Hamilton Boys’ High School: 30 (Mikaere Beattie, Kaleb Foote, Brodi McCuran tries, Te Raina Richards-Coxhead 3 pen, 3 con) Gisborne Boys’ High School: 13 (Beaudien Waaka, Jonte Lexmond tries, Waaka pen)
Hamilton Boys’ High School can thank their powerhouse forward pack for their sixth Super 8 title in seven years. Though Gisborne looked far more enterprising on attack, feeding off scraps is not a recipe for success against Hamilton. Hamilton won the ruck and maul count by 95-30, it was 60-5 at halftime, as they outmuscled a spirited Gisborne.
Hamilton flanker Brodi McCuran and locks Kaleb Foote and Apisai Tauyavuca were especially outstanding as their abrasive and repetitive chargers eventually sapped the resolve and energy of Gisborne’s resolute defence. Foote’s try with about ten minutes left made the score 23-8 and settled the contest.
For a long time however Gisborne was in the hunt. Their defence was patient as Hamilton’s attack, though disciplined, offered little variety.
Gisborne by contrast looked potent when they had the ball. The first try of the game was scored by Beaudien Waaka who fetched an errant pass and blazed 50 meters up field to score. Two clean breaks to Jonte Lexmond and Gisborne’s best Toa Halafihi reinforced Gisborne’s threat.
For some time the score remained 6-5 to Hamilton after two penalties to Te Raina Richards-Coxhead, whose goal kicking was faultless. But either side of halftime two key moments in the game went against Gisborne.
Before halftime Hamilton, with a rare venture out wide, created space for winger Mikaere Beattie, who shoved and bounced his way to the try line in a 25 meter charge.
Just after halftime Gisborne appeared to have mauled their way over the line for a try which was disallowed by the referee. Furious Gisborne was then penalised for decent and spent the next ten minutes on defence.
The last two tries of the game showed the quality of both teams. Jonte Lexmond scored a Jonah Lomu like try when he careered down the left wing and scattered aside multiple defenders to power in. Then Brodi McCuran had the last say for Hamilton when he showed supreme soccer skills over the course of 30 meters to score.