi Capital Rugby Union Grand Final. In the Premier Division, a grand final rematch takes place between the Kramer Ausenco Brothers and the Credit Corporation Harlequins. Both teams met in last year’s grand final showdown, where the Harlequins stunned the Brothers in a 20-16 victory. In a twist of rugby union deja vu, both teams will lock horns again in the 2023 Pepsi Capital Rugby Union grand final, fueling a bitter rivalry as old as the competition itself.

The consistent heavyweights of CRU, the Kramer Ausenco Brothers once again secure another grand final appearance in their illustrious 49-year history. Boasting a behemoth of a forward pack, in the likes of veteran Tony Sipa, and an electrically fast backline, directed by chief playmaker Jonah Kautu Jr, the men in black have put on a destructively clinical season, winning all 15 rounds in their regular season. Under the direction of their coach and former PNG Pukpuk fullback, Joe Kautu, the Kramer Ausenco-sponsored outfit has cruised to this year’s grand final undefeated. With the current squad, of seasoned veterans and dynamic youth, the KA brothers have, most fans and spectators are tipping the men in black to bag this season with a clean sweep.

Joining the KA Brothers in the big dance will be the defending champions of last year's grand final, the Credit Corporation Harlequins. The jesters of Bava Park fought tooth and nail throughout the season to secure their grand final spot. With a seesawing season of only 7 wins leading into the finals, the Credit Corporation-sponsored side was forced to dig deep and muscle their way past tough opponents in a similar fashion to last year. The Harlequins headed into elimination finals without their experienced skipper William Kalai, but the young Harlequins forward pack rose to the occasion by winning all the small battles through the field, fighting hard in the scrum, and forcing turnovers in their own territory. Although defending champions, the CC Harlequins walk into the grand final as underdogs but with powerful momentum on their side.

On paper, devoted fans of the men in black would see little cause for concern, however, one cannot deny the reigning champion’s relentlessness to relinquish their title with ease. After just scraping through to make the top four, and being forced to survive two sudden-death eliminations rounds, the Credit Corporation Harlequins showed pure grit, persistence, and tenacity to meet their 2022 grand finals rivals in this year's decider. Will the Kramer Ausenco Brothers exact revenge for last year’s grand final loss, or will the defending champions use their finals momentum to stun onlookers and retain the cup? One thing we can know for certain is that the 2023 Pepsi Capital Rugby Union grand final will be a compellingly entertaining match guaranteed to have spectators on the edge of their seats.

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