Thursday, June 6, 2019
He may not be tall in stature but Te Aihe Toma stands above many when he dons his Te Puna jersey.
This weekend the 173cm halfback will put the jersey on for his 100th game for Te Puna. Toma is one of three ‘game managers’, Te Puna coach Aidan Kuka turns to when he needs something to happen in the match.
"Our game managers have been doing a pretty good job. They’ve got real clarity around how we want to play the game in each part of the field."
Kuka says having players like Jordie Stone, Reece McDonald and Toma are a huge benefit for his team.
"Those three have been directing play for the last three or four weeks and Te Aihe is a big-game player for us. I think this is only his third game this year because of injury. But he’s bounced back from it pretty well. He’s really fired up for this game,” Kuka says.
“He’s only a short guy but he plays a lot of halfback and also a bit of first-five. He’s real nippy and an instinctive player and has the ability to really break a game open."
Kuka’s game managers will have to work hard in their next match in the Farmlands Co-operative Baywide Men’s Club Rugby.
Te Puna travel to Murray Salt Stadium to take on Te Puke.
Te Puke had a solid 47-11 win over Whakarewarewa, as did Te Puna beating Rangataua 57-8. Both sides will be looking to continue their winning form.
In the other matches in the round; injury ravaged Whakarewarewa will have to bounce back quickly from last week’s loss when they head to Centennial Park to take on Rangiuru, Greerton host Tauranga Sports and Rangataua travel to Blake Park to play Mount Maunganui.
Development matches kick off at 1.00pm and Premier Matches at 2.45pm
Click here for draws and kick off times for all matches.