Tasman produced an outstanding performance on the road at Canterbury to confirm their top spot in the ITM Cup, winning 38-10.
Tasman produced an outstanding performance on the road at Canterbury to confirm their top spot in the ITM Cup Premiership, winning 38-10.
For a first-ever win in Christchurch, this was incredibly convincing and somewhat of a shock.
Their captain Shane Christie couldn’t have wished for a better celebration on his 50th appearance.
Fly-half Marty Banks wrapped up the contest with the bonus point try when he intercepted Richie Mo’unga’s looping pass to finish with 16 points.
Former All Blacks scrum-half Jimmy Cowan was amongst the try scorers as Tasman simply had too much class for their hosts, producing some scintillating back play as rising stars Kieron Fonotia and James Lowe both shone.
Cowan’s try, Tasman’s third, had they way out in front at 21-3 with Canterbury yet to fire. The only question was whether the expected comeback from the seven-time champions would be too late.
Tasman had the control of the first half, Cowan snapping away and letting tempers boil while the likes of Lowe and Fonotia worked their magic.
Lowe’s try in particular was special, Robbie Malneek producing one of best passes of the year to send his winger flying over under the posts.
Lowe was at it again in dying minutes for another interception try to add more gloss onto the scoreboard. It truly was an emphatic win.
Canterbury boss Scott Robertson will be left reeling after seeing his team so well thumped at home.
Having looked so imperious in the early stages in the competition, Canterbury have now lost three on the bounce and struggled to maintain possession. At the breakdown they were comfortably second best.
Meanwhile, Tasman rightly sit top of the table full of confidence.
Tries: Havili, Lowe 2, Cowan, Banks
Cons: Banks 4, Saifoloi
Canterbury: 15 Luteru Laulala, 14 Nathaniel Apa, 13 Adam Whitelock, 12 Rob Thompson, 11 Michael Green, 10 Richie Mo’unga, 9 Mitchell Drummond, 8 Nasi Manu, 7 Matt Todd, 6 Luke Whitelock, 5 Matt Symons, 4 Dominic Bird, 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Daniel Lienert-Brown.
Replacements: 16 Ben Funnell, 17 Siate Tokolahi, 18 JJ Manning, 19 Reed Prinsep, 20 Steve Alfeld, 21 Brett Mather, 22 William Saukuru.
Tasman: 15 Robbie Malneek, 14 Bryce Heem, 13 Kieron Fonotia, 12 David Havili, 11 James Lowe, 10 Marty Banks, 9 Jimmy Cowan, 8 Vernon Fredricks, 7 Shane Christie (c), 6 Tevita Koloamatangi, 5 Joe Wheeler, 4 Alex Ainley, 3 Ross Geldenhuys, 2 Quentin MacDonald, 1 Siua Halanukonuka.
Replacements: 16 Jesse MacDonald, 17 Reuben Northover, 18 Tevita Cavubati, 19 Nemani Nagusa, 20 Billy Guyton, 21 Rohan Saifoloi, 22 Mitchell Scott.
Referee: Garratt Williamson