A jubilant Hastings Rugby & Sports have taken out the 2020 premier Maddison Trophy club rugby final, beating Taradale 22-16.
The tight final was played before about 800 supporters, seated appropriately at McLean Park according to Covid 19 Level 2 regulations, under clear skies with some swirling wind in Napier.
In a see-saw match, Hastings was first to cross the chalk with a try in the 11th minute, with Taradale later dotting down in the 27th minute. Both were converted, with both teams also slotting a penalty to make for an even 10-10 at half time.
Taradale dominated the first 20 minutes of the second half, nailing an early penalty and another at the 23rd minute - deserving their slim lead, higher possession and ascendancy.
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Hastings turned the tables at the 65th minute with a try, missed the conversion but made amends five minutes later with another try to lead, and eventually hold on to win, 22-16.
The road to today's final for Hastings and Taradale had come with victories over Napier Technical and Napier Old Boys Marist respectively last Saturday at McLean Park.
Hastings had accounted for Napier Tech 44-25 in a high scoring affair which treated spectators to 10 tries.
Taradale defeated NOBM 24-20 in their semi after each side scored two tries, but the boot of Caleb Makene made the crucial difference.