Waikato defeat Horowhenua-Kapiti in Ranfurly Shield match
Thursday, July 18, 2013 mooloo.co.nz and James Mortimer Getty Images
Waikato were into their work quickly with debutant loose forward Whetu Douglas barging his way over close to the line in just the second minute.
Joe Webber then made a strong run down the left wing and linked nicely with halfback and Morrinsville favourite Brendon Leonard who scored Waikato's second of the day in what was probably his last game for the province.
Later in the first quarter Webber proved dangerous again as first he got on the outside and sprinted 40 metres to score, before he finished off some nice build up play from Waikato in the left corner for his second try and Waikato's fourth.
Webber's hat-trick was soon completed when he dotted down under the posts after a superb individual chip and chase.
There was one more try in the first half when centre Dylan Collier, the former Warriors Under 20 centre/wing, scored in his first match for Waikato.
Fullback Trent Renata converted five of the six first half tries, passing the 300 point mark for the province in the process, as Waikato took a point-a-minute 40-0 lead into the break.
The offensive onslaught continued early in the second half with lock Romana Graham scoring, first five Wharenui Hawera setting up Collier for his second, and another new face, lock Brian Alainu'uese, getting on the scoresheet on debut.
The Waikato coaches then turned to their bench for fresh legs, introducing all seven players between the 60-64 minute mark.
However this didn't slow the Waikato boys down as they scored a further three tries in a five minute period.
Webber unselfishly handed off a possible fourth try to replacement wing Glen Robertson, hooker Hame Faiva then scored just minutes into his Waikato debut off the bench, and Robertson was put into space down the left wing for his second.
Horowhenua-Kapiti enjoyed their best period of the match in the final 10 minutes and went hard on attack for several phases.
But right on full time Waikato turned the ball over on their own goal line and swung the ball wide which launced a length of the field movement, finished by Webber who this time made it four tries for the day to complete the scoring.
Two of the second half tries were converted by Renata, while Hawera and Collier added one each for the final score of 85-0.
Next up for Waikato is a trip to Ruatoria for their second Ranfurly Shield defence of the year against East Coast on Tuesday 30 July.
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