This will be the first-ever Super Rugby meeting between Moana Pasifika and Western Force.
The Force have won their last three Super Rugby games when facing an opponent for the first time, including a 20-18 win over the Fijian Drua earlier in the Super Rugby Pacific campaign.
- Moana Pasifika has lost their last nine consecutive games in Super Rugby Pacific.
- The Force have lost their last seven consecutive games in Super Rugby Pacific.
- The Western Force have won only three of their last 21 Super Rugby away games against teams from outside Australia (L18); all three of those wins came against teams not based in New Zealand (Cheetahs, Sunwolves, Jaguares).
- Fijian Drua (7.8) are the only team to have made fewer entries into the opposition 22m zone per game this season than the Force (9.2) and Moana (10.6).
- Moana Pasifika (46%) have the lowest rate of possession of any team in the 2022 Super Rugby Pacific season, while the Western Force (53%) have the highest rate of any Australian team and the third-highest rate overall.
- The worst scrum win-percentage goes to both Force and Moana.
- The Western Australian outfit has not won in New Zealand since 2014.
Players to watch
- Manasa Mataele has made 11 line breaks this Super Rugby Pacific season, more than any other player in the competition; he has scored four tries in his last five games.
- Izack Rodda has won 10 turnovers, the joint-most of any player in the competition and twice as many as any Moana Pasifika player.
- Solomone Funaki has scored a try in each of his last two games and has a season tally of four; he’s also made six tackle-breaks, two offloads, and won three turnovers in his last two appearances.
- Jeremy Thrush has scored three tries across his last four games, playing an average of just 40 minutes per game.
We are waiting for the kick-off.
This match was rescheduled due to Covid outbreaks.
1.00: PEEEP! We are underway at Mt Smart Stadium in Auckland.
3.00: It looks like Moana Pasifika will go wide at every opportunity. They will need to watch their handling because it is slipper after some rain. A knock-on ends a good attack.
6.00: Ezekiel Lindenmuth is pinged for collapsing, the second of the game against the islanders. The Force kick to the opposition’s 22.
8.00: Moana gives away another penalty, Jake McIntyre kicks to the corner for a driving maul.
9.00: TRY! Andrew Ready flops over for his third try of the season after breaking from the back of the rolling maul. 0-5
10.00: MISS! Ian Prior cannot convert. 0-5
11.00: Jeremy Thrush is pinged at the ruck, and Moana kicks to the 22.
12.00: Tima Fainga’anuku breaks through an unguarded ruck, he slipped past Ian Prior and Fergus Lee-Warner before fending off Ready to score under the posts. 5-5
13.00: CONVERSION! Lincoln McClutchie. 7-5
15.00: A botched Force lineout leads to a penalty for the islanders to clear the danger.
17.00: Moana has conceded four turnovers to one in the first quarter. The islanders are looking to play with the ball-in-hand, but mistakes will only hamper Tim Sampson’s side.
19.00: Another seven-phase attack ends with Moana winning a penalty to set up a good attacking opportunity inside the Force’s 22.
21.00: Ryan McCauley wins the opposition’s lineout, and the Aussies clear the danger. Both teams struggled to maintain possession and each turned the ball over.
23.00: BRACE: Some slick handling by Lincoln McClutchie and Neria Foma’i ends with Fainga’anuku diving over untouched in the corner for his second of the night. 12-5
24.00: CONVERSION! The kick is good. 14-5
26.00: A bit of a scuffle breaks out for some reason after Moana wins the turnover penalty.
27.00: Moana botches a third lineout, which leads to another Force penalty.
27.00: YELLOW CARD! Levi Aumua sees yellow, this time for a tip-tackle on Richard Kahui. 14-5
28.00: Moana has conceded six turnovers and penalties to go with four handling errors.
29.00: Prior and Kahui make a mess of a certain score on the Moana Pasifika try line. The hosts clear but the Force counter-attack.
30.00: TRY! Prior’s skip-pass to Ready on the sideline sets up McIntyre for his fifth score of the campaign. Ready sucked in a defender before offloading to the supporting Manasa Mataele, who sent the fullback in for the try. 14-10
32.00: CONVERSION! Prior adds the extras. 14-12
35.00: Another lost lineout ends with the home team winning possession to set up an attack in the Force’s 22, but nothing comes from the attack.
37.00: Manasa Mataele is tackled into touch after another stolen lineout (five) inside 40 minutes.
