For the 10th time, the 2020 Billy Wallace Best & Fairest competition has been shared.
Bruce Kauika-Petersen (Norths) and Sam Reid (Old Boys University) have been confirmed as joint winners on 14 points.
Both players were tied heading into the September’s Jubilee Cup final between their two clubs, won 22-14 by OBU, but neither added to their tallies on the day.
Reid played 14 games out of a possible 15 for the 2020 champions, mostly at fullback and a couple of starts at centre, scoring 14 tries and a key player in the Goats backline.
Reid is the first back (not counting halfback winners) to win the award since MSP’s Fa’atonu Fili in 2008 and the first outside back to win since Jack Tarrant (Wests) in 2005 to win.
Going back further to the competition’s inception in 1966, other midfield or outside backs to win have included Richard Cleland (Petone) in 1970, Paul Tainui (Naenae OB) in 1971, Bernie Fraser (HVM) and Brian Cederwall (Athletic) in 1978, Allan Hewson (Petone) in 1979, Cederwall again in 1981 and Hewson again in 1986 and Andrew Smids (Wellington) in 1995.
Kauika-Petersen played 11 of his 13 games in2020 for Norths at openside flanker, one off the bench and the other at hooker, where he made his Wellington Lions debut off the bench in their 32-10 win over semi-finalists Bay of Plenty.
He continues a long line of loose forwards and hookers to have won this award, following inaugural winner Tom Lister (Athletic) who was a flanker and Poneke’s Dave Mahanga in 1980 who was a hooker.
In 2020, Kauika-Petersen completed his fifth season in Wellington club rugby, the former Wairarapa College student playing for Petone between 206-18 and Norths since 2019.
THE LAST 15 WINNERS OF THE BILLY WALLACE BEST & FAIREST COMPETITION HAVE BEEN:
2006: Peter Sciascia (Avalon)
2007: Dane Coles (Poneke)
2008: Fa’atonu Fili (Marist St Pat’s)
2009: Misipalauni Monanau (Poneke)
2010: Mateaki Kafatolu (Petone)
2011: Liu Taituave (Marist St Pat’s)
2012: Sharn Eru (Wainuiomata) / Ardie Savea (Oriental-Rongotai)
2013: Sam Tui (Poneke)
2014: Ben Tupuola (Wainuiomata)
2015: TJ Fermanis (Tawa) / Adam Deck (Wellington)
2016: Peniasi Tokakece (Tawa)
2017: Ben Tupuola (Wainuiomata) / Hemi Fermanis (Tawa)
2018: Greg Foe (Poneke)’
2019: Kemara Hauiti-Parapara (Tawa)
2020: Sam Reid (OBU) and Bruce Kauika-Petersen (Norths)