Four Wanganui teenagers loved the chance to show their natural ability in Maori rugby as they experienced success with the Central Maori Under 18 team at the weekend.
Connor Hill (Kaierau Premiers), Bobby Lambert (City College), Blade Jones (Collegiate) and Sheldon Pakinga (Wanganui High School 1st XV) were selected for the Te Tini A Maui team to play their Northern counterparts – Te Hiku O Te Ika – at Kings College. Pakinga slotted into the backline while Hill (flanker), Lambert (lock) and Jones (prop) were in the pack.
Central won a very physical clash 17-10.
Yesterday, the trio said they had really enjoyed the “different” feel of Maori rugby, a fun style of play that encourages natural ability and expression.
The teams created their own hakas for the pre-match challenge. Central was selected after the “E Tu Rangatahi” development programme was run over June in Wanganui, Hawkes Bay, Poverty Bay and Manawatu.
By Jared Smith – Wanganui Chronicle