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Schools Confirmed For NZRL National Tournament

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Schools Confirmed For NZRL National Tournament 

Auckland, New Zealand, August 14, 2013 – St Paul’s College goes into the NZRL’s National Secondary Schools’ Tournament as both the defending champions and the current Auckland champions, but they’re due to face the tournament’s strongest field yet.

With schoolboy rugby league growing at a rapid rate - and with 18 schools playing in Auckland’s College Rugby League competition alone - criteria was introduced this year to ensure the best teams from throughout New Zealand were at the national tournament in Papakura from September 2-6.

Play-offs have been held around the country, with the top qualifying schools from the NZRL’s seven zones being Kaitaia College (Northland), St Paul’s College (Akarana), Otahuhu College (Counties Manukau), Tokoroa High School (Upper Central), Tu Toa College (Mid-Central), Taita College (Wellington) and Aranui High School (Southern). They’ll compete in the 16-school Premiership Grade alongside the likes of Kelston Boys’ High School, Mt Albert Grammar School and Westlake Boys’ High School.

“There won’t be easy games,” says the NZRL’s General Manager of Football & Community Dain Guttenbeil. “Even in pool play there will be heavyweight clashes, like Sir Edmund Hillary Collegiate meeting Mt Albert Grammar, St Paul’s against Westlake, and Kelston versus Tu Toa.”

Tu Toa College, from Palmerston North, is among the more interesting entries. The school, which has just over 100 pupils, has a big focus on sporting excellence. Tu Toa beat New Plymouth Boys’ High School in the final of the Issac Luke Cup to win their place in the tournament.

The NZRL’s national tournament has been oversubscribed again this year, with entries capped at 24 schools. Eight will compete in the Developing Grade, where notable first-time entrants include Rotorua Boys’ High School and Southland Boys’ High School.

The structure of the tournament sees all 24 schools play games on each of the five days. The first three days are pool play, with semi-finals in the various divisions on the Thursday (September 5) and the finals on Friday (September 6). Outside activities will again include a leadership course with It’s Not OK!, visits to local primary schools, an awards night, and a position-specific coaching session with former greats of the game. Papakura High School is again the tournament’s host school.

The schools entered for the 2013 NZRL National Secondary Schools’ Tournament are:

Premiership Schools (16 teams)
Aranui High School (Southern), Henderson High School (Akarana), Kaitaia College (Northland), Kamo High School (Northland), Kelston Boys' High School (Akarana), Mt Albert Grammar School (Akarana), Otahuhu College (Counties Manukau), Papakura High School (Counties Manukau), Sir Edmund Hillary Collegiate (Counties Manukau), Southern Cross Campus College (Counties Manukau), St Paul's College (Akarana), Taita College (Wellington), Tangaroa College (Counties Manukau), Tokoroa High School (Upper Central), Tu Toa College (Mid-Central), Westlake Boys' High School (Akarana)

Developing Schools (8 teams)
Aotea College (Wellington), Fraser High School (Upper Central), Howick College (Counties Manukau), Northcote College (Akarana), Rotorua Boys' High School (Upper Central), Southland Boys' High School (Southern), St Thomas of Canterbury College (Southern), Whangarei Boys' High School (Northland)

ENDS

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