Planet Rugby

Tasman win promotion in dramatic final

25th October 2013 09:54

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Tasman players celebrate after winning during the ITM Cup Championship FInal 2013

Tasman: 2012 ITM Cup Championship winners

An exhilarating ITM Cup Championship Final ended in a narrow 26-25 victory for Tasman over Hawke's Bay at Trafalgar Park on Friday.

A 79th minute try from substitute Hawke's Bay scrum-half Chris Eaton left 20-year-old Ihaia West with a touchline conversion for the trophy, but the fly-half's attempt drifted wide of the mark.

Tasman's victory was built on solid defence, with number eight Liam Squire and second-row Joe Wheeler spearheading an abrasive and powerful forward display, while fly-half Marty Banks landed sixteen points.

Hawke's Bay led early on, however, when All Black full-back Zac Guildford sped over the line with just two minutes on the clock.

From then on, though, Tasman took control of the game, scoring three first-half tries through Bryce Heem, Squire and Banks himself versus a solitary West penalty goal.

Hawke's Bay struck first after the break, with a beautiful Richard Buckman offload sending flanker Brendon O'Connor in for five points. West's conversion cut the gap to six points, and the stage was set for a thrilling final quarter.

Banks and West traded penalty goals, before Eaton was sent sliding in at the corner after bullocking runs from replacement Trent Boswell-Wakefield and O'Connor.

But West, who had enjoyed an impressive game in the pivot position, could not add the extras out wide, and the Cup was destined for Tasman.

The Scorers:

For Tasman:
Tries: Heem, Squire, Banks
Con: Banks
Pens: Banks 2

For Hawke's Bay:
Tries: Guildford, O'Connor, Eaton
Cons: West 2
Pens: West 2

Tasman: 15 James Lowe, 14 Bryce Heem, 13 Kieron Fonotia, 12 Tom Marshall, 11 Mitchell Scott, 10 Marty Banks, 9 Billy Guyton, 8 Liam Squire, 7 Shane Christie (capt), 6 Gary Redmond, 5 Joseph Wheeler, 4 Alex Ainley, 3 Sila Puafisi, 2 Quentin MacDonald, 1 Tim Perry
Replacements: 16 Francis Smith, 17 Siua Halanukonuka, 18 Tevita Cavubati, 19 Vernon Fredericks, 20 Mark Swanepoel, 21 Andy Symons, 22 Robbie Malneck

Hawke's Bay: 15 Zac Guildford, 14 Telusa Veainu, 13 Richard Buckman, 12 Andrew Bradley, 11 Penikoko Latu, 10 Ihaia West, 9 Alby Mathewson, 8 Karl Lowe, 7 Brendon O'Connor, 6 Mike Coman (capt), 5 Mark Abbott, 4 Michael Allardyce, 3 Brendon Edmonds, 2 Ash Dixon, 1 Max Lahiff
Replacements: 16 Ged Robinson, 17 Adrian Barone, 18 Trent Boswell-Wakefield, 19 Tony Lamborn, 20 Chris Eaton, 21 Andrew Horrell, 22 Mikey Vuicacau

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ITM Cup
Thursday , August 14
Taranaki vs Counties Manukau19:35
Friday , August 15
Southland vs Bay Of Plenty19:35
Saturday , August 16
Otago vs North Harbour14:35
Canterbury vs Auckland16:35
Wellington vs Waikato18:35
Sunday , August 17
Tasman vs Hawkes Bay14:35
Northland vs Manawatu16:35
Thursday , August 21
North Harbour vs Southland19:35
Friday , August 22
Waikato vs Canterbury18:05
Hawkes Bay vs Taranaki20:05
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1Wellington1042
2Canterbury1040
3Auckland1036
4Counties Manukau1028
5Waikato1021