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Farah Palmer Cup Premiership Preview: Counties Manukau v Canterbury

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    27 Oct 2017     Getty Images

Counties Manukau v Canterbury, ECOLight Stadium, Pukekohe, Sunday, 2.05pm
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TALE OF THE TAPE
Counties Manukau are the defending champions having beaten Auckland last year, while Canterbury, for so long the second strongest powerhouse in the women's game in New Zealand, have contested six finals and lost them all.
Games between the two finalists have been high-scoring affairs, generally topping 50 points but their last three contests have seen 60 points raised. Counties Manukau have only once been able to keep Canterbury below 32 points in a game.

COUNTIES MANUKAU
Having beaten Auckland 22-17 in their semifinal, Counties Manukau go into the final this year knowing that the only roundrobin loss they have suffered in two years was to Canterbury, 29-32 at Papakura last month. It was a rare lapse as Counties Manukau have conceded fewer than half the points of the next best defence. At the same time they have been the heaviest scorers in the competition.

CANTERBURY
Canterbury's success earlier in the season will be a big fillip ahead of the final although they did suffer a loss, 12-41 to Auckland in the second round. But they will demand discipline from Counties Manukau as they have one of the best kickers in the game, Kendra Cocksedge to call on. She is the greatest points scorer in New Zealand women's rugby and is on target to be the first women to post 1000 points in first-class play. Canterbury will be without Sevens players Sam Curtis, Rebecca Davidson and Elizabeth Pera who have other commitments.

TEAMS

Counties Manukau: 1.Leilani Perese, 2.Te Kura Ngata-Aerengmate, 3.Aotearoa Matau, 4.Hanna Brough, 5.Harono Iringa, 6.Stacey Brown, 7.Larissa Lima E Silva, 8.Justine Lavea, 9.Arihiana Marino, 10.Victoria Subritzky-Nafatali, 11.Bernadette Robertson, 12.Timara Leaf, 13.Utumalama Atonio, 14.Lanulangi Veainu, 15.Hazel Tubic.

Substitutes: 16.Grace Gago, 17.Lauryn Steed, 18.Cindy Wong, 19.Georgina Lidgard, 20.Isabel Ozorio, 21.Emily Kitson, 22.Yuki Ono.

Canterbury: 1.Phillipa Love, 2.Jess Hansen, 3.Stephanie Te Ohaere-Fox, 4.Alana Bremner, 5.Estelle Uren, 6.Nicole Purdom, 7.Lucy Jenkins, 8.Rebecca Todd, 9.Kendra Cocksedge, 10.Charntay Poko, 11.Grace Brooker, 12.Lucy Anderson, 13.Corrina Whiley, 14.Melanie Puckett, 15.Olivia McGoverne.

Substitutes: 16.Nina Poletti, 17.Usipua Simaile, 18.Chelsea Bremner, 19.Charna Thompson, 20.Rosie Kelly, 21.Cassie Siataga, 22.Taylor Curtis.