Otago lose Protect in epic


The Ranfurly Protect will take up new residence in Christchurch.

Canterbury beat a plucky Otago facet 35-25 at Forsyth Barr Stadium tonight.

The house facet’s report card would learn A for enterprise however C for execution.

It was throughout these moments of inaccuracy that Canterbury pounced.

Otago had the primary alternative to open the scoring however Josh Ioane pulled the ball vast of the close to put up.

His reverse Brett Cameron made no mistake a couple of moments later.

The house facet was spinning the ball vast at each alternative and attempting to stretch the customer’s defence.

However winger Dallas McLeod picked off an bold go and dashed up area.

He acquired the ball off to the competitors’s main strive scorer Josh McKay and he beat a number of defenders to attain.

Otago stored taking part in an thrilling model of rugby. Canterbury’s rush defence acquired the odd head begin. However it was additionally actually efficient.

Ioane was pinpoint correct with a few of his cross kicks and landed two penalties earlier than the break to chop the result in 13-6.

Canterbury nipped down the blind and acquired the ball again into halfback Mitchell Drummond to attain whereas Otago hooker Steven Misa was getting medical consideration.

Perhaps the additional physique would have made a distinction, possibly not. However it was an enormous blow early within the second spell.

After which one other. Vilimoni Koroi chipped the ball forward and screamed down the touchline to regather and rating a 70m effort.

Good. Completely sensible and it counted not a jot. The ball to him was ahead.

Otago did lastly get some reward. Ioane poked a grubber by way of for Sio Tomkinson to run on to and rating below the posts.

Canterbury responded instantly, although. Winger Sam Gilbert scored within the nook in what was a nicely constructed strive.

Cameron landed the sideline conversion to offer his facet a 27-13 lead with 1 / 4 of the match remaining.

Veteran unfastened ahead Adam Thomson turned again the years with a beautiful intercept and a strive below the posts.

Hope had returned to the Otago camp however departed rapidly when Tim Bateman replied in type for Canterbury.

Or did it? Jona Nareki weaved his option to the road to lengthen the drama.

The missed conversion left Otago needing a transformed strive to attract the sport and maintain on to the Protect.

However Cameron sealed the win with a late penalty in frantic closing 20 minutes.