Marist number 8 Taina Fox-Matamua crashes over for a crucial try during his sides semi-final win over Stoke at Trafalgar Park at the weekend. Photo: Evan Barnes/Shuttersport.

Marist to meet Waimea Old Boys in sub-union title clash

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The club rugby season wraps up this weekend with two mouth-watering finals to crown our 2019 champions.

In a rematch of their epic Tasman Trophy final clash, Marist will meet Waimea Old Boys to decide the sub-union title at Trafalgar Park.

The teams reignite their rivalry which saw them play out a thrilling 100-minute final to decide the Tasman Trophy.

On that occasion it was Marist sneaking home 32-29 thanks to a clutch penalty from skipper James Hawkey.

Both sides booked spots in Saturday’s showdown in contrasting styles.

Marist hammered Stoke 46-24 while Waimea only just sneaked past Wanderers 29-20.

Stoke put up a stern challenge in the first 40 minutes but the Tasman Trophy champions would ultimately run away with it in the second half.

Marist coach Gavin Briggs says, being finals footy, they were always expecting Stoke to come out with plenty of intent.

“They certainly brought it and we probably weren’t clinical enough, but we addressed a few things that we knew we were letting ourselves down with and things seemed to come right in that second half.”

Stoke opened the scoring against the green machine through the boot of Declan Smith.

Marist’s Jamie Spowart and Sam Briggs looked in ominous form with ball in hand early, asking numerous questions of Stoke’s line defence.

Marist’s pack then made a statement with a dominant rolling maul that hooker Sam Moli would finish off for the game’s first try.

Smith kept his side in touch with a second penalty before Stoke took the lead against the run of play.

With Marist hot on attack, winger Chris Little picked off an intercept and streaked 80m to put Stoke ahead 13-7.

Marist took the lead back through Briggs’ boot and then stretched its lead further as Rahiti Witehira finished off a superb movement.

Stoke replied through winger Nikora Kanara before Taina Fox-Matamua and Hopo Taufua put the nail in the coffin with back to back tries.

Spowart then produced some magic using his lightning agility to break the line before chipping over the last defender and regathering to ensure a new sub-union champion for 2019.

In the women’s final, it will be a repeat of the 2018 decider between Waimea Old Boys and Moutere.

Waimea sent a statement to the Marlborough side after crushing Motueka 73-10 at Jubilee.

Moutere however also put in an impressive performance against Wanderers, winning 42-22.

Finals:

Saturday July 20 Trafalgar Park

Waimea vs Moutere 1.15pm

Marist vs Waimea 3pm