Caption: Rotorua BHS v St Kentigern (Pic Pania Gifford) lowres.Photo:SUPPLIED.
The Kelston Boys’ High School dynasty in the BNZ Condor Sevens has ended for now.
Otago BHS knocked out the four-time defending champion in a 19-17 Round of 16 thriller after the hosts missed a kick in front of the posts.
The southerners play Rotorua BHS in the second of the four quarter finals tomorrow.
“It was a team effort, we stuck together and kept to our structures and we have done the South Island proud,” said captain Reece Mau’u.
Otago, who earlier beat De La Salle College and St John’s College (Hamilton) in pool play, came north as one of the favourites.
“Our coaches have been preparing us for about six weeks and we have been training hard with the Otago men’s team which has helped us a lot,” Mau’u said, adding that the 34-0 and 29-10 pool victories were not as easy as they looked.
“We were struggling in the second game but pushed through and are happy with the win.”
Meanwhile, Hamilton GHS stormed into contention for their second successive girls title with three thumping wins in pool play.
Featuring rising stars Ariana Hira-Herangi, Tenika Willison and Terina Te Tamaki, the Waikato champions saw off South Otago HS 33-0, Kaipara College 49-7 and the composite Condor Babas 41-0 to top the seedings.
Hamilton faces neighbours Fairfield College in tomorrow’s Cup quarter finals.
Former champions Feilding HS are also in the last eight, although they did suffer a 0-17 loss to Opotiki College in pool play.
Feilding meets Lincoln HS (Canterbury) while the Bay of Plenty champions take on Wellington East Girls’ College coached by former NZ Maori back Norm Broughton.
North meets South in the other quarter final with Kaipara College facing the unbeaten Southland GHS.
A new format in the boys tournament – with eight pools of three followed by a round of 16 – turned up some surprising results.
Indeed, only four unbeaten teams remain after Day One.
Francis Douglas Memorial College, who edged Kelston 12-10 and Opotiki 10-5 in Pool A, Rotorua BHS, Otahuhu College and Otago all had clean sheets.
Rotorua booked a quarter final berth with a 12-0 win over two-time finalists Nelson College after earlier accounting for Hastings BHS 22-17 and St Kentigern College 26-10.
“It was a battle,” said Rotorua captain Isaac Te Aute after the final match. “The Nelson boys were tough and we also started with a tough one against a strong Hastings side so we are happy with the day overall.”
Te Aute singled out Latu Vaeno and Ngarohi Black for special mention.
“They’ve been outstanding not only today but also through the BOP tournament and the rest of our preparation.”
Mt Albert Grammar School and Gisborne BHS, coached by Rua Tipoki, each won their pool but bowed out later in the day while Pools B and F were both decided on points differential after all three teams had a win and a loss.
“Belief and work rate was the key to coming back after the Hamilton loss,” said Scot’s College captain Peter Umaga-Jensen who emerged from Pool B. “Most of our team have come through the successful XVs season so tonight is about preparation and getting our heads right.”
Meanwhile, the Scott Waldrom-coached St Patrick’s College (Silverstream) lost to Feiulding in Pool F but go through to the Cup round tomorrow.
“The coach wasn’t too happy and I won’t say his exact words but we got up for the next game and managed to do the job,” said captain Daniel Schrijvers.
“We have been successful in Wellington, have some big wingers and like to play it wide but this is obviously a big step up,” Schrijvers continued. “We haven’t seen Hamilton BHS play however they are obviously a good team and will surely bring heaps to the match.”
The 28th Condor Sevens will be live on the Rugby Channel from 12:30 tomorrow and Sir Gordon Tietjens and memners of the Dubai-bound All Blacks Sevens teams will be in attendance for the quarter finals.
FIXTURES FOR SUNDAY 30 NOVEMBER
SHIELD Quarter Finals
09:00 Opotiki College v St John’s College (Hamilton)
09:20 Hastings BHS v Rosmini College
09:40 Whangarei BHS v Wanganui Collegiate
10:00 Massey HS v Wesley College
BOWL Quarter Finals
09:00 De La Salle College v St Kentigern College
09:00 Nelson College v Kelston BHS
09:20 St Bede’s College v St Thomas of Canterbury College
09:20 Mt Albert Grammar School v Gisborne BHS
CUP Quarter Finals
12:40 Francis Douglas Memorial College v Otahuhu College
12:59 Rotorua BHS v Otago BHS
13:18 Scot’s College v Feilding HS
13:37 St Patrick’s Silverstream v Hamilton BHS
BOWL Quarter Finals
09:40 South Otago HS v Mt Albert GS
09:40 Karamu HS v Ruawai College
10:00 New Plymouth GHS v Otahuhu College
Motueka HS bye
CUP Quarter Finals
11:00 Hamilton GHS v Fairfield College
11:20 Opotiki College v Wellington East Girls’ College
11:40 Southland GHS v Kaipara College
12:00 Lincoln HS v Feilding HS