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ITM Cup Preview: Hawke's Bay v Bay of Plenty

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Wednesday, August 4, 2010    Sportal.co.nz    Getty Images

VENUE & TIME: McLean Park, Napier, Friday August 6, 19.35 NZT.

HEAD TO HEAD: Played 41 – Hawke's Bay 23, Bay of Plenty 17, drawn 1.

LAST TIME: October 2, 2009 (Rotorua) – Bay of Plenty 19-22 Hawke's Bay.

LAST TIME AT VENUE: October 3, 2008 – Hawke's Bay 46-12 Bay of Plenty.

MATCH ODDS: TAB (Tuesday): Hawke's Bay $1.40, Bay of Plenty $2.80.

WALKING WOUNDED: Daniel Kirkpatrick will sit this one out after his head knock last week, so Andrew Horrell takes over at first-five for Hawke's Bay. Michael Johnson, now a proud father, returns to the starting lineup at Trent Boswell-Wakefield's expense. With the exception of a bracket at prop between Joe Savage and James McGougan – either would be fine in the team – and switching Luke Braid and Solomon King between the bench and the starting XV, Bay of Plenty has named the same 22 that played at Hamilton.

FORM:

SEASON TO DATE:
Hawke's Bay
Round 1: Drew with Canterbury 23-23

SEASON TO DATE:
Bay of Plenty
Round 1: Lost to Waikato 10-13

Both teams were involved in tough battles last week and, had Phil Burleigh's last-gasp penalty gone over instead of falling just short, both would have drawn their openers. Hawke's Bay did well to get two points out of its match, as Canterbury created most of the chances but some excellent defence kept the Bay's line more or less intact. To its credit, Hawke's Bay did take all its scoring chances, with a try and six penalty goals. Bay of Plenty had to grit it out against Waikato, as the Mooloos had slightly the better of things for most of the match. Some outstanding defence kept the Steamers in the contest and, when Waikato lost a man to the sin-bin, a try put them right back in the game although those last points proved elusive.

WHO'S HOT: Hawke's Bay muscled up well in the forwards last week, with Hikawera Elliot playing strongly and Mike Coman showing there's still a damaging ball runner in the Magpie No 8 jersey despite the loss of Thomas Waldrom. Andrew Horrell did well after coming into the game as an early replacement for Kirkpatrick, playing with calm control and nailing that last vital penalty goal. Culum Retallick was strong, as one would expect from a senior Bay of Plenty forward, and controlled the aerial battles. Colin Bourke made a couple of outstanding try-saving tackles but did not have many attacking chances. Not much was seen of the Bay of Plenty backs, but having Grant McQuoid in the midfield gave them a sense of stability.

WE THINK: This should be a particularly tough, physical match between two good sides. For some reason Hawke's Bay has the other Bay's number at present, even if the pre-season result went the Steamers' way, and we think Hawke's Bay will get up by a few points in a rugged match.

TEAMS:

Hawke's Bay: 1. Kas Lealamanua, 2. Hikawera Elliot, 3. Clint Newland, 4. Bryn Evans, 5. Ross Kennedy, 6. Michael Johnson, 7. Karl Lowe, 8. Mike Coman, 9. Kahn Fotuali'i, 10. Andrew Horrell, 11. Zac Guildford, 12. Ryan McLeod, 13. Jason Shoemark (captain), 14. Richard Buckman, 15. Luke Rooney.

Reserves: 16. Eugene Smith, 17. Anthony Perenise, 18. Leighton Price, 19. Grant Webb, 20. Chris Eaton, 21. Star Timu, 22. Mark Jackman.

Bay of Plenty: 1. Joe Savage or James McGougan, 2. John Pareanga, 3. Josh Hohneck, 4. Luke Andrews, 5. Culum Retallick, 6. Solomon King, 7. Tanerau Latimer, 8. Colin Bourke (captain), 9. Taniela Moa, 10. Daniel Waenga, 11. Jason Hona, 12. Grant McQuoid, 13. Brett Mather, 14. Lance MacDonald, 15. Toby Arnold.

Reserves: 16. Simon Chisholm, 17. McGougan or Savage, 18. Aidan Kuka, 19. Luke Braid, 20. Chad Tuoro, 21. Phil Burleigh, 22. Lelia Masaga.

REFEREE: Mike Fraser