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
1978: MSP crush an understrength Petone 38-9 to effectively end Petone’s 1978 Jubilee Cup challenge, while the Wellington Axemen overrun University 29-0 in these two third round Jubilee Cup clashes. MSP and Wellington go on to share the title.
1995: A try in the last second to halfback Derek Stone by MSP to give them a 28-28 draw with Harlequins has seemingly shift Harlequins out of the playoffs. But elsewhere Johnsonville captain Kerry Whale scores a hat-trick for his side to beat Wellington 29-12, Harlequins seal fourth place ahead of the Axemen.
.2006: It’s a day for the traditional big guns in the Jubilee Cup, with MSP, Poneke and Petone all coming to the fore with significant wins in fourth round action to set up a real dogfight over the remaining three rounds in the race to the playoffs. Most momentous is MSP’s hugely needed 17-10 upset victory over previously unbeaten Northern United, while Poneke outlast Old Boys-University 16-7 at home in another key result.
1938: Form is turned on its head when previous leaders Poneke are upset by the previous winless Johnsonville 9-6. The loss spells the end of Poneke’s 1938 Jubilee Cup challenge, Petone winning the title.
1977: Athletic celebrate an upset 15-14 win over Petone, after fullback Brian Cederwall kicks the winning goal with 10 minutes left. Also on this day, minnows Onslow stun MSP 7-3. Athletic go on to win their last ever Jubilee Cup, before amalgamating with Onslow in 1982 to form Wests.
1988: MSP win away at Petone for the first time in 17 years. Peter O’Shaughnessy kicking 19 points and wing Damien O’Brien scoring two tries in the 31-18 victory. Elsewhere, University first five-eighth Mike Heron scores all the points in the students’ 17-12 win over Poneke.
1994: Brothers Mike and Tana Umaga score five tries between them in Petone’s 81-18 win over Western Suburbs. MSP are equally impressive in beating Upper Hutt 62-10.
2005: Swindale Shield winners Upper Hutt take on defending champions Norths. In a brutal encounter, Norths win 10-8 and book a home semi-final with three weeks to spare.
2011:A ferocious storm accompanied by thunder and lightning, heavy rain and high winds from the north arrives around mid-afternoon Undeterred, home team Oriental-Rongotai holds out eastern suburbs rivals Poneke 23-19 at the Polo Ground, to remain unbeaten after five rounds and become the first team to officially qualify for the semi-finals. At William Jones Park, Wainuiomata, with the help of super-sub Piri Weepu in the second half, come back to score a late converted try to draw their match 7-7 with Northern United.
1971: Petone win the Swindale Shield for the third straight year, beating MSP 13-6, while Graham Wallis (University) and Doug Frogatt (Wellington) star in wins over Eastbourne and Poneke respectively. Petone, University and Wellington are the leading three teams at the end of the first round.
1982: Two sides, Wellington and MSP, are unbeaten through three Jubilee Cup rounds. The accurate kicking of Murray Tocker and a try by Paul Quinn see MSP beat Upper Hutt 21-16, and tries to No. 8 Nigel Hughes and wing Peter Rackley give Wellington a 14-6 win over Avalon. Wellington will go on to share this year’s Jubilee Cup with Petone.
1993: The talk of the Jubilee Cup going into this round is that the Jubilee Cup is to be no longer; the sponsors have presented the new Lion Brown Trophy as a replacement during the week. On the field, MSP topple previous leaders and unbeaten for the past eight weeks Avalon 29-19 at Fraser Park. Halfback Elton Moncrieff stars for the visitors. It’s a significant win, MSP kicks on to win the new trophy.
1999: Western Suburbs beat MSP 19-14 in a top-of-the-table clash at Rugby League Park – winning courtesy of a penalty that referee Lyndon Bray awards them midway through the second half. MSP wing Lome Fa’atau scores the only try of the game. These two teams go on to contest the final three weeks from now.
2010: A dramatic 23-23 draw between Northern United and Hutt Old Boys Marist has created a logjam at the top of the points table after a month of round-robin rugby, with Norths HOBM, MSP and Poneke all bunched together. Norths fly to a 10-0 lead, HOBM comes back to lead 12-10, Sinoti Sinoti scores his second try to give Norths a 20-12 lead, which becomes 23-20, and then HOBM first five-eighth Dan Snee kicks a death-knock equaliser to end a dizzy match.
1964: Marist hang on by the barest of threads to beat Wellington 9-8 in the main game at Athletic Park and retain its joint championship lead with University. In a desperate finish, Wellington bombards Marist’s line, but the latter holds on to win a compelling match.
1970: A week after missing out to first round winners Petone in the Swindale Shield in the club’s centenary year, the Graham Williams-captained Wellington Axemen open their Jubilee Cup campaign with a 14-6 win over Naenae. However, Petone, with a Man of the Match performance from prop Gareth Head and a top game further out by second five-eighth Richard Cleland, also win their opener. The Villagers beat Athletic 25-0. Petone goes on to win the Jubilee Cup.
1987: Wellington representative prop Kevin Borovich is a cornerstone in Upper Hutt’s 15-12 Jubilee Cup win over Petone. Upper Hutt’s win is their sixth in the previous seven matches and they are on fire. Scoring-wise, it’s a penalty shootout between Upper Hutt’s Sam McLean (fice penalties) and Petone’s Allan Hewson (two) before Petone score a consolation try at the end to Naera Parata, after a dart by centre Mike Umaga.
1998: Tawa, who have finished no higher than sixth previously, beat Upper Hutt 25-6 at Maidstone Park to qualify third for next week’s semi-finals. Tawa will meet MSP who blank Johnsonville 16-0, while Wests dispatch Norths 25-10 to qualify top.
