October 14 2022

The 2022 Boys representative fixtures boast an extreme amount of top talent from across the motu. New Zealand Rugby League is proud to announce the return of the Clubs vs Schools match-up and the inaugural 16s Boys Auckland Invitational vs Aotearoa Whaanui. This 16s clash puts the top talent from around Aotearoa up against the melting pot that is Tāmaki Makaurau, whilst the 18s Clubs vs Schools fixture is a combination of the best players in both the NZRL Secondary Schools (SS) and Youth (YT) Tournaments.

The 16s Auckland Invitation is headlined by Akarana Falcon and Youth Tournament MVP Kaawyn Patterson. A team that possesses strike across the park, centre Taipari Wikitera and winger Ezekiel Tavita were electric for their sides in the Youth Tournament. The Aotearoa Whaanui outfit is one dominated by the South Island Scorpions. Exciting young talent Ezekiel Faga’ieti leads the Southern side, whilst Wellington Orca Maui Winitana-Patelesio directs them around the park.

Auckland Rugby League’s Thaine Ashford said, “The quality of rugby league across the Secondary Schools and Youth Tournaments has been exceptional.

Plenty of players outside the Auckland Invitational 18 were unlucky to miss out, but that shows the quality of talent in the ARL competitions and pathways.”

The Clubs vs Schools fixture is littered with outstanding talent across both teams. NZRL SS MVP Waisake Salabiau returns to the rugby league field alongside teammate Malakai Cama; they are joined by St Paul’s Sio Kali and South Island half Oliver Lawry. Not to be outdone, the School’s pack includes Malachi Tony, Elijah Salesa Leaumoana and YT Final MVP Rodney Tuipulotu-Vea. After a strong Youth Tournament, Counties contingent Kayliss Fatialofa, Phranklyn Mano-Le-Mamea, Jarome Falemoe and Ben Peni lead a versatile Clubs side. Scorpion Makaia Taufa slots in at dummy-half, and Team of the Tournament half Afaese Fa’avae leads the squad around the park.

NZRL General Manager of Football & High-Performance Motu Tony stated, “The return of the National Secondary Schools and NZRL National Youth Tournaments, after a Covid-19 enforced hiatus, gave our rangatahi and rugby league community a fantastic opportunity to come together.

“The tournaments showcased the enormous talent we have playing and participating in rugby league, and our inaugural female National Youth Tournament showed that the future of the Kiwi Ferns is bright and exciting.

“The efforts of those who performed exceptionally well in our tournaments have been recognised. They will get another opportunity to connect and compete with the rugby league talent throughout the motu.

I am excited about the talent we have that will compete in these fixtures and also proud that we can offer our young female players a representative opportunity for the first time.”

All games are free to attend and live on Sky Sport!


Auckland Invitational Boys 16s versus Aotearoa Whaanui Boys 16s; Monday 24 October, 2 pm. North Harbour Stadium




  1. Meihana Pauling (South Island Scorpions)
  2. Xavier Lynch (South Island Scorpions)
  3. Chelden Hayward (South Island Scorpions)
  4. Jackson Stewart (South Island Scorpions)
  5. Genesis Sherlock (South Island Scorpions)
  6. Eli Bijl-Kakoi (South Island Scorpions)
  7. Maui Winitana-Patelesio (Wellington Orcas)
  8. Ezekiel Faga’ieti (South Island Scorpions)
  9. Mangaroa Mark (Upper Central Stallions)
  10. Jake Rabarts (Upper Central Stallions)
  11. Ezekiel Paulo (South Island Scorpions)
  12. Sosaia Alatini (South Island Scorpions)
  13. Marley Igasan (Upper Central Stallions)
  14. Kyan Rosie (South Island Scorpions)
  15. Reihana Timms (Upper Central Stallions)
  16. Toby Gibson (South Island Scorpions)
  17. Adam Lawrence (Upper Central Stallions)
  18. Ryder Crosswell (Mid Central Vipers)



