At a glance
knock on ended the first half with the Mooloos 5-3 ahead.
Waikato’s forwards then rolled Manawatu, who coughed up possession after some bizarre errors, and replacement hooker Samisoni Taukei’aho crashed over after the break.
Guildford was forced off because of his hamstring injury in the attack that Taukei’aho scored from and Manawatu hit back when reserve halfback Jamie Booth cruised over to level the scores after an hour.
Harrison Brewer’s try then put Manawatu ahead for the first time Manawatu 23 (Jamie Booth, Harrison Brewer tries; Jade Te Rure 3 pen, 2 con) Waikato 10 (Pita Ahki, Samisoni Taukei’aho tries). HT: 3-5. as their scrum destroyed Waikato’s.
Two Te Rure penalties stretched the lead to 23-10 and Waikato just couldn’t drag themselves into contention as the resolute Turbos stood firm.
A bright day in Hamilton had quickly turned wet and wild as the heavens opened when Manawatu kicked off. But the shower cleared as fast as it arrived and Waikato opened the scoring within four minutes through Ahki’s try.
Neither side started particularly well, in adjusting to such sudden soaking conditions, but Manawatu’s early set piece dominance gave them some control.
After spurning one certain try before the TMO denied another, Manawatu tried to roll Waikato’s scrum for points.
The Turbos opted against shooting for three and could have paid the price for not taking chances if Waikato were more composed when counterattacking. With halftime looming and Manawatu still scoreless, Te Rure converted a penalty from near halfway.
Taukei’aho’s habit of scoring in Hamilton put Waikato 10-3 ahead but Booth and Brewer’s tries in the final quarter turned the tables in Manawatu’s favour.
The Turbos camped in Waikato’s end, Te Rure slotted two more penalties, and the Mooloos couldn’t come back.
Manawatu’s Kurt Baker wrestles Waikato fullback Zac Guildford for the ball in Hamilton yesterday.