HUTT OLD BOYS MARIST 33 OLD BOYS UNIVERSITY 17
Hutt Old Boys Marist 33 (Tomasi Alosio, Steven Bradshaw, Chase Tiatia 2, Parataiso Silafai-Leaanaa tries; Glen Walters 4 con) Old Boys University 17 (Tim Smith, Luke Campbell tries; Greg Mullany 1 con, 1 pen, Hamish Buick 1 pen). HT: 19-10. Yellow card: Ross Kennedy (OBU Lock).
Best and fairest: 3 points: James Wall (HOBM lock), 2 points: Chase Tiatia (HOBM wing), 1 point: Luke Campbell (OBU reserve halfback).
Venue: Hutt Recreation Ground.
What happened: HOBM was the much better side on Saturday. Led by a powerful forward pack and a strong set-piece they were able to strangle their opposition out of the match in a physical encounter. Tempers flared and it was scrappy for much of the fixture yet the home side had too much class in their backline. OBU showed some signs of improvement but it was a patchy affair.
Chase Tiatia has a happy knack of beating the first defender and crossed for two tries while Silafai-Leaanaa cemented the victory on the stroke of full-time. The bonus point could prove valuable.
Who stood out: James Wall was immense on defence and frustrates his opponents out of the game. Chase Tiatia seems to add the golden touch to HOBM. He didn't get a lot of opportunities in this match on the wing but made the most of the ones that came. Luke Campbell ignited the struggling OBU side back into life in the second half and scampered over for a well-deserved try; too much talent to be sitting on the bench.
The up-shot: OBU can recover next week against Wellington Axemen while HOBM will look for back-to-back wins against Norths. Both teams sit in the logjam in the middle of the table and will both need to be strong in the final three rounds of the Swindale shield to claim a spot in the Jubilee Cup.
- Jack Biggs
JOHNSONVILLE 23 MARIST ST PATS 33
Marist St Pat's 33 (Pago Haini, Sam Scown, Sefo Setefano, Andrew Wells tries; Fa'atonu Fili 3 pen, 2 con) Johnsonville 23 (Kane Le'aupepe, Jack Taulapapa tries; Hiro Nakata 3 pen, 2 con). HT: 9-13.
Venue: Helston Park
Best and fairest: 3 points: Nemani Waaka (MSP flanker), 2 points: Jack Taulapapa (J'ville halfback), 1 point Dan Turner (MSP lock).
What happened: High-fliers Marist St Pat's appeared a little shellshocked at halftime when they trailed Johnsonville 13-9. The rev-up they received had the desired effect however as they came out firing in the second spell and scored immediately, taking a 16-13 lead. They never relinquished their advantage despite J'ville being right in the game at 28-23 till a late clincher sealed it for the visitors.
Who stood out: MSP flanker Nemani Waaka was a tireless toiler and always tough to stop with ball in hand. Lock Dan Turner was a tower of strength at lineout time while the inside back pairing of Peter Sciascia and Fa'atonu Fili controlled proceedings with their usual aplomb. Will-o-the-wisp halfback Jack Taulapapa starred for J'ville, scoring a brilliant second-half try which had the large Old Timers' Day crowd in raptures. Taulapapa received the ball just inside in his own half and scythed through half the MSP team before dotting down.
The upshot: MSP did enough to hold on to second place in the Swindale Shield but still have Ories and Tawa to play. Johnsonville continue to punch above their weight though they are destined for the second-round Hardham Cup.
- Steven Moffatt
NORTHERN UNITED 26 WAINUIOMATA 33
Northern United 26 (Genki Hasegawa, Fala Tuala tries. Jackson Garden-Bachop 2con, 4pen) Wainuiomata 33 (John Monu, Shahn Eru 2, Fa'atau Mamea 2 tries. Tyler Tane con, 2pen). HT: 13-13.
Best and fairest: 3 points: Ben Tupuola (Woa Number 8), 2 points: Bevan Clarke (Wainui Lock), 1 point: Shahn Eru (Wainui Flanker).
Venue: Porirua Park, Porirua
What happened: In perfect Porirua Park conditions, Wainui showed their intentions, racing out to a 10-point lead early through a 60 metre penalty from Tyler Tane and first five John Monu finishing a well-constructed team try. To Norths' credit, they slowed Wainui's scoring, holding them to only a further 3 points for the first half.
Norths looked to target Wainui's lineout with lock Fala Tuala turning over a number of throws one of which they spread wide to wing Genki Hasegawa who sprinted 70 metres to score a converted try and close the half at 13 apiece.
Wainui started the second half strong, loose forward Shahn Eru scoring the first of his two tries after 4 minutes and was followed five minutes later by Fullback Fa'atau Mamea also scoring the first of his two. Apart from the earlier long range kick, Tyler Tane who is usually very accurate would be disappointed with his effort off the tee. 4 missed conversions kept North hopes alive, and they went down fighting. With 8 minutes to play lock Tuala scored wide which was converted by Jackson Garden-Bachop who also kicked a further two penalties to bag a bonus point in the under 7 point loss.
Who stood out: For Wainuiomata, Eru and Fa'atau Mamea finished well; however locks Bevan Clarke, Amaru Amaru and Number 8 Ben Tupuola were outstanding in leading Wainui's forward drive. Norths played well and disrupted Wainui's momentum, Tuala in the lineouts and hard working half back Adam Yardey at the breakdown. Veteran Prop Henry Smith and Fullback Peato Lafaele also contributed well.
