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OBU hold off Ories, Petone win McBain to stay in contention as top eight decided

Villami Fine crosses for his try in Petone’s emphatic McBain Shield win over Hutt Old Boys Marist today. Match report in the story below. Photo: Andy McArthur.

  • By Steven White, Scott MacLean, Adam Julian & Martyn Bridge

Results & Scoring (as received):

Old Boys University held off Oriental-Rongotai in a blockbuster city clash this afternoon and Petone beat Hutt Old Boys Marist to win the famous McBain Shield to stay in contact with frontrunners OBU with a fortnight yet to play in the first round Swindale Shield.

OBU are on 50 competition points and Petone behind on 45, with another five-point gap back to third placed Upper Hutt Rams, the only other team that can mathematically win or share the first round.

In these matches this afternoon, played in fine, blustery conditions, OBU beat Ories 19-13, Poneke defeated HOBM 48-31 and the Rams saw off Wainuiomata 39-17 at home at Maidstone Park. More on these two games below.

The other news from day is that the top eight for the upcoming Jubilee Cup has now been locked in, with defending first round champions Paremata-Plimmerton and HOBM on 38 points and MSP, Tawa and Ories all on 37 points and rounding out these teams.

The remainder of the competition is now officially Hardham Cup-bound, with Poneke on 26, Wainuiomata 25, Johnsonville 24, Norths 9, Wellington 5 and Avalon 3.

This despite some thrilling results elsewhere today, not least Poneke’s 42-22 win over Johnsonville at Helston Park. More on this game below.

Also, the Wellington Axemen pushed Paremata-Plimmerton close at Ngati Toa Domain. The Axemen led 24-0 at one point and then 24-10 at halftime but were run down at the end by the Hammerheads who won 27-24.

MSP enjoyed a clinical win over bottom placed Avalon, winning 62-17 at Fraser Park in their Joe Aspell Cup encounter.

In the day’s final fixture, Tawa ran rampant over struggling Northern United, beating them 69-0 for the Sammy Saili Memorial Trophy at Porirua Park.


Petone has retained the McBain Shield by almost the same scoreline as 2023 outpacing Hutt Old Boys Marist 48-31. Last year the score was 49-31.

Petone with the McBain Shield this afternoon. Photo: Andy McArthur.

The 2024 version of McBain followed an eerily similar pattern to 12 months ago.

Hutt tried to crash, bash and smash their way to success but were outwitted by a clinical and brisk Petone outfit.

Petone scored half their points in a blistering opening quarter where they used the wind intelligently, snaffled breakdown turnovers and prized the Eagles open out wide.

Halfback Cam Ferreira seized the initiative from the outset with a quick tap and 40m break from a penalty. Fullback Lachie Forbes trailed and caught a pass to touchdown in the left corner in front of the scoreboard.

That corner saw four of the first five tries as the visitors’ defence was stretched to breaking point.

Makeshift first-five Logan Henry recovered from a shaky start to guide Petone with poise. The veteran halfback scored a try and his goal kicking yielded six successes, including three sideline conversions.

Midfielders Losi Filipo and Viliami Fine were rampant. Fine scored his 50th try for Petone in the second half with a sabre-like thrust.

Forbes second, and Petone’s fourth try, was a belter which saw the eight-game rookie dash 40m with two props casting a larger shadow than the condemned grandstand in purist.

Petone led 34-7 at halftime with workhorse Sam Tonise rumbling clear. The lock in his 50th match was immense.

Loose forwards Jonathan Bailey, Ridge Studd and Connor Tuifao were a collective pest.

To their credit Hutt played with more enterprise and accuracy in the second spell. Centre Albert Polu scored two tries and was a magnet. Lock Teofilo Paulo was abrasive, and Mike Alaifatu scored a try from the bench and added plenty of bustle.

Hutt was down 48-31 when Petone lost a player to the sin bin with a dozen minutes remaining. However the horse had bolted. Petone wins McBain for the 64th time.


Where has this Poneke performance been all year?

Poneke played with all the passion and heart of old in their 42-22 win over the Johnsonville Hawks away at Helston Park. Poneke lifted the inaugural Galu Taufale Shield with a wholehearted six tries to three win over the Hawks.

Poneke didn’t even need their full complement of players on the field at the end, scoring their fifth and match-sealing try from an intercept in midfield and a runaway in the corner soon after second five Caleb Robson had been sent to the sinbin.  This made it 35-22 with a few minutes to play.

Johnsonville supporters hoped for a miracle comeback at the death, but it was not to be, moments after first five Carlos Hihi joined Robson in the sinbin behind the posts, they ripped the ball wide and scored their final try on fulltime.

Poneke had led 16-10 at halftime, but Johnsonville hit back immediately in the second half after Poneke dropped the ball from the restart which soon led to lock Sean Rankin storming 20 metres to score and close the game to 16-15.

Johnsonville lock Sean Rankin in for the try.

