Mitre 10 Cup



Canterbury (26 points), Taranaki (25), Counties Manukau (24) and Auckland (22) have jumped clear of Waikato and Tasman (both 18) at the top of the Premiership, albeit the latter two have a game in hand.

In the Championship Otago (29) and Wellington (23) are all but assured of semi final berths with Manawatu (15) and North Harbour (14) looking likely to join them.

Full standings can be found here

Week six as it happened

Southland 20-16 Bay of Plenty

As is the case so often this season, Southland overcame a 3-13 half time deficit to run out winners. The Bay really should have put the result beyond doubt before the break but both kickers used had an off night. Southland’s newest All Black Elliott Dixon and a former one in Jimmy Cowan lead the second half fight back.

Match report  

Wellington 29-21 Northland

Northland looked to be in for another heavy loss as Wellington jumped out to a 17-0 lead inside 15 minutes. The Taniwha largely closed Wellington down for the rest of the half and trailed 7-17 at the break. An early yellow card for Kara Pryor saw Wellington extend their lead to 29-7 before Northland staged a late rally. They’ve now lost 19 straight but are surely due to end that miserable run soon.

Match report

Counties Manukau 35-26 Waikato

Counties’ tight head prop Kalolo Tuiloma became an instant cult hero by scoring a hat trick in the opening quarter of the match, propelling his side to a 22-5 half time lead that was extended to 27-5 shortly after the resumption. Waikato then staged a comeback of sorts but Counties, with half back Augustine Pulu and 5/8 Piers Francis to the fore, never looked like being overhauled.

Match report

Kalolo Tuiloma’s hat trick:

Canterbury 45-34 Otago

Otago scored two of their four tries after the half- and full time sirens but were otherwise mostly dominated by a Canterbury side seething after last week’s shock loss to Manawatu. The Cantabs ran in seven tries of their own, lead 24-13 at the break and were never seriously in danger of losing the lead. Wing Johnny McNicholl had a stand out game, scoring one try and playing a hand in several others.

Match report 

Taranaki 30-19 Manawatu

Terrible conditions meant that this was never going to be anything other than an arm wrestle. Taranaki made the most of their limited opportunities playing into the elements and would have been well pleased to trail just 15-16 at half time. They then restricted Manawatu to just a penalty in the second half while running in two last-quarter tries to secure the bonus point win.

Match report

Tasman 36-29 Hawkes Bay

Tasman dominated possession and territory early and by half time had established a 24-8 lead. Hawkes Bay missed 17 first half tackles and made several costly unforced errors, the usually reliable Ihaia West among the culprits. A better second half saw the Bay close the gap to seven before Peter Samu’s 76th minute try ensured Tasman’s win despite a late try to Bay wing Jonah Lowe.

Match report

North Harbour 35-14 Southland

Both teams initially tried to put the other under pressure by kicking at every opportunity. After 30 minutes Harbour abandoned that in favour of a series of pick-and-goes that resulted in a try to wing Tevita Li and a 16-9 lead at the break. There was less kicking in the second half and some strong play from Southland but they could only manage one try while Harbour added three.

Match report

Auckland 44-38 Bay of Plenty

Twelve tries, including two hat tricks and a double, were scored as both sides ignored the difficult conditions to produce easily the match of the week.

The Bay struck twice early to lead 12-3 before Auckland centre Reiko Ioane produced a stunning solo try, adding another rather easier one late in the half. With fullback Lolagi Viinia also scoring Auckland lead 25-19 at the break. No. 8 Joe Tupe scored the Bay’s third try, the first of his own hat trick. Bay 5/8 Kelly Haimona missed a straight forward conversion plus a more difficult penalty that would prove crucial.

Auckland dominated the third quarter, extending their lead to a seemingly uncatchable 39-19 with Ioane’s third try. The Bay weren’t finished, though, storming back with Tupe also completing his hat trick to trail just 33-39. Melani Nanai gave Auckland some breathing space with a try in the 70th minute. The Bay responded with their sixth of the afternoon in the 75th but weren’t able to pull off what would have been a remarkable recovery.

Match report 

Match highlights:

Highlights of all matches can be found here

Week 7 fixtures

Wed 28 Sep Waikato v Canterbury, Hamilton RANFURLY SHIELD
Thu 29 Sep Tasman v Counties Manukau, Blenheim
Fri 30 Sep Wellington v Southland, Wellington
Sat 1 Oct Manawatu v Hawkes Bay, Palmerston North
Sat 1 Oct Auckland v Otago, Auckland
Sun 2 Oct Taranaki v Canterbury, New Lymouth
Sun 2 Oct Northland v Waikato, Whangarei

Mitre 10 Cup

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