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Petone win 15th Swindale Shield title on damp final afternoon

  • Steven White & Adam Julian

Results, standings and scorers (as received) HERE

SUNDAY MORNING UPDATES: Petone are the 2022 Swindale Shield champions.

They have won their first major club rugby title since last winning it in 2009 (shared with Norths) and their first outright since winning the 2005 Jubilee Cup. This was their 15th Swindale Shield win overall, since capturing it in its inaugural season in 1969.

Petone went into the final round needing a bonus point win over Wainuiomata at William Jones Park. After scoring three tries in the first half, they achieved it early it on a wet afternoon throughout the region in the second half by scoring their fourth try.

Petone’s Swindale title rivals Hutt Old Boys Marist too needed a bonus point win over Marist St Pat’s to put themselves in with a chance. They did so emphatically, beating MSP 50-14 and having their four-try bonus point when leading 26-0 midway through the first half.

James O’Reilly dives in to score for HOBM against MSP in this 100th Premier game.

Petone and HOBM finished all square on 55 points, but Petone win the first round title outright by virtue of their last-gasp McBain Shield win several weeks ago.

The 14 Premier teams now move on to the championship Jubilee Cup and Hardham Cup competitions. The second round commences next Saturday with the top eight finishing teams starting in the Jubilee Cup and the bottom six in the Hardham Cup.

Next week’s Jubilee Cup matches at a glance are: Petone (1) v Northern United (4), Hutt Old Boys Marist (2) v Poneke (3), Ories (5) v MSP (8) and Tawa (6) v OBU (7).

Next week’s Hardham Cup starts off with matches between the Upper Hutt Rams (9) and the Wellington Axemen (14), Paremata-Plimmerton (10) v Avalon (13) and Johnsonville (11) v Wainuiomata (13).

In other results in today’s 13th and final round of the Swindale Shield, Poneke secured third with a 26-7 win over the Avalon Wolves, pulling clear late in the match. Poneke led 8-7 in a tight match, but second half tries to flankers Connor Strang and captain Galu Taufale and two penalties to fullback Pakai Turia won them the match.

Northern United continued their winning streak, beating Paremata-Plimmerton 54-14 at Ngati Toa Domain for the Ivan Hardgrave Trophy. Norths scored two early tries to wing Junior Time Taotua and flanker Du Plessiss Kirifi go 14-0 up and maintained their advantage from there. Time Taotua scored a hat-trick and No. 8 Luca Reece two tries.

Oriental-Rongotai pulled clear of Johnsonville in a tight match for the Ash Pointon Memorial Cup at Helston Park to win 25-15. Ories scored five unconverted tries, with left wing Pose Tuilaepa scoring a hat-trick and fullback Pena Va’a and loosehead prop Alex Fidow scoring one each. Johnsonville led 12-10 at halftime, scoring first half tries to lock Anthony Pettett and left wing Marzy Karim.

Tawa beat Old Boys University 26-20 in a scrappy match at Lyndhurst Park on the occasion of their 75th anniversary weekend celebrations.

Ories and Tawa finished the Swindale Shield tied on 43 points, but Ories go into the Jubilee Cup as the higher seed based on their earlier win over Tawa.

At Hataitai Park, the Upper Hutt Rams secured top spot for the start of the Hardham Cup round with a 48-5 win over competition minnows the Wellington Axemen.

Extended reports of the respective Swindale Shield matches at William Jones Park and Lyndhurst Park follow:

Petone are Swindale Shield champions after defeating Wainuiomata 24-7 at William Jones Park.

It’s the first time since 2010, Petone has won over the hill.

The result was effectively settled in the first 20 minutes following a shocking start by the hosts. Wainuiomata was reduced to 12 players on the back of poor discipline as they slumped to a 17-0 deficit. Petone’s lineout was a weapon throughout, and hooker Ezekiel Sopoaga scored the first try from a rolling maul. Petone Halback Cam Ferreira was a bundle of energy and when he was clobbered high on his way to the try line, Petone was awarded a penalty try. Three players down meant there were more holes in the Wainuiomata defence than Swiss Cheese. Sopoaga scored Petone’s third try in the corner, the weight of number too tough to subdue. Petone had two tries disallowed due to forward passes.

WRFU President Kerry Walsh presents the Swindale Shield to Petone captain Jacob Gooch.

Too their credit Wainuiomata was dogged and struck first after the interval when blindside Kitiona Leitufia crashed through the Petone defence with a bustling 20-metre charge.