  1. Ernie Mahu-Delamere [Counties Manukau Stingrays]
  2. Vitaliano-Roache [Counties Manukau Stingrays]
  3. Taipari Wikitera [Akarana Falcons]
  4. Sosaia Antony Fatani Latu [Counties Manukau Stingrays]
  5. Ezekiel Tavita [Auckland Vulcans]
  6. Tyrone Hurt-Pickering [Akarana Falcons]
  7. Haami Loza [Counties Manukau Stingrays]
  8. Noah Hetutu-Davis [Counties Manukau Stingrays]
  9. Kaawyn Patterson [Akarana Falcons]
  10. Joshua Totara Kopua [Counties Manukau Stingrays]
  11. Te Paeroa Wi-Neera [Akarana Falcons]
  12. Dezman Laban [Akarana Falcons]
  13. Augustino Filipo [Counties Manukau Stingrays]
  14. Austyn Ah Toon-Hotene [Counties Manukau Stingrays]
  15. Joey Upoko [Akarana Falcons]
  16. Kanaan Talia Magele [Akarana Falcons]
  17. Eteuate Leilua [Counties Manukau Stingrays]
  18. Compton Purcell [Akarana Falcons]



New Zealand Schools Boys versus New Zealand Clubs Boys; Monday 24 October, 4 pm. North Harbour Stadium



  1. Kyan Alo [Akarana Falcons]
  2. Raphael Sio [Akarana Falcons]
  3. Leka Halasima [Auckland Vulcans]
  4. Kayliss – Jess Fatialofa [Counties Manukau Stingrays]
  5. Jarome Falemoe [Counties Manukau Stingrays]
  6. Phranklyn Mano-Le-Mamea [Counties Manukau Stingrays]
  7. Afaese Fa’avae [Wellington Orcas]
  8. Ben Peni [Counties Manukau Stingrays]
  9. Makaia Tafua [South Island Scorpions]
  10. Jordan Chapman [Wellington Orcas]
  11. Devante Mihinui [Auckland Vulcans]
  12. Te Kaio Cranwell [South Island Scorpions]
  13. Tanner Stowers Smith [South Island Scorpions]
  14. Khalan Clyde [Akarana Falcons]
  15. Bob Iosefo [Auckland Vulcans]
  16. Francis Tuimauga [Counties Manukau Stingrays]
  17. Samuela Vakadula [Mid Central Vipers]
  18. Alvin Chong Nee [Counties Manukau Stingrays]
  19. Sitana Loamanu [Auckland Vulcans]



  1. Ngaheke Nepata (St Thomas of Canterbury)
  2. Malakai Cama (Rotorua Boys High School)
  3. Sio Kali (St Pauls College)
  4. Keisaia Su’a (St Pauls College)
  5. Waisake Salabiau (Rotorua Boys High School)
  6. William Piliu (St Pauls College)
  7. Oliver Lawry (St Thomas of Canterbury)
  8. Lamonye Matu (Southern Cross Campus)
  9. Malachi Tony (De La Salle College)
  10. Sione Tupou (Rotorua Boys High School)
  11. Alekolasimi Jones (St Pauls College)
  12. Jason Salalilo (St Thomas of Canterbury)
  13. Rodney Tuipolotu – Vea (De La Salle College)
  14. Allan Talataina-Malama (De La Salle College)
  15. Elijah Salesa Leaumoana (Southern Cross Campus)
  16. Zachariah Stephenson (St Pauls College)
  17. Noah Harmer – Campbell (St Thomas of Canterbury)
  18. Cooper Te Hau (St Thomas of Canterbury)
  19. Maraki Aumua (Rotorua Boys High School)

NZRL would like to acknowledge the selection of Leti Jeff Samuela (De La Salle College) who, after an awesome Secondary Schools tournament was named in the NZ Schools team but has unfortunately been to withdraw due to injury.

The final game for the U18S NZRL Boy’s Youth Tournament saw Counties Manukau Stingrays face off against South Island Scorpions at Puketawhero park, Rotorua.

