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Tawa rugby on the rise

Jun 4th, 2014 | By | Category: Front Page Layout, Latest News, Sport

 

Tawa Rugby club

Credit: http://juntanlaycosports.com/union. Used with permission.

HARD WORK, a change of player attitude and some changes to key coaching staff over the last 18 months have paid dividends for Tawa’s Premier grade rugby team.

Last season Tawa won the Jubilee cup and the Swindale Shield, notching up the double header for their first time

Club chairman Dave Banks (RIGHT) says a big part of the success can be attributed to Steve So’oialo, older brother of formertawarugby30517 All Black Rodney So’oialo, who got player buy-in to old-school values and changed the culture at the club.

“Steve came on board and changed the direction dramatically, but slowly.”

He says that So’oialo has introduced early morning gym sessions Monday and Wednesday on top of the scheduled training sessions on Tuesdsay and Thursday.

As a result of the success, they have lured some big names to the club including former Crusader and Hawkes Bay player Tu Umaga-Marshall and New Zealand rugby sevens player George Tilsley.

The chairman is also paying tribute to the club’s strong committee.

“We’re a pretty tight-knit club, all the grades socialise together,” he says.

The local community also appears to be enjoying the team’s success according to the chairman, who says crowd numbers are up on previous years, and more of the old boys are coming out to watch.

Looking to the future he believes that they can be back-to-back champions.

“Yeah I think we can, I think we have a slightly better side from last year and the players in the team last year have gained in confidence a lot,” he says.

Tawa have hit a form slump, however, losing their last three games, going down 28-21 to Marist St Pats to miss out on winning the Swindale shield.

They are in the Jubilee cup though, and play Oriental-Rongotai this Saturday at 3pm.

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