A trip to Ashburton completes the second leg of Thames Valley’s last two away games in the round robin section of the Mitre 10 Heartland Championship. Thames Valley needs to win to stay alive in this year’s competition and they need to hit the ground running this weekend to do so. It remains unclear as to whether or not skipper, Jonnie Te Ruki Chambers will be fit to play but his presence could make all the difference judging by the results in his absence. The first four games in which he played, were close fought affairs but the last two games without him were both heavy defeats.
Mid Canterbury has been going along nicely, currently sitting in fourth place on the ladder and returning home to the Ashburton Show Grounds for this weekend’s game following a 76-22 mauling of East Coast in Ruatoria. Last year Mid Canterbury finished runner up in pool play, only one point behind South Canterbury and earned a home semi final against Wanganui in the Meads Cup before going down 26-11.
These sides didn’t meet last year but Thames Valley won the last encounter in 2014, 20-15 at the Paeroa Domain. They have met seven times since 2007 with Mid Canterbury winning four games and Thames Valley, three. Interestingly, five of these games were played in Ashburton with Thames Valley winning the initial game 13-7 in 2007. The game starts at 2.30pm and will be controlled by Referee Boris Jurlina from Northland.
All Thames Valley rugby followers should take note of the following important announcement. The round eight game between Thames Valley and Poverty Bay was scheduled to be played at the Paeroa Domain on October 15 but there has been a change of venue and the game will now be played at Boyd Park, Te Aroha. Kick off time will remain the same, at 2.00pm.
Heartland Rugby Report
Runaway competition leaders Wanganui continued their winning run with a 60-14 win against Thames Valley in the latest round of the Mitre 10 Heartland Championship. Played in ideal rugby conditions at Cooks Gardens in Wanganui, the defending Meads Cup champions got off to a flying start against the visitors and never let up.
The Butcher Boys, as they are known, ran in seven tries in the first forty minutes and took a 52-8 lead into the changing rooms at half time. Their only concern was a lapse in discipline that saw two Wanganui players in the Sin Bin at the same time just prior to the break.
Jamie Hughes and Second Five, Kameli Kuruyabaki scored two tries each while up and coming winger Te Rangatira Waitokia, Tremaine Gilbert and Gavin Thornbury all got one each. Hooker, Hayden Wisnewski scored Thames Valley’s only try in the first half with Beau Hamilton adding the conversion.
The second half was a complete contrast as Thames Valley attacked for long periods and showed some resolve on defence, with each team only scoring one try but it was only academic as the home side remained on target for a home semi final in the Meads Cup following a sixth consecutive win.
Thames Valley can still make the Lochore Cup playoffs but they are running out of games to qualify.
Wanganui’s nearest rivals kept the pressure on the competition leader with South Canterbury beating Horowhenua Kapiti 36-24 in Timaru after being held at 16 all at half time. South Canterbury is the only team to have picked up a four try bonus point in every match so far this year and is only two points behind Wanganui, in second place. Third place was retained by a plucky Buller side that eked out a two point win against Wairarapa Bush at Masterton, thanks in part, to some fine play by first five, James Lash. Lash set up one try, scored another, kicked three conversions and a 78th minute penalty to steal the points for his side. Mid Canterbury holds fourth place with a 76-22 win over East Coast in Ruatoria while a 4-4 draw between King Country and North Otago did little for the prospects of either team. Poverty Bay was the big mover with a 62-28 win over West Coast. The result pushes Poverty Bay well into reckoning for a semi final berth with two rounds to go.
The Thames Valley team is on the road for the next two weeks starting with a trip to Cooks Gardens Wanganui this weekend. Winless from five games, Thames Valley faces the daunting prospect of trying to contain the unbeaten competition leaders, Wanganui, who are on a five match unbeaten run and lead the Heartland championship.
Injuries to key players have not helped the cause, losing Midfield back Bryce Cowley for the rest of the season and skipper Jonnie Te Ruki Chambers out of action with a foot injury. Coach Hayden Roe will be hoping that the rest of the squad stays intact for a tough few weeks on the road.
The Thames Valley record against Wanganui in the Heartland Competition does not read well. Thames Valley has never beaten Wanganui in any of the six Heartland games in which they have met. Last year Wanganui won 47-27 in Paeroa and in the previous encounter in Wanganui, the home side won 28-8. The closest the Valley team has come to victory was a 23-17 loss in 2010. Thames valley has beaten Wanganui in the past, including a famous win in 1988, when the Ross Cooper coached side upset the locals at Spriggens Park 31-12 on the way to their inaugural Third Division Championship Title in the old NPC.
