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Short Passes 2 September

On Saturday the Upper Hutt Rams J8s won the last club rugby title of the year up for grabs, the Reserve Grade Division 2 Alan Seerup Cup. PHOTO: Peter McDonald. More photos of this game and season photos archive at 

Welcome to a new week in rugby. A focus for Club Rugby over the next fortnight is covering the National U19 Tournament. Look out for some stories this week on this website around that, including our annual ‘Players to Watch’ article.

The Wellington U19 side for the Jock Hobbs Tournament will be named today. 25 players will make the squad though its expected there will be others on standby for injury. Wellington’s first game on Sunday is likely to be against Otago.

UPDATE: The Wellington U19s team is below:


Plenty of rugby coming up this week.

There are two school tournaments being played in the Hutt Valley and one in Wellington all week.

Hutt Valley High School are hosting the Rugby Captain’s Trophy tournament. This is a Quadrangular Tournament that has been going for 44 yrs between, Wairarapa College, Dannevirke High School and normally Horowhenua College, but due to the latter not having a 1st XV team this season, Paraparaumu College will take their place.

There are two games per day today and tomorrow. Today’s games are 11.30am and 1.30pm and Tuesday’s are 10.30am and 12.30pm.

The Hurricanes U15 tournament and the WRFU U14 tournament are both all week in the Hutt and in Wellington respectively. Both feature schools from around the country.

For the draws for these tournaments visit the WRRA site HERE


This coming Saturday, representative games to watch live and follow include:

  • Wellington Lions v Bay of Plenty, Rotorua, 7.35pm
  • Wellington Pride v Bay of Plenty, Jerry Collins Stadium, 1.00pm
  • Centurions U85kg v Tasman U85kg, Porirua Park 2, 11.00am
  • Wellington Maori v Wellington Samoans, Petone Rec, 2.30pm
  • Wellington Maori Development v Wanganui Development, Petone Rec 2, 12.30pm
  • Centurions Development v Hawke’s Bay Saracens, Napier, 2.30pm
  • Centurions u18s v Samoan U18s, Petone Rec, 1.00pm
  • Wellington Community Women U18 v Centurions U18s Women, Ngatitoa Domain, 12.00pm
  • Wellington U16A v Petone Barbarians, Bernie Wood, 1.30pm
  • Wellington U16 Development v Wairarapa Bush U16s, Masterton 1.00pm


Was last Thursday night’s crowd at the Stadium the lowest ever there for a National Provincial Championship match?

For the sake of the fans, at what stage might they take NPC games elsewhere, i.e Porirua Park and the Hutt Rec? This now seems unlikely given that from next year Sky has a vested interest in the Stadium as naming rights sponsor.

The Westpac Stadium (soon to be Sky Stadium) annual report is out soon and official crowd statistics for last year will likely reveal a continued decline.

On the subject of Sky Sport, this next season they will take up the back of shirt position on all home and away Phonenix shirts, as well as branding on travel gear. Read more HERE


Once again there’s no Wellington representation at this year’s Barbarians National Top 4 Championships in Palmerston North, with Aotea College and St Mary’s well beaten in their regional finals and Scots and Silverstream dipping out the week before.

However it appears that changes are afoot for the Coed grade with rule changes proposed, including standardising the date for schools to decide whether to enter it or not (In 2019 for Wellington schools it was April, while Auckland’s Saint Kentigern College had until Queen’s Birthday to make up their mind), and requiring schools that have won their region two years in a row to then enter the main boys competition the following year which would particularly affect perennial Hurricanes winners Feilding High School, but also Canterbury’s St Andrew’s College and Waikato’s St Peter’s School. Also expect some firming up of the requirements for the Girls division as well.


Wellington College First XV captain and deputy head boy Ridge Studd has missed the last two games for the U18 Centurions due to the most unusual injury. While cooking an egg he managed to burn his leg so badly he required hospital treatment. With behaviour like this Studd is a starter’s chance of a Darwin award. He must also get a New Zealand Radio award after a top debut as a commentator on Te Upoko O Te Ika during the recent Premier I First XV final between Scots College and St Pat’s Silverstream

Lincoln Rawles has retired as Wellington College First XV coach after a decade at the helm. An old boy of St Pat’s Town, Rawles coached between 2006 and 2009 winning the Premier I title in each season and making two trips to the National Top Four. He returned in 2012 and Wellington managed to win further Wellington crowns in 2013 and 2016. A score of Lions have come through Col. Always personable to deal with, the last two years were extremely tough though as Wellington slumped to some of the worst results in their history. A number of factors have led to Wellington’s decline making the appointment of Rawles’ replacement a most interesting and important process.


Finalists announced for 2019 Community Rugby Awards

The finalists for the 2019 Wellington Rugby Football Union Community Rugby Awards have been announced.

The awards, which will be held on Wednesday 11 September, are a great opportunity to celebrate and recognise those involved in our community game at junior and senior levels.

It is the third year the awards, which recognise players, teams, referees and volunteers, have been held after it was decided to separate the community and representative parts of the game in Wellington.

In all, 12 awards will be presented, including the club team and club coach of the year.

The awards are also the right time to recognise some of the many outstanding volunteers we have in the game – both at junior and senior level.

Following that, the prestigious Wellington Rugby Football Union Lifetime Contribution Salver will be presented.

The 2019 WRFU Community Rugby Awards finalists are:

Referee of the Year:

  • Richard Gordon
  • Nick Hogan
  • Vincent Ringrose

Junior Rugby Volunteer of the Year:

  • Jimmy Atkinson (Avalon)
  • Rebecca Dixon (Petone)
  • Annemie Otto (Paremata-Plimmerton)

Senior Rugby Volunteer of the Year:

  • Perry Barber (Johnsonville)
  • Tony Walsh (Western Suburbs)
  • John Willis (Oriental-Rongotai)

Club Coach of the Year:

  • Gerard Faasavalu (Northern United Premier)
  • Dan Farani & Dan Smith (Wainuiomata Premier)
  • Edwin Meachen (Marist St Pats Premier Reserves)

Club Team of the Year:

  • Avalon 85kg Restricted
  • Marist St Pats Premier Reserves
  • Northern United Premier
  • Oriental-Rongotai Women

Age Grade Player of the Year:

  • Cameron Ferreira (Petone)
  • Luke Gilbert (Old Boys University)
  • Tasipale Valavala (Marist St Pats)

Women’s Club Player of the Year:

  • Jane Bryce (Marist St Pats)
  • Montana Heslop (Old Boys University)
  • Amanda Rasch (Oriental-Rongotai)

Other awards to be presented on the evening, but without nominees, are the WRFU Lifetime Contribution Salver, the Club Community Award in association with the New Zealand Amateur Sport Association Inc., the Billy Wallace Memorial Trophy and the Club Awards based on performance on-field.




If nothing else, the Wellington Pride will be relishing having their home dressing room this coming Saturday when they host the Bay of Plenty Volcanix at Jerry Collins Stadium at 1.00pm. They turned up at the Addington Showgrounds on Saturday only to find their changing sheds were somewhere else and not at the ground itself as the home Canterbury team and the two NPC teams that followed their game, including Southland, who would struggle to beat Norths, had use of the ones available.


Rugby World Cup: All the squads that have been named so far can be viewed HERE


Rebecca Mahoney will become the first female to referee in New Zealand’s premier domestic rugby competition when she officiates the National Provincial Championship match between Hawke’s Bay and Southland this Friday.

The former Black Fern continues to break new ground for female referees after last year’s Heartland Championship appointment and this season’s Otago versus North Otago Ranfurly Shield clash.


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