Playford Park in Levin will be rock hard and the rugby promises to be as hot as the recent weather this Saturday for the Men’s and Women’s Central Region Qualifying tournament for the Sevens Nationals in the New Year.
Seven of the eight Hurricanes region sides (East Coast not entering) and Taranaki will contest the Men’s side of the draw, with five spots for the Nationals up for grabs, while Wellington, Manawatu, Taranaki, Hawke’s Bay and Poverty Bay will be chasing four places available for the Women’s Nationals.
The Nationals are in Rotorua on the weekend of 13 and 14 January, just over a month away.
The men’s competition will be operating two pools of four, based on seedings from last year’s Nationals. Wellington are the top seeds and headline Pool A, while Taranaki are the top seed in Pool B.
The all-important men’s crossover matches start at 3.40pm, leading up to the Cup Final at 5.40pm. Perhaps the most important men’s match of the afternoon is the playoff for fifth and sixth on field 2 at 5.20pm.
On the Women’s side of the draw, five teams (down from six last year) will be chasing the four spots for the Nationals, in one Pool. Defending Central region champions Manawatu lead out Wellington, Taranaki, Hawke’s Bay and Poverty Bay.
Women’s Pool play runs from 10.00am to 5.30pm approximately, with the straight final slated for 6.10pm on field one. and the all-important playoff for third and fourth and qualification for the Nationals at the same time on field two.
Youth will be a feature of this tournament, with several squads blooding new players at this level for the first time.
All provinces have been slowly ramping up their preparations with appearances in various local tournaments over the past few weeks and some reported recent hard training sessions.
Saturday’s tournament is one of three qualifying events for the National Tournament, with the Northern Region and Southern Region qualifiers in Cambridge and Timaru respectively on Saturday too.
Pool A: Wellington (1), Manawatu (4), Horowhenua-Kapiti (5), Poverty Bay (8)
Pool B: Taranaki (2), Hawke’s Bay (3), Wairarapa Bush (6), Wanganui (7)
Pool W: Manawatu (1), Wellington (2), Taranaki (3), Hawke’s Bay (4), Poverty Bay (5)
Men’s Pool matches:
10.20am Wellington v Horowhenua-Kapiti and Manawatu v Povery Bay
10.40am Taranaki v Wanganui
11.00am Hawke’s Bay v Wairarapa-Bush
12.00pm Wellington v Manawatu
12.20pm Horowhenua-Kapiti v Poverty Bay
12.40pm: Taranaki v Hawke’s Bay and Wairarapa Bush v Wanganui
1.40pm Horowhenua-Kapiti v Manawatu
2.00pm Taranaki v Wairarapa Bush and Wellington v Poverty Bay
2.20pm: Hawke’s Bay v Wanganui
Women’s Pool matches:
10.00am Manawatu v Hawke’s Bay and Wellington v Poverty Bay
11.20am Hawke’s Bay v Wellington
11.40am Manawatu v Taranaki
1.00pm Wellington v Taranaki
1.20pm: Poverty Bay v Hawke’s Bay
3.00pm: Wellington v Manawatu
3.20pm: Taranaki v Poverty Bay
4.40pm: Manawatu v Poverty Bay
5.00pm: Taranaki v Hawke’s Bay
Men’s Crossover matches:
3.40pm Semi-finals 1st in Pool A v 2nd in Pool B and 3rd in Pool A v 4th in Pool B
