Re­gion cel­e­brates rugby’s re­turn

Marlborough Midweek - - FRONT PAGE - MARTYN VERCOE

Rugby is back up and run­ning in Marl­bor­ough, and by the end of this week­end rugby play­ers of all ages would have had their first taste of ac­tion for the sea­son.

Se­nior footy is three games in, the Mako HP (High Per­for­mance) team has al­ready had a pre­sea­son hit out and the Marl­bor­ough Boys’ Col­lege First XV and ju­nior rugby also start this week­end.

This sea­son has also seen a chang­ing of the guard in our lo­cal Tas­man Rugby of­fice with Matt MacDougall com­ing on board as our new Com­mu­nity Rugby De­vel­op­ment Of­fi­cer.

Matt is a keen rugby man, who has played, coached and vol­un­teered in our game at a very high level. He is a mas­sive as­set to our lo­cal sport­ing and rugby fra­ter­nity. Matt has al­ready been busy run­ning our an­nual Farm­land Mini Mako hol­i­day pro­gram plus pri­mary school Rippa and sev­ens tour­na­ments.

Af­ter three rounds of the lo­cal Mo­tor­world com­pe­ti­tion - which also dou­bles as the round robin of the NPD Tas­man wide tro­phy - all our lo­cal teams are in with a chance to go to the fi­nal on Queens Birth­day week­end.

Ren­wick look the strong­est con­tenders at present and are ben­e­fit­ing from all the hard work their club has done over the last few years.

Moutere have a very good spine in their team - a core of play­ers who are per­form­ing well, cou­pled with a few hearty club men who have pro­duced a cou­ple of gusty wins early in the year.

East Coast and Waitohi will be qui­etly happy with their start to the sea­son and are build­ing nicely. Although Cen­tral are yet to regis­ter a win, they have been knock­ing on the door of vic­tory in all matches. You get the feel­ing they will get one shortly.

As is tra­di­tion, a few new faces pop up in club rugby who catch the eye. Mix that with the usual sus­pects and you can list a num­ber of in­di­vid­u­als who are look­ing sharp at this stage of the sea­son. Most of these in-form play­ers had a run for the Mako HP team this week in Welling­ton against Hawkes Bay in the first step towards the Mitre 10 Cup sea­son which starts in Au­gust

Lastly, good luck to all our young rugby play­ers who are lac­ing up their boots for the first time this week­end, I’m sure they will have an awe­some time get­ting out on the field and giv­ing it their best.

PHOTO: RICKY WIL­SON/STUFF

Kavekini Tabu of Ren­wick, right, is tack­led by Henry Evans of Waitohi in last year’s semi­fi­nals.

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