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Waikato vs Auckland


Academy Player
Oct 12, 2010
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Just finishing watching the Waikato/Auckland game and it was a great game. What A Finish!!!

The ball handling was scrappy, too many dropped balls, but for a Waikato fan, I was on the edge of my seat for the entire last 20-30 minutes

For someone who doesnt watch too much ITM Cup matches, I can see the appeal of these games, especially a great rivalry like this one. Its a shame it took me the last round of the comp to start following.

Anyway just making this thread to tell you all how much I enjoyed this game and how much I'm looking forward to Waikato next week in the final
There have been some classic games of rugby in this ITM cup but that game would have to go down as one of the greatest provincial games in New Zealand Rugby History. The amasing end was created because both teams needed to score a try to finish the game.

Waikato knocked a lot of ball on, tim mikkelson in particular had a shocker with his hands but they made up for it with a totally dominant Scrum.

People will get sick of me talking about Toby Smith soon but this kid is something special. He's only 22-23 years old, about 190cm tall over 110kg and in the last two weeks he has dominated Neemia Tialata and Charlie Faumuina at the scrums, he can scrum either side and he has an allround game similar to the Franks brothers. I can easily see this kid leap froging Crockett and Mackintosh to make the all blacks next year.

the game had a bit of controversy with Donald being sin binned for rucking. It was a bad call by the refs and auckland scored 10 of thier 19 points and their only try while donald was in the bin. in a way it does show how important he is in defence, he makes a lot of tackles and cover tackles. Waikato have tended to leak a lot of points when donald is not on the field this year.

Barlow had a huge game, he has really started to come in in this ITM cup.

The two guys who I think should be in the All Blacks had massive games. Liam Messam was very good and combined with donald to create three of Waikato's trys with great hands and impressive speed. And Leonard who had a massive game off the bench and only improved on what barlow had done.

mikkelson had a shocker with his hands, if anything Waikato should have had an easy win if it wasn't for mikkelson's hands. He bombed at least two trys with knock on's and other spills

The classic line in comentary came when mikkelson shelled a great ball from Donald that could have ended in a try. Sumo said something like:

"On the bright side for mikkelson is that the last pass came from Donald so the New Zealand public will find some reason to blaime that missed chance on Donald rather than him."

Absolutely classic, that comment echo's what I've been saying for a long time that Donald does not and never has got the support he deserves from NZ.

And that brings me to the man of the match, had to be donald. His two trys were brilliant. Even though he's obviously carrying an injury he ran the game well.

Everyone's talking about Cruden right now and rightly so he's playing very well, but Donald has been just as good and with that effort against Auckland should take some light off cruden. Was a real shame Donald was injured for the turbo's game where we would have seen them head to head.

Epic game, anyone who missed it should check out a replay.

edit: sucks but checking the sky TV guide I can't see a replay for this game.
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