Waikato have put in another impressive display in the Mitre 10 Cup, but they were left disappointed to not come away with a win over Auckland.
Discipline was an issue for Waikato, who settled for a 20-20 draw with Auckland in Hamilton, as lock James Tucker was yellow carded after his team conceded too many penalties inside their own 22 early in the contest.
Waikato raced out to an early 14-3 lead before Tucker was sent from the pitch. Auckland took advantage of the player advantage to close the gap, and while Waikato pushed the lead back out to as many as 10 points, they allowed Auckland back into the match late, with a try to Leni Apisai and a penalty from Daniel Kirkpatrick levelling the game with seven minutes to go.
Both teams had chances to win the game long after the hooter sounded - the best chance going to Waikato first five Fletcher Smith, who had a penalty from 45 metres out on an angle.
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Smith - who hadn't missed a kick all season and had already nailed two conversions and two penalties - couldn't find the distance, missing out on the chance to win the game in the 84th minute.
His attempt fell into the hands of Auckland, who in turn tried to win the game, but when given a penalty of their own, their attempt - this time to find touch - also came up short,
and a subsequent Waikato handling error saw the teams forced to share the points.
It's the second draw in four games for Auckland, who temporarily go top of the Premiership table ahead of Tasman's clash with Taranaki tomorrow, while Waikato jump into third on the ladder with two wins, a draw, and a loss.
Waikato v Auckland as it happened: