Hawke's Bay, with clinical efficiency, annihilated a near-disgraceful North Harbour to ignite their NPC Championship prospects with a bonus-point 39-10 victory at Albany on Thursday.
The Magpies, who only just missed out on the top division last year, made a strong statement - showing they are determined to get back in the Premiership.
Fringe All Black hooker Hika Elliot led from the front. Elliot's forward pack were an impressive, organised unit.
The competition's leading points scorer, Andrew Horrell, kicked accurately and wing Gillies Kaka claimed a try and epitomised the high-work rate effort from his side.
Two tries in the first half and three in the second spell set up the dominant victory.
Simply biding their time and forcing North Harbour's ambition into frustration, Hawke's Bay turned it on in the second half to screw the fire out of the home team which disappointed more and more the further the game went.
Harbour had few heroes. Their only win of the season came over lowly Tasman and this was their third defeat.
For North Harbour:
For Hawke's Bay:
Tries: Saseve, Tuamalolo, Marshall, Kaka, Forbes
Cons: Horrell 4
Pens: Horrell 2
North Harbour: 15 Codey Rei, 14 Ken Pisi, 13 Nafi Tuitavake, 12 Luke McAlister, 11 David Raikuna, 10 Willie Walker, 9 Chris Smylie (captain), 8 Matt Luamanu, 7 Sam Hayes-Stevenson, 6 Brent Wilson, 5 Filo Paulo, 4 James King, 3 Ben Afeaki, 2 Mike Mayhew, 1 Mike Reid.
Replacements: 16 James Parsons, 17 James Afoa, 18 Chris Smith, 19 Solomon King, 20 Brenton Helleur, 21 Ben Botica, 22 Brendon Watt, 23 Taione Vea.
Hawke's Bay: 15 Richard Buckman, 14 Tu Umaga-Marshall, 13 Tua Saseve, 12 Andrew Horrell, 11 Gillies Kaka, 10 Daniel Kirkpatrick, 9 Kahn Fotuali'i, 8 Karl Lowe, 7 Adam Bradey, 6 Trent Boswell-Wakefield, 5 Bryn Evans, 4 Brodie Retallick, 3 Ben Tameifuna, 2 Hikawera Elliot (captain), 1 Sona Taumalolo.
Replacements: 16 Hikairo Forbes, 17 Anthony Perenise, 18 Ashton Johnson, 19 Hugh Reed, 20 Chris Eaton, 21 Ryan McLeod, 22 Tino Nemani, 23 Logovi'i Mulipola.
Referee: Sheldon Eden-Whaitiri
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