This week’s game starts at 2.30pm and will be refereed by Nick Webster from North Otago.
An impressive display by the visiting South Canterbury team earned them a 62-16 win over Thames Valley at the Paeroa Domain last Saturday. The round five Mitre 10 Heartland championship game got off to a bruising start as South Canterbury came up against a vigorous defensive effort from the home team but it didn’t take long to find a way through and the green and blacks were on the board in less than five minutes.
To their credit, Thames Valley fought back and scored tries through Hayden Wisnewski and Ben Bonner, both of which were converted by Moss Doran and at the halftime break they only trailed by 28-16 and were unlucky not to be closer on the scoreboard.
The half time talk from the Green and Black’s coach, Barry Matthews, must have been a beauty as the visitors came out firing in the second half and removed any doubt as to the outcome of the game by piling on 34 unanswered points, totally dominating the second forty minutes in a commanding performance. Loan winger Kalavini Leatigaga had a great debut, scoring two tries while centre Cam Bailey also grabbed a double. Loose forwards Hamish Strachan and Matthew Etheredge also scored as did captain Kieran Coll.
The results leaves South Canterbury in second place just two points adrift of defending champions Wanganui, with Buller just one point behind in third. Thames Valley remains well ensconced in the bottom third of the table stuck on five points along with West Coast with only East Coast beneath them. Front runners Wanganui kept up their unbeaten run with a seven tries to four victory over Poverty Bay in Gisborne and face Thames Valley in Wanganui next weekend. Buller holds onto third place after beating East Coast 54-22 in Westport. Mid Canterbury had to overcome a half time deficit and rely on a last minute length of the field try to steal a win against a gutsy West Coast side in Ashburton. Wairarapa Bush jumped up to fourth place with a 38-22 win over North Otago that drops the Old Golds down to seventh. King Country kept their top four hopes alive with a 42-18 win over Horowhenua Kapiti in Levin.
Thames Valley is back in Paeroa this week for the Round Five match against South Canterbury in the Mitre 10 Heartland Championship. Coming off a loss against Wairarapa Bush last week and a draw with King Country the week before, Thames Valley is still chasing that elusive first win of the competition. Coach Hayden Roe will be aware that in order to make the semi final play offs his team has to win this week against a South Canterbury outfit that is enjoying a successful 2016 campaign.
The Southerners won their opening two games of the season before going down to Wanganui by two points at Cooks Gardens in round three. They recovered well a week later to beat Poverty Bay comfortably in Timaru. They sit in second place on the table while Thames Valley is languishing in tenth with only the two Coast teams worse off.
South Canterbury has an impressive away record against Thames Valley. In fact, since the inception of the Heartland Championship in 2006, Thames Valley has only beaten South Canterbury once in the Thames Valley. That win came in 2013, a 21-17 victory in Paeroa. They have played 11 times in the Heartland championship with South Canterbury winning 10 times, the longest winning streak consisting of eight wins between 2006 and 2012. In 2013 they met twice, with Thames Valley winning the round robin game in Paeroa and South Canterbury taking out a low scoring semi final in Timaru 14-8, later in the year. South Canterbury was the losing finalist in the Lochore Cup in 2007, 2011, 2012 before winning the trophy in 2013. They were also losing finalists in the Meads Cup last year, beaten 28-11 by Wanganui in Timaru.
This year the South Canterbury team is coached by Barry Matthews and his assistant is Grant McFarlane. Matthews comes well recommended in coaching circles and just last month he was appointed as the Head Coach of the New Zealand Heartland XV for the first time. Matthews has also coached North Otago in the Heartland Championship, guiding them to Meads Cup glory in 2010.
This week’s game will be refereed by Richard Gordon from Wellington. Kickoff is at 2.00pm.
In other grades the Under 18 team heads off to New Plymouth on Friday to take on the Taranaki Under 18's in the final round on the Northern Region Under 18 B competition. A win for Thames Valley would push them up to second place in the overall competition.
Meanwhile the Under 16 team plays Counties Manukau at Karaka Sports Park at 12.00pm on Saturday in their final round of competition.
