Hawkes Bay has held Canterbury to a 23-all draw in Christchurch in a re-run of their provincial rugby championship semi-final last season.
Canterbury scored two tries to one and finally broke a 20-all deadlock with a penalty goal three minutes from full-time.
But Hawkes Bay hit back, Canterbury infringed twice more at the breakdown and the Bay's replacement first-five Andrew Horrell kicked their fifth penalty goal three minutes into injury time.
Fullback Sean Maitland and winger Tu Umaga-Marshall scored Canterbury's tries and Hika Elliott scored for Hawkes Bay, who led17-13 at half-time.
Northland upset Taranaki 26-19 in New Plymouth in the season opening match, the result ruining coach Colin Cooper's homecoming with the visitors scoring three tries to one, although two of them came from intercept passes.
Taranaki led 19-18 at half time, before Northland, who finished second to last last year, moved away for the victory in a match that didn't reach great heights.