Kia Toa secure Prue Christie Cup
Kia Toa can thank a big defensive effort for their 17-12 Prue Christie Cup win over Feilding Old Boys-Oroua at Central Energy Trust Arena on Saturday.
They were forced to cling on as FOB-Oroua launched an all-out assault at their tryline in the final minutes of the match.
But FOB-Oroua could not find any way of the tryline and eventually the referee’s whistle came to the aid of Kia Toa giving them a deserved win.
Kia Toa should have won the game by much more. Four key try-scoring opportunities were squandered by poor decision-making and poor handling.
Those mistakes were costly and allowed FOB-Oroua to stay in the match.
Kia Toa had the dominant forward pack, but the Stags had a pace advantage.
The first try of the match went to No 8 Marilyn Live as she barged over from short range.
In the 14th minute, FOB-Oroua responded with a try of their own to No 8 Samantha McIntosh.
Neither team seemed interested in kicking the ball and that attacking attitude proved costly as they looked to run with their backs on the tryline gifting an intercept try to Maggie Leota who only had to fall over after pinching the ball.
With two minutes to play in the first half, FOB-Oroua’s Isabella Rewiri-Wharerau intercepted a pass and sprinted deep into Kia Toa’s half before finding the safe hands of New Zealand Sevens representative Rhiarna Ferris for the try.
At 14-12 at halftime, the game was wide open, but a lack of accuracy hurt both team’s scoring opportunities.
A Carys Dallinger penalty were the only points of the second half.
As the clock ticked towards 80 minutes memories of last season’s final when FOB-Oroua bagged the match-winner in the final play would have been haunting Kia Toa coach Tarehu Solomon. But this time his side held on.
Kia Toa 17 (Maggie Leota, Marilyn Live tries; Carys Dallinger 2 pen, con) Feilding Old Boys-Oroua 12 (Samantha McIntosh, Rhiarna Ferris tries; McIntosh con) HT 14-12