Also travelling to New Plymouth is the Roller Mills team. They will be playing in the traditional week long tournament which comprises of two pools of five teams. After four round robin games the teams go into play off games for semi finals and finals. The tournament concludes next Saturday
Heartland Rugby Report 17-09-2016
Thames Valley will have to wait at least another week to celebrate its first win of the season after being beaten 28 -18 by Wairarapa Bush at Masterton on Saturday in the latest round of the Mitre 10 Heartland Championship. Playing on the artificial surface at Memorial Park for the first time, the visiting Thames Valley side found itself behind on the scoreboard after only three minutes following a strong run by Wairarapa Bush fullback Sam Monaghan which led to a try by prop Stan Wright. Jonnie Te Ruki Chambers got Thames Valley on the board with a penalty after ten minutes and second five Bryce Cowley ran strongly to score a converted try in the twentieth minute to give his side the lead. In spite of a period of dominance by Thames Valley, the home side was next to score through halfback John Ika who finished off a neat scrum move to score beside the posts.
There was a long stoppage in play just before half time following a head-knock to Thames Valley try scorer Bryce Cowley, who was stretchered from the field.
Tim Priest kicked a penalty for the hosts to increase their lead to eight points before Thames Valley was rewarded for another period of good play with a sharp try to nifty halfback Ben Bonnar. Moss Doran added the conversion and it was game on at eighteen all. Wairarapa Bush came back with a converted try of their own and regained the lead 26-18. They added a late penalty to put Thames Valley outside the bonus point range until the last play of the game when the visitors were awarded a penalty in kicking range. Doran took the kick but it missed, hit the post and bounced away into touch before the referee signalled full time.
Bush 28 (Stanley Wright, John Ika, Glen Walters tries; Tim
Priest 3 con, pen; Andy Humberston pen)
In other Heartland games, Wanganui continued its unbeaten run with a solid 22-10 win against King Country in Te Kuiti, to remain alone on top of the table. It was the first time this year that Wanganui failed to collect a four try bonus point. South Canterbury gave Poverty Bay a hot reception in Timaru, running up fifty points as they recorded a 52-28 win to consolidate second place. Buller thumped traditional neighbours and rivals West Coast with a comprehensive 48-0 victory at Westport. The Red and Blues now hold third spot on the ladder. North Otago travelled to Ruatoria and secured fourth place on the table with a 48-8 defeat of East Coast. Mid Canterbury put a couple of losses behind them to overcome Horowhenua Kapiti in Levin winning 42-26. The former Meads Cup Champions and perennial table toppers find themselves in mid table occupying sixth position for this week.
Representative Games this Weekend
Mitre 10 Heartland Championship
Thames Valley v South Canterbury
U18's v Taranaki New Plymouth - 1.00pm
U16's v Counties Manukau Karaka Sports Park, Karara - 12.00pm
Sunday 25th September
Roller Mills - New Plymouth
Roller Mills v Northland New Plymouth (NP) TBC
Mitre 10 Heartland Championship
Thames Valley v Wairarapa Bush
U18's v Northland Vikings Waitakaruru Domain - 11.30am
U16's v Waikato St. Pauls Collegiate, Hamilton - 12.00pm
Roller Mills v Waikato Leamington RFC, Cambridge - 12.00pm
Sunday 18th September
U45's Finals Day at Boyd Park - Te Aroha
U45's v Hamilton Gold 11am
U45's v Hamilton Black 1pm
Mitre 10 Heartland Championship
Thames Valley v King Country
Stan Meads Cup
Thames Valley Development XV v Central Bay of Plenty
Otorohonga Rugby Club, Otorohonga @ 1.00pm
U18's v King Country Boyd Park, Te Aroha - 12.30pm
U16's v King Country Boyd Park, Te Aroha - 12.30pm
U14's v King Country Boyd Park, Te Aroha - 11.30am
Roller Mills v King Country Boyd Park, Te Aroha - 11.00am
U45's v King Country Boyd Park, Te Aroha - 11.00am
Girls v Waikato Eastern Suburbs, Hamilton - 12.00pm
Mitre 10 Heartland Championship
Thames Valley v North Otago
Stan Meads Cup
Thames Valley Development XV v Bye
U16's v Bay of Plenty Rhodes Park, Thames - 11.45am
U14's v Eastern Bay of Plenty Rhodes Park, Thames - 12.00pm
Girls v Bay of Plenty Rhodes Park, Thames - 11.45am
Sunday September 4 2016
U45's v Te Awamutu Te Awamutu - 11.30am
Mitre 10 Heartland Championship Thames Valley v Horowhenua Kapiti
Stan Meads Cup
Thames Valley v Te Awamutu Ohaupo RFC - 2.30PM
U16's v Taranaki
Sunday 28th August
U14's v Auckland East Restricted
U18's v Wairarapa Bush
U18's & U16's Squads Named
After the TVSS Rugby Finals the 2016 Thames Valley U18's & U16's squads were named.
