How it all began ....
The Mt Aspiring College 1st XV was set up initially through the efforts of Hamish Crosbie who coaches the side and Mt Aspiring College Principal Wayne Bosley.
Add into this the current assistant coach Mike Mason and Manager Steve Schikker, and it is this four member group who are responsible for the day-today running of the team. Support is also to the fore from Wakatipu High Principal, Steve Hall, Cromwell College Principal Mason Stretch, and Cromwell College rugby administrator John Drummond. When the number of teams participating in the Otago-wide rugby competition dropped from 11 teams in 2009 to four in 2012, this was the catalyst for the invitation being issued to the Upper Clutha Under 18 side to be part of the Highlanders 1st XV competition by the Highlanders Board. Having comprised Mt Aspiring College players at that point, Crosbie said that they realised the best thing they could do for their players was to step up a grade and
play in this competition which showcases the best teams in the lower South Island. There was also a belief that the players needed to be challenged in their sport and being involved in this competition would make this happen. An invitation was subsequently issued to Wakatipu and Cromwell secondary school players to take part in trials for the team. And the rest, as they say, is now history, with the cream of Under 19 School rugby players from the Southern Lakes area now combining to make this ground-breaking side. Since then, it has been a journey of cooperation which has resulted in this team being selected and has ultimately given the best under 19 players in the district the opportunity to not only play together as a team, but to accept the challenges involved with top level rugby and the highs and lows associated with this.