Short Passes 15 July (bumper edition)

15/07/2019

Monday evening edition. 

The championship end of the season is upon us. As of Monday morning there are Jubilee and Hardham Cup semi-finals at the Polo Ground, Lyndhurst Park, Evans Bay Park and the Hutt Rec ( OBU are moving their operation to firmer pastures). View the semi-finals HERE 

Long term weather forecast for Saturday 20 July.

With school holidays, another quiet week for midweek rugby fans. There is rugby on Friday though, with the St Pat’s Town First XV playing Manukura in their annual traditional at Evans Bay Park at 1.30pm and then a match at Porirua Park at 6.30pm between Combined Hutt and Porirua Colleges selections.

There is one First XV match on Saturday, with Wellington College heading over the hill to play Wairarapa College. This is the concluding match of the seventh round that was played before the holidays. When the Premiership competition resumes in full, there are two more rounds to play before the semi-finals in the first weekend of August. View the First XV Draws & Results on College Rugby HERE

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How far back into the history books do we have to go to find the last time that neither the defending Jubilee Cup holders [Old Boys University] nor that season’s Swindale Shield winners [Hutt Old Boys Marist] were part of the major championship playoffs?

Similarly, when was the last time the Oriental-Rongotai Women’s side lost back-to-back matches?

Has there been a team that has gone from last place after three rounds to winning the Andy Leslie Trophy four weeks later [Oriental-Rongotai]?

The top qualifier has gone on to win the Jubilee Cup on just five of 14 occasions since 2005.

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Another weekend of player milestones, with the headliner being Oriental-Rongotai’s Whetu Henry’s double-century. HOBM’s Francis Tanuvasa and Norths womens’ Nina Foease each played their 100th matches for their respective sides, with Ories’ Declan Hay and Norths’ Josh Hunt registering their 50th outings.

Look out for a story this week on WRFU channels with Ories pair Paulo Aukuso and Whetu Henry, who have become the club’s first double centurions a week apart.

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Francis Tanuvasa reaches a milestone few Eagles reach. Francis will play his 100th Premier game today, to do this at such a young age is a feat in itself. A man of few words, Francis has always been a player to lead with his actions. Making his Premier debut in 2014, Francis battled his way amongst talented past Eagles to solidify his position in our backline. The second of four Tanuvasa brothers- Hemi, Junior and Nathan – currently playing at the Nest, family and love are what he lives for. This is evident in the support his family and beautiful partner bring to his life of playing footy. Rain or shine you will find the Tanuvasa family in the stands or on the sideline. Your Eagle family are proud of your massive achievement and grateful for your services to the club Francis. Good skills today 🇮🇹🦅

A post shared by Hutt Old Boys Marist RFC (@huttoldboysmarist) on

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Some minor confusion during the week for the Premier Reserve HD Morgan teams. Paremata-Plimmerton were deducted the points from their win over Wellington last week for “repeated failures to supply a teamsheet and score information”, but still had a chance of making the semi-finals. That was extinguished on Friday however when the WRFU appeared to realise that they had overlooked the second part of the relevant bylaw, and not applied the five points to the Axemen. With Pare-Plim then denying Johnsonville any competition points on Saturday, it means the Axemen Reserves season isn’t yet over.

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🔴⚫️ RICHARD WATT – ASSISTANT COACH FOR THE KINGDOM OF TONGA #RWC2019 SQUAD🇹🇴 🔴⚫️ – Our beloved Pōneke coach and rugby mentor to many – @watty_44 – has finished his 9-year long tenure with the Hurricanes and will head to Tonga to support their campaign for #RWC2019 success. – We are thrilled to see Watty thrive in his coaching vocation and know he’ll be strongly missed here in Wellington and highly welcomed with open arms on the Islands. – Congratulations on your achievement with the @hurricanesrugby Watty – you can trust that this rugby club will always support you, Megan and your girls as you take the next step with Tonga Rugby Union. – 📸credit: David Hamilton Photography 📸credit: Robin Dodd – #youbelong #bandtogether #clubrugby #redblack #ponekefc #poneke #pfc #pfcfamilylegacy #ponekeheroes #ponekestories #pfcheroes #pfcstories #nzrugby #rwc2019 #tonga #tongarugby

A post shared by Pōneke Football Club (@ponekefc) on

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Both Taranaki and Manawatu finished up their Premier club seasons on Saturday. In New Plymouth Spotswood United claimed their first title since their creation in the 1990 merger of Spotswood College Old Boys and Star by beating top qualifiers Coastal 18-13 on Yarrows Stadium.

In Palmerston North Feilding Yellows atoned for last year’s near-miss by coming out on top over Massey University 16-14.

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It is finals week in two more provinces. In Hawke’s Bay Napier Old Boys Marist will face Hastings in the Maddison Trophy decider, while in Horowhenua-Kapiti the Ramsbottom Cup final will be played out between Foxton and Waikanae at the Levin Domain.

Wairarapa-Bush and Wanganui are, like Wellington, at the semi-finals stage. Over the Remutaka’s top qualifiers Gladstone will take on Eketahuna while neighbours Martinborough and Greytown clash in the other. In Wanganui Ruapehu will host their neighbours Taihape, with Border facing Kaierau in the other match.

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This month’s Rugby News Magazine features 12 pages of local rugby content. Check out page 81 when you make your purchase.

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The Svenson brothers – Scott, Josh and Todd – all played together for the Upper Hutt Rams Premiers against OBU on Saturday. PHOTO: Peter McDonald.

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A defeat in Taupo on Sunday for the Hurricanes U18s side against the Blues U18s. In difficult conditions, the Blues won 20-10. Read more HERE 

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Congratulations to Wellington players Ayesha Leti L’iga, Jonah Ngan-Woo and Marcelle Parkes for being part of the Black Ferns side that bounced back from their loss to France to beat England 28-13 and win the Super Series tournament this weekend.

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Beauden Barrett to the Blues. Three different media releases below in three minutes on Friday morning hit Short Pass’s email box. The first by NZRU announcing the move and that they have retained him nationally for the next four years, the second by the Blues announcing his arrival to Auckland and the third by the Hurricanes lamenting his departure. Maybe they should coordinate to promote local local rugby on Friday mornings too?

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Otago put the Ranfurly Shield on the line on Saturday and were pushed hard by Thames Valley. Otago won 41-21 but were trailing 7-13 at halftime and didn’t hit the lead until 1o minutes into the second spell. How good would it have been if it had changed hands to a Heartland side!

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Video below is HOBM right wing Nash Fiso going close to scoring a try in the corner late in the Eagles’ match on Saturday against his former team Wainuiomata. Short Passes wasn’t at this game, but understands that if the try was awarded then HOBM would have got an extra bonus point and thus qualified for the semi-finals ahead of Wainuiomata. White line fever strikes HOBM twice in several weeks, for different reasons.

 

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A season of defeats – Johnsonville went close to winning their first game of the year but fell short 20-22 to Paremata-Plimmerton.

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