The Stingrays dominated possession early as they continued to forced errors in the South Island’s half of the field, resulting in 4 tries in the first half, two of them coming from powerful backrower Rodney Tuipulotu-Vea.

The second half saw Counties Manukau opened the scoring as Rodney Tuipulotu-Vea completed a hat-trick. With their backs against the wall, a spirited Scorpions side tried to mount a comeback and were rewarded with a try however it was too little, too late with Counties Manukau Stingrays claiming the U18’s championship in dominating fashion with the score being 28-12.


Counties Manukau – Rodney Tuipulotu-Vea x3, Phranklyn Mano-Le-Mamea x2, Hirini Holmes, Jarome Falemoe, Cameron Tuipulotu

South Island – Makaia Tafua, Alofa Faaiva


Counties Manukau – Phranklyn Mano-Le-Mamea 2/8

South Island – Jacob Nyman 2/2

12 October 2022

Counties have repeated their efforts from the Girl’s tournament, seeing both age groups advance to their respective grand finals.

The 16’s match-up was set after dominating victories by the Akarana Falcons and the Counties Manukau Stingrays. The Stingrays outfit put Auckland to the sword, winning 26-4, while the Falcons were able to outlast the South Island Scorpions 20-8. The Auckland derby will be played on field one at 11:00 am

The final in the 18’s grade sees Counties again, this time facing a South Island side hot off a 42-14 drubbing of Auckland. South Island boasts a talented squad, including Te Kaio Cranwell, Tanner Stowers Smith and Makaia Tafua, who were selected in the 2022 NZRL Youth Tournament Team of the Tournament. South Island 20’s half Oliver Lawry and St Thomas fullback Ngaheke Nepata round out a robust Southern outfit.

De La Salle contingent Kayliss Fatialofa, Rodney Tuipulotu and Ieti Samuelu make up a solid and determined Counties outfit. Tournament MVP Ben Peni will look to continue his fine form and help his side capture the Youth Tournament trophy. This side also features wing Jarome Falemoa, Phranklyn Mano Le Mamea and Francis Tuimauga, who were all named in the Tournament Team.

Make sure to tune in on the NZRL Youtube channel to catch all of the finals action live from Rotorua’s Puketawhero Park!

16s Grand Final

Counties Manukau v Akarana Falcons 11:00 am – Puketawhero Park

18s Grand Final

Counties Manukau v South Island Scorpions 01:00 pm – Puketawhero Park

1 October 2022

The Auckland Vulcans have secured promotion into the NZRL Men’s Premiership for next season with a dominant 48-12 win over the Otago Whalers.

Auckland’s account got off in fast fashion, as five-eight Dylan Tavita went over in the early stages. A few minutes later, Tavita turned provider, providing a lovely cross-field kick for Siapo Pasene to score.

Piling on the pressure, Auckland made Otago rue their mistakes as the ball was left for Mose Esera to pick up and put down as the lead grew to 16.

Otago replied through number 10 Cameron Brown, but Auckland hit right back through Esera, who bagged a first-half double.

Final MVP Tevin Arona got the Vulcans going again in the second stanza, supporting through the middle to further the lead.

Otago found a glimmer of hope a few moments later as James Waterson’s fumble in his in-goal saw Samuel Wyber pick up the pieces, but Waterson redeemed himself, finishing off a great left side shift a few sets later.

Tavita scored his second of the match, and two late tries from Pasene and Mike Williams saw the Auckland outfit comfortably make their way into the Men’s Premiership.



Tries: Tavita x2, Pasene x2, Esera x2, Arona, Waterson, Williams

Conversions: Arona 6/9



Tries: Brown, Wyber

Conversions: Haugh 2/2


3rd August, 2022

as seen on Otago Daily Times.


A big nervous smile envelops Anya Clark’s face when she thinks about running out at Mt Smart Stadium tonight.


The year 12 St Hilda’s Collegiate School pupil will take the field for the South Island Scorpions 16s in the curtain-raiser for the Warriors match against the Melbourne Storm.

They will play Auckland 16s.

“It is pretty nerve-racking,” she beamed.

