1958 Kowai Rugby ti­tle cel­e­brated

Northern Outlook - - FRONT PAGE -

A cham­pi­onship won 60 years ago in 1958 will be cel­e­brated at Loburn on Satur­day (May 12th) as mem­bers of the Kowai team gather to watch Ash­ley matches.

Six of the re­main­ing seven are able to make the day, David Dalzell, Arthur Loffha­gen, Brian and Ian Peter, John Rickerby and James Wil­son while Er­rol Rickerby is un­able to at­tend. 1958 marked the last ti­tle for Kowai who had dom­i­nated post World War 2 with vic­to­ries in 1948, 1950 52, 53 and 1955.

Brian Peter re­calls it was a close call as Kowai and Ran­giora were equal on points at the end of round robin play but the Sub Union de­cided a play off match would be sched­uled at Wood­end. ‘‘We won 5-0 by a sin­gle try scored by John Dalzell and con­verted by Ivan McNally with the match re­ferred by the Wood­end School prin­ci­pal, Mal­colm Liv­ing­stone’’. The sig­nif­i­cance of this 60 year re­u­nion is em­pha­sised by the fact it took 56 years for an­other ti­tle when Ash­ley (Kowai and Loburn amal­ga­mated in 1977) beat Glen­mark in 2014.

Many of the team had rep­re­sented North Canterbury and Coun­try but most were by 1958 to­wards the twi­light of their play­ing days. Brian Peter made his rep­re­sen­ta­tive de­but that sea­son and af­ter leav­ing the dis­trict en­joyed a fur­ther nine ti­tles with Glen­mark. James (Jim) Wil­son be­came a prom­i­nent ad­min­is­tra­tor be­ing a life mem­ber of North Canterbury Rugby and in­volved as re­cently as 2005 within the or­gan­is­ing com­mit­tee for their 100 year cel­e­bra­tions.

The team will be hop­ing their day is a good omen; a 40 year re­u­nion of the 1955 side saw the 14 in at­ten­dance wit­ness a first ever vic­tory for the com­bined club over Ka­iapoi, 20-19.

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