Click Here for the U18's
Click Here for the U16's
Thames Valley Secondary Schools Finals Results
Paeroa Domain - Saturday 13th August
10am - 4th Grade - Bob Passey Cup
Paeroa College 7 v Hauraki Plains College 8
11.30am - Development Grade - L Berry Cup
Thames High School 32 v Waihi College 26
11.30am - 1st XV 1B Championship - Allen Fisher Cup
Mercury Bay Area School 19 v Waihi College 17
1pm - 1st XV 1A Championship - Coulter Cup
Thames High School 43 v Hauraki Plains College 10
Junior Finals Day Programme
Saturday 6th August
Boyd Park - Te Aroha
Under 8’s TVYMB Trophy
10.15am on Field 4 (25 minutes each way)
Waihi Black v Te Aroha
WINNERS: WAIHI BLACK
Under 9’s Division 2 Barry Priest Cup
10.00am on Field 2 (25 minutes each way)
Hauraki Plains v Te Aroha Black
WINNERS: TE AROHA BLACK
Under 9’s Division 1 Bill Hayward Cup
11.15am on Field 2 (25 minutes each way)
Waihi Black v Paeroa
WINNERS: WAIHI BLACK
Under 11’s Division 2 Rex Holden Cup
10.00am on Field 3 (25 minutes each way)
Whangamata v Thames
Under 11’s Division 1 Roley Chaney Trophy
10.30am on Field 1 (25 minutes each way)
Waihi v Tairua
Under 13’s Division 2 Dennis Lees Trophy
11.15am on Field 3 (30 minutes each way)
Coromandel V Te Aroha
Under 13’s Division 1 Bernie Passau Cup
11.45am on Field 1 (30 minutes each way)
Paeroa v Te Aroha
WINNERS: TE AROHA
The 2016 Thames Valley Roller Mills Squad will be announced at the completion of the U13's Division 1 Final.
Congratulations to the following 24 players who will travel to New Plymouth first week of the September School Holidays to take part in one of the longest running tournaments in NZ rugby history.
Finals Day at Rhodes Park, Thames
30 July 2016
The Club Rugby Finals Day has finally arrived and for six teams it’s the biggest day of the year as they head to Rhodes Park, Thames to battle it out for the right to be crowned champions of their respective grades.
The day starts off with the Senior A Reserve Final at 12.15pm between old rivals Coromandel and Whangamata. Coromandel go into the final as top qualifier, having taken out the Leach Cup for the second round while Whangamata had to ensure they won their last game to head off Hauraki North B’s for the other place in the final. Coromandel last appeared in the Lawrence Cup final two years ago, losing to Paeroa West and haven’t won the Cup since a memorable victory in 2011 against Mercury Bay in Te Aroha. Whangamata won the trophy in 2010 and again in 2013.
The Senior B final sees back to back McDonald Cup winner Waihi Athletic seeking a hat trick of titles when they meet Ngatea at 12.30pm on Field 4. Ngatea last enjoyed Finals Day success in 2009 when they won the Lawrence Cup and have not been to the Finals too often since so they will need to be on their game to prevent Waihi from making it three in a row.
Regardless of the outcome, Waihi Athletic will make history
on Saturday as they make their first ever Grand Final appearance this year.
Waihi has had a great year to date finishing runner up in both the first and
second rounds of the Senior A competition and playing attractive running rugby
to record some high scoring victories during the year. Their opponents, Waihou,
have also had a top year, winning both the Silcock Shield and the Tom Jordan
Cup on the way to the final. This will be their third final appearance in a row
and their eighth final in the last twelve years. They will be playing for the
McClinchy Cup, which is currently held by Waihou and Mercury Bay who drew last
year’s final 22 all in Te Aroha. The final starts at 2.00pm
Thames Valley Senior Club Rugby Finals 2016
30 July 2016 at Rhodes Park, Thames
SENIOR A McClinchy Cup Final
Waihou v Waihi Athletic @ Field 1, 2.00pm
SENIOR A RESERVE Lawrence Memorial Cup
Coromandel v Whangamata @ Field 1, 12.15pm
SENIOR B McDonald Cup
Waihi Athletic v Ngatea @ Field 2, 12.30pm
It's the second week of semi finals for the Senior Club Rugby teams. In the Senior A grade, Waihou earned a place in next week's final by beating Waihi Athletic in Te Aroha last week. Waihi has a second chance to make the final when it meets Mercury Bay at Waihi tomorrow in the second Major semi final. Mercury Bay stayed in the play offs at the expense of Hauraki North, who they defeated 23-18 at Whitianga.
