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Luisetti Seeds Country Rugby - Ellesmere
Ellesmere President Stuart Boon says rugby in the sub-union is in a good state with a number of exciting competitions and events to look forward to this season.
Playing numbers are likely to be up in Ellesmere this season: earthquake relocation and the general growth in the Selwyn area has meant most clubs continue to grow
“Areas such as Rolleston, Lincoln, Halswell, West Melton have been rapidly growing and this has been reflected in junior numbers at these clubs,” Stuart says.
“Our clubs have also been doing a great job in showing players just what is so special about rugby in the Country,” he says. “Just the little things like stopping after the game and getting to know your opposition players.”
Ellesmere will have eight teams participating in the 19-strong Luisetti Seeds Combined Country competition. There was some hope that Leeston would enter a team. Stuart says that the club will field a Colts side this season and look to build that way. Ellesmere will field eight or nine club sides in the Combined Country Colts competition.
“Ellesmere are fortunate for the Lincoln University lads who have really helped our numbers,” Stuart says. Stuart believes it is difficult to predict exact playing numbers this season but he is confident they will be up.
On the field Ellesmere rugby remains strong: Southbridge won the Luisetti Seeds Combined Country Competition last season beating Lincoln in a pulsating final. Ellesmere had a large representation in the Country squad. Joe Moody and Sam Dickson have made huge strides in Canterbury rugby. Still, Stuart says the sub-union is not resting on its laurels: there is work to do.
The Country think-tank that took place at Prebbleton late last season was encouraging, Stuart says. “There was a really good turn-out and it was very beneficial for a number of issues confronting Country to be discussed.”
One issue that remains is sideline abuse: last season officials took proactive steps to prevent such abuse. Stuart says that there were not a large number of incidents although the sub-union continues to monitor the situation.
A highlight of this season will be Dunsandel’s 125th anniversary and Waihora’s 100th, both on the same weekend at the start of May. These two great clubs have contributed enormous amounts to the game in Ellesmere. The Luisetti Seeds Combined Country competition begins on 2 April with the rest of the competitions in Ellesmere kicking-off on 6 April.
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