But Poneke struck back straight away through a try to right wing Dominic Ririnui-Sipa, off a lovely insideconverted by Hihi, to extend their lead to 23-15.

Johnsonville went close again at the other end, but Poneke turned the ball over and worked their way up-field where second five Robson wound up on a storming run from a tap penalty and crashed over near the posts for another seven pointer, and it was now 30-15 to the visitors.

Above: Two second half tries to Poneke that made the difference – scored by right wing Dominic Ririnui-Sipa and second-five Caleb Robson.

Johnsonville had to score next, and they did. They won a big turnover from a scrum in midfield and attacked up the western touchline and first five Zyrus Grace put through an outstanding kick and collect for centre Aukuso Tuitama score from at their clubrooms end. Halfback Mark Sutton added the extras and it was 30-22 at that stage.

The first half was a hard fought and even battle between the two mid-table teams. Johnsonville opened the scoring with a Sutton penalty, but Poneke set the pattern for their performance when they strung together a number of phases inside Johnsonville’s half which led to loosehead prop Moses Galuvao scoring the first try of the match. Poneke stormed back on to attach and Hihi added a penalty to extend their lead to 8-3.

The home team rallied, and after being held up over the line in front of the scoreboard, they strung more phases together and second five Finlay Sharp threaded through broken play to score their first try. Sutton’s conversion put Johnsonville ahead 10-8, their only lead of the match.

Poneke replied with an outstanding individual try to blindside flanker Pasia Asiata who stormed up the embankment touchline from 20 metres out and crashed over in the corner. Hihi missed the sideline conversion, but Poneke now led 13-10.

Five minutes before half time, Poneke went very close to scoring again after another strong passage of play. Second five Robson made a final dash at the line but then his short pass to the support player was intercepted by a Johnsonville defender who cleared the danger.

Right on halftime, Hihi kicked his second penalty to put Poneke up as they turned to play with the blustery wind in their favour.

For Poneke, this was a committed team performance and several players had big games, such as halfback Jimmy-Lee Hongara, No 8 DJ Taoipu, Hihi, Asiata, and lock Adam McRandle in general play as both teams struggled to take control of their own lineouts all match in the blustery conditions. For Johnsonville, their scrum was powerful, particularly in the second half, while lock Rankin and N0. 8 Ofa Uesuli wre two players to make in-roads with ball in hand.


At Maidstone Park, the Upper Hutt Rams beat Wainuiomata for the Peter Jones/Dave Ritchie Cup.

The Rams made a fast start, centre Daniel Scrijvers making a break and finding right wing Tynan Barrett to score under the posts and convert his own try in his 100th Premier match.

Wainuiomata hit back with a try off the back off a lineout to prop Kade Tiatia and the Rams led 7-5 after 17 minutes. The visitors were almost in again but made an error from their attacking 5-metre scrum. Instead, the Rams turned this into a try of their own 80 metres away with centre Schrijvers making the length of the field run.

It went from bad to worse for Wainuiomta when Rams openside Jack Wright stole an intercept and raced clear to score their third try to make 19-5 to the Rams after 27 minutes. The match tightened up and there was no further scoring in the first half.

The first 15 minutes of the second spell were also tight, but the Rams struck first through a Barrett penalty, extending their lead to 22-5.

Wainuiomata then made an error from the re-start and the Rams capitalised from the ensuing scrum on halfway, with left wing Ieti Campbell going over for their bonus point try and match sealer at 27-5.

The visitors rallied and scored their second try to close it up to 27-12, but the Rams scored their fifth try, again off a Wainuiomata mistake, this time replacement wing Callum Wanden going over. Halfback Kaide McCashin sealed the deal with their last try after a break by fullback Todd Svenson, before Wainuiomata finished with a consolation try at the end to replacement wing Saita Tuaoi.

Premier 2

With two rounds left in the Premier 2 Harper Lock Shield, like the Swindale, is OBUs to lose.

The Goats were 34-24 winners over Ories and only have MSP and Norths to play.

Defending champions Tawa are second after thrashing Norths 85-17, and Petone leapt over HOBM into third by winning their clash 17-15.

Poneke are fifth after beating Johnsonville 31-7 and Pare-Plim sixth after squeaking past Wellington 29-27. In the remaining matches the Upper Hutt Rams beat Wainuiomata 43-15, and MSP beat Avalon 54-27.


There are still three rounds left in the Colts Paris Memorial Trophy, but it’s hard to see that trophy leaving the Hutt Rec after HOBM thumped Petone 47-7 today to open a nine-point lead.

The Upper Hutt Rams are now second after trouncing Wainuiomata 63-0, and MSP third following their 48-19 over Avalon.

Down the table OBU won the rematch of last year’s final 27-21 over Ories, Tawa edged Norths 22-19, and Poneke were 43-15 winners over Johnsonville. The seventh match saw Pare-Plim retain the Daniel Baldwin Memorial Trophy with a 33-19 win over Wellington.