There are no semi finals in the Senior A Reserve, with the top two finishers going directly to the final in Thames next week. At this stage, Coromandel have qualified for the final but any one of three clubs can still win the Leach Cup for the second round of competition.
The Senior B semi finals take place tomorrow. Morrissey Cup winner, Thames meets fourth placed Ngatea at Rhodes Park at 2.00pm. Runner up, Waihi Athletic plays Waihou in the curtain raiser at Waihi at the earlier start time of 12.00pm
2016 Senior A Semi Finals
The Senior A Club competition has reached the semi final stage this week, with the top four teams, going on to play for the McClinchy Cup.
The format sees the first and second placed teams meeting in the first semi final and the third and fourth placed teams in the second semi final. The higher ranked teams host each game. The winner of the first semi final goes straight through to the Grand Final.
The loser plays the winner of the second semi final between the third and fourth placed teams the following week. The winner of that game also progresses to the Grand Final.
Top qualifiers, Waihou, took out the 2016 Tom Jordan Cup for the Second Round of competition, with a week to spare and they are at home at Boyd Park, Te Aroha to play runners up, Waihi Athletic.
Third placed Mercury Bay host Hauraki North at Lyon Park, Whitianga.
John Dustow will be the man in the middle at Boyd Park and Stephen Whyte will officiate at Whitianga
Thames Valley Under 16’s Wider Training Squad
The Thames Valley U16’s Coaching staff have named their wider training squad in preparation for the upcoming Northern Regions Competition.
Congratulations to the Following players
THAMES HIGH SCHOOL:
LAITH HAMMOND, TALEB KNIGHT, LEVI PLIER, BAYLEE EDWARDS
MANAWA HILL, STRIPLING KOOPU, PAEA TOKI, SAMUEL TUPOU, KALITI MATANGI
TE AROHA COLLEGE:
KYLE NICKEL, JOSH ROWE, JORDAN DOWNS, SERGIO SCHULLER, LUKE THOMPSON, KEANO PERCHARD
RILEY CHRISTENSEN, DYLAN HOWELL-ANSTY, CODY CHARLTON, ZINZAN FENTON, ETHYN LOWRIE, RICKY TRELEAVEN, KEANU MAY-MATEFAO, WICKLIFFE HINE, FINN ADAMS
MERCURY BAY AREA SCHOOL:
JAMES ARTHUR, CALLUM WALKER, JACK STEVENSON, JOE REYNOLDS
WHANGAMATA AREA SCHOOL:
LUKE ANDERTON, JEREMY BLAKE, KAEL CORNWALL, JAMIE TOHAIA
HAURAKI PLAINS COLLEGE:
The next 2 trainings are on Wednesday 13th and Wednesday 20th July at the Paeroa Domain starting at 6.30pm.
In the meantime if anyone has any questions then please contact Coach Mark Peterson on 021 971964.
Club Rugby Preview 9 July 2016
This week is the final round of the Senior A competition. With Waihou having already claimed the Tom Jordan Cup for the Second round, Waihi Athletic confirmed as runner up and Hauraki North guaranteed a top four place, all attention swings to the remaining teams still in contention for a top four berth.
Waihou travels to Tairua where the home team needs a win ( a four try bonus would also help) and then has to rely on Mercury Bay losing and preferably not getting a bonus point, in order for Tairua to make the top four. If Waihou wins, Tairua misses out on the top four.
Hauraki North is one point ahead of Mercury Bay on the table but the trip to Whitianga is a great leveller and Mercury Bay will be aware that a win would not only secure a semi final place but it would also mean home ground advantage against the same opposition the following week.
Cobras will have to bounce back from last week’s loss quickly when they host Waihi Athletic at Boyd Park, Te Aroha. The visitors have a good record away from home this year and will want to go into the play offs with some good form from this outing.