“I find it so exciting. I’ve never really seen the country up there before and going on a plane is so exciting.”

Yep, you read that right. The thought of a big crowd of curious onlookers rated second to the adventure of flying to Auckland.

It will be just her second trip to the city. The first was for the New Zealand Rugby League nines under-16 tournament.

The 16-year-old fullback shone and was named in the tournament team.

She impressed again during the Otago 16s tournament and made the longlist and eventually the squad for the South Island Scorpions.

She is also a gun motocross rider, although she swatted away praise for her effort in winning the South Island women’s cross-country motocross championship in mud and snow.

“Oh, motocross is just a hobby.”

Her real passion is for tackling. She is an evasive runner but it is bringing opponents crashing down that gives her the most joy.

She has been doing jiu jitsu since she was 7 and loves the close-quarter contact.

Anya enjoys rugby as well and plays second five for the school first XV.

“I like rugby league better, I think. It is more exciting and there are less stoppages in the game. But don’t get me wrong, I love rugby.”

Anya might have to learn to love rugby even more, though.

“Next year I won’t be eligible for under-16s. They are trying to get an under-18s team [up and running], but there is nothing and it is really sad because I don’t know what I’ll be doing next year.”

April 10, 2022


The Mid Central Vipers played host to the Canterbury Bulls in the final round of the SkySport Women’s Premiership as both teams clashed at Palmerston Norths’ Central Energy Trusts Arena.

Canterbury was the first to strike as a strong kick return from Bulls standout Mikayla Werahiko put the South Island side in striking distance. Off the ensuing play fullback, Dayna Napa went over breaking through a scrambling Vipers defense to go up 4-0.

Werahiko then got herself on the scoresheet attacking a cross-field kick to go over untouched in the corner. Moments later half Cassie Siataga hung another cross-field kick up, this time to the right-hand side which took a wicked bounce, falling into the lap of winger Sailai Pau to put the Bulls up by 12.

In the 13th minute, Mid Central hit back through hooker Paris Paul whose craftiness and footwork out of dummy half saw her beat several defenders to score under the post as the Vipers brought it to 12-6.

Mid Central started the second stanza in good stead and this paid off in the 45th minute as middle Agnes Faraimo barged over close to the line to level the scores.

Canterbury though off the back off Vipers mistakes crushed any momentum as Talosaga Manu crashed over in the same vein as Faraimo to put the Bulls up by a converted try. With ten minutes left to go, number 19 Theresa McPherson went over in the corner which proved to be the dagger as Canterbury went out 22-12 winners.





Tries: Napa, Werahiko, Pau, Manu, McPherson


Conversions: Siataga (1/5)




Tries: Paul, Faraimo


Conversions: Bates (2/2)


April 3 2022


Canterbury hosted Akarana at Christchurch’s Nga Puna Wai, and Akarana got off to an early start. Ten minutes into the proceedings five-eight Roimata Amosa-Tiro sliced through to score under the posts as they took a 6-0 lead. Several minutes later Akarana doubled their try tally as a left edge shift saw left wing Roelien Du Plessis go over untouched as the lead went out to 10-0

Minutes later, Canterbury Wing Mikayla Werahiko latched onto a cross-field kick, towering over the defenders to put the South Island team back into the contest.

Akarana half-back Laishon Albert-Jones trumped any Canterbury momentum though as she crashed over from dummy-half seconds before the half-time buzzer to take a 16-6 lead into the sheds.

Canterbury came out of the blocks quickly, number 18 Sailiai Pau scoring a controversial try in the corner as they brought the score to 16-10 early in the second stanza. An error from an Akarana bomb saw Canterbury allow the Auckland outfit dangerous territory, and fullback Lavinia Tahalaliku took advantage, shedding multiple defenders to score on the left edge.

A Left side shift saw Werahiko score her second for Canterbury bringing the game within a converted try as it stood at 20-14.

