Harbour Rugby – ODT Kick for Touch, Taieri Coach Sacked

Sacking of ‘Erik V’ huge overreaction

Varsity predictably was too good for AU and the Pony Pit boys are going nowhere fast as their injury toll rises – season gone for them.
The word is Varsity could play its strongest team of the year against the Eels this weekend – that is ominous for all!

Dunedin inflicted Harbour’s second loss of the year with a powerful forward performance in terrible conditions at the Flying Geese and Lobster emporium.

Harbour gets overtaken by Varsity at the top and Dunedin is six points clear in third.

In the biggest result since Bob Crane won a maiden trot at Forbury and paid over $200 to win, Zingari upset all the form pundits including, yours truly, to upset Taieri, and just remember, it lost by 137 points two weeks ago.

Taieri holds on to the four just over Southern and Zingers storms to eighth.

More soon.

Green Island destroyed Pirates by 50 to be only three points out of the four in a logjam.

The week of shame

I have alluded over the past few weeks that all is not well on the Taieri, both on and off the field, and how prophetic that has turned out to be.

Taieri went down to Zingari in what was a massive upset in the weekend.

In the past few weeks, it has lost to Dunedin, Kaik, Harbour and now Zingari.

It has reacted by sacking coach Erik Vaafusuaga this week.

Remember this team is still in the top four and has had massive injury problems this year with many players playing out of position.

A case in point: promising midfielder Kori Rupene has been playing blindside flanker.

Allied to the fact that it has lost several senior players in O’Connell, Webster, Larsen, Parker, Scott, Collins and Casey is it any wonder it isn’t travelling that well?

So in my opinion the sacking of “Erik V” is a massive overreaction from the committee.

Erik is a stalwart of the club, played more than 200 games and was instrumental in it regaining premier status.

He has been in its coaching ranks for several years and took it to a final last year.

When the club was looking for coaches this year he was the only one to put his hand up.

This situation has been badly handled and “Erik V” does not deserve this.

I know there are two sides to every story but this should have been handled at the end of the season.

I’ve had several texts and emails from most clubs saying they are shocked about the way Erik has been treated and he deserves better.

Look out for Speights/ODT Rugby Chat today on the ODT website on which Taieri explains its position.

Taieri, in an interesting aside, has been treated badly in this year’s draw so when it rains it pours.

The other potential top-four sides – Varsity, Harbour, Southern and Dunedin – miss one game against each other in the vagaries of the draw while Taieri plays them all twice.

Murray Roulston and Hayden Finch have taken over the reins and I wonder how much money that has cost – but I digress.

As always, I’ll keep you informed!

So where are they now?

So where are the massive groups of critics now that Zingers has won a game?

The media hacks were all over the club when it lost by a paltry 137 the other week – 40 inquiries for interviews, apparently.

It then beat a top-four side and how many requests – none!

There is a shock! Perhaps the bleating about our competition will now subside – until the next time.

Remember note to self to just ignore.

Country rugby

In no particular order.

Old Boys in the north decided to play at the weekend to keep the points ticking over – perhaps it’ll default again next week.

Unbelievably, playing-through champ in Central Alex has finally won a game to get off the mark in the comp.

Did nobody tell the club it started in April?

My favourite team Matak had yet another win this time over the Maggots from Ranfurly.

The Maggots’ season is going to hell in a handcart.

There are also rumours of a young Matak prop left unconscious after an incident with a senior “Maggot.”

Tell me it’s not true.

For some reason, the competition was postponed in the south, not through lack of interest but because they had a “State of Origin” game.

Lads, you’re not playing league down there. I’m down there this weekend looking after the Dog Sharks against Clutha so I’ll get them back on track.

Coming and going and other bits

Perhaps the Eels need to get the best coach on the Taieri back involved, in “Grimey Anderson”.

He was also the best horse trainer but now that is being seriously questioned.

He’s got a nice middle handicapper in Titan Banner who hasn’t quite made the top rung but he sends it to the Purdons for a week and it beats the best horse in the country!

They either have good pills in the feed or they might be better trainers.

Southland is chasing more Harbour players, I hear.

It already has Aleki Morris and Big Hale T-Pole but now it is chasing big Tonga, Halaleva and George Bower.

Has its comp been cancelled down there?

Or is someone pocketing big commission cheques?

Ex-Super Coach Belcher, from the Magpies, in charge of the Ravens in junior colts who haven’t lost in a decade and who he confidently predicted wouldn’t lose for another decade, lost to Zingers at the weekend.

Why am I not surprised?

Big Chris Preddy from Zingari brought up his 100th for Zingari at the weekend and what a way to do it, in the win against Taieri.

Good on ya, mate, and I hope you didn’t have to buy a drink at Boothill on Saturday night.

I hear Seilala Mapasua was yellow-carded for a “cynical” act in the Hawks v Eels game recently.

“Maps”, is that a good look for a Union coaching officer?

Just wondering if they cut the overtime for that?

This Weekend

The victories keep on coming as John Hyde from Varsity’s challenge was a mere inconvenience.

On to the very prompt Steve Baughan from Zingers this week, so the impossible 10 straight is now a certainty.

Harbour (13+) could put 100 on Pirates at the Yardarm but with the inclement weather let’s hope not.

Varsity (13+) could make cannon fodder of the Eels at the Elver Pit, given the week they’ve had. Dunedin (12-) always loses to Kaik but surely not this day.

Southern (13+) at home may bring Zingers back to earth with a thump.

The Spannerheads (13+) away at Shetland Pony Pavilion will hold too many wrenches for the AU boys who are decimated by injury.

The late mail

Paul Grant is turning out for Kaik tomorrow, against my protestations, and his battle with Dunedin No8 Gareth Evans should be a highlight.