Errors costly for Sharks
Weather, errors and poor decision-making in the weekend has put Pacific Sharks premiers at risk of losing top spot and a home semi.
In bad weather conditions they travelled to Rotorua to play Pikiao Warriors in a top of the table clash.
With a controlled first half, using the wind to advantage, Pacific held out 8-4.
Two unconverted tries went to to Haukainga Tiatoa and Ngari Hawkins as a result of forwards leading through the middle and halves kicked early, turning around the Pikiao pack. Each team had equal opportunities to score but errors meant it was a low scoring match for both.
Pacific dominated the first half, looking like the the leaders of the BOP competition. Coaches Paniora Daniels and Neville Takiri were encouraged by the huge effort from their forwards but wanted to see the unit maintain and take more advantage of their possession in the opposition territory.
In the second half, Pacific started real strong with an early penalty by Ngari Hawkins taking the lead to 10-4 but Pikiao replied quickly with an unconverted try.
Co-captain Callin Tereu crossed the line shortly after off a Sean McCain grubber which was converted by Hawkins.
With a Pikiao player sent to the bin for an attempted leg trip, Pacific looked certain to score with possession but once again errors proved costly. Patience and persistence saw Pikiao take the lead in the 75th minute with a converted try.
The determined Pikiao side held out to win 18-16.
Retox player of the day was co-captain Callin Tereu, who lead well from the front.
Pacific now hold top spot by one point and travel again to Rotorua to play third spot Nongataha for the chance to secure the home semi.