Towards the back end of the match, Akarana made Canterbury pay for a penalty that didn’t reach touch. The Auckland team shifted the ball towards the right edge and Albert-Jones held the ball up for Keri Ratima to score in the right corner. Du Plessis scored her double in the final minute as Akarana exploited an overlap in the Canterbury defence. 28-14




Tries: Roimata Amosa-Tiro, Roelien Du Plessis (x2), Laishon Albert-Jones, Lavinia Tahalaliku, Keri Ratima


Conversions: Laishon Albert-Jones (2/7)




Tries: Mikayla Werahiko (x2), Sailiai Pau


Conversions: Dayna Napa (1/3)

April 3 2022


Counties travelled to Christchurch’s Nga Puna Wai to take on competition leaders South Island.


Early errors from the home side saw immediate points for the Auckland outfit as Timothy Tiatia finished in style crossing over in the corner. Five minutes later South Island struck back as an attacking kick from Oliver Lawry ricocheted into the hands of Jacob Lowe as he went under the posts. Halbert-Pere added the extras to put them up 6-4 early.


Off the ensuing kick off South Island charged down the field and put their stamp on the game scoring through number 14 Taani Fangupo, making the score 10-4. Not done yet, South Island halfway through the first half again found themselves in open space only for Tiatia to save a try for Counties Manukau. Counties scored with five minutes left in the half through Samuel Hansen as the score saw 10-8 going into the halftime break.

Only minutes into the second stanza South Island half Makaia Tafua forced his way over as they extended their advantage to six points. The second half was defined by the stifling defense from South Island who held Counties out on multiple occasions, not budging on their own line. These defensive sets were the foundation for number 11 Tupou Kaufononga and centre Siaki’s second half tries, completing an all-round performance.

With seven minutes remaining, Counties scored a consolation as Hansen grabbed his second, with the fulltime score reading 24-12 to the home side.




Tries – Jacob Lowe, Taani Fangupo, Makaia Tafua, Tupou Kaufononga, Vaione Siaki


Conversions – Mata Halbert-Pere 2/5





Tries – Timothy Tiatia, Samuel Hansen (x2)


Conversions – Teariki Ford 0/3

27 March 2022


Auckland’s Trusts Stadium held host to South Island and Waikato, with Waikato seeking their first win of the competition.


The South Island side did not take long to open their account, half Oliver Lawry taking advantage of a Uriah Tuli break to go over in the second minute. 14 minutes in Waikato hit back, hooker Tahere Kaio-Koroheke taking advantage of lazy ruck defense to sneak over from dummy-half. Te Awa Daniela converted to take a 6-4 lead.


South Island’s Lawry turned provider in the 19th minute as he put second-rower Tupou Kaufofona through from close range to retake the lead. Moments later Tuli again found himself in space and this time finished, scoring a scintillating solo try as the South Island side went into the break, up 16-6.


Five minutes into the second stanza a dummy half break from Kiardyn Hatch was turned into points as South Island shifted left finding Taani Fangupo who crashed over. Halbert-Pere making it 22-6. After receiving multiple penalties breakdown in the play saw Waikato prop Portman Paul fight off several defenders to bring them to with two converted tries. With five minutes remaining, Prop George Faiava snuffed out any semblance of a comeback crashing over under the posts with Jacob Lowe adding the extras.


Two minutes from time, Deijdre Siaki leapt over the pack to reign in a cross-field kick to score his first of the afternoon. Not to be outdone, Oliver Lawry connected with Jacob Lowe as he scored seconds from the buzzer to complete the victory.


South Island – 40


Tries: Lawry, Kaufofonga, Tuli, Fangupo, Faiava, Siaki, Lowe.


Conversions: Halbert-Pere (3/4), Lowe (3/3)


Waikato – 10


Tries: Kaio-Koroheke, Paul.


Conversions: Daniela (1/1), Stillinovich-Watene (0/1)

March 13 2022


Christchurch’s Nga Puna Wai hosted both South Island and Akarana for their first hit-outs of the 2022 Ruben Wiki Cup.


Akarana asserted themselves immediately, quickly moving into the swing of the game and converting this early dominance into points as Northcote winger Tupala Faaee went over untouched in the corner.


