Mitre 10 Cup: Auckland beat Canterbury in thrilling premiership final

Auckland has claimed a memorable victory over Canterbury, winning the Mitre 10 Cup premiership final in extra time, 40-33.

Canterbury dominated early, with their forward pack securing a penalty try in the 26th minute, after repeat penalties on the Auckland line. 

George Bridge scored for the visitors in the 32nd minute, after some great work from the Canterbury backs. 

The home side started the second half behind 20-7, with rain hammering down at Eden Park.

Number eight Akira Ioane made the most of a penalty early in the second half, after Canterbury flanker Billy Harmon was sent to the bin, taking a quick tap and muscling over to score.

Auckland's next try was their most impressive. After 20 phases and incredible ball control, they managed to get the ball out wide to Jordan Trainor, who scored to make it 26-17.

Caleb Clarke went over with eight minutes to go and Harry Plummer slotted the kick from the side-line to tie the game up at 26-26, setting up a grandstand finish.

Canterbury's defence was heroic late in the game, as they withstood 30 phases in their own 22. A knock-on from Auckland sent the game into extra time.

The visitors got the first points of extra time through a Tom Sanders try.

But anything Canterbury could do, Auckland was doing it better, scoring just five minutes later to tie the game up once again.

Leon Fukofuka sealed the deal for the home side, scoring in the 93rd minute to set up their first final win in 11 years.


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