4.00pm: Men’s Cup semi-final 1
4.20pm: Men’s Cup semi-final 2
5.20pm: Men’s 3 v 4 match and Men’s 5 v 6 match
5.40pm: Men’s Final
Women’s Crossover matches:
6.10pm: Women’s Final and Women’s 3 v 4 matc
Hawke’s Bay: 1 Ricky Hayes, 2 Cole Eru, 3 Damien Scott, 4 Trent Hape, 5 Ausage Fomai, 6 Mitchell Drew, 7 Ioane Lauano, 8 Samuela Kokosigasiga, 9 Al Momosea, 10 Christopher Johnston, 11 Tyrone Dodd-Edwards, 12 Timoteo Vaiusu
Horowhenua-Kapiti: 5 Saki ROUNDS, 6 Trent RETI, 7 Faleulu MATUA, 8 David THOMPSON, 9 Ethan RETI, 10 Arana MURPHY, 11 Willie PAIA’AUA, 12 Jake QUIN, 13 Jamie HINDS, 14 Dylan TAYLOR, 15 Michael TAMBOUR, 16 Rob MILLER
Manawatu: 1 Liam Mitchell, 2 Jared Deal, 3 Kirk Tufuga, 4 Angus White, 5 Tyler Moeau, 6 Sam Malcolm, 7 Leighton Ralph, 8 Alipate Notoba, 9 Ben Wurthmuller, 10 Drew Wild , 11 Thomas Kalin, 12 Tobias Wickham-Manuel
Poverty Bay: Siosiua Moala, James Grogan, Quade Tapsell, Joshua Coward, Austin Brown, Andrew Tauatevalu, Deni Caucau, Fawn White, Viliami Kavai, Keegan Lewis, Korey Love, Moses Christie
Taranaki: 1 Lewis Ormond, 2 Michael Loft, 3 Cole Blyde, 4 Jack White, 5 Henry Miles, 6 Liam Blyde, 7 Brent Landers, 8 Latu Vaeno, 9 Meli Naholo, 10 Brayton Northcott-Hill, 11 Jade Taylor, 12 Kini Naholo
Wairarapa-Bush, Bruce Kauika-Petersen, Epeli Rayaqayaqa, Jonte Miller, Inia Katia, Cody Whittaker, Tipi Haira, Chris Raymond, Sam Smith, Ryan Hargood, Shayne Harmon, Reece Calkin, Isaac Bracewell
Wanganui: 12 Tremaine Gilbert, 18 Timoci Seruwalu, 22 Samu Kubunavanua, 13 Hamish Bennett, 20 Osea Tarogi, 5 John Kilisi, 11 George Stratton, 10 Shandon Scott, 9 Shaquille Waara, 6 Ethan Robinson, 14 Karl Pascoe, 7 Te Atuarere Albert
Wellington: 1 Dale Sabbagh, 2 Hayden Schrijvers, 3 Daniel Schrijvers, 4 Esi Komaisavai, 5 Leon Ellison, 6 Losi Filipo, 7 Levi Harmon, 8 Paddy Hughes, 9 Ryan Setafano, 10 Ratu (Varani) Komaisavai, 11 Romu Senileba, 12 Sione Ma’u
Hawke’s Bay: 1 Felicity Powdrell, 2 Niamh Jefferson, 3 Teilah Ferguson, 4 Julie Ferguson-Ngawaka, 5 Bryarn Nuku, 6 Hope Hakopa, 7 Marlane Harmer, 9 Natasha-Dean Greville, 10 Danielle Pomare-MacKay, 11 Melrose Kaukau, 12 Sincerely Horne, 13 Rawinia Mason
Manawatu: 9 Rhiarna Ferris, 10 Rebekah Cordero-Tufuga, 5 Crystal Mayes, 8 Nicole Dickins, 11 Georgia Ponsonby, 1 Selica Winiata, 7 Kristina Sue, 4 Janna Vaughan, 3 Lauren Balsillie, 2 Hayley Hutana, 12 Kahurangi Sturmey, 6 Krysten Cottrell
Poverty Bay: Sulieti Halafihi, Elizabeth Goulden, Renee Holmes, Maila Rickard, TeMaiora Olsen-Baker, Azalleyah Maaka, Jessica Pease, Shay Waikawa, Honey Mokomoko, Tui Aupouri, Maddison Reid, TeUarangi Olsen-Baker
Taranaki: 1 Tara Blyde, 2 Karen Pullen, 3 Elle Johns, 4 Jessie Fowell, 5 Tiffany Nuku, 6 Caterina Poletti, 7 Tiana Davison, 8 Brooke Neilson, 9 Casio Austin, 10 Kate Parkinson, 11 Iritana Hohaia, 12 Lana Kingi
Wellington: 9 Acacia Te Iwimate, 6 Aimee Sutorius, 12 Grace Surridge, 1 Jane Bryce, 4 Joanah Ngan-Woo, 15 Kat Simpkins, 10 Marcelle Parkes, 13 Monica Tagoai, 11 Rejieli Uluinayau, 14 Renee Savai’inaea, 8 Tina Vaaua-Hamlin, 3 Tyler Bentley