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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Waikato vs CanterburyWaikato vs Canterbury Preview
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Northland vs Wellington14:35
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North Harbour 21 - 25 Southland
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Tasman 35 - 15 Hawkes BayTasman vs Hawkes Bay Report
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1Canterbury15
2Tasman15
3Waikato15
4Taranaki12
5Counties Manukau12