Tag veterans shine
A Porirua over- 35s tag team won their grade for New Zealand at the Tag20 international tournament in Brisbane last month.
The 12-member side travelled to Australia for the tournament from October 17 till 20. They won the right to represent New Zealand after winning a national tournament in March.
With players aged between 35 and 42, New Zealand was one of the older sides so trained hard in the leadup, co-captain Cassius Kuresa said.
‘‘We had to be super-fit,’’ he said.
Australia, Samoa and Niue were the toughest competition of eight entrants, Mr Kuresa said.
The final was a 6-5 nailbiter against Australia, who had smashed the Kiwis by five points earlier in the tournament.
‘‘They gave us a bit of a hiding in the rounds.’’
Tag20 began three years ago as a faster version of flag foot- ball. Tag and flag are themselves quite new sports, but over the last decade Porirua has embraced them more than rugby league, which they are based on.
‘‘ We probably have more people playing tag than league,’’ Kuresa said.
Porirua’s over-35 side began playing together only this year, and are keen to repeat their success next year and especially in 2015 in Hawaii.
‘‘That gives us an incentive to stay fit and stay together,’’ Kuresa said.