Two Auckland kura kaupapa got the opportunity to meet players from the NZ Warriors today as part of a project that fosters well-being in schools through professional rugby league.
They're keeping the faith, for the Warriors this season.
“The children have long followed the Warriors, and this year is no different.
So it's a big honour for us to host them today,” says TKKM o Piripono principal, Tipene Watson.
TKKM o Piripono in Auckland were chosen to host a selection of Warriors players today. But it was the players who were overjoyed with the opportunity. This is the second time Piripono has hosted the Warriors.
The school believes this is the team's true home.
“They painted the school the last time they were here,” says Curtis Hapi from Ngāpuhi.
“That's true! This is the true home of the Warriors,” say Watson.
12 Northland schools have been treated to the same experience in conjunction with the side's pre-season trial against Gold Coast in Whangarei.
Warriors second rower, Simon Mannering enjoyed the kura’s performance, “They did a pretty cool haka for us, which was part of the thing, and yeah really enjoyed it, had fun so that’s the main thing.”
Hurrell says the vibe was good, “As soon as we got in they were excited so it was excited so it was kind of a good feeling for me too to come and mingle with them so yeah.”
The visit also provides an insight into playing professional rugby league.
“They get to hear what these athletes do daily, which will give them something to strive for today, tomorrow and in the days to come,” says Watson.
30 other schools nation-wide have also been given this opportunity by the club.