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91 years of continuous club rugby radio commentary

Swindale Shield | 21 February 2018 | Club Rugby

91 years of continuous club rugby radio commentary

Club rugby will be back on-air in 2018, with Wellington’s Te Upoko o Te Ika the sole broadcaster for the first five weeks of the Swindale Shield, broadcasting“The Rugby Round-Up” every Saturday through the Swindale Shield and Jubilee Cup from 2.00pm on 1161AM, or online at

Regular Match-Day commentators, Adam Julian, JP Tocker and Gordon Noble-Campbell will provide live commentary from around the Wellington region, every Saturday afternoon, with regular support from Wellington sporting legends, John Morrison and Andy Leslie, together with other guest commentators.


Wellington is the oldest, continuous, Club Rugby radio broadcaster, in the world. The first request to broadcast Club Rugby in Wellington was made to the Wellington Rugby Union in June 1927 by the Radio Broadcasting Company of New Zealand Limited, on their “new-super- power” frequency 2YA, (formerly2YK), transmitting from the top of Mount Victoria.

The first club rugby match ever broadcast in Wellington was on Saturday, 23 July 1927 on 2YA, between University and Old Boys. The match was played at 2.30pm and broadcast live from Athletic Park. University won the match, 21 points to 11, in front of a reported 9,000 spectators. The Match Day commentator was Chas (Charles) Lamberg, who was the rugby commentator on 2YA during this early period. Lamberg famously lost his job as a rugby broadcaster in 1938 for during one commentary saying that “… the silly bugger’s missed the kick!”

The Rugby Round-Up is kindly sponsored by Mobil Kilbirnie and Karori, two service stations managed by Marist St. Pat’s and Wellington Rugby stalwart, John (JD) Duignan. JD has had a long coaching involvement with Marist St. Pat’s, St. Patrick’s College and community rugby, through his role as Club Coaching Co-ordinator. His role in identifying and developing rugby talent in the region was recognised in his appointment as Coach of the Wellington Development Team in 2010.

2018’s radio coverage commences at Wellington Rugby’s Gala Day, on St.Patrick’s Day, at Awakairangi Park in Upper Hutt.

The Saturday Rugby Club on Radio Sport also re-joins the local air-waves from 21 April.

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