18 Sep 2010

Taranaki beat wind, rain and Canterbury

9:56 pm on 18 September 2010

Taranaki refused to let an often wet and windy afternoon put a dampener on their national provincial rugby match against Canterbury, winning their 125th anniversary centrepiece 31-20.

The five-try bonus-point victory puts Taranaki third on the table, one place ahead of Canterbury, the defending champions.

In the other Saturday games, Wellington beat Hawke's Bay 17-13 and North Harbour beat Tasman 28-21.

At New Plymouth, Canterbury star Sonny Bill Williams scored his first try of the competition. The visitors' other try went to Sean Maitland; Taranaki's were scored by Ben Souness, Kurt Baker, George Pisi, Jarrod Hoeata and Beauden Barrett.

Willie Ripia kicked the home side's other points and Stephen Brett kicked Canterbury's other points.

The half-time score was 19-10.

Home side hang on in windy Wellington

In Wellington, the home side beat Hawke's Bay 17-13 to move one place up the table to fifth and stay in touch with the top four.

In windy conditions Kahn Fotuali'i scored an early try for the Magpies, but that was their only one; the Lions responded with tries to Hosea Gear, Tahjon Mailata and Lima Sopoaga, who also kicked one conversion. Richard Buckman kicked the visitors' other points.

The half-time score was 17-10.

In Nelson, North Harbour took control in the second half to run out 28-21 winners, after leading 13-10 at half-time.