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NZ Under 20 take game one on the Gold Coast

A powerful second half has driven the New Zealand Under 20s to a comprehensive 30-10 win over Australia in game one of the Oceania Cup on the Gold Coast.

After an error-ridden first half where neither side gained any dominance, New Zealand stepped it up in the second half to run away with a four try victory. Wellington prop Alex Fidow made a big impact from the bench to open up holes in the Australian defence while left wing Mason Emerson crossed for two tries in an electric performance.

In a tight first half, Australia held the edge in the set piece but were constantly forced into errors and turnovers from the fast New Zealand defensive line. The only try of the half came when speedy Hawke’s Bay wing Mason Emerson finished off a sweeping backline movement to score in the corner.
The pace of the game lifted in the second half as halfback Sam Nock ignited New Zealand to set up a try to lock Quentin Strange in the 45th minute. Moments later, Australia responded when halfback Moses Sorovi finished a brilliant counter attack to make it 13-10.

With the game in the balance, rampaging replacement prop Alex Fidow made a series of telling runs to put Australia on the back foot. A converted try and penalty to Jordie Barrett stretched the lead to 23-10 before Mason Emerson capped off a strong performance with his second try out wide.

The win puts one New Zealand hand on the Oceania Cup with the second and final match to be played this Saturday at the same venue. WATCH the LIVE STREAM on from 6pm NZT on Saturday 7 May.

New Zealand: 30 (Mason Emerson 2, Quentin Strange, Jordie Barrett tries, Barrett 2 con, 2 pen) Australia: 10