Rugby club goes in boots and all

Central Leader - - News - By Me­lanie Ver­ran

Free rugby boots are up for grabs as part of a bid to en­cour­age teens to stick with sport af­ter leav­ing school.

The Teach­ers/East­ern Rugby Club is of­fer­ing to buy boots for its Colts play­ers in teams from the un­der-17s to un­der-21s.

Rugby co­or­di­na­tor Kirk Jen­nings says they are tar­get­ing this age group be­cause pri­or­i­ties can change for school leavers start­ing to be­come fi­nan­cially in­de­pen­dent.

“Once they leave school they’ve of­ten got to work and earn money and help mum and dad and play­ing sport is not so easy any­more,” he says.

“It’s just an in­cen­tive. And of course in th­ese hard eco­nomic times we want to do our lit­tle bit to help.”

He says as a sports club they have a so­cial re­spon­si­bil­ity to keep the boys busy, fit and in­ter­ested in sport.

Player Ray­men Misa, 18, is looking for­ward to get­ting his brand-new pair.

“It feels good to have new boots,” he says.

“They’re eye­catch­ing – they might help get the girls.”

Mr Jen­nings says rugby boots cost up to $100 – and more for the larger sizes.

De­vel­op­ment man­ager Tan­ner Vili has been chas­ing do­na­tions and spon­sor­ship to fund the idea.

The club also hopes to be able to of­fer the deal to pri­mary-aged kids. Play­ers have to com­mit to play­ing for the club be­fore they will be el­i­gi­ble for the boots.

Those in­ter­ested can go down to the club at Orakei Do­main and join in on train­ing on Tues­days and Thurs­days at 6pm.

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