This coming Saturday, Hutt Old Boys Marist hosts Petone for the famous McBain Shield.
The McBain Shield has been contested every year since 1934, and commemorates Alexander McBain who was the first headmaster of Eastern Hutt School when it opened in 1915. He was a Life Member of the Hutt Club and he served as vice-president of the WRFU.
Heading into Saturday’s encounter, the the McBain Shield head-to-head is Petone 60 wins, Hutt: 20 wins, with five draws. The last draw was 18-18 in 1987. In 1974 it was 0-0.
See below for five thrilling McBain Shield matches of recent years:
2018: Hutt Old Boys Marist wins 30-27
Down 23-27, HOBM fullback Anthony Utanga outflanked the Petone defence with the last play of the game.HOBM appeared to be in control when leading 20-10 early in the second-half. However the Eagles forwards noticeably fatigued and Petone piled on 17 unanswered points to surge ahead 27-20.There were two key moments which changed the momentum again. Petone was reduced to 14 players for the second time when lock Glen Angus was yellow carded following an all-in melee. Earlier HOBM flanker Jordan Gillies stopped a certain try when he toppled Losi Filipo around the ankles when the Petone second-five was in the clear and headed for the try line. Filipo played a hand in three of the four tries scored by the hosts.
2016: Petone wins 27-23
Petone scored 27 points in the second half to come from behind and win 27-23. In the dying moments, Petone turned down a shot at goal to tie the game at 23-23 after reserve HOBM prop Brett Manaia was sin-binned for not rolling away at the ruck. That decision paid off for Petone as the Villagers stole the game on the hooter, scoring on the left wing through Willie Fine for his hat-trick and the win as the home fans went into raptures. After the first 40 minutes, a Petone win didn’t look at all likely as they were held scoreless by the Eagles but a yellow card early in the second half to Alexis Time, who was celebrating his 150th appearance in the green, white and red, resulted in two Petone tries to bring the hosts within one point of Hutt and spark life into Petone.
2014: Petone wins 20-19
An inspired Petone defied pre-match predictions to re-claim the McBain Shield at home. With the confidence of an outstanding first half defensive effort, the Mateaki Kafatolu-led Petone side turned around a 3-14 deficit. In a tight finish, HOBM first five-eighth/fullback Glen Walters had the chance to re-take the lead but pulled his penalty attempt wide. Petone pivot Tamati Samuels, then had his 22-dropout charged down, but he regained the ball and hoofed it down deep into HOBM’s corner and the home side held on to the final whistle to win this match for the first time since 2010. After an intense forwards dominated battle throughout most of the first half, the Eagles had led 9-3 on penalties when their talisman prop Simon Malaeulu scored to extend the margin. Petone came hit back and right wing Aleks Noble-Campbell scored in the corner and Green converted to put Petone ahead 20-14. HOBM scored another try and it was back to a one-point game and a tense finish.
2013: Hutt Old Boys Marist wins 50-22
HOBM won the McBain Shield for the fourth consecutive year with a record win at home at the Hutt Rec, wing James Kusel scoring four tries and Brandyn Laursen scoring 20 points. Commentator Adam Julian recalls the match: “I commentated the 2013 McBain Shield with Petone stalwart Murray Blandford. Hutt incredibly led 36-3 after 20 minutes. The previous week Hutt had beaten Rimutaka 127-0 and the new electronic scoreboard at the Hutt Rec had malfunctioned when Hutt passed hundred points. I turned to Murray and told him this could happen again and then quipped, ‘the scoreboard might explode today. Murray dropped his hands into his head and his Hutt mates, visible through the commentary box window, were waving white handkerchiefs and heckling in his direction. It was funny at the time, but not to Murray, I haven’t worked with him since.”
2012: Hutt Old Boys Marist wins 43-21
Playing to a big Petone Rec crowd, HOBM soared to the outright lead in the Swindale Shield standings with this ANZAC Day win. A super-slick HOBM had too much pace for the Villagers, running in six tries to two. All six were scored by numbers 11,14 and 15. Left wing and former New Zealand Sevens player Leka Tupuola scored a second half hat trick, right wing Tupeni Kamakorewa crossed for a brace and fullback Glen Walters scored the other. HOBM went on to win the first round Swindale Shield title, Kamokerewa and Tuaploa scoring 19 tries between them in 11 games and Walters topping the points scoring charts with 117.