Coun­try Cow­boys round up Bar­bar­ians

South Canterbury Herald - - SPORT - STU PIDDINGTON

The Coun­try Cow­boys had too many guns for the Ash­bur­ton Bar­bar­ians in the Ao­raki Rugby League fi­nal at Alpine En­ergy Sta­dium.

The Te­muka-based Cow­boys won 40-18, run­ning in seven tries to four to lift the Dun­can McGre­gor Tro­phy, after be­ing los­ing fi­nal­ists in 2016.

From the start­ing whis­tle, the Cow­boys were never re­ally in dan­ger.

The Cow­boys big for­wards gave their side plenty of go for­ward and took some of the steam out of their op­po­si­tion, which also helped score the first three tries. The Bar­bar­ians got one after 30 min­utes to make half time 18-6.

The Cow­boys how­ever proved too classy shoot­ing out to 40-10 be­fore the Bar­bar­ians got a cou­ple of late con­so­la­tion tries with the Cow­boys down to 12 men.

Sev­eral stand­out play­ers got the Cow­boys home. Half­back Taleni Tiai put in a near per­fect kick­ing dis­play, converting six of seven tries. Sec­ond rower Vaka Tael­ega was a star scor­ing a hat trick. Other tries went to wing Josh Rob­son, Anam Mana and Wise Leiroti.

For the Bar­bar­ians, hooker Purokis Matauti was a stand­out prop Caleb To­ho­vaka made sev­eral strong runs and back rower Alifeleti Prescott im­pressed.

In the backs wing Mii Pu­tai tried to get in­volved and was re­warded with a try.

The Coun­try Cow­boys were de­served win­ners of the Ao­raki Rugby League fi­nal out gun­ning the Ash­bur­ton Bar­bar­ians 40-18 at Alpine En­ergy Sta­dium.

Taleni Tiai flies in for a try.

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