Planet Rugby

Auckland edge past Steelers

11th August 2011 10:41

Share:

Charlie Faumuina

Auckland: Hat-trick of wins

Auckland beat Counties Manukau 25-22 to claim an uninspiring win in Thursday's ITM Cup crossover match at Eden Park.

The home side's third straight win moves them into second place on the Premiership standings.

In an uninspiring spectacle place kicking dominated the opening proceedings and it wasn't until the 31st minute that fans were treated to any real action when Sherwin Stowers crashed over for the opening try of the match.

Sensing they had an overlap, Counties chanced their arm and decided to run the ball out of their own 22. After making metres down the left flank, the ball was then spun the other way as Tim Nanai-Williams fed Ahsee Tuala who got on the outside of his man and raced down the wing before passing inside to David Bason.

The Counties halfback was dragged down short of the line, but from the ensuing ruck the ball was sent quickly through the hands as Stowers burst onto it at pace and dived over the whitewash to score.

Steelers pivot Baden Kerr then gave his side the lead with a conversion and stretched the score out to 16-12 in favour of the visitors with a penalty kick five minutes before half-time.

However Auckland fly-half Gareth Anscombe landed his fifth successful penalty kick after the hooter had sounded to narrow the gap to just a point at half-time.

After applying plenty of pressure to the Counties Manukau defensive line all game, referee McBride eventually had enough of the visitors' constant impeding and yellow carded Simon Lemalu early in the second stanza.

The decision had an immediate effect, as number eight Chris Lowrey took the ball from the back of a five metre scrum and passed to wing George Moala who cut inside two defenders and burrowed his way over the line to score.

Kerr and Anscombe continued to keep the scoreboard ticking over for their teams as Auckland held a 25-22 lead in the dying stages of game, before the visitors were awarded a penalty minutes from full-time.

Turning down a relatively easy kick at goal to draw the match, Kerr instead decided to kick the ball into touch to go for the try and the win, and it almost came off as Counties came within a whisker of scoring their first ever victory over Auckland at Eden Park.

After setting up a driving maul, the visitors inched their way towards the try line through their forwards and Lemalu appeared to have scored. But referee McBride said the ball was played by a player on the ground, awarding a penalty to Auckland as Anscombe booted the ball into touch to celebrate the victory.

The scorers:

For Auckland:
Try: Moala
Con: Anscombe
Pen: Anscombe 6

For Counties Manukau:
Try: Stowers
Con: Kerr
Pens: Kerr 5

Auckland: 15 Brent Ward, 14 Joe Rokocoko, 13 Hadleigh Parkes, 12 Teddy Stanaway, 11 George Moala, 10 Gareth Anscombe, 9 Alby Mathewson, 8 Chris Lowrey, 7 Sean Polwart, 6 Nathan Hughes, 5 Steven Luatua, 4 Josh Townsend, 3 Charlie Faumuina/Nathan Vella, 2 Tom McCartney, 1 Tevita Mailau.
Replacements: 16 Ash Dixon, 17 Pauliasi Manu, 18 Ben Masoe, 19 Sam Henwood, 20 Toby Morland, 21 Piers Francis, 22 Winston Stanley, 23 Angus Ta'avao.

Counties-Manukau: 15 Tim Nanai-Williams, 14 Ahsee Tuala,13 Reynold Lee-Lo, 12 Tasesa Lavea, 11 Sherwin Stowers, 10 Baden Kerr, 9 David Bason, 8 Fritz Lee, 7 DJ Forbes, 6 Taiasina Tuifua, 5 Jamie Chipman (c), 4 Chris McLaren, 3 Matt Talaese, 2 Grant Henson, 1 Simon Lemalu.
Replacements: 16 Mark Price, 17 Jeremiah Fatialofa, 18 Adam Cathcart, 19 Mark Selwyn, 20 August Pulu, 21 James Semple, 22 Tyrone Lefau, 23 Peter Hale.

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
European Rugby Champions Cup
Saturday , October 25
Scarlets vs LeicesterScarlets vs Leicester Preview
Bath vs ToulouseBath vs Toulouse Preview
Montpellier vs GlasgowMontpellier vs Glasgow Preview
Northampton vs OspreysNorthampton vs Ospreys Preview
Sunday , October 26
Clermont Auvergne vs Sale SharksClermont Auvergne vs Sale Sharks Preview
Castres vs LeinsterCastres vs Leinster Preview
Wasps vs HarlequinsWasps vs Harlequins Preview
Benetton Treviso vs Racing Metro 92Benetton Treviso vs Racing Metro 92 Preview
More European Rugby Champions Cup fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , October 31
Leinster vs Edinburgh19:35
Ospreys vs Connacht19:35
Glasgow vs Benetton Treviso19:35
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
European Rugby Challenge Cup
Saturday , October 25
Rovigo vs Cardiff Blues14:00
Exeter vs ConnachtExeter vs Connacht Preview
Oyonnax vs Gloucester19:45
More European Rugby Challenge Cup fixtures
Currie Cup
Saturday , October 25
Western Province vs LionsWestern Province vs Lions Preview
More Currie Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
European Rugby Champions Cup
Saturday , October 25
Ulster 13 - 23 ToulonUlster vs Toulon Report
More European Rugby Champions Cup results
European Rugby Challenge Cup
Bucuresti 9 - 13 Stade Francais
More European Rugby Challenge Cup results
ITM Cup
Taranaki 36 - 32 TasmanTaranaki vs Tasman Report
More ITM Cup results
European Rugby Champions Cup
Friday , October 24
Munster 14 - 3 SaracensMunster vs Saracens Report
More European Rugby Champions Cup results
European Rugby Challenge Cup
Grenoble 15 - 25 London Irish
Edinburgh 25 - 17 LOU Rugby
Newport Gwent D'gons 26 - 30 Newcastle
La Rochelle 25 - 13 Bayonne
Brive 21 - 26 Zebre
Thursday , October 23
London Welsh 20 - 52 Bordeaux-BeglesLondon Welsh vs Bordeaux-Begles Report
More European Rugby Challenge Cup results
European Rugby Champions Cup
Sunday , October 19
Ospreys 42 - 7 Benetton TrevisoOspreys vs Benetton Treviso Report
Toulouse 30 - 23 MontpellierToulouse vs Montpellier Report
Toulon 28 - 18 ScarletsToulon vs Scarlets Report
Leinster 25 - 20 WaspsLeinster vs Wasps Report
More European Rugby Champions Cup results
European Rugby Challenge Cup
London Irish 70 - 14 RovigoLondon Irish vs Rovigo Report
More European Rugby Challenge Cup results
International Match
Saturday , October 18
Australia 28 - 29 New ZealandAustralia vs New Zealand Report
More International Match results
European Rugby Champions Cup
Sale Sharks 26 - 27 MunsterSale Sharks vs Munster Report
Saracens 30 - 23 Clermont AuvergneSaracens vs Clermont Auvergne Report
Racing Metro 92 20 - 11 NorthamptonRacing Metro 92 vs Northampton Report
Glasgow 37 - 10 BathGlasgow vs Bath Report
Leicester 25 - 18 UlsterLeicester vs Ulster Report
More European Rugby Champions Cup results
European Rugby Challenge Cup
LOU Rugby 28 - 18 London WelshLOU Rugby vs London Welsh Report
Bayonne 30 - 24 Exeter
Stade Francais 22 - 38 Newport Gwent D'gons
Connacht 48 - 12 La Rochelle
More European Rugby Challenge Cup results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Northampton625
2Saracens622
3Exeter620
4Bath620
5Wasps615