A POTENTIALLY serious knee injury to fullback Rohan Lisle may have soured Port Macquarie Pirates' win over Kempsey Cannonballs on Sunday.
Pirates won through to the Mid North Coast Rugby preliminary final, 36-26, as they turned it on in the second half at Stuart Park.
Korie Paio scored two tries in a solid display at flyhalf, and captain Chris Geary also found the line.
Geary was outstanding. He was involved in everything and took man of the match honours.
Other try scorers were Bledden Gant and Jacob Law.
It was a particularly great second half from the host team, after the Pirates were down 14-8 at the break.
Coach Nigel Hurlston said the result was never in doubt.
"You know when you play those games you just know you're going to win?" he said.
Paio is a plus for the team any time he steps onto the field, and it was no different on Sunday.
A couple of niggling injuries had taken their toll on Paio's game time this season.
"He was a little bit rusty," Hurlston said.
The Pirates planned to take him off if they ever had the game comfortably wrapped up.
"But we couldn't," Hurlston said.
"It was too close."
Pirates were due to find out the extent of Lisle's injury on Monday afternoon. Hurlston and Pirates' medical staff suspected anterior cruciate ligament damage.