A thrilling Farah Palmer Cup season was decided in the 81st minute of today’s Final with Canterbury scoring a late try to win 8-7 over Waikato in Christchurch.
Canadian lock Cindy Nelles was the hero for the home team, crashing over the line for her team’s only try in the last play of the game.
It is Canterbury’s fourth consecutive title, the team going through the past two seasons undefeated.
Barely anything could separate the teams in the first half as the visiting Waikato side were suffocating on defence and preventing Canterbury from taking advantage of their long spells of territory and possession.
The home team did take a 3-0 lead into half time, but a converted try by Waikato flanker Kennedy Simon got her team in front in the 64th minute.
Canterbury were relentless and capitalised on a late penalty to surge at the line and seal the Farah Palmer Cup title.
New Zealand Rugby’s Head of Women’s Rugby Cate Sexton congratulated Canterbury on their unbeaten season.
“Canterbury have set the benchmark in recent seasons and continued to do so in 2020 so it is fitting to see them lift the title.
“Blair Baxter and his coaching team have done a phenomenal job and it is great to have a number of their players acknowledged with selection in next week’s Possibles v Probables trial.
“Congratulations also to Waikato for their success this season, they emerged from a challenging North Pool and have played some fantastic rugby.
“Lastly, I want to pay credit to the efforts of all teams in what has been a challenging year, but the final product saw some of the best Farah Palmer Cup action in recent times,” said Sexton.
Canterbury 8 (C Nelles try, K Cocksedge pen)
Waikato 7 (K Simon try, C Alley con)