Evergreen Taranaki flanker Scott Waldrom might not have a Super Rugby job at the moment but he has a contract for as long as he likes in his adopted province.
The 31-year-old, who barely got a run for the champion Chiefs, crossed with just three minutes left in Taranaki's epic 18-9 Ranfurly Shield win over Canterbury to keep the Log o' Wood safely in New Plymouth.
Waldrom emerged from Taranaki's dressing room bloodied and bruised after the game but there was no way the smile was leaving his face.
"I've put it on my CV, if I don't come off bloodied, then I won't be happy," he said.
"I was just so stoked with the try, it was just a huge relief. It was like a weight coming off my shoulders."
Man-of-the-match against Hawke's Bay last week, Waldrom again emerged with plenty of admirers as he went toe to toe with Canterbury's Matt Todd.
More than 10,000 braved miserable conditions at Yarrow Stadium which badly effected the performance of both sides.
As well as constant drizzle, a swirling wind meant it was not a good day to be under the high ball.
There were plenty of them to deal with, as well, as both first five-eighths chose to put boot to ball more than run it wide.
In the end Canterbury made too many errors to deserve to take the Shield.
It was the first time the red and blacks have failed in a challenge since they lost to Waikato in 1998.
Before the game, Canterbury coach Tabai Matson said his side would have to bring their A game to beat Taranaki.
They didn't, while the loss also puts them under pressure to beat Waikato next week after they dropped their opening NPC match to Tasman.
"Clearly we didn't play to the conditions as well as the home team," a dejected Matson said after the game.
"On the back of a lot of errors, which is uncharacteristic, we were just poor."
Canterbury, who most pundits had predicted to beat Taranaki, never really threatened the opposition line. The only time they did was when Todd had a try ruled out for an earlier knock-on.
"Against a team like Taranaki, you have to do a lot better than that," Matson said.
Taranaki took a 10-6 lead into the break, thanks largely to a try from first five-eighth James Marshall who crossed after a neat move from a scrum.
Canterbury will look back on their poor defence in that instance, as well as Waldrom's try, although they could argue it was a double movement close to the line.
Taranaki were quite happy to try and plug the corners in the second half as they camped in the Canterbury 22 for long periods.
The four-time defending champions will also rue their inability to get any phases going as they made too many mistakes in the face of some quality defence.
"I think it was one of those games when it wasn't going to be the team who played the most rugby that would win," Matson said.
"It was team that made the least mistakes."
That team was Taranaki.
Taranaki 18 (James Marshall, Scott Waldrom tries; Frazier Climo pen, con; Jack Cameron pen) Canterbury 9 (Tyler Bleyendaal 3 pens). HT 10-6.
Full time: Taranaki win 18-9
76 minutes: Taranakin try to Scott Waldrom. Taranaki 18 Canterbury 9. Jack Cameron misses conversion.
75 minutes: Taranaki scrum on Canterbury twenty-two after knock on.
74 minutes: Canterbury scrum on own twenty-two.
73 minutes: Canterbury lineout on own twenty-two. Taranaki early jump Canterbury free kick.
71 minutes: Taranaki scrum inside own half, Canterbury forward pass.
70 minutes: Canterbury scrum just inside Taranaki half. Jackson Ormond and Sione Lea on.
69 minutes: Canterbury miss penalty Taranaki 13 Canterbury 9.
68 minutes: Canterbury lineout inside Taranaki half.
66 minutes: Taranaki penalty, Canterbury playing ball on the ground. Jack Cameron converts Taranaki 13 Canterbury 9
65 minutes: Taranaki scrum inside Canterbury half, Canterbury knock on.
63 minutes: Taranaki penalty, Canterbury offside. Jack Cameron misses. Brett Goodin on. Taranaki 10 Canterbury 9
62 minutes: Canterbury knock on, Taranaki scrum on Canterbury twenty-two.
60 minutes: Taranaki penalty, Canterbury slowing the ball down. Climo misses from 45m out. Taranaki 10 Canterbury 9
58 minutes: Canterbury miss peanlty. Taranaki 10 Canterbury 9. Chris Walker, Jason Eaton and Jack Cameron come on.
56 minutes: Canterbury knock on just before the line. Taranaki scrum on own 5m.