Thames and Paeroa West meet at Rhodes Park in a game which starts at 2.00pm.
Coromandel and Whangamata go head to head in Coromandel while in the other Senior A Reserve game, Paeroa Old Boys plays Hauraki North at Waitakaruru.
In the Senior B grade, Mercury Bay versus Waihou is the curtain raiser at Whitianga at 12.30pm. Thames host Cobras and Waihi Athletic is at home against Ngatea. Both games start at 2.00pm
Thames Valley U14 Squad Development Camp 2016:
Congratulations to the following players who have been selected to attend the 2016 U14’s development camp in Taupo 18th – 20th July 2016.
ALL of the above players are required to attend an information evening regarding the camp on Wednesday 6th July at 7pm at the Paeroa Domain.
In addition the following 2 players are selected for the 2016 Squad but will not be attending the Development Camp due to injury.
Non Travelling reserves:
Forwards: Sheldon Smith, Tristan Tahitahi, Liam Tully, Sia Taulanga
Backs: Damien Watene, Jack Newbold, Logan Wilson.
Thank you to all who attended the skills session and the trial.
If you have anything you wish to discuss then please call coach Don Edgecombe
021 191 2453
Quest for Age Grade Representative Teams Begin
The quest to find the next crop of representative players has begun in earnest with some teams already having skills sessions whilst other teams are starting in the next couple of weeks.
All of the relevant information has been passed onto team coaches but just in case anyone has not yet received this information - below is a summary of when the next musters are:
Under 14's Sunday 26th June - Paeroa Domain - 10am start
Under 18's Monday 27th June -Paeroa Domain - 7pm start
Under 16's Sunday 3rd July - Paeroa Domain - 10am Start
Under 14's Sunday 3rd July - Paeroa Domain - 12.30pm Start (Trial)
Roller Mills Sunday 10th July Paeroa Domain - 10am Start
All players wishing to make themselves available can just turn up on the day and make themselves know to the rep team coaches.
Honours Shared in Secondary Schools First Rounds
The honours have been shared amongst the schools after the completion of the first rounds of the 2016 Thames Valley Secondary Schools competition.
The Te Aroha College 1st XV - after battling with player numbers in 2015 have regained their confidence to claim the Graham Watton Trophy.
hames High School Development have swept all before them so far to claim the Laurie Burns Trophy.
In the 4th grade it came down to the last games of the round with Hauraki Plains College managing to salvage a bonus point in their loss to Mercury Bay in Ngatea to take home the Frank Treanor trophy.
All teams are now well into their preparations for the championship round as they eye a spot in the semi-finals that will take place on the 6th August.
SHAW CUP & FLEMING SHIELD PRIMARY SCHOOLS RUGBY TOURNAMENT 2016.
The Thames Valley Primary Schools Rugby Union was formed in 1926 one year after the Northern Roller Milling Co. presented the Champion Roller Mills Shield for competition among some 1200 primary schools in the greater Auckland provincial district. In presenting the trophy, the donors had a two-fold purpose: firstly encouragement of the active employment of a truly great sport; secondly the building of character in the young people of New Zealand
In the first year of competition for the shield, 1925, the primary schools of Paeroa and Waihi Sub Unions formed a ‘Goldfields’ team and took part. They lost by one point in each game against hosts Auckland and North Auckland.
The next year Piako primary schools joined Paeroa and Waihi and thus formed the Thames Valley side which was successful in winning the shield in their first attempt.
The Hauraki Plains Primary Schools joined the Thames Valley schools in 1929 to give the Roller Mills side a true Thames Valley representative side.
Within Thames Valley there are 2 competitions which provide keen regionally based competition among the primary schools rugby players. In 1927 the Paeroa hardware firm of Wm Fleming & Sons Ltd presented the Fleming Shield for competition among those players who are eligible for the Thames Valley Roller Mills team.
In the late 1940’s – the primary schools union introduced a junior grade for boys under 7st (45kgs) and Mr HM Shaw donated the Shaw Cup in 1950. These 2 trophies have been competed every year and the tournaments provide a viewing platform for the Thames Valley Roller Mills and U45kg’s teams to be selected.
In 1970 the Goldfields RFC provided a competition for the players 45kg’s and under – known as the Goldfields Button for competition between Counties-Manukau, Waikato, King Country, BOP and Thames Valley.
