Waikato consolidated their position on the Mitre 10 Cup table when the claimed a 46-22 victory over Hawke’s Bay in Hamilton on Saturday.
The result was a significant one for Hawke’s Bay as it confirmed their relegation from the Premiership.
The home side were full value for their win, outscoring Hawke’s Bay by six tries to three with Jordan Trainor leading the way with a 21-point haul courtesy of a try, five conversions and two penalties.
Waikato dominated from the outset and first half tries from Iliesa Ratuva, Willis Halaholo and Tau Koloamatangi, as well as accurate goalkicking from Trainor, gave them a 24-3 lead at half-time, with Hawke’s only points registered via an Ihaia West penalty.
Trainor added a penalty early in the second half before Hawke’s Bay were awarded a penalty try in the 45th minute when Tevita Taufui prevented Geoff Cridge from scoring a certain try.
Taufui received a yellow card for his indiscretion but that didn’t deter Waikato and Trainor soon crossed for their second try which he converted himself.
The Magpies struck back with five-pointers from Tony Lamborn and Mason Emerson but Waikato clinched victory via a Jason Robertson try three before ful-time.
Tries: Ratuva 2, Halaholo, Koloamatangi, Trainor, Robertson
Cons: Trainor 5
Pens: Trainor 2
Yellow Card: Taufui
For Hawke’s Bay:
Tries: Penalty try, Lamborn, Emerson
Cons: West 2
Waikato: 15 Jordan Trainor, 14 Iliesa Ratuva Tavuyara, 13 Willis Halaholo, 12 Tevita Taufui, 11 Sevu Reece, 10 Sam Christie, 9 Pele Cowley, 8 Whetu Douglas (c), 7 Adam Burn, 6 Jordan Manihera, 5 Brian Alainu’uese, 4 Jacob Skeen, 3 Atu Moli, 2 Hame Faiva, 1 Tau Koloamatangi
Replacements: 16 Steven Misa, 17 Sefo Kautai, 18 Latu Talakai, 19 Leva Fifita, 20 Mitch Jacobson, 21 Isaac Boss, 22 Jason Robertson, 23 Milford Keresoma
Hawke’s Bay: 15 Matt Garland, 14 Jonah Lowe, 13 Robbie Fruean, 12 Tiaan Falcon, 11 Mason Emerson, 10 Ihaia West, 9 Chris Eaton, 8 Fa’alemiga Selesele, 7 Tony Lamborn, 6 Trent Boswell-Wakefield, 5 Mark Abbott, 4 Geoff Cridge, 3 Ben May, 2 Ash Dixon (c), 1 Ricky Riccitelli
Replacements: 16 Jorian Tangaere, 17 Jason Long, 18 Mason Kean, 19 Ross Filipo, 20 Ben Hamelink, 21 Brad Weber, 22 Billy Ropiha, 23 Shannan Chase
Referee: Brendon Pickerill