Tasman have consolidated their spot in the NPC premiership play-offs with a 21-14 win over North Harbour at Lansdowne Park in Blenheim.

Third-placed Harbour salvaged a bonus point from the match, but are still three points behind second-placed Taranaki, who have a game in hand.

Tasman are still fourth, but sit eight points clear of fifth-placed Auckland with two games to play.

Lack of discipline and errors proved costly for Harbour from the first whistle, as they conceded a series of penalties that culminated in a penalty try after just five minutes.


Harbour couldn't seem to do anything right, and the turnovers mounted rapidly. Restarts went out on the full, touch-finders didn't find touch, lineouts couldn't find their mark, and too many tackles were missed.

In contrast, Tasman's set piece was efficient, they showed impressive patience in building phases, and their defence was unerringly staunch.

Fullback Will Jordan dotted down for Tasman's second try after 15 minutes after the Makos stole a Harbour lineout throw and launched a counterattack from well inside their own 22.

Tasman clocked up their third try four minutes later, a patient build-up capped off when lock Shannon Frizell barged over from close range to make it 21-0.

Harbour finally got a break in the 23rd minute when Tasman centre Trael Joass was sin-binned for dangerous play, but couldn't capitalise and the home team took a commanding lead into half-time.

A rejuvenated North Harbour struck early in the second stanza, fullback Matt Duffie taking a quick throw-in then combining with winger Tevita Li before storming down the left touch to score.

However, Tasman looked well in control until the 71st minute when centre Matt Vaega finished a sweeping counterattack after Harbour forced the turnover deep in their own 22. Trailing by seven, Harbour battled for the equaliser right to the final whistle, but the Tasman defence proved equal to the challenge.