Topic: Rugby League

Strong clash expected between NZ Māori Res and Auckland

By Wikitōria Day
  • Waikato/Bay of Plenty

Auckland head coach Richie Blackmore has recently named his side to face the NZ Māori Residents team this weekend.

The game will be held at Rotorua's Puketawhero Park and it won't be the only Auckland rugby league team touring this Queen's Birthday weekend.  The Auckland Vulcans Development U21 team will also be touring the West Coast and Canterbury at the same time.

Blackmore says, "We're excited about the potential of this squad, with a number of our players having been on the fringe of NSW Cup selection recently.  It's exciting that the full Auckland rep side is back in action - the jersey has such a long and rich history - I understand that and the players understand that."

There will be many familiar faces in the NZ Māori team as most of them have come from teams that participate in Auckland's First Division Competition, the Appliance Shed Fox Memorial Premiership.

This year, the Māori team will be coached by former Auckland Vulcans head coach and Warriors assistant, Ricky Henry.

"They have a number of very experienced players in their squad who I would have loved to have picked for the Auckland side," Blackmore adds.

Auckland Rugby League CEO John Ackland says, "Meeting the New Zealand Māori Residents in a mid-season clash like this is great for the wider game in this country, and it's a fantastic opportunity for the players and staff involved to experience representative football."

The match will kick off on Saturday 30 May at 6:30pm.

Recently, Te Kāea reporter, Rewa Harriman spoke to Kai Tahu's Manu Weepu, who was selected for the Māori squad:


Here's the full Auckland squad:

Siua Otunuku (Pt Chevalier)
Saula Solomona (Pt Chevalier)
Atunaisa Tupou (Papakura)
Semisi Fotu (Mt Albert)
Corey Seator (Marist)
Eliakim Uasi (Papakura)
Raymond Taimale (Mangere East)
Eddie Purcell (Mt Albert)
Tevita Latu (Pt Chevalier)
Herman Retzlaff (Pt Chevalier)
Stedman Lefau (Papakura)
Sione Feao (Otahuhu)
Roman Hifo (captain, Papakura)
Semisi Ma'u (Marist)
Daniel Palavi (Mt Albert)
Peter Oliveti (Papakura)
Pakisonasi Afu (Pt Chevalier)
Simon Luafalealo (Marist)


Here's the full NZ Māori Residents squad:

James Bell (Warriors, Auckland)
David Bhana (Warriors, Auckland)
Trent Bishop (Howick, Auckland)
Jono Carl (Point Chevalier, Auckland)
Sam Cook (Warriors, Auckland)
Matiu Stone-Dunn (Richmond, Auckland)
Carlos Hotene (Howick, Auckland)
Arden McCarthy (Point Chevalier, Auckland)
Dylan Moses (Point Chevalier, Auckland)
Mike Nathan (Te Aroha, Wellington)
Jeremiah Pai (Point Chevalier, Auckland)
Dillon Rota (Mount Albert, Auckland)
Kouma Samson (Glenora, Auckland)
Dion Snell (Mount Albert, Auckland)
Malo Solomona (Point Chevalier, Auckland)
Taylor Daniels (Northcote, Auckland)
Cody Te Awa (Hornby, Canterbury)
Zac Tippins (Mount Albert, Auckland)
Tony Tuia (Howick, Auckland)
Jared Tua (Warriors, Auckland)
Manu Weepu (Mount Albert, Auckland)