Norths fight back strongly
A 14- 12 score in favour of Paremata Plimmerton over Northern United early in the second half would have been unheard of a few years ago.
But the fortunes of both premier rugby clubs have changed recently and their Hardham Cup match at Porirua Park had signs of a major upset on Saturday. Norths, however, brought their game plan to bear with 30 minutes to go and their bigger men got the better of the visitors.
The bonus-point 31-14 victory means Norths sit comfortably in third after four matches. Paremata Plimmerton have two wins and two losses and are sixth.
Norths coach Steve Haturini said that in the first 50 minutes his players forgot structure and basics, and Paremata Plimmerton’s line speed and pressure was impressive.
‘‘It took a while, but we came right and got those late tries and the bonus point, which was great,’’ he said. ‘‘In the end, the whole team stood up.’’
Haturini said the run towards the Hardham playoffs included matches against Upper Hutt, Poneke and Avalon, which would test his side’s mettle.
‘‘It won’t be easy, but I think we’re on track.’’
The past few weeks had been tough on the club following the death of Jerry Collins, but the Norths, Wellington and All Black legend would want the premier side to get on with the job, Haturini said.
The character and attitude within the squad has been such that Haturini has softened his stance on music in the changing sheds.
In the Jubilee Cup, Tawa went down 31- 30 to Petone at Lyndhurst Park, conceding a lastminute try. A brilliant Steve So’oialo try, three James So’oialo penalties and try to Telea Seumanutafa gave Tawa a 23-10 lead midway through the second half, but Petone fought back well.
Tawa’s first Jubilee Cup loss means they are second after four games, behind Old BoysUniversity.
The Northern United women’s side made a winning start to the second-round Victoria Tavern Trophy, accounting for Old BoysUniversity 46-19. Tawa had their first win in the second tier competition, dispatching Johnsonville 53-5.
In Kapi Mana premier netball, there were big wins for KBJ 1, Te Tai Timu 1 and Norths 1, and Aotea College edged Rockz 1 58-51.
Porirua Vikings resumed their winning ways after their loss to Te Aroha in Wellington premier rugby league, winning the local derby 55- 12 over St George Dragons at Cannons Creek Park on Saturday. The win puts Vikings fifth in the table. St George are seventh.
In the Chatham Cup football third round, Western Suburbs beat New Plymouth Rangers 4-0.
Northern United’s Peato Lafeaele runs at the Paremata Plimmerton defence shortly before scoring a try.