Our Premier Reserves have rounded out a successful season for our club by winning the Ed Chaney Cup after beating previously unbeaten Northern United in the final at Petone Rec.
The side never trailed in the match with two tries, to Jacob Taituave and Ofa Siale, scored in quick succession midway through the first half saw the side jump out to a 12-0 lead. The defence was largely watertight and expert kicking from evergreen Fa'atonu Fili kept Norths on the backfoot for most of the half.
It was only a lapse in concentration after an MSP knock on that saw the get on the scoresheet in the first half, with the Norths winger scooping it up to run 50 metres to score. MSP led by 12-5 at half time.
Norths, the Harper Lock Shield winners, struck soon after the whistle to narrow the lead to 12-10 but the gap wouldn't be narrow for long. MSP hit back immediately with two tries in the next five minutes; fullback Shane Thompstone finished a break from Jay Cameron and then Ofa Siale beat multiple defenders to score his second. Both tries were scored in the northeast corner in front of our delighted Premier side who were vocal in support.
After finding no way through the staunch MSP defence, Norths opted for a penalty kick at the 63 minute mark to peg the score back to 22-13. From there the MSP continued with the theme of the day - strong defence - shutting down the game. A Fa'atonu Fili penalty in front on full time extended the winning margin to 25-13.
Isaac O'Connor was named the player of the day after setting the tone for the forward pack that was relentless at the breakdown and laid the strong foundation for the backs to launch their attack.
The Ed Chaney Cup win is the fifth piece of major silverware won by the Premier Reserves in the past three seasons. They have won 50 games and lost just three over that period.
Congratulations to captain James Zino, coaches Tinkah Tolova'a and Sonny Whitman and all the players and management on another outstanding season.