Mitre 10 Cup: Otago hold off Waikato to keep hold of Ranfurly Shield

Vilimoni Koroi.
Vilimoni Koroi. Photo credit: Image: Photosport

Otago have continued to keep two hands on the Ranfurly Shield with a 45-35 victory over Waikato at Forsyth Barr Stadium. 

The win leaves them just one win away from keeping the Log o' Wood locked away for the season. 

Vilimoni Koroi was at his brilliant best for the southern men, scoring two tries and assisting three to help keep Otago firmly in the top four of the championship division. 

The hosts jumped out to 20-0 lead after half an hour, with tries to Slade McDowall, Vilimoni Koroi and Jona Nareki.

Waikato scored twice to take the score to 20-14 at half time.

A 10-minute attacking period midway through the second half all but sealed the deal for the Shield holders, as Koroi scored his third and Henry Purdy scored an intercept try, taking the score to 42-21.

A late comeback wasn't enough for Waikato - they scored two late tries to fall short by 10 points. 

Waikato take on Taranaki next Sunday and Otago face their final Shield defence of the year when they host Canterbury on Saturday. 

Otago 45 (Vilimoni Koroi 2, Slade McDowall, Jona Nareki, Aleki Morris-Lome, Henry Purdy tries; Josh Ioane 3 pen, 3 con). 

Waikato 35 (Penalty try; Samisoni Taukei'aho 2, Simon Parker, Mitchell Jacobson tries; Fletcher Smith 4 con).



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