56 minutes: Canterbury scrum on Taranaki twenty-two, knock on from Taranaki.
55 minutes: Taranaki scrum on own twenty-two, Canterbury knock on.
54 minutes: Canterbury lineout inside Taranaki half.
53 minutes: Canterbury penalty, Taranaki eary scrum engage.
51 minutes: Taranaki wins scrum on Canterbry 5m.
48 minutes: Canterbury scrum on own twenty-two, Taranaki knock on.
46 minutes: Taranaki scrum on Canterbury twenty-two. Canterbury knock on.
45 minutes: Canterbury penalty, Taranaki tighthead binding at scrum. Taranaki 10 Canterbury 9.
44 minutes: Taranaki scrum inside own half, Canterbury knock on.
43 minutes: Canterbury lineout inside own half, big clearance from Jayden Hayward.
42 minutes: Taranaki penalty, quick tap. Canterbury wrong numbers in the lineout.
41 minutes: Taranaki lineout just inside Canterbury half.
40 minutes: Teams back on the field. Taranaki kick to Canterbury.
Half time: Taranaki have taken a slim 10-6 lead into the break after an error ridden 40 minutes. A James Marshall try was the only real scoring highlight.
38 minutes: Canterbury penalty, Taranaki holding on. Taranaki 10 Canterbury 6
37 minutes: Canterbury lineout inside own half. Taranaki obstruction.
36 minutes: Taranaki penalty, Canterbury obstruction. Lineout on Canterbury twenty-two
32 minutes: James Marshall scores from scrum move. Climo converts Taranaki 10 Canterbury 3
31 minutes: Taranaki scrum inside Canterbury half, Canterbury knock on.
30 minutes: Taranaki scrum just inside own half. Canterbury knock on.
29 minutes: Canterbury scrum inside Taranaki half after knock on.
27 minutes: Canterbury lineout inside their own twenty-two.
25 minutes: Taranaki penalty on halfway, Canterbury offside at the ruck. Climo misses Taranaki 3 Canterbury 3
24 minutes: Taranaki scrum on halfway. Canterbury knock on.
23 minutes: Marshall back on. Canterbury scrum on halfway after Taranaki knock on.
22 minutes: Taranaki lineout, Canterbury tackled into touch.
21 minutes: Canterbury lineout on halfway
21 minutes: Canterbury scrum inside Taranaki half.
20 minutes: Taranaki lineout on halfway. Canterbury holding on. James Marshall getting check up for concussion.
18 minutes: Canterbury lineout just inside Taranaki half.
15 minutes: Taranaki penalty Canterbury offside at ruck. Climo misses Taranaki 3 Canterbury 3
13 minutes: Taranaki offside at ruck. Canterbury convert penalty Taranaki 3 Canterbury 3
12 minutes: Canterbury lineout 30m out from Taranaki try line
11 minutes: Canterbury penalty, Taranaki offside at the ruck. Canterbury miss Taranaki 3 Canterbury 0
10 minutes: Canterbury scrum just inside Taranaki half after knock on.
8 minutes: Canterbury lineout just inside Taranaki half. lineout not straight. Taranaki scrum.
7 minutes: Canterbury knock on after some good play. Taranaki scrum just inside their own twenty-two.
5 minutes: Canterbury kick too deep. Taranaki scrum on halfway.
3 minutes first half: Canterbury offside at ruck, Taranaki penalty. Frazier Climo converts Taranaki 3 Canterbury 0.
Kick off - Canterbury kick to Taranaki. knock on Canterbury, Taranaki scrum just inside own half.
2.20pm: 15 minutes from kick off and the stands are filling up, there is a lot of amber and black in the crowd. A strong northeast wind is blowing across the field and there are a few spots of rain.
Thousands turn up for parade
Thousands of Taranaki fans, and the odd Canterbury fan, lined up on Devon St to get a look at the Ranfurly Shield parade this morning.
More than a dozen floats made their way down the main drag which was littered with amber and black jerseys, flags, hats and scarfs.
Taranaki cheerleaders lead the parade out and the prized shield was on display, guarded closely by members of the Taranaki team.
Tenderlink Taranaki will take on Canterbury at 2.35pm at Yarrow Stadium.
If you can't get to the game check out the live updates on our website, @Taranakinews twitter page or the Taranaki Daily News Facebook page.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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