E’stel Beverage sales manager Andy Bunny presents the Tasman Trophy to James Hawkey of Marist club
Marist won an absolute thriller of an E’stel Tasman Trophy at Trafalgar Park on Saturday. In my book the afternoon couldn’t have been any better, with 2,000 enthralled spectators and 7,000 viewing on livestreaming – with extra time and the match finishing under lights.
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Marist and Waimea Old Boys were the two outstanding team throughout the round robin. In fact after 2 matches and 180 minutes of rugby against each other only three points separated them.
The game illustrated how far premier club rugby has come in the last five years. We had Mako coaches and squad members watching the livestream from their Super franchises, the Mako manager watching from Argentina where he’s currently manager of the NZ Under 20 team at the World Cup, and many supporters from around the world commenting on the quality of individual performances and the skill, style and physicality of the teams’ performances.
It was a match that had everything and deserved the title of Final. In my opinion this is the premier competition of the region and illustrates to all, and most importantly the Mako coaches, which players are of NPC quality.
The Final was a magnificent occasion and fitting finale for our new sponsors, E’stel Beverages owners Andrew Strand and Wayne Herring and sales manager Andy Bunny. Tthey thoroughly enjoyed the match and occasion from the Mako coaches box. It is absolutely superb for that we have a new naming rights partner that loves community rugby as much as we do.
I congratulate both teams for a magnificent game, Michel Lash who had the best game I have seen him referee, and those huge number of club volunteers from both clubs who each week work behind the scenes for their team and club community.
I think the quality of coaching was reflected in the quality of the game and I salute the coaches of the respective teams, Gavin Briggs and Shawn Begg (Marist), Mark Milne, Dion Mytton and Billy Guyton (WOB).