Rugby: Winning farewell for departing captain

Hawkes Bay captain Jason Shoemark will leave at the end of the season to play for England club Exeter. Photo / Getty Images
Hawkes Bay captain Jason Shoemark will leave at the end of the season to play for England club Exeter. Photo / Getty Images

Hawke's Bay skipper Jason Shoemark farewelled his Napier home ground with a win as he led his side to a 36-21 win over North Harbour today.

Shoemark, who leaves at the end of the season to take up a two-year contract with England's Exeter club helped his side recover from a 14-16 deficit at halftime to grab a come-from-behind win.

North Harbour shot out to the perfect start taking a 16-0 lead in the first 20 minutes from a converted Chris Smylie try and three penalties to second five Michael Harris before the wheels fell off their game.

Hawke's Bay ground their way back into the game with a Zac Guildford try which wing Richard Buckman converted.

With North Harbour having quickly exhausted their bag of tricks, Hawke's Bay began to control the game and it was only a matter of time before they scored again, this time through hardworking blindside flanker Michael Johnson just before halftime.

North Harbour, despite the presence of All Black prop Tony woodcock could not summon any meaningful response as Hawke's Bay dominated the second half to score another three tries through Mike Coman, Ryan McLeod and Chris Eaton.

North Harbour finally broke the Hawke's Bay scoring spree with a late try of their own when substitute back Josh York finished off their first thrust into their opponents' territory in the second half.

Hawke's Bay: 36 (Zac Guildford Michael Johnson, Mike Coman, Ryan McLeod, Chris Eaton tries; Richard Buckman pen, 3 con, Mark Jackman con)
North Harbour 21 (Chris Smylie, Josh York tries; Michael Harris 3 pen, con). Halftime: 14-16

- NZPA

- NZ Herald

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