Pos­sum hops off his cherry picker

South Waikato News - - PICK THE WINNERS -

Fri­day night’s match against Can­ter­bury was the last for a Waikato favourite and his trusty chain­saw.

War­ren ‘Pos­sum’ Allen an­nounced last week he would hang up his chain­saw af­ter 20 years of stand­ing in the cherry picker which looks over the sta­dium.

He used the chain break to make dif­fer­ent tones with his chain­saw and played along to the Mooloo song when the team ran out.

His du­ties also in­cluded turn­ing up three hours be­fore kick­off, set­ting up the cherry picker, throw­ing out lol­lies to the young fans, walk­ing around the sta­dium and in­tro­duc­ing him­self to the pa­trons, in­ter­act­ing with the crowd and revving the chain­saw when the op­po­si­tion kicked for goal and when the home team scored a try.

‘‘I love the at­mos­phere at the games and as a born and bred Hamil­to­nian I love the pas­sion we have for our rugby,’’ Mr Allen said.

‘‘I’m hon­oured to be a part of our team. I’m sad I will be leav­ing my post. It was a strug­gle to say that I was re­tir­ing but I’m now mov­ing into a new era where I will be in the sta­dium with my fam­ily and the Waikato rugby fam­ily.

‘‘You never know I might have a few lol­lies on me.’’

Af­ter 20 years of ded­i­ca­tion the Chiefs and Waikato, the Waikato Rugby Union and the Chiefs gave Allen a three-year fam­ily mem­ber­ship for him to share with his three daugh­ters and two grand­chil­dren.

‘‘My old­est grand­son knows I’m well-known. He came home from school and said his teacher said I was fa­mous which was pretty cool,’’ he said.

The name Pos­sum came from his time as a qual­i­fied line me­chanic build­ing pow­er­lines. Af­ter colour­ing his hair orange and black and styling it into a Mo­hawk his work­mates told him he looked like a pos­sum up a pole.

Photo: WAIKATO TIMES FILE

FAREWELL: War­ren ‘Pos­sum’ Allen has been a fix­ture at Waikato Sta­dium for two decades.

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