Damian McKenzie could've won the game for Waikato against Hawke's Bay.[Pic:stuff.co.nz]
Former All-Black Damian McKenzie’s return to the National Provincial Championship is something he’d rather forget after missing three chances to seal victory for Waikato in a 32-all draw with Hawke’s Bay in Hamilton.
Yesterday’s match was also Liam Messam’s 100th game for the province and McKenzie missed a penalty with three minutes remaining at Waikato Stadium as the match went to golden point extra time.
The 27-year-old then had another chance to secure a hard-fought win for the defending champions in extra time when a Hawke’s Bay player was penalized for not rolling away as they pushed for a match-winning try.
The result means the teams share the points after a breathless encounter that produced 62 points and some high-quality attacking rugby.
Isaiah Walker-Leawere scored a try in the match for Hawkes Bay.
In another match, Tasman beat Southland 27-20.