Ten minutes in, Akarana found themselves over again through Faaee as the Falcons went to a short side shift, capitalising on an overlap to make the score 8-0 to the visitors.


Dominating the opening exchanges, Captain Doux-Fiatau-Kauhiva intercepted a loose pass to put winger Esom Ioka down the right-hand side extending the lead to 14-0 as Joshua Tanielu converted.


South Island found a way through as three quick penalties pushed them down onto the Akarana line. Tupou Kaufononga was able to turn that field position into points as he crashed over around the ruck to bring the game to 14-6 going into the half.


Eight minutes into the second stanza saw Sebastian Su’a fight his way over for a four-pointer. A superb break by Ioka put Akarana into dangerous territory and a short ball by Fiatau-Kauhiva put Su’a into a hole where he was able to score. Faaee converted to make it a 20-6 game.


With the contest going back and forth, Akarana took the game into their own hands and were able to extend their advantage in the 60th minute. A clinical set-piece saw Lani Graham-Taufa push the score to a comfortable 24-6.


With 15 minutes left in the match, South Island produced their best displays of the afternoon as Makaia Tafua, Ethan Faitaua and fullback Kiardyn Hatch put themselves on the scoresheet in quick succession to make the game a tight contest. Missed conversions were costly as they were unable to complete the comeback with Akarana sneaking through 24-20 to end round 1.


Next week South Island hosts Upper Central Stallions and Akarana meet Counties in the Auckland derby at Trusts Stadium.


Akarana – 20



Tupala Faaee (x2), Esom Ioka, Sebastian Su’a, Lani Graham-Taufa.



Faaee (1/3), Tanielu (1/2)


South Island – 20



Tupou Kaufononga, Makaia Tafua, Ethan Faitaua, Kiardyn Hatch.



Jacob Lowe (2/4)

Dunedin will host the annual South Island 13/14 and 19 years rugby league tournaments over the weekend of Saturday 28th and Sunday 29th September. The tournaments are being played at Kettle Park with games starting at 10am each day. There will be an evening fixture on Saturday 28th September at Logan Park 6, with the Otago 19’s team taking on Canterbury 19’s at 5pm under lights.

The 13/14 tournament which is in its second year, presents a fantastic opportunity for boys and girls to give rugby league a go and put their skills on display while setting a great foundation for them to move up to the 15/17 tournament next year. The 19’s tournament will see the cream of teenage rugby talent from the South Island compete and put their best foot forward to move up into their district club and premier teams in the following years.

The 13/14 tournament will have three grades: boys 13’s, boys 14’s and girls 13’s/14’s, with each grade having three teams participating, while the 19’s grade will be made up of four teams. Each of the tournaments is comprised of teams from 4 districts – Canterbury, Southland, Otago and West Coast.

The tournaments provide players with the opportunity of competing at a level that allows them to challenge themselves against their peers. Past tournaments have seen players being identified and provided with further opportunities to follow their dream, be it NRL clubs or NZ age-group teams. West Coast’s Griffin Neame is an excellent example of this, Griffin played for the West Coast 19’s team at last years tournament and has just been selected in the Junior Kiwis and is a part of the North Queensland Cowboys setup.

Following the 19’s tournament, a South Island squad will be announced. This squad will train in preparation for a match against an Auckland 19’s team in Christchurch on November 9th. This is the first year a South Island side has been picked from this tournament and provides a fantastic opportunity for players to test themselves against top-class opposition and push their case for higher honours.

These tournaments are a great opportunity for those in Dunedin wanting to see high-quality rugby league being played.


