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St Kent’s field 5 Cook Islanders against local sides

Wednesday 15 April 2009 | Published in Regional

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Wednesday 15: The Saint Kentigern College first fifteen rugby squad will play their first of three matches today against the Cook Islands Sports Academy squad.

The college team includes five Cook Islands players – Sema Robati, Adam Tangata, Denis Heather, Ben Tautu and Mark Tuaati. St Kent’s head coach Grant Truman says that the team’s Cook Islands tour, which will include one game on the island of Aitutaki, is all part of the team’s pre season build up.

He hopes the team will play with more cohesion over their next three games as the team has only played one game together prior to their tour.

Truman says that only a few players are from last year’s first fifteen squad so he hopes that they will come together as a unit before the Auckland Secondary Schools rugby season starts.

He says that this is also the first squad that has included so many Cook Islands players.

Apart from wanting a few tough pre-season matches here in the Cooks, Truman says another big reason for the tour is for the squad to have an understanding of where their Cook Islands team mates come from.

“The Cook Islands boys are great attributes to the team and this tour will be a good learning experience for the squad,” says Truman. Truman says this tour is also a great opportunity to tighten their links with the Cook Islands and promote rugby in the islands.

Today’s game between St Kent’s and the Cook Islands Sports Academy will kick off at 3.30pm at the Titikaveka College rugby field.

Admission is $2. The match will be refereed by Johnny Hosking assisted by Pare Rongokea and Robert Graham.

Cook Islands Sports Academy squad: Tino Napa, Temata Rangi, Tupou Faireka Jnr, Fernandez Patia, Willie Marsters, Kairan Marsh, Uriarau Parakoti, Gary Tangiiti, Nathan Pere, Tave Tereapii, Junior Kirikava, Teariki Tou, Turoa Kamana, Joseph Napa, Tatuava Tatuava, John Rea, Joshua Maui, Tai Joseph Jnr, Aaron Vaiimene and Bill Tangapiri.

St Kentigern squad: David Pohlen, Mitchell Binney, Sootala Fa’aso’o, Mokani Fuavao, Jarrod Firth, Joshua McWilliams, Brendan Peat, Hamish Gee, Yates Gordon, Dennis Heather, Oliver Johnson, Liam King, Angus Kirkwood, Nick Lyons, Sam Marshall, Stephen Mackenzie, Sema Robati, Liam Steel, Robert Sullivan, Adam Tangata, Ben Tautu, Mark Tuaati, Albert Vete, Jordyn Walters, Ihaka Watene, Tim Wilson and James Wright.- Matariki Wilson