Tawa round off a bril­liant sea­son

Kapi-Mana News - - SPORT - By KRIS DANDO

Tawa rugby se­nior 1 coach Lo­gan Tauili­ili said his side’s com­bi­na­tion of hu­mil­ity, con­fi­dence and team spirit won them the Ed Chaney Cup fi­nal.

Their 14-6 vic­tory over red-hot favourites Pare­mata-Plim­mer­ton at Ngati­toa Do­main on Satur­day was built on de­fence and de­ter­mi­na­tion. Im­mense for­ward play and a dom­i­nance at set-pieces – a hall­mark of their pre­mier team’s Ju­bilee Cup hero­ics this sea­son – plus canny kick­ing helped them edge to vic­tory in a dogged and tight match.

Cen­tre Maka Ioane scored a fan­tas­tic in­di­vid­ual try on the half-hour mark and half­back Nick But­ter­worth put the game out of reach with a 48-me­tre penalty 10 min­utes be­fore the end.

Hun­dreds of vo­cal sup­port­ers of both sides en­joyed the late win­ter sun­shine as Pare­mata- Plim­mer­ton’s im­pres­sive 14-game un­beaten run was bro­ken.

They fell at the fi­nal hur­dle last sea­son as well, los­ing out to Welling­ton.

Tauili­ili, in his first year with Tawa, said his play­ers were ec­static to em­u­late their pre­mier side’s suc­cess.

The Tawa se­nior play­ers trained as one unit this sea­son and it made all the dif­fer­ence, he said.

‘‘There is so much shape, struc­ture and hard work at this club.

‘‘The play­ers re­spect each other, turn up for train­ing on time and train hard.

‘‘They are hum­ble but con­fi­dent, and some­times it looks like there is not a first and sec­ond team, but a 52-man squad.

‘‘On the field, the pre­miers set a bench­mark that we chased very hard.’’

He said many of the se­nior 1 squad had come through colts to­gether and they hoped to re­tain the Ed Chaney ti­tle in 2014.

Pare­mata- Plim­mer­ton coach Dave Birnie rued cru­cial li­ne­out misses, turnovers and two missed late penal­ties by full­back Ryan McLean. He could not fault the char­ac­ter of his team, how­ever.

‘‘It was such a tight game. Both teams re­ally wanted this, but some­one has to win,’’ Birnie said.

‘‘Our boys are re­ally happy with what they’ve achieved this sea­son – it was just a pity to drop this game in front of a home crowd.

‘‘This is an­other build­ing step for us as we take the club for­ward.

‘‘We have a group of play­ers who work hard for each other and will achieve more in the fu­ture.’’

Birnie said suc­cess was not gauged just on the col­lec­tion of sil­ver­ware. Hav­ing 1000 sup­port­ers at­tend a se­nior 1 club rugby fi­nal pointed to the right things hap­pen­ing at Pare­mata-Plim­mer­ton, he said.

Pho­tos: KRIS DANDO

Sil­ver­ware: The tro­phy cabi­net at Lyn­d­hurst Park will need to be en­larged af­ter Tawa’s se­nior 1 side cap­tured the Ed Chaney Cup on Satur­day.

On the at­tack: Tawa half­back Nick But­ter­worth was a key cog in his side’s Ed Chaney Cup win.

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