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Heartland Preview – Mid Canterbury v West Coast – Head 2 Head

MIDCANTERBURY vs WESTCOAST

23 August 2014

Mid Canterbury v West Coast

@ Ashburton 2:30 PM – BET NOW

We continue our Head 2 Head Previews with Mid Canterbury v West Coast.

MID CANTERBURY

MIDCANTERBURY2013 finish: Meads Cup champions

The Hammers, again under coach Glenn Moore, recorded the best Ranfurly Shield challenge of any Heartland side in the past 14 years in holding Counties Manukau to 46-10 which indicates they will be a hard side to de-throne this season.

The bulk of the 2013 champion squad, which dropped only one match, is back again and bolstered by the addition of a few experienced players – Tasman flanker Gary Redmond, Northland prop Scott Vessey and North Otago lock Eric Duff while Canterbury-based fullback Matt Thatcher will be the Player of Origin.

Add in the return of ex-Canterbury and Tasman winger Willie McGoon, Ponsonby goal-kicking first five Murray Williams (123 pts last season) who has repped for Auckland, Bay of Plenty and the Chiefs, Canterbury halfback Jake Ashby (injured at pesent) and mid fielder Peni Manumanuniliwa and possibly Otago three-quarter Dwayne Burrows.

Hooker James Carr is sitting on 99 games for the union while last year’s captain  and No 8 Jon Dampney plus props Tokalua and Simon Fleetwood are all in the selection mix.

The backline squad again includes former Taranaki and Samoan international second five Esera Lauina, NZ Heartland rep halfback William McKenzie, fullback Richard Catherwood and utility back David Maw.

Missing from last season are former Otago and Manawatu lock Grant Polson (retired), mid field back Manase Nonu and Canterbury loan winger Muleli Bula.

Mid Canterbury, endeavouring to match Wanganui (2008-09) in winning back to back Meads Cups, has tune-up games against Southland and South Canterbury.

LATE NEWS:  ( Thanks Jason Ree – Mid Canterbury )

Scott Vessey has pulled out due to injury before the shield game,  James Carr has retired (Played 108 games) , also they have ex-Tasman Winger Brenton Connell, back in the fold after playing for Methven this season

Mid Canterbury Heartland Squad 2014 – (Announced Saturday 26 July)

midcantsquad2014WEST COAST – http://westcoastrfu.com

WESTCOAST2013 finish: Meads Cup semi-finalists

Reaching the Meads Cup semi-finals for only the second time, the previous occasion being in 2008, the Coast impressed with a fourth overall Heartland ranking last  season.

West Coast gave eventual champions Mid Canterbury a real test in the Meads semi-final in Ashburton before being pipped 28-25 after twice leading and finally being foiled in the last minute of play.

Earlier there had been notable away wins over Wanganui (25-24) and Lochore Cup champions South Canterbury (30-25) plus the thrilling 14-12 Seddon Shield victory over Nelson Bays thanks to a wet weather drop goal from Tim Priest.

Winning the Seddon Shield for the first time in 33 years was a feather in the cap for the red and whites who now faced the formidable task of defending the trophy on successive weekends against Marlborough, Buller and Nelson Bays before the Heartland starts , they were successful over Marlborough before losing 31 – 42 to Buller.

Coast’s strength will revolve around current NZ Heartland reps Alan Monk (flanker), Troy Tauwhare (hooker) and Tim Priest (first five) along with hard-working loosie Rowan O’Gorman (top try scorer with six last year) and strong locks Josh Manning and Kalave Auali’itia plus front rowers Heroshi Tea and Andrew Williams (both Samoan test players)

Robert Thomson is a strong-running fullback and Maleli Mudu (69 caps) can be an elusive winger.

The Canterbury-based coaching pair of Alan Lindsay and Sean Cuttance again have a pool of talent to pick from this year.

West Coast Heartland Squad 2014

westcoastsquad2014West Coast Team to Play Mid Canterbury on Saturday 
1 Lolesio Lavea 2 Troy Tauwhare 3 Ryan Kennedy 4 Kalave Aualiitia 5 Brad Houston
6 Alan Monk 7 Josh Hill 8 Rowan O’Gorman 9 Nick Makea 10 Tim Priest 11 Gareth Price
12 Sean McClure 13 Josh Costello 14 Peter Te Rakau 15 Jason Wright
REPLACEMENTS: 
16 David Oates 17 Darcy Ralph 18 Chris Mason 19 Logan Winter
20 Mark Le Lievre 21 Nathan Smith 22 Phillip Thomson

MID CANTERBURY v WEST COAST
Saturday 23 August, 2.30pm at Ashburton Showground, Ashburton

Played: 5, 2006-2013 | Mid Canterbury wins: 4 | West Coast wins: 1
Last match: Mid Canterbury 28 West Coast 25, 19.10.13 in Ashburton (MC SF)
Last West Coast win: West Coast 24 Mid Canterbury 9, 02.09.06 in Greymouth (P)
Biggest Mid Canterbury score: 29 (29-24), 29.09.12 in Greymouth (HC)
Biggest West Coast score: 25 (25-28), 19.10.13 in Ashburton (MC SF)
Biggest differential: West Coast by 15 (24-9), 02.09.06 in Greymouth (P)

HEARTLAND CHAMPIONSHIP MATCHES
Head-to-head matches: MID CANT – WEST COAST
19.10.13 Mid Cant West Coast 28 : 25
29.09.12 West Coast Mid Cant 24 : 29
27.09.08 Mid Cant West Coast 07 : 05
08.09.07 Mid Cant West Coast 23 : 12
Last matches: MID CANTERBURY
26.10.13 Mid Cant North Otago 26 : 20
19.10.13 Mid Cant West Coast 28 : 25
12.10.13 Buller Mid Cant 13 : 31
05.10.13 Mid Cant Thames Valley 44 : 11
28.09.13 King Country Mid Cant 17 : 32
21.09.13 Mid Cant South Cant 34 : 27
14.09.13 North Otago Mid Cant 19 : 18
07.09.13 Mid Cant Wairarapa 29 : 23
31.08.13 Horowhenua Mid Cant 09 : 13
24.08.13 Mid Cant Poverty Bay 31 : 12
Last matches: WEST COAST
19.10.13 Mid Cant West Coast 28 : 25
12.10.13 Wanganui West Coast 24 : 25
05.10.13 West Coast North Otago 22 : 32
28.09.13 Thames Valley West Coast 18 : 33
21.09.13 West Coast East Coast 15 : 11
14.09.13 South Cant West Coast 25 : 30
07.09.13 West Coast Poverty Bay 30 : 14
31.08.13 Wairarapa West Coast 32 : 12
24.08.13 West Coast Buller 23 : 17
13.10.12 Buller West Coast 26 : 18


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