In the Colts curtain raiser between Johnsonville and Poneke played at a fine but windy Nairnville Park, Poneke ran out winners by almost 30 points. Poneke led 19-5 at half time despite losing a player to the sinbin just before the break and scored their bonus point try with the wind behind them from a penalty and lineout in the corner. They quickly scored again in the same position to increase their lead to 31-5, followed by their next try which was scored by blindside flanker Va’a tuvaa, his third try of the match.

Poneke broke out once more and sealed the game with a penalty try. Johnsonville battled hard to the end and scored the last two tries of the match. The game was played under uncontested scrums from the start while Poneke dominated the lineout confrontations throughout.

But Johnsonville were more competitive than the scoreline suggests in the breakdowns, whilst a couple of their outside backs had strong games.


Petone and Oriental Rongotai will contest next Saturday’s Women’s Tia Paasi Memorial Cup final after winning their respective semifinals today.

Unbeaten top qualifiers Petone crushed Wainuiomata 67-0, while a second half surge carried Ories from 12-19 down to a 36-19 win over Norths at Porirua Park in a match refereed by former professional Mike Fraser.

Try time for Petone in their semi-final win over Wainuiomta. Photo: Andy McArthur.

In the Izzy Ford Cup the Poneke-OBU side beat Avalon for the second week in succession, this time by 24-17, to book their place in next week’s final against Paremata-Plimmerton.

Both finals are at William Jones Park in Wainuiomata, with the Izzy Ford Cup at 11am and the Tia Paasi Memorial decider at 1.30pm.


The Tawa Ducks have all but wrapped up the first round JC Bowl with two rounds to play after securing their ninth straight bonus point win this afternoon.

The Ducks beat Poneke 68-12, to move to 45 competition points, 10 clear of second placed defending champions the OBU Scallywags who had their bye today. The Ducks do have their bye to come but just need to win their other match to come to hoist the trophy high.

In other ninth round U85kg matches this afternoon, third placed Avalon accounted for MSP 54-5, HOBM beat Petone 24-10 on McBain Shield day, Johnsonville defeated Eastbourne 24-5 and Wellington defeated the Paremata-Plimmerton Piranhas 34-27.


Just three First XV Premiership matches contested this afternoon.

St Pat’s Town and Rongotai College are joint second on 15 points behind Wellington College (18) and St Pat’s Silverstream (16) – who met on Wednesday.

St Pat’s Town defeated Paraparaumu College 55-10 this afternoon and Rongotai beat St Bernard’s College 36-14 in Lower Hutt.

Scots College moved into fifth with a 31-15 win over Hutt International Boys’ School at Upper Hutt.

In Premier 2, Hutt Valley High School’s First XV are leaders with four bonus point wins. They beat Porirua College Firsts 53-0 today. The Silverstream Seconds beat the St Pat’s Town Seconds 75-5 to lie second.

The Wellington College Seconds defeated the Aotea College Firsts 61-5, while the other two matches were much closer. In these, Bishop Viard College beat Naenae College 25-17 and Taita College defeated the Rongotai College Seconds 31-24.


The Kia Toa machine rolls on in the Manawatu Senior 1st competition, winning their “Top Five” match 38-14 over Old Boys Marist. It was closer in the other match with Massey getting up 33-28 over College Old Boys, with Feilding Yellows on the bye. The “Bottom Four” matches produced the surprise of the day with Linton beating Te Kawau away 34-19, while Freyberg were 49-12 winners over strugglers Feilding Old Boys-Oroua

The predictable result of the day in Horowhenua-Kapiti saw Rahui continue their dominant ways, winning 37-15 away over Foxton. It was a real humdinger in the Levin derby, with College Old Boys just getting up 28-27 over Wanderers, while the old firm clash saw Waikanae beat Paraparaumu 38-27. Shannon had the bye

A day of contrasting results in Wairarapa Bush. Second round leaders Marist blasted East Coast off the field at Memorial Park with a 79-14 win, while Carterton were 48-15 winners over Masterton Red Star (see report below). It was much closer in the other two matches; Eketahuna won 14-12 at home over Greytown, while Martinborough got up 29-28 on their Club Day over Pioneer.

The Wairarapa-based arm of Club Rugby was in the middle at Masterton Red Star’s Colombo Road ground for the visit of defending champions Carterton. And it was the visitors who flexed their muscle, running in four first-half tries for a 26-3 lead at the break as they showed dominance through the forwards and were able to manipulate Red Star’s defence out wide. The second half was a lot more even as the hosts got some parity as the game lost structure and scored twice, but the visitors added four more tries to record a 48-15 win stay second on the table behind Marist.

Carterton had plenty of quality across the pack, but got great mileage out of ball running prop Tupou Lea’aemanu and square-shaped centre Brandon Wright, while MRS skipper Jake Gibbs was Mr Everywhere for the home team, who really could use a big physical presence like injured former Scots star Jack Loader.

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