Bay of Plenty's U15 and U17 players put their skills on trial today in the hopes of representing the region. BOP Touch is investing time and energy in developing their younger grades of not only players, but referees too.
Sending the U15 & U17 to the junior national touch tournament next year in Christchurch has been the main focus for Bay of Plenty Touch.
“Usually our season doesn't start till October but we have started a little bit early because these kids need to fundraise to get their $1200 each to get all the way down to Christchurch,” says coaching director from the Bay of Plenty Touch, Ira Te Kani.
Trials were conducted today across seven grades which included boys, girls, mixed and development teams.
According to Ira Te Kani the junior side shows promise, “Last year we've had our most successful year and we had three teams contest finals.”
Today is also about teaching our youth to become referees.
Tari Sinclair from Bay of Plenty Touch says, “We got one of our youngest referees here, today is his first day referring. He's only like 13/14 (Tumanako) and that's what we want to try and promo young referees.”
The touch season begins next month and those successful in today’s trials will be announced next Wednesday.