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Rugby

A great day at the Sport Park for Thames Valley Rugby Union

Nineteen teams across three grades – First XV’s, Youth Boys, Open Girls – gathered from all parts of the Thames Valley for a grand one-day Rugby Union tournament at Moewai Sport Park, Whitianga, last Wednesday 27 march. All the teams got to play multiple twenty minute games with a very short turn around time. The playing fields were all full and busy.
 |  The Informer  | 

There were three titles to be won with all the Colleges participating were:

• The girls Open Championships – Hauraki Plains College

• First XV Championship – technically won by Matamata College who are not in the Thames Valley region. This meant runner up, Paeroa College was the winner and they qualified with their points to enter the National Condor Sevens Cup later this year.

• Ian Murphy Development Grade Cup (Open Boys) – won by Paeroa College.

The region’s Community Rugby Manager, Scott Day, who was timekeeper and communication channel for all the games played, was very pleased with the day.

“We have received the most entries and it is the most competitive tournament we have had in recent years,” says Scott.

“Our region stretches from Te Aroha right up to the tip of the Coromandel and through to Waitakaruru.

“Matamata College is not technically in our region, but they asked could they enter, and we are glad to include them. They wanted the extra competition and match experience.”

This organised regional programme is run through the different College Sports Co-ordinators.

“We are here to support and assist them,” added Janine Spice, Rugby Development Officer. Really, we back up the good work that Thames Valley Rugby Union is doing.”

The Informer also spoke to the referees’ coach, Mike Dilmott.

“The referees today come from Counties Manukau, Waikato Union and Thames Valley. We needed nine referees for today and we were fortunate to have eight. We do need more referees and we invite anyone interested or who has had experiences to contact our Referee Education Officer, Wayne Berry, phone 027 2801444.”

Scott Penney, CEO of Thames Valley Rugby Union, who was very involved in the detail of the day commented, “It was good to see so many schools attend particularly as the season has not really started.

“One of our goals is to boost our numbers and this is a very good beginning with so many young players coming out and playing well with a level of fitness that is great for this stage of the playing season,” says Scott.

“This sports park is a top facility – thank you to Whitianga and the Mercury Bay Area College for hosting all of us.”

It was a day for many of the wider regional leaders in Rugby Union to come. Ross Cooper, a former All Blacks coach and now President  of the Thames Valley Rugby Union was there to help and encourage the players and organisers.

1. Administration Tent team for the day – Janine Spice, Scott Day and Kahu Hall (11 years); 2. Kauri of Paeroa College scores a try; 3. Hauraki Plains College won the Girls Open Youth Sevens – four consecutive years; 4. Enjoying the day were Thames College Open Girls team members:  Zaylee Savage, Jodie Louden, Amaia-Rose Herewini, Gwen Kingi, Olivia Lamont. 5. Scott Penney, second from left, CEO Thames Valley Rugby Union, and Mercury Bay 7’s coach, Dwayne Mansell, second from right, at the end of the games; 6. The final match of the day –  the youth boys final, was won by Paeroa College just two points ahead of Mercury Bay Area College. 7. Reo McQueen from Mercury Bay College.