11 March 2021

The New Zealand Rugby League (NZRL) is proud to announce that 2021 will see the much-awaited return of one of our most significant calendar events – the NZRL National Secondary Schools Tournament.

After a two year hiatus, the five-day tournament returns to Auckland’s Pulman Park bigger and better than ever before.

Sixteen schools from across the country will battle it out for the ultimate Secondary Schools Premiership title alongside the Senior Boys Championship and an inaugural Girls Championship involving eight women’s teams for the first time in the competition’s history.

The tournament will commence on Monday 30 August, with the Finals taking place Friday 3 September at Pulman Park.

The competition is a Senior Secondary School Tournament with competing teams entering through their respective Zones / Regional qualifiers. Teams entering the National Secondary Schools Tournament must have a referral from their respective Zone contact.

In conjunction with this tournament and in succession to the inaugural fixture in 2020, New Zealand Rugby League will be selecting a New Zealand Schools (Boys 18s) team to play against New Zealand Clubs (18s) on Sunday 17 October 2021.

National Secondary Schools

Venue – Pulman Park, Auckland
Competition dates: Monday 30 August – Friday 3 September 2021

Senior Boys Premiership
–    16 Premier teams – 2 places per Zone (14),
     plus an additional 2 for Auckland.

Senior Boys Championship
–    8 Championship teams – 1 place per Zone (7),
     plus an additional Auckland School.
–    Composite schools can also qualify for the Championship tier.

Senior Girls Championship
–    8 Women’s teams – 1 place per Zone (7),
     plus an additional Auckland School.
–    Composite schools can also qualify for the Championship tier.

If you would like to receive more information, please register your interest here:


New Zealand Rugby League has made the executive decision to cancel next week’s NZRL Secondary Schools competition in light of the current measles outbreak.

The Secondary School’s competition was to be held at Pulman Park, Takanini from the 2nd – 6th of September, hosting 26 schools from across the country. Several of the schools involved have recorded measles cases among their students in the past week.

Unfortunately, the occurrence of measles has been most prevalent in South Auckland, with Counties Manukau DHB recording 72% (527) of Auckland’s 731 confirmed cases of measles. With this in mind, we do not want to risk potentially exposing others travelling for the tournament. The health and safety of the players, staff, supporters and volunteers are paramount above all else.

Greg Peters, CEO of NZRL, says: “This is an unfortunate outcome, as our Secondary Schools Tournament is one of our most exciting events, but it is the only decision that can be made under these circumstances. We sought medical advice and liaised with stakeholders who all agreed with our positioning. We understand people may be disappointed by our decision and we apologise for any inconvenience caused; however, the welfare of our players and all involved in the tournament comes first.”

Dr John Mayhew, Head of NZRL Medical Advisory, says: “The vaccination status of the participants in this tournament is uncertain therefore the risk of transmission is very high. It is not appropriate for NZRL to host the tournament under these circumstances.”

Garry Carnachan, CEO of New Zealand Secondary Schools Sports Council, says: “Rugby League have identified a number of additional risk factors that are unique to this event which we appreciate. These factors are difficult to mitigate and Rugby League have therefore made the decision to cancel this event.”