North takes on South in Heartland semifinals

Getty Images     15 Oct 2015     Getty Images

All four semifinals pit North Island sides against South Islanders, in the quest for silverware that honours two greats of the game.

At the end of the Heartland Championship round robin, the teams ranked in the top four compete for the Meads Cup, named for All Blacks and King Country great Sir Colin Meads. The teams that placed fourth through to eighth then compete for the Lochore Cup, which was named after All Blacks and Wairarapa legend Sir Brian Lochore.

In the Meads Cup semifinals, fans will see South Canterbury hosting Wairarapa Bush in Timaru, while up State Highway One, 2014 Meads Cup winners Mid Canterbury are playing Wanganui in Ashburton. South Canterbury finished top of the table after a comprehensive 62-19 win over Poverty Bay in their final round robin match, one point ahead of Mid Canterbury, who edged North Otago 39-36.

Meanwhile in the Lochore Cup semifinals, Horowhenua Kapiti are hosting North Otago in Levin and King Country are travelling to Westport to face Buller. Horowhenua Kapiti's loss to Buller last weekend and a loss to Wairarapa Bush earlier in the season meant they missed out on the Meads Cup under tie break rules. Buller also claimed home advantage under the tie break rules, with their 32-20 win over King Country in the opening week proving the difference.

For all four semifinals, the team hosting the match was the victor in their round robin encounter earlier in the season. For the Lochore Cup matches, both were played at the same venue, while in the Meads Cup, it was the visitors last time who are fulfilling hosting duties for the semifinals.




Saturday 17 October, 2.30pm at Alpine Energy Stadium, Timaru
Played: 6, 2006-2015 | South Canterbury wins: 3 | Wairarapa Bush wins: 3
Last match: South Canterbury 35 Wairarapa Bush 26, 12.09.15 in Masterton (HC)
Last Wairarapa Bush win: Wairarapa Bush 32 South Canterbury 21, 25.08.12 in Masterton (HC)
Biggest South Canterbury score: 43 (43-16), 06.09.14 in Timaru (MC)
Biggest Wairarapa Bush score: 47 (47-17), 30.09.06 in Masterton (MC)
Biggest margin: Wairarapa Bush by 30 (47-17), 30.09.06 in Masterton (MC)

Saturday 17 October, 2.30pm at Ashburton Showground, Ashburton
Played: 14, 2006-2015 | Mid Canterbury wins: 5 | Wanganui wins: 9
Last match: Mid Canterbury 30 Wanganui 28, 29.08.15 in Wanganui (HC)
Last Wanganui win: Wanganui 24 Mid Canterbury 23, 25.08.12 in Ashburton (HC)
Biggest Mid Canterbury score: 30 (30-28), 29.08.15 in Wanganui (HC)
Biggest Wanganui score: 46 (46-8), 23.09.06 in Wanganui (MC)
Biggest margin: Wanganui by 38 (46-8), 23.09.06 in Wanganui (MC)



Saturday 17 October, 2.00pm at Levin Domain, Levin
Played: 5, 2007-15 | North Otago wins: 4 | Horowhenua Kapiti wins: 1
Last match: Horowhenua Kapiti 26 North Otago 22, 19.09.15 in Levin (HC)
Last North Otago win: North Otago 27 Horowhenua Kapiti 22, 12.10.13 in Oamaru (HC)
Biggest North Otago score: 61 (61-15), 03.09.11 in Levin (HC)
Biggest Horowhenua Kapiti score: 23 (23-59), 07.10.06 in Levin (MC)
Biggest margin: North Otago by 46, 03.09.11 in Levin (HC)


Saturday 17 October, 2.30pm at Victoria Square, Westport
Played: 9, 2006-15 | Buller wins: 7 | King Country wins: 2
Last match: Buller 32 King Country 20, 22.08.15 in Westport (HC)
Last King Country win: King Country 44 Buller 5, 09.10.10 in Te Kuiti (LC)
Biggest Buller score: 53 (53-29), 06.09.14 in Te Kuiti (HC)
Biggest King Country score: 44 (44-5), 09.10.10 in Te Kuiti (LC)
Biggest margin: King Country by 39 (44-5), 09.10.10 in Te Kuiti (LC)