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Farmlands Co-operative Baywide Club Rugby Preview 07.07.18

Thursday, July 5, 2018
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With two weeks remaining in the Farmlands Co-operative Baywide Club Rugby Championship the excitement is building for play offs across the Divisions. Last weekend concluded the end of the Baywide Premier Women’s round robin with teams entering quarter finals next weekend.

Whakarewarewa v Te Puna:
Whakarewarewa will host Te Puna this weekend at Puarenga Park. A win for either team would likely secure their spot in the top four. However a draw or loss would provide an exciting final week of the Farmlands Co-operative Baywide Club Rugby Championship.

Whakarewarewa head coach Peter Smith said this weekend’s focus for his side will be delivering a team performance.

“The big focus for us is to try and go about our job. Tick the boxes and play to our strengths. But at the same time it is not about individual performance as a collective we are much stronger as a team.”

“We have put it on the boys to play for each other. To put their body on the line, there are obviously periods of the game when we are under pressure as well as times where you need to capitalise and put points on the board.”

“Last week our defence won the game, but this week it will be about cutting down Te Puna and nullifying their strengths and try to exploit their weaknesses,” said Smith.

Smith concluded this weekend is about reciprocating the hospitality Te Puna provided Whakarewarewa when they were hosted on Matakana Island.

“Not to be overwhelmed by the occasion, we know it is going to be a big one after Te Puna hosted us over at Matakana Island and we will put it on for them when they come over here this weekend. It is a big thing for us as our people, our team, club and community really want to reciprocate what Te Puna delivered for us,” said Smith.

Te Puna head coach Aidan Kuka said his side has had to work hard to achieve their win last weekend over Mount Maunganui Sports.

“We have had a good look at ourselves in the last two weeks and have worked hard to get back into the winners circle. The Mount is a very good side and have a lot of round two experience so it was pleasing to get the win over them.”

Kuka said he wants to see his side to start strongly despite having to travel.

“We want to start games better. It is going to be a difficult task to get off the bus at Puarenga Park and rip straight into it but we will give it a good go,” said Kuka.

Kuka concluded acknowledging the skill of his team’s opposition this weekend.

“Whakarewarewa are a well-balanced side with physical forwards and skilled backs so we are preparing for a tough battle,” said Kuka.

Arataki v Opotiki:
Arataki will host Opotiki this weekend at Arataki Park. With both Arataki and Opotiki sitting tied on the table and in a strong position to qualify for the upcoming semi-finals if either team secures a win this weekend.

Arataki head coach Billy Russell highlights the areas his team need to improve on in order to provide a strong performance this weekend.

“The games where we have been close should have been put beyond all doubt by being patient and closing the game out. Our goal kicking has been pretty poor, so the guys have taken it upon themselves to be a lot more accurate in that area also,” said Russell.

Russell further acknowledges Opotiki’s key areas of strength, alongside the need to regain strength after enduring injuries.

“I know they have a great kicker who can slot it from around 50 out, so discipline in our own half is huge. Traditionally, the forward pack is a good unit as well, so ours will need to be on their game,”

“We've had a bad spell of injuries and sickness so depth wise have struggled a bit. The guys that have been given a chance need to really step and the competition is close so we can't let this one slip.” finished Russell.

Opotiki head coach Richard Howe said this weekend his team will need to step up and lift their intensity.

“We have a hard task ahead of us this weekend, travelling away and facing a team in the same position as us on the table. We are a little bit flat when we are away and just need to get up. Our guys know it is not going to be easy this weekend and we need to lift our intensity.”

This weekend’s focus for Howe’s Opotiki side will be to maintain their focus on their game plan first and foremost.

“This week is a little unknown but we need to worry about ourselves and stick to what we know. We need to play like we did last week and learn when we have control of the ball we prevent the opposition from having the opportunity to score,” said Howe.

“Each week we go in with the objective to deny the opposition of points and take up opportunities when they present themselves, this weekend will be no different.”

Howe concluded, “The club hasn’t been in this position for a couple of years and we are a couple of wins away from making the playoffs. While we would like to have a full strength team we have been hit with injuries with key players’ but lucky to have depth in our team.”

Farmlands Co-operative Baywide Club Rugby Draw, Results and Standings: Click here

Farmlands Co-operative Baywide Premier 1 Club Rugby Draw:
Saturday 7 July
Premier Kick-off: 2.45pm
Development Kick-off: 1.00pm

Rotoiti v Te Puke at Emery Park
Rangataua v Tauranga Sports at Te Ariki Park
Whakarewarewa v Te Puna at Puarenga Park
Greerton v Mount at Greerton Park

Farmlands Co-operative Baywide Premier 2 Club Rugby Draw:
Saturday 7 July
Premier Kick-off: 2.45pm
Development Kick-off: 1.00pm

Arataki Marist v Opotiki at Arataki Park
Ngongotaha v Te Teko at Ngongotaha Domain
Marist St Michael’s v Waikite at Marist Park
Rangiuru v Whakatane Marist at Centennial Park

Farmlands Co-operative Baywide Division One Club Rugby Draw:
Saturday 7 July
Premier Kick-off: 2.45pm

Kahukura v Waimana at Kuirau Park
Ruatoki v Poroporo at Tuhoe Park
Paroa v Murupara at Lawson Park
Papamoa v Judea at Gordon Spratt Reserve

Farmlands Co-operative Baywide Division Two Club Rugby Draw:
Saturday 7 July
Premier Kick-off: 2.45pm

Eastern Pirates v Eastern Districts at Neil Hunt Park
Katikati v Matata at Moore Park
Edgecumbe v Reporoa at Edgecumbe Domain

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