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Lions overwhelm Turbos in Palmy blitz

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Sunday, September 23, 2018    allblacks.com    Getty Images

It was a completely dominant display from the Lions with the only worry being the goal kicking with just two of the nine tries converted.

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Although the usually reliable boot of Jackson Garden-Bachop was off key, the rest of his performance was on point as he expertly guided the Lions around the park and picked the right moments to spark his exciting backline.

As they have done all season, the platform was laid up front by the Lions and it was skipper Thomas Waldrom who opened the scoring in the fifth minute to bag his first try since returning to New Zealand from a decade-long stint in the UK.

Wellington enjoyed a remarkable 93% of possession in the opening 10 minutes and bagged a second try to Mateaki Kafatolu to take a 0-10 lead in just as many minutes.

A well-worked try to Thomas Umaga-Jensen was followed by a long range effort by Ben Lam before James Blackwell went over from a training ground lineout move to finish the first half.



The Wellington pack again benefited early in the second half with hooker Asafo Aumua and lock Isaia Walker-Leaware scoring to make it 0-37.

Turbos fans had one moment to cheer in the 68th minute when replacement No.8 Brice Henderson barged over following a steady forward drive towards the Lions line.

But that was to be it for the Turbos as the Lions grabbed two quick tries in the closing moments to secure the bonus point 7-49 victory.

The Lions are now equal third with Canterbury on the Premiership ladder while Manawatu are languishing at second to last in the Championship on just five points.

Duane Monkley Medal points:
3: Thomas Waldrom
2: Galu Taufale
1: Thomas Umaga-Jensen

Scorers:
Manawatu 7 (Brice Henderson try, Sam Malcolm con) Wellington 49 (Thomas Waldrom, Mateaki Kafatolu, Thomas Umaga-Jensen, Ben Lam 2, James Blackwell, Asafo Aumua, Isaia Walker-Leaware, Peter Umaga-Jensen tries, Trent Renata 2 con)
HT: 0-25