2019 SZRL 13’s/14’s AND 19’S TOURNAMENT DRAW

Kettle Park, Dunedin

Saturday 28th September and Sunday 29th September



10am: Otago 13’s vs West Coast 13’s, West Coast 14’s vs Canterbury 13’s

11am: Otago 13/14 girls vs West Coast 13/14 girls

12pm: Southland 13’s vs West Coast 13’s. Southland 14’s vs West Coast 14’s, West Coast 19’s vs Southland 19’s

1pm: Otago 13/14 girls vs West Coast 13/14 girls

2pm: Otago 13’s vs Southland 13’s, Southland 14’s vs Canterbury 13’s

2:30pm: Canterbury 19’s vs West Coast 19’s

5pm Otago 19’s vs Canterbury 19’s (Logan Park 6)



10am: Otago 13’s vs West Coast 13’s, West Coast 14’s vs Canterbury 13’s, Otago 19’s vs Southland 19’s

11am: West Coast 13/14 girls vs Southland 13’s girls

12pm: Southland 14’s vs West Coast 14’s, Southland 13’s vs West Coast 13’s

12:30pm: Canterbury 19’s vs Southland 19’s

1pm: Otago 13/14 girls vs Southland 13 girls

2pm: Otago 13’s vs Southland 13’s, Southland 14’s vs Canterbury 13’s

3pm: West Coast 14/14 girls vs Southland 13’s girls, Otago 19’s vs West Coast 19’s

Canterbury emerged from the Southern Zone Rugby League 19s tournament undefeated, but West Coast and Otago returned home from two action-packed days in Christchurch with their heads held high after some encouraging results.


The teams played four games each across a gruelling Saturday and Sunday schedule at Knights Stream Park.


Canterbury and West Coast kicked off the tournament on a chilly Saturday morning, with the host province powering away to a 28-12 win after leading just 10-6 at halftime.


West Coast backed up to play Otago in the second game and led 18-8 at the break, before running out of steam and being held to a 22-all draw by the resurgent southerners. Rockcote Canterbury Bulls halfback Brad Campbell scored a hat-trick and booted three goals for the Coast.


It was then Otago’s turn to feel the fatigue of back-to-back assignments, blitzed 34-6 in the first half by Canterbury in the final game of day one. But Otago showed plenty of character to win the second half in an eventual 40-14 loss.


West Coast stormed out of the blocks on day two, racking up a 50-10 win over Otago with Campbell tallying 18 points for the second straight game and David Lowe and Levi Pascoe notching try-doubles.


But Otago finished their campaign in stirring fashion. They trailed Canterbury by just two points at halftime of Sunday’s second encounter, before going down 24-12 in a gallant effort.


Canterbury centre Fabricius Su’a produced arguably the standout individual display of the tournament by running in five tries in a 42-18 win over West Coast in the day two closer.


Canterbury second-rower Zion Kamana was named the tournament MVP, while Su’a claimed the Back of the Tournament award and West Coast’s Griffin Neame – who starred in Southern Zone 17s National Youth Tournament campaign only a week earlier – won Forward of the Tournament honours.


West Coast’s Brad Tacon was named Referee of the Tournament, Canterbury pair Jason Martin and Adam Kelson were named Coach and Trainer of the Tournament respectively, and West Coast’s Deb Campbell carried off the Manager of the Tournament award.


Lock Chanel Feala and Domanyc Fidow-Kele led Canterbury superbly all weekend and were joined in the Tournament Team alongside six teammates. Campbell and Neame headlined a four-strong West Coast contingent in the Tournament Team, while four Otago players won selection.


The players and management from all three teams were a credit to their provinces, as well as Southern Zone Rugby League. Special thanks also goes to the development officers and referees who helped make an outstanding weekend of footy possible, as well as the Christchurch City Council for making a tremendous venue available in Knights Stream Park.







