There was plenty of action in the gripping semifinal between Hawkes Bay Magpies and Otago on Saturday.
Hawkes Bay won, beating Otago 44-39 and are now on their way to the big dance with Bay of Plenty Steamers in Friday night’s Mitre 10 Cup Championship final in Rotorua.
The semifinal at Napier’s McLean Park on Saturday was a stunning battle. Hawke’s Bay had been the form team in the competition for most of this season, before losing to Bay of Plenty and dropping to second on the table. They were in no mood to drop further.
Otago got the jump on the Magpies in the opening exchanges and turned that into a ten point margin at the break, with the half time score Hawke’s Bay 14 and Otago 24.
The game swung back and forth, taking 100 minutes to final settle things, with the Magpies squeaking home and Otago coming up short after both teams giving everything, providing a thrilling and entertaining semifinal.
The Magpies have a shot at being promoted to the Premiership, but will need to excel against a strong Steamers side after being pummelled by them two weeks ago. It’s going to make for an exciting final this week as they head to the Bay of Plenty.