Mitre 10 Cup

Mitre 10 Cup 2016: Week 7 Wrap

Mitre 10 Cup 2016: Week 7 Wrap

• A third loss in for Waikato in two weeks as the Shield goes south to Canterbury and the Mooloos lose to bottom placed Northland
• The big city teams Auckland, Wellington and Canterbury continue their momentum with big wins
• In the Premiership Division Canterbury is 10 points clear on 35 points with just 5 points separating the next four teams Taranaki, Auckland, Counties-Manukau and Tasman
• In the Championship Division Wellington and Otago are well clear of the pack with North Harbor, Manawatu and Bay of Plenty chasing the remaining two semi-final spots.

Mitre 10 Breakdown Law Update
At a recent meeting with all 18 coaches from Super Rugby SANZAAR Game Manager Lyndon Bray told an Australian media briefing that:

“as a total package, [we’re] not sure that the whole [Mitre 10 Cup] experimental law is right.” Bray explained “The prevailing issue is to what extent is the contest still on the tackle, and if you’ve watched a bit of Mitre 10 Cup you can see how hard it is to get in and actually win the ball, we want to protect a little bit of that contest. At the same time the balance is making sure the attack team has got confidence to play.”

It appears that coaches and Administrators are concerned that the balance has shifted too far to the attacking team under Mitre 10 Cup rules. Watch this space.

Read more here

Waikato v Canterbury (28 Sep) Hamilton

This was a tight match. The Waikato backline stepped up setting up two excellent tries in the first half to loose forwards Jordan Manihera, Whetu Douglas. The visitors scored their own tries before the break when veteran hooker Funnell burrowed over from a maul and Johnny McNicholl finished off a sideline break from halfway. The difference was the boot of Jordy Barrett that kept Canterbury ahead at the break 20-12. Waikato needed to score after the break and when Ratuva went over in the corner the scores were level at 23-23 with 10min to go. But Canterbury had the will and clinical ability to close out the game and inside Waikato’s half, brought pressure while Barrett’s boot added the 6 points that would make the final difference. The win signals Canterbury’s first successful Ranfurly Shield challenge since 2010 and brings the curtain down on a six match reign from Waikato.

Final score 29-23.

Full match report can be found here

Long Highlights:

Tasman v Counties Manukau (29 Sep) Blenheim

A low scoring affair in Blenheim reflected the change in intensity with the run towards the playoffs. A loss would have been the end of hopes for Tasman while Counties-Manukau is just one place above. All of Tasman’s points came from the boot of Marty Banks while Counties Manukau made a number of attacking raids into the Tasman half but just couldn’t finish their opportunities. A try to Jimmy Tupou in the first half after a solid forward rumble being the only try of the match.

Final Score Tasman 15-10 Counties-Manukau

Full match report can be found here

Wellington v Southland (30 Sep) Wellington

Wellington ran in 9 tries to 3 to put their mark on the Championship Division before the looming playoffs. Southland scored first through Jahvis Wallace off a set-piece 5m lineout and Southland first five Hawea (10) scored a brilliant try. Bristol-bound Jason Woodward (14), first five Garden-Bachop (10) and Hurricane Vaea Fifita (6) were prominent early sparking the Wellington attack. Southland stayed in touch until the 30min mark but then Wellington pulled away with 3 tries to Proctor (13), Goosen (12) and Woodward (14) to round out the first half 34-14. The second half was more of the same with more tries coming including a double to teenage winger Malo Tuitama, and a brilliant run from Jason Woodward. The game finished off by a consolation try to Southland.

Final score Wellington 60-21 Southland

Full match report can be found here

Jason Woodward had an excellent game:

North Harbour v Bay of Plenty (01 Oct) Albany

North Harbour overcame wet and windy conditions to edge out the Bay of Plenty 5 tries to 4 in front of their home crowd. An exciting first half saw Harbour up 20-10 after tries to Tevita Li (11) and Chris Vui (5) from excellent long range build ups. In the second spell the weather closed in but the game opened up with Li scoring his second and a couple of Harbour kicks – a high kick and a grubber – leading to tries that would prove the difference in the end.

Final score Harbour 44-34 Bay of Plenty

Full match report can be found here

Manawatu v Hawke’s Bay 01 Oct (Palm North)

In wet conditions, Hawkes Bay the accurate boot of Ihaia West proved to be the difference between the two teams. Manawatu started the game the better of the two teams taking the lead with Bay working hard to get back on terms squaring the log 16 all. An intercept try and West’s kicking closed out the game for the Bay. The win for Hawkes Bay keeps alive the faint hope of avoiding relegation.

Final score Manawatu 21-30 Hawke’s Bay

Full match report can be found here

Auckland v Otago 01 Oct (Auckland)

The Auckland team clicked on the weekend putting one of their best performances to comprehensively beat Otago. A highlight of the game was the effort of Rieko Ioane scoring three tries for the second week in a row. Otago struggled for the second week in row with a poor performance and inheriting injury problems at the wrong end of the season.

Final score Auckland 54-17 Otago

Full match report can be found here

Taranaki v Canterbury (02 Oct) New Plymouth

A top of the table clash with both teams only suffering one loss each before this match. Taranaki has an excellent, well drilled forward pack and Canterbury are arguably the best in the business. The game see-sawed right till the end but the difference was Canterbury’s six tries to Taranaki’s four. Taranaki were able to match the men from the South for the first 60min going into the sheds at 18-17 ahead at halftime with two tries a piece. Iopu Iopu-Aso had another strong game for Taranaki running well and scoring a try while Jordy Barrett was a key player for Canterbury scoring for 19 points and defending well. Jordy Barrett and Luke Whitelock tries after the break put Canterbury ahead and Taranaki played catch up from there. Canterbury were able to step up the pace of their game in the final 10-15 min as they did in Hamilton, taking control and closing out the game. They may look back at their four penalty options and missed conversions and rue not taking a more attacking mindset early on against this clinical Canterbury outfit.

Final score Canterbury 34-39 Taranaki.

Full match report can be found here

Long Replay:

Northland v Waikato 02 Oct (Whangarei)

Northland has finally ended their 19 game losing streak with a resounding win over Waikato. It appeared an unlikely result pre-game with an injury keeping Northland’s starting halfback on the sidelines. For the first time in a long time Northland were setting to pace rather than chasing the game score three tries before half time and keeping the Waikato from crossing their line. The second half saw Waikato start to mount a comeback scoring two quick tries but Northland were determined and wrestled back control of the game and did enough to close it out and finally get a long awaited win.

Final score Northland 48-27 Waikato

Full match report can be found here

See video highlights of all matches here

Week 8 Fixtures:
Wed 5 Oct Manawatu v Wellington Palm North
Thu 6 Oct Auckland v Tasman Auckland
Fri 7 Oct Canterbury v North Harbour Christchurch
Sat 8 Oct Southland v Northland Invercargill
Sat 8 Oct Otago v Counties Manukau Dunedin
Sat 8 Oct Waikato v Hawke’s Bay Hamilton
Sun 9 Oct Wellington v Taranaki Wellington
Sun 9 Oct Bay of Plenty v Manawatu Rotorua

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