A Mason Emerson try in extra time has earned Hawke's Bay a spot in the championship final of the Mitre 10 Cup, sealing a nailbiting 44-39 victory in Napier.
The visitors got off to the perfect start, with captain Michael Collins opening the scoring in just the second minute, after bursting through the defence from 35 metres out.
Flanker Slade McDowall doubled Otago's lead five minutes later, scoring off the back of a scrum.
The Magpies hit back in the 18th minute, when Neria Fomai finished off a superb break, wrong-footing Collins to score under the posts.
Collins had a double midway through the first half, after a mistake from Mason Emerson, taking the score to 21-7.
Pouri Rakete-Stones scored his first try of the night to close the gap for the hosts, with Otago taking a 24-14 lead into the break.
Seventeen straight points to start the second half put Hawke's Bay in front, when tries to Lincoln McClutchie and Devan Flanders took the score to 31-24 with just 15 minutes to go.
But Otago wasn't done with it - Aleki Morris-Lome scored, after great running from Collins and winger Jona Nareki, levelling the score at 31-31.
That's where the game stayed until the full-time whistle went, taking both sides to extra time.
Josh Ioane slotted a long penalty in the opening minutes of extra time to take Otago out to a 34-31 lead.
But on the verge of halftime, winger Emerson scored to give the Magpies their final lead of the match and that was enough to book their spot in the Mitre 10 Cup championship final.
They will take on the Bay of Plenty Steamers for a spot in the premiership next season.
Hawke's Bay 44 (Neria Fomai, Pouri Rakete-Stones, Lincoln McClutchie, Devan Flanders, Mason Emerson tries; Tiaan Falcon 5 cons, 3 pens )
Otago 39 (Michael Collins 2, Slade McDowall, Aleki Morris-Lome tries; Josh Ioane 4 cons, 2 pens )
Join us for live updates of the Mitre 10 Cup championship final at 7:30pm on Friday October 25.