12 – 27
Auckland recovered from a 0-12 deficit to beat Bay of Plenty 27-12 at Rotorua International Stadium on Saturday.
That Bay of Plenty lead was taken into the half-time break after tries from hooker Joe Royal and blinside flank Johan Bardoul, one of which being converted by their outside centre Nick Evemy.
However it took just five minutes after the break for Auckland to move into the lead as a couple of penalties from full-back Gareth Anscombe came either side of Visinia’s first score of the contest.
Visinia extended the lead on 53 minutes with his second effort to make it 18-12 and from then on Auckland turned the screw, with Anscombe adding three further penalty goals to secure the points.
For Bay of Plenty:
Tries: Royal, Bardoul
Tries: Visinia 2
Pen: Anscombe 5
Bay of Plenty: 15 Leroy Van Dam, 14 Tino Nemani, 13 Nick Evemy, 12 Doug Edwards, 11 Junior Tofa Va’a, 10 Te Aihe Toma, 9 Jono Kitto, 8 Carl Axtens, 7 Hamish Gosling, 6 Johan Bardoul, 5 Tim Bond, 4 Culum Retallick (c), 3 Mike Kainga, 2 Joe Royal, 1 Solomona Sakalia.
Replacements: 16 Vyron Smith, 17 Pingi Tala’apitaga, 18 Josh Sole, 19 Jesse Acton, 20 Dan Hollinshead, 21 Siaosi Iongi, 22 Byron McGuigan.
Auckland: 15 Gareth Anscombe, 14 Ben Lam, 13 George Moala, 12 Francis Saili, 11 Lolagi Visinia, 10 Simon Hickey, 9 Leon Fukofuka, 8 Joe Edwards, 7 Sean Polwart, 6 Blake Gibson, 5 Liaki Moli, 4 William Lloyd, 3 Ofa Tu’ungafasi, 2 Tom McCartney, 1 Sam Prattley.
Replacements: 16 Gafatasi Su’a, 17 Nicholas Barrett, 18 Scott Scrafton, 19 Jack Whetton, 20 Junior Poluleuligaga, 21 Melani Nanai, 22 TJ Faiane.
Date: Saturday, September 13
Venue: Rotorua International Stadium, Rotorua
Referee: Kane McBride