Close encounters in NPC 3
October 18, 1999
East Coast will host the final, their first, in what has already been the best season in their 78-year history. They had to wait until an injury time penalty gave them the decisive lead in their semi-final victory over Horowhenua-Kapiti. The size of the East Coast pack has frequently got them out of trouble but they will probably need to show a little more midfield guile against Poverty Bay.
The Bay will not be overawed up front, in lock Wayne Ensor, their skipper, flanker Johnny Martin and no 8 Mana Pohatu they have skilful ruckers and maulers.They will also have crucial experience on their side and will hope that the Coasters' unaccustomed presence in such a showcase match will prove unnerving.
Huw Richards Rewinds to 1975 when three Welsh legends were handed their debuts and assesses their legacy
Seven places in the Champions Cup quarter-finals are up for grabs; we break down the permutations for each group in the final round of matches
"Easter must show he is built in the Lancaster blueprint despite having not featured on the England radar until now," writes Tom Hamilton
Monday Maul reflects on a stark setback against Saracens for Munster and ponders what it all means for the Irish provinces in the Champions Cup