2009: Marist St. Pat’s have shot into Jubilee Cup contention with a fighting 19-12 win today over a star-studded Northern United at Evans Bay Park in round five. In the definitive clash of the year for them, MSP shoot to a 19-0 lead and then tackle themselves to a standstill. Centre Chris Slade, who scores a key try, will soon be MSP’s hero in the Jubilee Cup final re-match at Westpac Stadium.
1930: “Rugby Surprise: Hutt soundly trounces Petone…the 5,000 spectators who attended Athletic Park were treated to exhilarating display by the Hutt fifteen.” [The Dominion]. Hutt win this encounter 22-8, a match between big guns Petone, led by All Blacks five-eighth Mark Nicholls, and the newly promoted Hutt side, featuring the All Blacks’ greatest ever second five-eighth, Bert Cooke who has come to play in Wellington at the start of this season. Hutt finish third in 1930, while Petone win their first Jubilee Cup.
1980: Petone and Poneke draw 18-18 in this round three clash, while MSP over runs Wellington 30-0 at Athletic Park, scoring seven tries but converting just one. These two results put MSP on the top of the table ahead of a showdown with Petone for the title in a month’s time.
1997: Pace-setters Western Suburbs suffer a shock 0-9 defeat to Avalon today, to significantly close up the race for the semi-finals places that are still up for grabs. Heading into next week’s final round, four teams are now left chasing two spots. Despite the defeat, Wests are safe, as are Petone who beat Johnsonville 26-12.
2008: A late converted try to openside flanker Pau Halafihi carries Oriental-Rongtotai to a sensational 20-16 win over Poneke to keep their Jubilee Cup semi-final chances alive with two rounds to play. Ories had led 13-0 at halftime but Poneke came back to seemingly nab victory. In the round’s other results, Petone defeat HOBM 25-0, Norths beat Old Boys-University 45-0 at Porirua Park and MSP beat Upper Hutt 34-0 to become the first team to qualify for the top four, with two rounds to play. MSP and Norths will later meet in the final.
1929: The inaugural winter of Jubilee Cup rugby is a wet one and ground conditions are terrible most weeks. The Dominion reported of this day’s play that “heavy rain rendered the grounds so unfit that it was almost impossible to stand up in them. Nevertheless, players and officials accepted their lot with great fortitude.” In leveling conditions there are several upsets in this round, headlined by Berhampore’s 6-0 defeat of Old Boys and Eastbourne’s 6-0 victory over Poneke in “a stirring forwards struggle”.
1968: Petone retain the lead with a 51-5 win over Naenae Old Boys. No. 8 Andy Leslie scores four tries and he and halfback Ian Stevens are neck-and-neck at the top of the Billy Wallace Best and Fairest standings.
1985: A fifth minute try to wing Allan Pollock, running on to a chip kick by Allan Hewson, and a three second half penalties gives Petone a 13-3 win over Ories today. Hewson puts his feed up tonight as tomorrow he’ll be playing his 100th first-class match against Horowhenua-Kapiti for Wellington.
2013: A day of drama today in sixth round matches. Leaders Hutt Old Boys Marist have their wings clipped by Poneke, who roar back after halftime to score 24 unanswered points and win 32-16. Swindale Shield champions Tawa beat MSP 20-10 away at Evans Bay Park and they are on track for a tilt at the Swindale-Jubilee double, while OBU qualify for the semi-finals and at the same time knock Petone out of the running with their 20-0 win in Petone lock Chris Molenaar’s 200th Premier match.
1984: Wellington rebounds from a 0-21 loss last week to beat Upper Hutt 24-0 today. Wellington scores six tries, all by the backs, to take their tally this year to 59 tries in 16 games. Elsewhere, Marty Clamp, younger brother of All Black Mike Clamp, scores at the death in Petone’s 19-12 win over Ories.
1990: Recently crowned Swindale Shield champions Upper Hut beat a Hika Reid-inspired Northern United 28-26 in this third round Jubilee Cup clash. Former All Blacks hooker Reid is the Man of the Match in a losing cause. Upper Hutt take the win courtesy of two tries to wing Mike Seymour and the reliable boot of first five-eighth Alan Henderson that yields 16 points. Elsewhere, soon-to-be Cup champions Petone beat Poneke 26-12.
2001: Poneke stand alone at the top of the Jubilee Cup standings, after beating MSP 24-8 today in the penultimate round. These two teams are destined to meet again under lights at Westpac Stadium in a fortnight, and MSP will reverse the outcome. Elsewhere, Avalon’s Mano Flutey kicks the winning penalty in a 32-29 win over Ories. Avalon will also make the semi-finals and they too will lose, to Petone.
2007: Marist St. Pat’s edge out Hutt Old Boys Marist 17-16 to maintain their lead in the Jubilee Cup while Poneke bow out of playoff reckoning in losing to Petone 12-10 in the fifth round set of matches today. MSP won the battle of the Marist clubs and confirm their place in the semi-finals courtesy of a hat-trick to fast finishing left wing Jope Naubo. Across the road at Kilbirnie Park, Poneke are served their last rites by Petone first five-eighth Sam Rasch, whose four penalties win the game. MSP and HOBM will meet again in the Jubilee Cup final next month.
2018: A dramatic last-play win today for Oriental-Rongotai over Northern United, a win for Marist St Pat’s over Poneke that denied them a bonus point and an OBU shutout of Tawa means the four Jubilee Cup semi-finalists have been found with a week to spare in Wellington Premier club rugby. Oriental-Rongotai score a try with the final play of the game to beat Norths 37-33. Down 33-30, and deep into referees time, second five-eighth Alex Ropeti scores the winner for the Magpies. MSP score two late tries to beat Poneke 43-25, the latter only scoring three tries, and OBU secure a bonus point 31-12 win over Tawa.