New Zealand’s Mitre 10 Cup side Manawatu have just given us one of the greatest rugby restarts you will ever see.
As the Rugby Championship currently occupies the international stage in the southern hemisphere, domestically, leagues are cranking up in earnest.
In the Mitre 10 Cup, New Zealand’s rugby union league, things are approaching the halfway point of the season and, as you would expect from the rugby-mad nation, a veritable feast of skill has been delivered to fans thus far.
Among some of the more sublime moments in the season to date took place last weekend when mid-table Manawatu welcomed Bay of Plenty to the Central Energy Trust Arena.
In a game that the home side ultimately lost 17 – 20, one moment in the match stands out for what, in all honesty, is likely to be one of the greatest restart kicks you will ever see, at any level of the game.
Former Maori All Black Kurt Baker was on hand to secure the ball behind his own try line, thus preventing a try for the visitors. Though there is nothing special about this, what he did with the ball certainly was.
Restarting from his 22-metre line, Baker noticed the Bay of Plenty’s full-back was out of position. He, therefore, proceeded to send the ball long, very long, towards the corner of the opposition’s half.
A beneficial bounce ensured the ball remained out of reach of the increasingly desperate Bay of Plenty No. 15, where he could only watch with incredulity as the ball rolled into touch, mere inches from the try line.
Take a look.
— EatSleepRugby (@eatsleeprugby) September 12, 2017
Fortuitous bounce or not, it was some smart play from Baker and the results don’t come much better.