Pack your bags Steamers fans, we've booked a ticket to the Premiership.

The Bay of Plenty side showed great resilience in a game when they were not at their best to beat Hawke's Bay 12-7 in the Mitre 10 Cup Championship final at Rotorua International Stadium.

It was a tense, nervy affair in which neither side ever really reached top gear but the Steamers led throughout and held on for victory.

The Steamers had all the territory early and made use of it five minutes in, winning a penalty 10m left of the posts. First five Dan Hollinshead put last week's kicking woes behind him and slotted it to lead 3-0.

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Hawke's Bay looked to have hit back minutes later when halfback Folau Fakatava went in under the posts. However, replays showed Mitch Karpik's last ditch tackle was enough to force the knock on and the try was disallowed - one of many heroic moments the tenacious Steamers flanker has produced this season.

Bay of Plenty fans set the scene at Rotorua International Stadium. Photo / Getty Images
Bay of Plenty fans set the scene at Rotorua International Stadium. Photo / Getty Images

Hawke's Bay certainly warmed into the game but struggled to break down the Steamers' defence. One prolonged spell on attack inside the Steamers' 22m ended when the home side were able to hold the ball up and force a turnover, drawing an emphatic roar from the 4300-strong crowd.

Having absorbed the pressure, the Steamers worked their way upfield. Twenty-five minutes into the match they won a penalty about 30m out and 10m left of the posts - Hollinshead took the kick at goal but this time was unable to convert.

As is expected in a final, attacking opportunities were limited for both sides as neither gave an inch on defence. The Steamers won another penalty right on halftime, 40m out and centre field. This time Hollinshead made no mistake, splitting the sticks and giving Bay of Plenty a 6-0 halftime lead.

The Steamers got straight into their work in the second half, setting up camp inside Hawke's Bay territory. They were patient and another penalty 30m out gave Hollinshead another chance to go for goal. He had the radar working again and after 45 minutes the Steamers led 9-0.

Just minutes later Bay of Plenty were able to turn the screw a little further, a penalty from near the left hand sideline this time giving Hollinshead the opportunity to extend the lead to 12-0. He duly obliged.

Steamers lock Alex Ainley collects the ball in the lineout during his 100th NPC match. Photo / Getty Images
Steamers lock Alex Ainley collects the ball in the lineout during his 100th NPC match. Photo / Getty Images

As the clock ticked away, the nervous tension in the stadium began to ease. The home crowd made their voices heard, encouraged by the stadium DJ who had the place pumping.

Hawke's Bay were not going anywhere though. With 20 minutes to play they won a penalty in a kickable position but chose to go for it all, finding touch inside the Steamers 22m. However, the Steamers stole the lineout and set about making their way back down field.

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Then, disaster for the home side. Just as they looked like breaking through near halfway, Hawke's Bay winger Jonah Lowe snatched an intercept and raced 50m to score under the posts. The try was converted and Hawke's Bay trailed 12-7 - the crowd was back on edge.

Steamers halfback Richard Judd booms a kick downfield. Photo / Getty Images
Steamers halfback Richard Judd booms a kick downfield. Photo / Getty Images

The Steamers were dominant in the final 15 minutes but their attack was not clicking as well as it did in their massive semifinal victory the previous week. Hawke's Bay defended wholeheartedly to keep themselves in the game.

Hawke's Bay threw everything at Bay of Plenty in the closing two minutes with phase after phase inside the attacking 22m. The blue and gold wall proved impenetrable, finally the Steamers won a penalty at the breakdown and the crowd went berserk.

They put the ball into touch and won the lineout. The hooter sounded but the throw wasn't straight. Hawke's Bay had another shot.

Hawke's Bay gave the ball some air, looked for a way through but Steamers winger Fa'asiu Fuatai snatched an intercept. He was tackled over the sideline and the game was over.

The Steamer had held on for victory and this time the crowd really lost it as the players celebrated on field.