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Touch eyes ‘exciting’ season

Friday 13 January 2023 | Written by CI News Staff | Published in Other Sports, Sports

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Touch eyes ‘exciting’ season
Outlaws beat Notchya to win Beach Touch gold on Wednesday. Beach volleyball will be held today. CISNOC/23011270

Cook Islands Touch Association is excited about the 2023 season following the successful Beach Touch competition this week.

Weather held up for beach touch at the 2023 Cook Islands Beach Games after some horrid rain on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Seven teams registered for the two-day competition held at the National Beach Courts in Nikao – all consisting of experienced fast men and women. 

Two pools were created where a round robin was held taking top two teams from each pool to battle it out for playoffs.

Pool A consisted of Nukz Power, North Harbour and Outlaws and Pool B consisted of team IDK, Mighty Arrows, Notchya and Give us a Bark.

Cook Islands Touch president Julieanne (Julz) Westrupp said: “Some fun games were had with brilliant tries and amazing defense to stop some tries from being scored.”

“A standout team would be North Harbour consisting of young Maeva Robati leading with patience, wit and good passing skills.”

Outlaws dominated their pool winning both games to take first placing. This team was led by experienced Puna Hiro and Mr TMS (Maiti Samson) and then there was young Maka Puaka and Oscar Wichman to add more strength to the team. 

Taking out Pool B was team Notchya, another experienced and talented team consisting of Genesis Piri and John Noovao. 

“These two teams actually ended up playing each other in the finals which came down to Outlaws scraping it through with the win.”

The side defeated Notchya 10-7 in the final to win gold medal. North Harbour managed bronze medal after overcoming Team IDK 8-7 in a close tussle.

In the semi-finals, Notchya defeated North Harbour 9-6 while Outlaws overcame Team IDK 13-8.

Westrupp would like to thank all those teams that registered and played as well as CISNOC for organising and planning the event. 

She would also like to thank the referees (Sun, Koa and Papa Moa) for taking the whistle and controlling the games that were played. 

“Big shout out to our CISNOC CEO, Owen Lewis for leading by example and getting on the sand to have a run with your staff. Nothing like walking the talk.  Next year’s Beach Games looks to be better. But for now, the first touch event is done for 2023. Next up, our touch season.”

The touch season will kick off in early February and the categories this year will be, in the open division, men and women and then in the mixed division, opens, 18s and masters. 

Westrupp said: “This year we are asking 18s players to play in your age group and not in the open so we are able to identify talent in this age group as we have the Pacific Youth Cup tournament happening in May of this year.”

“Should you be interested in playing in this tournament, we encourage you to find an U18s team to have that opportunity in being selected to trial. Please register your team/s with Julz on mobile 55055 or Daph on mobile 54171.”

Westrupp said they will also use the season to identify possible trialists to play at the upcoming Pacific Games to be held in November in the Solomon Islands.

Cook Islands Touch Association has advertised for “managers” (men and women) so if you are interested send your CV to email citouchraro@gmail.com.

“Give us a call if you require further details or would like to register a team to play in this year’s touch season. More details to follow.”