Bladeless Turbos fall to Stags’ mighty scythe
D is for dismal, diabolical and demolished. An eight-try scoring spree Saturday’s game against Southland game may have been, but only two were scored by Manawatu.
The Turbos had left their blades on the plane at Invercargill airport and were chopped apart by the rampant Southland Stags at Rugby Park.
The Turbos’ reputation for slow starts and woeful tackling was exploited by Southland which kept Manawatu under the pump for the first 20 minutes, scoring two tries. Matters weren’t helped by the loss of Turbos fullback Semisi Masirewa with a season-ending double fractured leg in the first seven minutes.
The only first-half glimmer for Manawatu was a 50-metre intercept to Heiden BedwellCurtis, with a second half consolation to Rob Foreman.
The hosts were up 22-7 at the half, completing the rout 49-14.
Next Saturday, September 26 is realistically Manawatu’s only remaining chance to post another win in the ITM Cup. It’s a home game against languishing Championship side North Harbour, only beaten 17 - 10 by Canterbury on Sunday.
Given current form, the Turbos won’t stand a dog’s show in its last two away games against Premiership side Taranaki on Saturday October 3, and Championship side Wellington in the final round.
Saturday’s kick-off at the Oval against North Harbour is at 7.35pm.
It’s also the last opportunity for Manawatu schools to take part in the ITM Cup ‘We Love It Here’ competition. With a grand prize of a $10,000 working bee for the best school in every province, stickers have been given out to kids at Turbos home games to put on their ITM supplied school sticker chart.
The competition closes next Tuesday September 29 when participating schools have to send their completed sticker charts into Manawatu Rugby. With one last sticker-collecting game to go, the leading contender for the $10,000 prize is Mount Biggs Primary School.
Unwanted All Black and Southland steamroller Lima Sopoaga on the way to scoring his try against the hapless Turbos in Invercargill.