Sib­ling ri­valry plays out on the rugby field

Central Leader - - Front Page - By Scott Morgan

Sib­ling ri­valry will reach new heights on the rugby field to­mor­row.

Brothers Chris and Josh Lan­don will face off against one an­other when King’s Col­lege and Auck­land Gram­mar’s first 15s clash in one of the big­gest days on the sec­ondary school rugby cal­en­dar.

Chris, 18, plays full­back for Gram­mar while Josh, 16, is a loose for­ward for King’s Col­lege.

Josh de­cided to go to the Otahuhu school af­ter spend­ing his in­ter­me­di­ate years at King’s Prep, while Chris was al­ways keen to go to Gram­mar.

And the older brother is de­ter­mined not to let his lit­tle brother get the bet­ter of him on the field.

“There’s more pres­sure on me be­cause he’s my younger brother,” Chris says.

“I re­mem­ber los­ing in an in­ter-class soc­cer match when we went to the same school and it was the worst feel­ing in the world,” he says.

“I don’t want to let it hap­pen again.”

“He didn’t speak to me for a week af­ter­wards,” Josh says.

But the brothers are de­ter- mined not to pull any punches if they meet face to face in the match.

“We’ve de­cided we’re not brothers on the field, just play­ers,” Chris says.

Chris played off the bench in Gram­mar’s 15-14 vic­tory over King’s at Eden Park last year, which he de­scribes as “one of the big­gest games I’ll ever play”.

How­ever Josh has mixed emo­tions about his first chance to play in the an­nual fix­ture, which will see be­tween 5000 and 6000 spectators sup­port their re­spec­tive teams.

“I’m ex­cited and ner­vous, but it’ll be good,” he says.

Both boys know they will have to take a de­feat in their stride, but that won’t make it any eas­ier for the brother on the los­ing side.

“Sure, there will be some sour thoughts af­ter the game for one of us but that’s just rugby,” Chris says.

Proud dad Graeme Lan­don says it’s im­pos­si­ble for him to choose which team to cheer for.

“Ei­ther way I can’t lose – I’ve got to stay in the mid­dle,” the Ep­som res­i­dent says.

The match takes place to­mor­row at King’s Col­lege, Golf Ave, Otahuhu, from 2.30pm.

Photo: JA­SON OXENHAM

Face off: Chris Lan­don, left, and his brother Josh clash in the Auck­land Gram­mar ver­sus King’s Col­lege first 15 rugby match to­mor­row.

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