Surf crum­bles to in-form Hin­uera

Toko­roa falls short to com­pe­ti­tion lead­ers

South Waikato News - - SPORT -

A cou­ple of lucky tries proved to be the dif­fer­ence as South­ern United pro­duced a spir­ited per­for­mance only to fall 17-7 against Hin­uera in a phys­i­cally ab­sorb­ing en­counter.

Surf showed their in­tent from the open­ing whis­tle as they mus­cled up and launched their at­tack on the com­pe­ti­tion lead­ers who were look­ing to so­lid­ify their place at the top of the ta­ble.

Blus­tery con­di­tions fell

in favour of the vis­it­ing Surf side in the open­ing 40 min­utes as they nailed Hin­uera deep in their own half and de­fended their try line.

As the pres­sure con­tin­ued to build, Surf showed con­ti­nu­ity as they put to­gether a num­ber of phases but could not add the fin­ish­ing touches and con­vert it into points.

Even­tu­ally the break­through for the vis­i­tors came when first five-eighth Zane Cos­tar caught the de­fence off guard chip­ping the ball into space and win­ning the race to the line as Surf took a 7-0 lead.

How­ever, Hin­uera dis­played their class and wres­tled their way back into the con­test as South­ern scram­bled in de­fence to keep their op­po­si­tion out.

Hin­uera were boosted when they lev­eled the scores min­utes be­fore half­time with a try against the run of play when their num­ber 10 Toby O’Reilly stripped pos­ses­sion away and ran in for the try.

De­spite play­ing into the strong con­di­tions, Surf bat­tled away play­ing the ma­jor­ity of the sec­ond spell.

The turn­ing point came when South­ern were forced to play with 14 men af­ter the ref­eree harshly pe­nalised prop Sean Woon­ton for a tackle that earned him a 10 minute rest.

Hin­uera took con­trol and hit the lead from the en­su­ing penalty, then ex­tended their ad­van­tage min­utes later when an op­por- tu­nity to at­tack arose for South­ern but O’Reilly was on hand to in­ter­cept a pass for Hin­uera for his sec­ond try.

Surf were suc­cess­ful as they made in­roads in the Hin­uera de­fence but the hosts were able to hang on as they did ear­lier on in the match and even­tu­ally picked up the win.

Mean­while the se­nior B side re­main in top four con­tention af­ter their tough loss against dif­fi­cult op­po­si­tion and both Surf teams will aim to close out the sea­son this weekend against an in-form Taupiri side at home.

Hard de­fence: James Suther­land and Brodie Haugh (head­gear) tak­ing the de­fence to Hin­uera.

Run­ning hard: Prop Bryan Cameron with ball in hand closes in on the Hin­uera try line.

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