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Old Boys-University: Teariki Ben-Nicholas

 

Profile May 2015: In native tongue Teariki means Chief.

His father Tai is the head of the Oceania Football Confederation. His mother is a successful accountant.

After attending King's College and seeking his his own independence, Teariki shifted to Wellington to study commerce and law at Victoria University . The move has been an overwhelming success.

His study is on track and Teariki is a regular selection for the Old Boys University Goats. He has played 13 Premier games and scored four tries.

Additionally he was a member of the Wellington Under-19 team that won the first National championship and he has just earned selection for the New Zealand Under-20 team.

He made starting debut today for the New Zealand U20s against Samoa in the Oceania Junior Championship on Australia's Gold Coast -alongside club teammates, halfback Luke Campbell and right wing Wes Goosen.

Teariki describes the appeal of the capital:

"I came to Wellington for academic reasons and that was the right call because I really like the university. I like the city to because its small and easy to get around. The rugby has been great. OBU has a great vibe and I have done better than I thought I would."

Interestingly he flats with Goosen and Sam McNicol, a New Zealand Schools' selection in 2013 and a recent Hurricanes call-up.

Teariki is a No.8. He is known for his uncompromising carries and diligent defence.

He made the First XV at King's in 2011, coming off the bench to debut against Onehunga High School.

Teariki wasn't a regular selection in Year 11. The 2011 First XV reached the 1A semi-finals and included Simon Hickey (2014 NZ under-20 captain), Fa'asiu Fuatai (Otago) and Ngataua Hukatai (New Zealand Warrior).

The latter scored two tries in the last-minute to help King's dramatically beat Auckland Grammar, 25-21. Despite not playing, Teariki describes that game as the "best game of rugby I have ever seen."

In 2012 and 2013 Teariki was a regular member of the King's team. In 2012 King's had a poor season and finished sixth in 1A.

In 2013, they won 13 out of 19 games, beat National Champions, Hamilton Boys' High School and cracked the 1A semi-finals. Teariki was selected for the Blues Under-18 squad, but reflects it was a season of near misses.

"We lost to St. Kent's twice and in both games we led. In the first game we were up 18-3, but didn't take our chances and they came back."

King's coaches were Kevin Putt (South Africa Sevens), Tasesa Lavea (Melbourne Storm) and Graeme Syms (National Top Four winner). All three had a huge influence on Teariki:

"The First XV environment at King's was really competitive, well resourced and semi-professional. It helped me when I joined the Academy in Wellington."

"All three coaches complemented each other. Kevin was the fiery one. He waved his hands around and revved us up when we needed it. Tasesa was quiet, but real considered, you listened when he spoke. Graeme was my boarding master so he was like a father figure."

New Zealand teammate Mitchell Karpik was captain of the 2013 First XV and the player of the tournament at the first National Under-19 tourney in Tapou last year.

The Under-19 tournament was an event that Teariki really flourished in. He played in every game as Wellington won the title. In the final, Luke Campbell, Pakai Turia, Faraimo Nofoaiga and Chase Tiatia scored tries as Canterbury was conquered 32-21.

"It was an awesome experience to win the Under-19's. The boys had a really good bond and that brought out the best in us."

Results from games played:
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Date Competition Rnd Pos Team 1 Score 1 Team 2 Score 2 T C P DG Pts
2017-08-05 Jubilee Cup Premier 9 8 OBU: Premier 32 HOBM: Premier 19 0 0 0 0 0
2017-07-29 Jubilee Cup Premier 8 8 OBU: Premier 50 Tawa: Premier 22 0 0 0 0 0
2017-07-22 Jubilee Cup Premier 7 8 OBU: Premier 21 Marist St Pats: Premier 22 0 0 0 0 0
2017-07-15 Jubilee Cup Premier 6 8 OBU: Premier 56 Wainui: Premier 22 0 0 0 0 0
2017-07-08 Jubilee Cup Premier 5 8 OBU: Premier 39 Ories: Premier 24 0 0 0 0 0
2017-06-24 Jubilee Cup Premier 3 18 OBU: Premier 19 HOBM: Premier 17 1 0 0 0 5
2017-06-10 Jubilee Cup Premier 1 8 OBU: Premier 36 Norths: Premier 10 1 0 0 0 5
2017-06-03 Swindale Shield 13 19 OBU: Premier 43 Avalon: Premier 10 0 0 0 0 0
2017-05-27 Swindale Shield 12 8 OBU: Premier 38 HOBM: Premier 36 0 0 0 0 0
2017-05-20 Swindale Shield 11 8 OBU: Premier 39 Upper Hutt Rams: Upper Hutt Ra ... 24 1 0 0 0 5
2017-05-13 Swindale Shield 10 4 OBU: Premier 11 Wainui: Premier 16 0 0 0 0 0
2017-05-06 Swindale Shield 9 8 OBU: Premier 30 Norths: Premier 7 0 0 0 0 0
2017-04-29 Swindale Shield 8 8 OBU: Premier 11 Ories: Premier 32 0 0 0 0 0
2017-04-22 Swindale Shield 6 5 OBU: Premier 28 Marist St Pats: Premier 20 1 0 0 0 5
2017-04-15 Swindale Shield 5 5 OBU: Premier 27 Petone: Premier 20 0 0 0 0 0
2016-04-27 Swindale Shield 7 8 OBU: Premier 34 Norths: Premier 29 2 0 0 0 10
2016-04-23 Swindale Shield 6 8 OBU: Premier 32 Wellington: The Axemen 6 4 0 0 0 20
2016-04-16 Swindale Shield 5 19 OBU: Premier 25 Ories: Premier 24 0 0 0 0 0
2016-04-09 Swindale Shield 4 18 OBU: Premier 17 Pare-Plim: Premier 6 0 0 0 0 0
2016-04-02 Swindale Shield 2 8 OBU: Premier 23 Marist St Pats: Premier 19 0 0 0 0 0
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