The up-shot: Wainui jump into third in on the table and host Johnsonville next week to try and solidify their position in the top four. With only 5 points between 4th has kept them well within touch of the Jubilee Cup contenders and travel to the Hutt Rec to face Hutt Old Boys Marist next week
- Shane Kempson
ORIENTAL-RONGOTAI 15 TAWA 22
Tawa 22 (Tries: Phillip Finau, Sam Tuala, George Tilsley, Conversions: Randall Bishop 2/3 Penalties: Randall Bishop 1/2) Oriental Rongatai 15 (Tries: Peter Fa'atau, Tuga Mativa. Conversions: Hayden Whelan 1/2 Penalties: Hayden Whelan 1/4). HT: 3-0 Tawa
Venue: Polo Ground, Miramar
Best and fairest: Jeff Makapelu (Tawa Winger) 3 points Sam Blair (Tawa Flanker) 2 points Ben Komiti (Ories lock) 1point.
What happened: Tawa struggled, but were able to come away with the win over a strong Oriental Rongatai side.
Both teams' defence was very strong, making it difficult for either team to score in the first half. Tawa opened the scoring with a penalty. Then the reigning champs turned the heat up and played most of the last 10 minutes of the first half in the Ories' 22,but strong defence and crucial mistakes kept Tawa from scoring.
Tawa came back out the way the finished off the first, looking sure to score, but two against the run of play tries for Ories gave them an unexpected lead. Tawa bounced back strong scoring three tries within 15 minutes giving them the lead and the win.
Who stood out: Jeff Makapelu was a strong ball carrier, breaking tackles with every run. Sam Blair's defence was unbreakable and he won a few turnovers at the ruck. Ben Komiti's bone-crunching tackles were a crowd favourite, he also made some crucial try-saving tackles. Paulo Aukuso had and eye for the gap all day, one of his breaks led to Tuga Mativa's try.
The up shot: Tawa remain unbeaten and atop of the leader board, Ories left wondering how they lost.
- Zac Ringrose
PETONE 34 UPPER HUTT RAMS 22
Petone 34 (Tamati Samuels, Nick Grigg, Jared Kahu, Michael Kainga tries, Carne Green 1 con, 4 pen) Upper Hutt Rams 22 (Max Pearson, Greg Strickland tries, Jordon Simpson Heft 4 pen). HT 19-14 Petone. Yellow Card: Cam Incledon 29'
Venue: Petone Recreation Ground
Best and fairest: 3 points: Ta'amilo Vaa (Petone lock), 2 points: Mathew Luamanu (UHR lock), 1 point: Eugene Smith (Petone hooker).
What happened: Upper Hutt applied pressure immediately from the start and took an early lead with two Jordon Simpson Heft penalties, Petone came back with a penalty to Carne Green but it looked ominous for the home team when big Matthew Luamanu bulldozed his way through the Petone defence before off loading to Max Pearson for the Ram's first try. Penalties were traded before Petone fullback Lewis Marshall dashed up the field to set up a try for Tamati Samuels.
The smaller home pack took control in the second half and replacement halfback Jared Kahu scored following several forward drives at the line.
Nick Grigg scampered 70 meters to extend Petone's lead after a bobbled ball fell into his arms. Upper Hutt then got their game together and Luamanu had his second try assist with a clever little kick for Greg Strickland to score out wide.
The Villagers finished the game with their fourth try to Mike Kainga following several concerted Petone attacks.
Who stood out: Hooker Eugene Smith in his 150th game was prominent in Petone's defence and his lineout combination with promising young lock Ta'amilo Vaa was faultless, Nineteen year old Vaa is a real prospect and is getting better week by week . Matthew Luamanu gave the Villagers problems all day while Joyner Key was always dangerous with the ball in hand.
The up-shot: With this win Petone have given themselves a good chance of playing Jubilee Cup rugby. Both teams will still have to look back over their shoulder however as it is a very tight competition with three rounds to play. Next up: Petone v Tawa-Lyndhurst Park, Upper Hutt Rams v Poneke-Kilbirnie Park.
- Doug Smith
PONEKE 21 WELLINGTON 20
Poneke FC 21 (Judd Baker, Nathan Iro tries; Edwin Ainsley 3 pen 1 con) Wellington 20 (Paddy Hughes Mike Smith tries; Matthew Goosen con & pen, Nick Butterworth con & pen). HT: 10-6 to Wellington.
Venue: Kilbirnie Park.
Best & Fairest: 3 points: Judd Baker (Poneke prop), 2 points: Vaea Fifita (Wellington lock), 1 point: Hennie Tui (Poneke prop).
What happened: Both goal kickers for each club will be at the receiving end of commiseration and congratulations, with Poneke's 1st five-eighth Edwin Ainsley getting the crucial extras to get the win for Poneke by one point.
The first try to the Axeman's centre Paddy Hughes was a peach as he turned multiple defenders from deep inside his half both inside and out to score by the posts.
A missed opportunity to collect penalties for the Axemen meant that the lead was slim at halftime but with Poneke opting for penalty conversions - it appeared that they banked on defense to see them out.
After Axeman's blindside Mike Smith try was converted, Poneke had twenty minutes to score twelve points.
With the timely arrival of fresh legs in the front row replacements of youngsters Aresmin Schmaukell and Hennie Tui as well as the experienced head and hands of halfback Brad Faulkner - Poneke found the chalk twice and Ainsley the middle of the posts to win at the final whistle.
Who stood out: Poneke prop and top try scorer Judd Baker showed real grit to find the paint and start the fightback. Wellingtons' lock Vaea Fifita demonstrated again why he's frequently picked for best and fairest with a heavy workload at set piece, showing good pace across the park.
The upshot: The Upper Hutt Rams travel to Kilbirnie who will hunt for the 4 point buffer to stay in the eight whereas Poneke has the rugby equivalent of a 'Stephen Hawking' mathematical chance to glimpse the Jubilee round. As for Wellington, they should start setting up the other clubs for IOU's if they hustle OBU at Ian Galloway next week.
- Florence Masoe
- The Dominion Post
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