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Metro Division 1 Update
University and High School Old Boys have opened up a lead at the top of the Metro Trophy division one championship after an unbeaten start to the second round.
Cup winners Old Boys hold a one point lead over the students, after beating Sydenham 32-16 on Saturday. Trailing by two points with 10 minutes to play, it seemed possible the Cardinals might snatch victory. However, late converted tries to Hendrix Tui and Josh Taylor snuffed out a brave Sydenham performance.
University, who welcomed back successful New Zealand Under-20 skipper Luke Whitelock, stayed in touch with a 30-15 win against New Brighton at Rawhiti.
The visitors made the perfect start when, in the opening seconds, flanker Tyler Hammond charged down a clearing kick to score.They lead 27-3 at the break, but New Brighton were a transformed side in the second half, holding University scoring to a sole penalty goal.
Fullback Jamie Verran, who had a faultless day with the boot, became the third player this season to reach 100 points.
University coaching co-ordinator Derek Todd says he is pleased with his side’s form. “It just a matter of keeping it going, which any coach will tell you at this time of the year is not easy, with losing key players to rep commitments,” he says. “We’ve never been able to field our top side at any stage this season, but we’re getting used it.”
New Brighton will have to overcome Old Boys and Christchurch in their last two matches to have any chance of a place in the final. Likewise, Christchurch have an uphill battle.
Burnside, after relieving New Brighton of the DCL Shield last week, were forced to hand it over to Christchurch after their first defence ended in a loss.
In the plate section, the race for the final is becoming very congested, with only Shirley out of the race. Marist-Albion’s 20-15 defeat of former frontrunners Belfast brought them a share of the lead with Lincoln University, who comfortably despatched winless Shirley. The Cambridge Blues did score three tries, a first for them this season.
Marist-Albion winger Chris Crichton continued his try-scoring form by dotting down for the seventh consecutive week.
Linwood’s scrap with Sumner ended in a close win, 19-14.
Check out the weekly editorial on Metro division one rugby, which is published under the Metro tab of the CRFU website each Sunday around 3pm.
Visit www.crfu.co.nz/main/index.cfm/1,649,0,40,html/Game-Day to have a read.
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