Counties claim their first Shield

Fri, 06 Sep 2013 14:07
Large counties celebrate with shi Large southland stags team huddle Large southland stags fans2 630

Counties Manukau has won the Ranfurly Shield for the first time, while consigning Hawke's Bay to the shortest ever tenure.

Counties Manukau has won the Ranfurly Shield for the first time, while consigning Hawke's Bay to the shortest ever tenure.

The Steelers edged the Magpies 24-22 in Napier on Saturday, courtesy of two late tries to replacements Sean Reidy and Sikali Nabou.

The Magpies' six day reign eclipses the seven day Shield tenures of Wellington in 1963 and Waikato in 2007.

The hosts led 16-14 at half-time, and looked to have one hand on the Shield when they opened up a 24-17 lead midway through the second half.

However, Counties struck back twice for their first Shield victory in 24 attempts.

* Meanwhile Auckland went to the top of the NPC Premiership competition with a dominant 51-15 win over Taranaki in New Plymouth.

The visitors scored the first of their six tries after just a minute of play, taking a 21-10 lead into half-time.

Fullback Lolagi Visinia dotted down twice, with first five Simon Hickey flawless in kicking 11 points.

The bonus point victory comes on the back of a three day turnaround from Auckland's win over Counties Manukau, and puts them ahead of Wellington on the ladder.

* In Friday's action Southland is on the board in the NPC, after beating Waikato 20-16 in Invercargill.

The Stags were held scoreless until late in the first half, before taking a 10-9 lead into the break.

The lead ballooned out when Stags lock Josh Bekhuis scored the first try of the second half, though Waikato replacement Semisi Masirewa answered to again close the gap to just a point.

However, a late penalty to Southland first five Marty McKenzie ensured his side would get its first win of the championship, while keeping the Mooloos near the bottom of the premiership.

* Meanwhile Tasman has roared to life in the NPC, with a dominant 49-16 win over Otago in Nelson.

The hosts scored two tries in the first half to lead 20-13 at the break, before running riot, crossing four more times after the break.

The Makos stunned the visitors by attacking from their own end, showing a lethal touch in scoring a couple of long range tries.

The bonus point victory takes Tasman to the top of the championship, while Otago's misery at losing the Ranfurly Shield to Hawke's Bay is compounded by two losses in a row.

This week's scores and scorers:

Hawke's Bay 24-27 Counties Manukau


Hawke's Bay:
Kaka, Atkins
Con: West
Pens: Ihaia West 4

Counties Manukau:
Stowers, Reidy, Nabou
Pens: Baden Kerr 4

Taranaki 15-51 Auckland


Broadhurst, Marshall
Con: Brooks
Pen: Brooks

Visinia 2, Parkes, Aso, Fekitoa, Silipa
Cons: Hickey 4, Weepu 2
Pens: Hickey, Weepu, Ai'i

Tasman 49-16 Otago


Lowe 2, Scott, Christie, Squire, Koloamatagi
Cons: Banks 5
Pens: Banks 3

Con: Parker
Pens: Parker 3

Southland 20-16 Waikato


Cardiff Vaega, Josh Bekhuis
Cons: Marty Mckenzie 2
Pens: Marty Mckenzie, Scott Eade

Semisi Masirewa
Cons: Trent Renata
Pens: Trent Renata 3

Bay of Plenty 18-48 Canterbury


Bay of Plenty:
Lynn, Axtends
Con: Ripia
Pen: Ripia 2

Keresoma 2, Crotty, G Whitelock 2, Thompson
Con: Bleyendaal 5, Mo'unga
Pen: Bleyendaal 2

Auckland 22-20 Counties Manukau


Con: Hickey
Pens: Hickey 5

Counties Manukau:
Halai, Lee-Lo
Cons: Anufe 2
Pens: Anufe 2