Wednesday, September 4, 2019
Bay of Plenty Toa coach James Porter says his side probably got more out of losing to Waikato Under-19s than beating them.
The side lost 17-18 in the dying minutes of their seeding match on Saturday, while it wasn’t the result Porter was after. He says his team have learnt a lot from the game.
"That's the challenge. Do we learn this week, and come together correcting all the mistakes? This week's training would suggest, yes. The team's attitude has been awesome. So, we are certainly a squad that learns.”
“But now, we don't want to go into the competition with that loss, and it becomes the trend. As coaches, we've got to manage last weekend's loss really well. Make sure we are giving them the right cues. The team have taken the loss on the chin. We lost that game. Waikato didn't win it really. We gave them opportunities to come back."
Despite Porter's coaching staff only coming together at the start of the 2019, season, he says, his assistant coaches have thrived on the challenge, especially when the side is the defending champions.
“I’ve been in the team for a while. This is my third year with our 19s squad, but the other two boys Glenn Jackson and Aidan Kuka are new to this level. They both have coaching credentials.
“I think they will both acknowledge this has been a hell of a jump and the pressure and all that stuff. But they’re loving it and thriving in the environment. Jacko and AK are both first class players. They know what they’re doing.”
Porter says his side is ready for the Jock Hobbs Memorial National Under-19 Tournament, which kicks-off this weekend at Owen Delany Park, in Taupo.
"We wanted to finish top, and we did that. So, we get the easier sides, if there is an easier side, Auckland Development aren't going to be easy. But we are confident. You work all year for this.
“Auckland are in a position where they have to bring boys quickly together now. Whereas, we have mostly had the same squad the whole way through.
“So, we know what we need to do, and our confidence is where it should be, going into this tournament."
The coach says, it hasn’t been easy selecting his squad for the week-long tournament, but he is happy with the overall balance of the side.
“Losing players this week is hard, but we are pretty settled in our squad. The boys that missed out, kind of knew the whole way through, that they were close, but as coaches you have to make some hard calls.”
Porter says, the side’s resource coach Tom Martin has also been helpful in preparing the players for the Tournament.
“Tom, usually works for New Zealand 7s but he has been massive in helping the team be ready for Saturday.
Bay of Plenty Toa Squad
1. Benet Kumeroa (C) (Rangiuru)
2. Chris Hemi (Te Teko)
3. Poukohe Sorenson Tawhara (Te Puna)
4. Hunter Wharerau (Whakarewarewa)
5. Rory Marsh (Ngongotaha)
6. Pena Taumata (Te Puke)
7. Tamarau Karepa (Arataki)
8. Louis Bruinsma (Tauranga Sports)
9. Lockie Devereux (Rangataua)
10. Nikora Broughton (Arataki)
11. Malupo Ma’afu (Te Teko)
12. Taituha Woller (Te Puna)
13. Simione Ofa (Rotoiti)
14. Jamaine Tawa (Judea)
15. Jack Hollinshead (Te Puke Sports)
16. Conor Mceldowney (Tauranga Sports)
17. Bailey Gordon (Arataki)
18. Cassius Misa (Te Teko)
19. Connor Paki (Arataki)
20. Josh Calvert (Mount Maunganui Sports)
21. Tamaikoha Te Aute (Rangiuru)
22. Fritz Rayasi (Arataki)
23. Sam Tuibua (Mount Maunganui Sports)
24. Peni Lasaqa (Tauranga Sports)
25. Izhan Le Comte (Rangataua)
Bay of Plenty Toa 2019 Management:
Head Coach: James Porter
Assistant Coaches: Glenn Jackson & Aidan Kuka
Manager: Michaela Tahere
Strength & Conditioning Coach: Scott Joblin
Physio: Aine Conway
Analyst: Hannah McDonald
Jock Hobbs Memorial Under-19 Tournament:
Match Day One Game Details:
Bay Toa vs Auckland Development
Sunday, September 8
Field 3, Owen Delany Park, Taupo
Match Day Two draw will be determined by Day One results.