It was a complete performance from the mighty Taniwha- one not seen in a long time.

The Taniwha are alive, lest anyone worry after a not-too-decent outing in which any number of opportunities were blown at will.

But tonight at Okara Park, Northland played like men possessed against Manawatu and it showed in the 49-19, seven-try romp in the Mitre 10 Cup match.

As predicted, halfback Jono Kitto created the space with his sniping runs off setpiece play while evergreen Rene Ranger ran amok right across the park in a stunning display of creativity and flair.


Add to that the sleight of hand from the likes of No 10 Jack Debreczeni and loose forward Kara Pryor who put down the accelerator and ran 90 metres to the tryline, embarrrasing Manawatu wing Michael Tangicakibau who futilely gave chase.

A loosie smoking a wing- arguably the fastest player on the field- is not heard of very often but that was the sort of razzle dazzle performance up on show at the spiritual home of Northland rugby.

Up four tries at the breather, the home side didn't let the guard down in the second half and were rewarded with three more to the delight of a bumper crowd on a pleasant evening.

Except for the opening 10 minutes, the Turbos were teetering, vulnerable for most of the game and Northland sensed they had the upper edge and ramped up the pressure.

Northland tries came from No 8 Matt Matich, skipper Jordan Olsen, Scott Gregory, Debreczeni, wing Jordan Hyland and centre Blake Hohaia.

For the Turbos, wing James Tofa, fullback Junior Laloifi and replacement Adrian Wyrill got on the scoreboard.

Northland's next match is at the same venue against Southland on Thursday next week.