Canterbury 28 (Reuben Wilson 2, Antonio Lemalu, Domanyc Fidow-Kele, Zion Kamana tries; Jope Gaunavou 3 goals) defeated West Coast 12 (Iraia De Goldi, Levi Pascoe tries; Brad Campbell 2 goals)


West Coast 22 (Brad Campbell 3, Eugene Gillies tries; Campbell 3 goals) drew with Otago 22 (Nehemiah Faamoe-Lone, Teremoana Hamblin, Cam Todd, Nale Ofa, Lemanu Filifilii tries; Jayden Hollander goal)


Canterbury 40 (Reuben Wilson, Nick Evans, Fabricius Su’a, Jope Gaunavao, Josh Rawiri, Simeon Langan, Ketesemane Pauli tries; Gaunavou 6 goals) defeated Otago 14 (Nehemiah Faamoe-Lone, Shade Rowe, Cole Garrett tries; Jayden Hollander goal)





West Coast 50 (David Lowe 2, Jack Coleman 2, Levi Pascoe, Mason Hunt, Brad Campbell, Sincere Harraway, Iraia De Goldi tries; Campbell 7 goals) defeated Otago 10 (Nehemiah Faamoe-Lone, Delaney McKenzie tries; Jayden Hollander goal)


Canterbury 24 (Diploma Muaimalae, Nathan Chai, Jope Gaunavou, Kingston Dempsey, Ben Ferguson tries; Gaunavou 2 goals) defeated Otago 12 (Allan Gillies, Quinn McHardy, Cam Todd tries)


Canterbury 42 (Fabricius Su’a 5, Nick Evans, Antonio Lemalu, Jordan Molioo tries; Jope Gaunavou 4, Jimmy Rangiawha goals) defeated West Coast 18 (Levi Pascoe 2, Brad Campbell tries; Campbell 3 goals)


TOP POINTSCORER: Brad Campbell (West Coast) – 50

TOP TRYSCORER: Fabricius Su’a (Canterbury) – 6

The Southern Zone Development Camp which is a key component of the Southern Zone Development plan and pathways, was held for 2018 at St Thomas College in Christchurch. This camp saw 75 talented 14, 16 and 18-year-old players from throughout the South Island receiving expert tuition, information and advice across a range of topics that will help them to achieve their potential.

The programme was delivered by key personnel from the Zone supported by the NZRL with David McMeeken, the National Talent Manager and Nigel Vagana, the NZRL WellBeing Manager in attendance. The programme covered the areas of skill development, tactical appreciation, performance analysis, positional roles, nutrition, goal setting and smart training principles. Players were also fitness tested to assess their current level of fitness.

The camp culminated in a game where the players were able to put into practice some of what they had learnt. At the end of the camp they were issued with a comprehensive training diary which contained all the information presented to them.

Whilst the aim was to provide development for the players attending, a secondary and just as important outcome will be those in attendance taking what they have learned back to their club teams to share with their teammates and coaches.

The next focus of the Southern Zone Development programme will be the South Island 15s and 17s Tournament to be held in July in Greymouth. South Island 15s and 17s Scorpions squads will be picked from this tournament to prepare for the National Youth Tournament in October in Rotorua.

Southern Zone is grateful for the many coaches, trainers, a managers and presenters for giving their time to make this camp possible. There is no doubt that the boys who attended will have all learnt a lot.

The Southern Zone Rugby League Board wishes to formally advise that the Southern Zone Rugby League Inc. Annual General Meeting will be held on Wednesday 16 May 2018 in Christchurch starting at 7.30pm following the Canterbury Rugby League AGM at the Canterbury Tennis Rooms, 113 Woodham Rd, Linwood, Christchurch. The Annual General Meeting is called in accordance with the SZRL Constitution section 13.3 – Notice of Annual Meetings.

Please note that the business of the AGM is as follows:

1. Receive and adopt the Annual Report and audited annual statement of accounts for the past year.

2. Appoint a representative to the Appointments Panel.

3. Elect a President.

4. Any other business of which at least twenty (20) Business Days notice has been given in writing.

The Southern Zone is seeking nominations for a club representative to be on the Appointments Panel for the appointment of Directors for the Southern Zone for appointments to be made in 2019.

Nominations from clubs and or districts for the representative must be sent to the General Manager Southern Zone as soon as possible to the address below or by email. This position needs to be approved by members at the upcoming AGM.

The annual accounts, Chairman’s and GM’s reports will be sent out soon with proxy papers for clubs and districts unable to attend the AGM.

Steve Martin
General Manager
Southern Zone RL
PO Box 969
021 271 6975