These 2 representative tournaments still exist today with the Northern Regions Roller Mills tournament, in which Thames Valley are a part of, taking place in the first week of the September school holidays and the U45kg Invitational tournament taking place over 3 consecutive weekends in September.
Some notable players who have come through the ranks of the Thames Valley U45kg’s and Roller Mills teams are former All Black Keith Robinson and former Wallabies Hooker Jeremy Paul. Both were in the last Thames Valley team to win the Roller Mils shield in 1989.
More recently – current Counties Manukau ITM Cup player Richard Judd represented Thames Valley at U45’s, U14’s U16’s & U18’s age grades as well as going on to represent Thames Valley in the Heartland Championship. Last years Thames Valley’s Rookie of the Year Tyrone Keith from Paeroa played in the Fleming Shield tournament and was selected for the NZ Heartland XV meaning he got to wear the silver fern on his chest.
How do you get involved?
The Shaw Cup / Fleming Shield teams are not made up entirely of rugby players. Whilst it helps to have been part of a local youth rugby team, it is definitely not a requirement and there is ample provision for players that come from other sports to participate. All you need to do is let your local club contact know.
There is however some criteria that you need to fulfil.
Dates of the Tournament for 2016:
Sunday 17th July 2016 Ngatea
Wednesday 20th July 2016 Thames
Sunday 24th July 2016 Te Aroha
This is during the last week of the July school holidays.
Contact your local junior rugby club to find out more about how you can get involved in these tournaments that hold a lot of history and prestige.
Thames Valley Junior Rugby Grades Changed for 2016.
Thames Valley Junior rugby has undertaken a significant change to its’ grading structure for the 2016 season by removing a lot of the weight restrictions and now classifying players based purely on age.
“At the end of 2015 there was a get together of key personnel from within the union to discuss where the Unions was at, where did we want to head to and how do we get there. One of the recommendations from these discussions were to go to a straight age grade classification for primary school children and these changes are a result of this recommendation” says Thames Valley Youth Management Board President Mark Peterson
He went on to say “All of the Junior Rugby Clubs within the union were given the opportunity to discuss these changes with their respective communities and as a result – at a Special meeting of the Thames Valley Youth Management Board held at the beginning of March it was voted unanimously to change”.
Rugby Development Officer Bill Cooksley stated “Some players and parents may be put off the idea of smaller sized children playing against bigger kids but from a rugby development perspective players will need to know – and be coached correctly – on how to tackle bigger players safely and effectively as well as skills such as catch / pass, evasion and decision making to avoid a lot of the contact. Rugby Union prides itself on being a game for all shapes and sizes and this change reflects this philosophy. Players want to play with their mates in their own age group which is something that in the past may not have been able to happen due to the difference in weights however now this is possible. This grading system also more closely aligns with NZ Rugby’s Small Blacks Development Model that is prevalent throughout the country”.
Gavin Flint from Hauraki Plains Junior rugby has already witnessed first hand the positive side of this change. “We’ve had 5 or 6 players come back to the game to play with their mates as a result of this shift in thinking. That can only be good for TV as a whole”
Backed by the Thames Valley RFU Board of Management – the new system will undergo a thorough review at the end of 2016 to ensure that there was a positive impact on participation numbers.
Cooksley went on to add “The last thing that we want – as a union – is to see a significant drop in playing numbers at junior level as a result of this change. It’s really up to the rugby community to embrace the change in a positive way and ensure that we at least maintain our current playing numbers in this group”.
One restriction placed on the grading was that any players aged 12 as of 1st January and weighing in at 57.0kg or less – and currently a year 9 student - may apply for a regrade to return to play Thames Valley Junior Rugby and must obtain permission from their respective high school or college Principal to play in 5th Grade.
The New Grades for 2016 are:
TABULATION OF WEIGHTS AND AGES
All correct ages, birth dates and weights must be entered on the registration form as provided by the TVYMB.
ALL AGES ARE AS OF 1st JANUARY.
The grading list shall be as set out below by the TVYMB:
Under 13’s - Born in 2003 or 2004
12 Years and Under – Year 8 student or below Open Weight
12 Years and Under – Year 9 student 57.0kg or less
Under 11’s - Born in 2005 or 2006
10 years and Under Open Weight
Under 9’s - Born in 2007
8 Years and Under Open Weight
Under 8’s - Born in 2008 or 2009
7 years and Under Open Weight
This is the first year of tackle rugby
Rippa Rugby Born in 2009 or after.
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