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Positive Messages Shared at Tournament Awards

Positive Messages Shared at Tournament Awards

Auckland, New Zealand September 5, 2013 – After four tough days of competition, the Awards evening is a chance for the players to celebrate just some of the successes of their peers, along with the contributions of the match officials, coaches, managers and trainers. Now an integral part of the NZRL National Secondary Schools tournament, it is held following the semi finals on Thursday to accommodate the teams who have to travel on Friday.

This year saw the addition of an award recognising the contribution Haka make to the tournament, with three schools invited to perform theirs on the night. A representative from the school spoke about how their Haka and what it meant to them, then they performed and were then judged by a team of experienced performers lead by Donna Grant, of Manaakitanga Aotearoa Trust and a member of the Warriors Board. The finalists were Southern Cross Campus, Tokoroa High School and the winner Rotorua Boys High School.

Speakers during the evening included Mayor of Auckland Len Brown, Vic Tamati from It’s Not OK!, Warriors players Ben Henry and Glen Fishiiahi, Dain Guttenbeil and Tony Iro from the NZRL and Wallace Haumaha from NZ Police.

All the speakers focused on a common theme, asking the players to take what they were learning in their roles as team members and players and applying this to their lives. Key words and phrases used by many of the speakers included discipline, courage, respect, leadership, making good choices, building good relationships with their team mates, visitors from the other schools, and their wider community. Mt Albert Grammar captain Nathaniel Roache put it most succinctly when he said “Good players make good people and good people better players” which earnt him applause from the assembled group.

Ben Henry and Glen Fisiiahi both stressed the importance of hard work, reminding the players to perform at their best at all times as they never knew who might be watching. Tony Iro spoke about his dreams for league in NZ, saying that within a few years we should be the strongest league country in the world, and they could be a part of it.

Winners of the 2013 NZRL National Secondary Schools Awards were:
It's Not Okay Fairplay Award Developing Grade: Kauri Harema, Whangarei

It's Not Okay Fairplay Award Premier Grade:
Taylor Waenga, Kaitaia College

Match Official Developing Grade:
Chris McMillan, Auckland

Match Official Premiership Grade: Kena Waikai, Waikato
Trainer of the Tournament: Phil Kingi, Kelston

Manager of the Tournament: Billy Maea, Tokoroa

Coach of the Tournament: Mark Rice, St Paul's

National Secondary Schools Merit Team (1 - 17)
1. Bradley Abbey, St Paul's College
2. Latu Vaeno, Rotorua Boys' High School
3. Brody Lam, Mt Albert Grammar
4. John Tapueluelu, Mt Albert Grammar
5. Matthew Faitotoa, Kelston Boys' High School
6. Irae Simone, Mt Albert Grammar
7. Zion Ioka, Kelston Boys' High School
8. Jonah Sofele, St Paul's College
9. Semisi Havili, St Paul's College
10. Seremaia Sovea, Kelston Boys' High School
11. Faitotoa Faitotoa, Kelston Boys' High School
12. Jazz Tevaga, Papakura High School
13. Joseph Price, Otahuhu College
14. Nathaniel Roache, Mt Albert Grammar
15. Joseph Manu, Tokoroa High School
16. Connor Purcell, Mt Albert Grammar
17. Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, Rotorua Boys' High School
NZRL Emerging Talent Award: Matthew Faitotoa, Kelston Boys HS
Vodafone Warriors Best Forward Award: Semisi Havili, St Paul's
Vodafone Warriors Best Back Award: Irae Simone, Mt Albert Grammar

Best Cultural Salute: Rotorua Boys High School
Watties MVP award: to be named after the Finals on Friday
NZRL More Than Just a Game Award: Southland Boys High School


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