The try which secured a four try bonus point for Petone was scored by blindside Jarrod Hrstich. Petone won a lineout inside the Wainuiomata 22 and a series of pick and goes was finished by the abrasive flanker.

Petone scored more points (509) and tries (73) than any other club in capturing first round glory.

Today’s victory wasn’t a vintage display but Petone better managed territory and showed superior composure in trying conditions. Lock Jack Ross had a storming game, tighthead prop Iona Apineru was busy and centre Lester Maulolo lively. For Wainuiomata Matt Jacobs was typically plucky and second-five Niki Patelesio tried hard to engineer meaningful attack.

A 13-man Tawa held on to beat Old Boys University 26-20 at a sodden Lyndhurst Park on the afternoon of their 75th anniversary celebrations.

A big defensive penalty off a srcum on their own try line with about 10 minutes to play proved decisive for Tawa, snuffing out a late possible comeback by the Billygoats.

Leading 26-10 with the floodlights taking over the natural light and the ducks having bid retreat to their pond for an early night, Tawa had seemingly done enough to win, but respective yellow cards to left wing Mofate Siupolu and replacement forward Akira Ieremia and OBU second half positional changes including Callum Harkin moving from fullback to first five that added impetus gave OBU a sniff of victory.

Soon after keeping OBU out on their line, the visitors finally did score a try after Harkin kicked ahead in general play for left wing Owen Wright to collect and cut in-field and score near the posts to make it 26-17. But it would prove too late.

With about two minutes to play, Harkin kicked a 30-metre penalty to secure a losing bonus point for his side, and to also set up a possible grandstand finish. But home side Tawa held on inside OBU’s 22 to seal the game.

Earlier in the second half, veteran fullback Randall Bishop kicked a cheeky drop goal which extended Tawa’s half time lead to 26-3.

The Goats replied not long after with the first of their two tries, to hooker James Holbrook, to make it 26-10.

Playing into a steady drizzle in the first half, Tawa built a 20-point halftime lead on the back of forwards-engineered tries to tighthead prop PJ Sheck and hooker Lotu Muku. First five Trent Renata punished OBU ill-discipline by kicking three penalties and both conversions.

OBU, who lost starting tighthead prop Henry Allen to injury at the first scrum of the match, barely fired a shot in the first half. They made numerous errors and gave away a slew of penalties and hooker Holbrook spent time in the sin-bin, all from which Tawa capitalised and built their lead.

Both sides will regroup and reset for their Jubilee Cup re-match at the same venue next weekend.

In Premier 2, competition leaders Tawa dismantled the OBU Goat’s second XV in the Lyndhurst Park curtain-raiser, winning 66-12.

At the other end of the scale, HOBM pipped MSP 10-5 in their Ed Chaney Cup Division 1 encounter. Norths beat Ories 23-13 and Poneke overcame Avalon 31-5 in the other two games in this grade.

In the Division 2 HD Morgan Memorial, Petone beat Wainuiomata 50-5 in the William Jones Park curtain-raiser and Johnsonville beat the Upper Hutt Rams 25-12 at Newlands Park. Stokes Valley beat Paremata-Plimmerton by default in the other match.

There was no Colts grade rugby today, except for one catch-up Colts match that saw HOBM Green beating Wainuiomata Colts 67-7.

In the U85kg JC Bowl, Johnsonville assumed pole position in this year’s first round title with their  20-0 win over Stokes Valley and Poneke’s 31-0 win over the Upper Hutt Rams, in today’s games.

Elsewhere, the OBU Scallywags made light work of Petone, prevailing 63-8, as did Eastbourne of MSP with the Gulls winning 66-17 beside the seaside. Avalon met the Wests Roosters in the other match today. On Friday night, the Wellington Axemen beat HOBM by default.

A notable result in First XV rugby was St Pat’s Town’s and Scots College’s 15-15 draw at Evans Bay Park, particularly after Scots had been deducted six Premiership competition points earlier this week.

St Pat’s Silverstream beat St Bernard’s College 24-18 – after St Bernard’s had led 13-10 at halftime.

Wairarapa College beat Mana College 22-12 in today’s other fifth round match, following Rongotai’s 25-24 win over Wellington College last Wednesday.

In Premier 2, the Silverstream second XV had a rollicking 48-35 win over Paraparaumu College, Taita edged Naenae 19-17 in their Avalon Cup clash in the early game on Fraser Parkm whilst Upper Hutt defeated HVHS 45-0 and Bishop Viard College beat Aotea College 24-13.

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