Mitre 10 Cup Review - Week 1

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Sunday, August 11, 2019    Lynn McConnell    Getty Images

Adding to the efforts for a first-up loss by perennial winners Canterbury at the hands of Waikato. While that is not unusual for the red and blacks it was the manner in which Waikato hung in and claimed the victory with a second half comeback that told a story in itself.

In the Premiership, Tasman and Waikato have started with bonus point wins and the Auckland draw has put it under pressure not to concede games if it wants to stay in touch with the leaders.

In the Championship, Bay of Plenty, Hawke's Bay and Taranaki have set the early pace sharing bonus point wins.

Southland 17 Northland 27

Desperate to shake-off their losing streak of the last two seasons, Southland had to absorb a lot of pressure from a hard Northland pack who were never happier than when setting up pick-and-goes near the Southland line. The home team did reveal some great running skills for their tries.

Scorers: Southland 17 (Isaac Te Tamaki, Phil Halder, Josh Moorby tries; Marty McKenzie con) Northland 27 (Coree Te Whata-Colley, Jordan Hyland, Temo Mayanavanua tries; Jack Debreczeni 3 con, 2 pen). HT: 10-6

Auckland 28 North Harbour 28

Defending champions Auckland looked set to make an impressive start to their campaign but they reckoned without the doggedness of their rivals from across the bridge. Held scoreless in the second half, Auckland had to settle for a share of the spoils after some great forward play from North Harbour.

Scorers: Auckland 28 (Tanielu Tele'a, Hoskins Sotutu 2, penalty try, tries; Harry Plummer 3 con) North Harbour 28 (Gerard Cowley-Tuioti, Asaeli Tikoirotuma, Karl Tu'inukuafe, Lua Li tries: Jared Page 4 con). HT: 28-14

Tasman 45 Wellington 8

On paper Tasman looked to be one of the teams to beat this year and on grass they demonstrated why in a complete annihilation of Wellington in Blenheim. Thriving in the wet conditions the powerful Tasman pack had too much control and pressured Wellington all the way.

Scorers: Tasman 45 (Liam Squire, Andrew Makalio, David Havili, Tyrel Lomax, Leicester Fainga'anuku 2, Te Ahiwaru Cirikidaveta tries; Mitch Hunt 5 con) Wellington 8 (Alex Fidow try; Jackson Garden-Bachop pen). HT: 26-3

Counties Manukau 29 Taranaki 34

Blow-for-blow Counties Manukau and Taranaki produced another thriller in the round. The Taranaki pack held the sway at the crucial moments and set up the win in which the ability to get low in driving for the line proved a key element for both sides in this nine-try effort.

Scorers: Counties Manukau 29 (Chris Kuridrani, Etene Nanai-Seturo, Conan O'Donnell, Daniel Hyatt tries; Riley Hohepa 2 con, pen; Andrew Kellaway con) Taranaki 34 (Sean Wainui, Waisake Naholo, Lachlan Boshier, Jackson Ormond, penalty try, tries; Daniel Waite 2con, pen) HT: 19-29

Waikato 31 Canterbury 28

Waikato produced a great first-up effort to push Canterbury all the way in a thrilling contest in Hamilton. But Valynce Te Whare-Crosby had the final say in giving Waikato an edge they were able to hold through some tense final moments.

Scorers: Waikato 31 (Josh Iosefa-Scott, Quinn Tupaea, Hamilton Burr, Valynce Te Whare-Crosby tries; Fletcher Smith 4 con, pen) Canterbury 28 (Josh McKay 2, Luke Whitelock, Sam Gilbert tries; Brett Cameron 4 con). HT: 14-21

Bay of Plenty 50 Otago 7

Otago had plenty of possession but Bay of Plenty had all the points. Thirty missed tackles didn't help Otago who conceded eight tries while they were also guilty of giving away twice as many penalties as the home team. With the Ranfurly Shield around the corner they will be looking to an improvement.

Scorers: Bay of Plenty 50 (Abraham Papali'i, Mitch Karpik, Fa'asiu Fuatai 2, Aidan Ross, Joe Webber, Luke Campbell, Jason Robertson tries; Dan Hollinshead 5 con) Otago 7 (Sio Tomkinson try; Vilimoni Koroi con). HT: 26-0

Manawatu 13 Hawke's Bay 31

A try in the first two minutes suggested Manawatu had a potential upset in the making. But controlled forward play from Hawke's Bay saw it apply all the pressure and by game's end it was a victory backed by all the key statistics with a five tries to one margin a fair reflection of the result.

Scorers: Manawatu 13 (Hamish Northcott try; Otere Black con, pen; Sam Malcolm pen) Hawke's Bay 31 (Brendon O'Connor, Ash Dixon 2, Pouri Rakete-Stones, Folau Fakatava tries; Danny Toala 3 con). HT: 10-10