39.00: NO TRY! Jeremy Thrush crashes over from a ruck, but a knock-on in the build-up sees the try chalked off by the TMO. The Force had a penalty advantage, so they will go to the corner. 14-12
41.00: TRY! Bryon Ralston, playing his first game in the midfield, takes Prior’s pass with an angled run and reaches out to score. 14-17
43.00: CONVERSION! Prior adds the extras. 14-19
The halftime score was Moana Pasifika 14 Western Force 19
41.00: PEEEP! We are back underway in Auckland.
44.00: TRY! Ryan McCauley’s strong carry gets the Force over the gain-line and to the 22. Reesjan Pasitoa’s weaving run sees him slip a tackle before sending Toni Pulu away for his 20th Super Rugby try.
46.00: CONVERSION! The kick is good. 14-26
50.00: TRY! McIntyre dances through three defenders after a scintillating linebreak by Kahui, who raced from his half to the opposition’s 22. Kahui drew the defenders before playing Pulu on the wing. Pulu popped inside to the fullback, who barged his way over the line. 14-31
51.00: MISS! The kick is no good. 14-31
52.00: TRY! Ezekiel Lindenmuth crashes over from close range. 19-31
53.00: CONVERSION! The standoff cannot miss from there. 21-31
57.00: PENALTY! Prior extends the lead. 21-34
59.00: Tim Anstee’s break sets up Prior, whose delayed pass to Jackson Pugh sees the number eight claim his maiden Super Rugby try. 21-39
61.00: CONVERSION! Prior adds the extras. 21-41
63.00: McClutchie’s restart does not go 10; the Force wins a scrum penalty, but Kahui does not find touch – what a mess!
66.00: A barnstorming run by Tu’ipulotu comes to nothing after a knock-on kills the attack.
69.00: TRY! Taukiha’amea Koloamatangi takes a crash ball to take away the Force’s bonus point. 28-41
70.00: CONVERSION! The kick is good. 28-41
74.00: The game is petering out, but the Force needs to get another try for the bonus point.
75.00: NO TRY! Lincoln McClutchie’s try is chalked off for obstruction by Henry Taefu. 28-41
78.00: It’s helter-skelter in Auckland.
79.00: TRY! Kyle Godwin wraps up proceeding after Mataele’s wonderful midfield break set up the bonus-point try. 28-46
80.00: CONVERSION! The kick is good. 28-48
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The final score is Moana 28 (14) Force 48 (19)
Tries – Fainga’anuku (2), Lindenmuth, Koloamatangi
Con – McClutchie (4)
Cards – Aumua (Yellow, 27′)
Tries – Ready, McIntyre (2), Ralston, Pulu, Pugh, Godwin
Pen – Prior
Con – Prior (4), McDonald
Referee: James Doleman
Assistant Ref 1: Ben O’Keeffe
Assistant Ref 2: Brendan Pickerill
Moana Pasifika: 1 Ezekiel Lindenmuth, 2 Luteru Tolai, 3 Chris Apoua, 4 Veikoso Poloniati, 5 Mahonri Ngakuru, 6 Sione Tu’ipulotu, 7 Alamanda Motuga, 8 Jack Lam (captain), 9 Ereatara Enari, 10 Lincoln McClutchie, 11 Neria Foma’i, 12 Henry Taefu, 13 Levi Aumua, 14 Tima Fainga’anuku, 15 Lolagi Visinia.
Replacements: 16 Samiuela Moli, 17 Taukiha’amea Koloamatangi, 18 Joe ‘Apiokotoa, 19 Alex McRobbie, 20 Penitoa Finau, 21 Manu Paea, 22 Fine Inisi, 23 Willy Havili.
Western Force: 1 Tom Robertson, 2 Andrew Ready, 3 Santiago Medrano, 4 Ryan McCauley, 5 Jeremy Thrush, 6 Fergus Lee-Warner, 7 Tim Anstee, 8 Jackson Pugh, 9 Ian Prior (captain), 10 Reesjan Pasitoa, 11 Manasa Mataele, 12 Richard Kahui, 13 Bryon Ralston, 14 Toni Pulu, 15 Jake McIntyre.
Replacements: 16 Feleti Kaitu’u, 17 Angus Wagner, 18 Bo Abra, 19 Izack Rodda, 20 Jack Winchester, 21 Michael McDonald, 22 Kyle Godwin, 23 Brad Lacey.