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Luisetti Seeds North Canterbury Rugby - Pegasus Bay U18 Win Combined Country Title
Pegasus Bay has won the Combined Country under-18 competition in its first season as a combined club. The amalgamated club is made of players from Kaiapoi, Woodend and Hurunui clubs.
These clubs had been struggling for numbers in these grades and administrators felt that a combined team would provide quality rugby for these players. “It’s been a success on and off the field,” team manager Bede Crean says. “It has not only seen the team play well but it has enabled young players from around North Canterbury to get to know each other and discover what they are all about.”
Pegasus Bay, which beat Prebbleton/West Melton 39-22 in the final last weekend, has also fielded an under-16 team this season.
The under-18 side has been coached by Woodend’s Toni Pitama and Lionel Bridger and Kaiapoi’s Rick Kara.
Bede himself is from Hurunui and has brought the boys from the north down to Kaiapoi for trainings each week. Co-captained by centre Jacob Hurring and openside flanker Zane Carey, it is hoped that the under-18s may form the bulk of a Colts side from the club in the next season or two. “Otherwise,” Bede says, “then players will go back to their home clubs and play Division 1 or 2 rugby.”
Luisetti Seeds North Canterbury Division 1 Semi Finals This Weekend
It is semi-finals time in North Canterbury this weekend.
In Division 1 it will be Glenmark that will host Oxford in one semi-final while Saracens will play Ashley in the other semi-final.
“We have played well in patches this season,” Oxford co-coach Donald Smith says, “and we are excited to play Glenmark this weekend after losing to them last Saturday.”
Donald says Oxford’s season to date has been frustrating. “We lost three games earlier in the season in the last few minutes and so we have been there or thereabouts this year.” Oxford will benefit this weekend by having half-back Matt Roberts back playing this season. “He had the flu last week and so we decided not to risk him,” Donald says. The spirit within the Oxford side has been very good; no doubt as a result of having two excellent coaches in Donald and former All Black John Mills.
“Although we have had a few injuries this season, we have struggled on,” Donald says. “We know we have the potential to play well. We just have to do the basics properly and let the result take care of itself.”
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