In association with the Bond Street Sports Bar on Bond Street in Wellington, some highlights from this week in Wellington club rugby history are below.–
1995: Marist St Pat’s and Petone will square off for the Swindale Shield, after MSP flanker Gordon Simpson is Man of the Match in his team’s 16-6 win over Johnsonville and Petone centre Tana Umaga stars in his side’s 27-6 win over Avalon. In another match today, Harlequins No. 8 Elliott Fuller scores a hat-trick in their 58-5 win over Ories.
1955: Former Petone first five-eighth Jackie Dougan has made the switch to Onslow and today makes his debut for his new club against his former one. Petone win the match 6-3. Petone and University, who defeat Taita 27-6, are the two unbeaten teams after three rounds.
1960: The Dominion reports that Marist hooker Mick Horan suffers a ‘painful mouth injury’ after an ugly outburst among the forwards, but wing Mick Dennehy scores a hat-trick for Marist in their 21-3 win over Poneke. Meanwhile future All Blacks wing Rod Heeps scores a 65-metre runaway try for Athletic as they are upset by Hutt 14-9.
1988: Denis Tocker scores a hat-trick of tries and Chris Welch scores a brace for MSP in today’s 41-15 win in the feature match against previously unbeaten Ories.
1994: Flanker Gordon Simpson stars in MSP’s 18-15 win over Petone in tonight’s midweek Swindale Shield final at the Hutt Recreation Ground. Simpson leads MSP to victory with a storming match and to their first Swindale Shield since 1988. For Petone, it’s their second consecutive narrow loss at the end of the first round after being pipped by Avalon 21-22 the previous year.
2011: Ories, One of this year’s favoured teams, are pipped 17-12 by Tawa in a thriller. Tawa score the winning try at the end after trailing 12-10 deep into the contest. Elsewhere, Petone inflict an emphatic 46-14 victory on Marist St. Pat’s to win back the Bill Elvy Memorial Trophy in style. Petone lead 17-7 at halftime but take control of the match soon after halftime, No. 8 Piers Gordon scoring a hat-trick.
1965: University wing Alan Osborne scores a Wellington club record six tries and fullback Mick Williment scores 18 points in University’s 42-6 win over Wellington College Old Boys. Osborne’s six tries equals the most scored on Athletic Park by one man after Ron Jarden had scored six tries there for Wellington versus East Coast in 1953 in a Ranfurly Shield defence.
2010: Petone celebrate their 125th anniversary weekend with a stunning 28-21 win over long-time rivals Poneke. In a fairy-tale finish and with scores locked up, Petone captain and hooker Eugene Smith scores after 20 phases and first five-eighth Ben Aoina adds the fulltime conversion.
1987: Wellington fullback Evan Hopkin scores 19 points in the Axemen’s 27-6 win over University. Frontrunners Wellington have scored 24 tries in six games and Hopkin is the competition’s leading points scorer so far with 61.
2015: The Upper Hutt Rams leave it to the last play of the game to pip Northern United 31-30 to take the Terry Farrow Memorial Trophy. Fullback Joyner Key takes a pass from prop Apa Heemi in his 100th game for the club and runs through to score under the posts and he then calmly converts from in front. The Rams had led 10-0 after 10 minutes and then 18-6 at halftime, but in a helter-skelter affair, Norths take a 30-24 lead when Inoke Rasabale scores in the corner.
1969: Senior division newcomers Upper Hutt cause a major upset, beating in-form Wellington 12-3. Upper Hutt’s two heroes are fullback Alan Dudley and No. 8 David Allan. Upper Hutt’s first win of the season means Petone – who beat Onslow 20-15 – have a four-point (two-match) lead at the top of the table to a group of six teams in second place.
1968: Naenae Old Boys create the first major upset this season, toppling highly fancied University 8-6. St. Pat’s Old Boys hold last year’s runners-up Wellington to an 8-8 draw in another unexpected result.
1996: Upper Hutt celebrate their Old Timers’ Day and captain Loni Katoa’s 145th and last match for the club with an 18-15 win over Petone. Katoa and wing Craig Foster score Upper Hutt’s first and second tries en route to a winning 18-6 halftime lead. Of note, Petone have Hurricanes players Tana Umaga and Tim Mannix arrive at the start of the match by helicopter and both come off the bench in the second half.
1956: Petone are the only unbeaten team after five rounds after they thrash WCOB 53-0 and previous co-leaders Marist lose 10-35 to University. The Dominion says that Petone produce “an orgy of scoring” as their international pocket-rocket wing Tom Katene scores 21 points. Katene played his only Test for the All Blacks the previous year against the Wallabies.
1973: Unbeaten Petone account for Poneke 54-4 and they have now scored 244 points and conceded 40 in six matches this season to date. Elsewhere, in the battle for minor placings, Athletic and Wellington (10-10) and WCOB and University (12-12) are involved in consecutive draws in the matches on Athletic Park, while previously bottom placed Upper Hutt beat mid-table Hutt Old Boys 9-7.
1984: MSP miss nine of 12 shots on goal, but still come away with an 18-15 win over Petone, while fullback John Gallagher scores 20 points for Ories in their 40-13 win over Titahi Bay to become the first player to reach 100 points this season and wing Steve Haturini scores a hat trick in Wellington’s 41-12 demolition of Western Suburbs.
2001: MSP beat Poneke 15-8 in a dour top-of-the-table encounter, while the referee calls time off with 10 minutes to play in the Hutt – Wellington fixture. The reason? Hutt are leading 109-0. They led 64-0 at halftime and score 17 tries in 70 minutes.
2012: HOBM left wing Leka Tupuola is the hero for the Eagles scoring two tries in the shadows of fulltime to give his side a 27-22 victory over previous joint leaders Upper Hutt. Tupuola finishes off a length of the field try to see HOBM draw level at 22-22. He scores again at the end to take the match away from Upper Hutt at the death. HOBM go on and win the Swindale Shield.
2018: Tongan halfback Tomasi Palu (on Jonah Lomu’s birthday) scores four tries in OBU’s 48-16 Wood Cup win over HOBM at Nairnville Park in a match between the two Swindale Shield contenders. The halfback is in the right place three times after powerful forward surges and supports a breakout by fullback Sam Reid in the first-half. OBU dominate the second half after trailing 14-16 at the turnaround. Elsewhere, the Avalon Wolves upset Marist St Pat’s 27-19 at Evans Bay Park for the Joe Aspell Cup while Paremata-Plimmerton lower Poneke’s flag 25-11 at Ngatitoa Domain.