Above: Valentine Meachen (MSP) and Ben Tupuola (Wainuiomata) were the two No. 8s when their sides met under lights at Jerry Collins Stadium and drew 30-30 this week in 2014.
In association with Lovelocks Sports Bar on Bond Street in Wellington, some highlights from this week in Wellington club rugby history are below.
1963: Oriental beat St Pat’s Old Boys 17-12 after leading 17-3 at halftime, rounding off a successful 75th jubilee weekend for the club. Off the field, Oriental’s celebrations include a parade and dinner that is attended by 95-year-old co-founder G.S. Hill and 1913 All Black Charlie Gillespie who is the guest speaker.
1971: Four-time defending champions Petone are given a huge fright by long-time rivals Poneke before winning 11-8 and retaining the Fred Tilyard Shield. Poneke flanker Wayne Nicholls is a standout. Elsewhere, newly constituted club Marist St Pat’s, an off-season amalgamation of Marist Brothers Old Boys and St. Pat’s Old Boys, beat Upper Hutt 23-9 to earn their maiden Senior rugby win.
2010: All Black Piri Weepu kicks seven penalties to help Wainuiomata beat his former club Hutt Old Boys Marist 26-22. The win is Wainuiomata’s first in four attempts over HOBM since reinstatement to Premier rugby in 2007.
2014: Midweek Swindale Shield rugby at Porirua Park under lights sees Marist St Pat’s and Wainuiomata fight out an exciting 30-30 draw. MSP goes on to win the Swindale Shield and Wainuiomata reaches the final of the Jubilee Cup.
1960: In the Petone Rugby Football Club’s 75th jubilee match against Poneke, played at the Petone Recreation Ground, the home side are beaten 14-6 by Poneke. The red and blacks lead 11-6 at halftime
2003: Poneke maintains their unbeaten record and clear out as frontrunners with a four tries to one fifth round victory over Upper Hutt. Lock Conrad Pau’u scores two tries in the forwards-dominated win. Ories maintained second place after dispatching winless Tawa 47-18, with NZ Sevens flanker Tafai Ioasa bagging a brace. Petone halfback Cam Incledon, Norths No. 8 Laki Vitale and MSP fullback Trent Eagle also all score two tries each in their team’s wins.
2008: Wellington Lions No. 8 Alex Tulou and Samoan international first five-eighth Fa’atonu Fili produce the magic that sees MSP snatch a thrilling 25-22 win over Northern United on their Old Timers’ day at Evans Bay Park. Tulou scores two tries in a matter of minutes early in the second half, both off the shoulder off Fili, and Fili kicks both conversions as well as two late penalties that help turn the game around and earn the victory for MSP after they fought back from a 15-0 deficit at halftime. MSP go on to win this year’s Swindale Shield.
1985: Paremata-Plimmerton are on their way with their maiden Swindale Shield win, beating Titahi Bay 19-18 in a nail-biter. Fullback Tony Saunders kicks a last-gasp penalty. Other matches today are also close, with Avalon and Poneke drawing 6-6, MSP edging Wests 18-15 and WCOB defeating Ories 18-12 on penalties.
1992: Avalon are setting the Swindale Shield pace so far and today win their fifth straight match, sweeping past neighbours and defending Jubilee Cup champions Hutt Old Boys 59-9. Avalon run in nine tries, loose forward trio of Jason Goble, Murray Steele and Joe Langi all having strong outings
2001: An edge of the seat thriller as MSP beat Tawa 27-25. MSP lead 21-3 at the turnaround, but Tawa hit back and they take a 25-24 lead after Junior Togia scores. MSP work their way up field and wing James Reilly snaps the winning dropped goal with time almost up.
2014: The Johnsonville Hawks swoop on the Ories Magpies at the Polo Ground today, kicking a late penalty to win the game 19-16 and grabbing their maiden Swindale Shield win of the season and first Premier rugby victory in eight years. Johnsonville brreak a 16-16 deadlock to win the game with time almost up, winning the Ash Pointon Cup off Ories and breaking a 23-game losing streak dating back to their 20-17 win over Ories at the Polo Ground in April 2006.
1950: Joint defending champions St Pat’s Old Boys open the new season with a come-from-behind 14-10 win over Wellington College Old Boys, while Marist Brothers Old Boys, fielding their heaviest pack in the history of Wellington rugby according to the Dominion, steamroll Onslow 15-3.
1989: Ories continue their winning ways, beating MSP 19-3 in front of a monster Polo Ground crowd of 3,500. Elsewhere, University score their winning try from a controversial forward pass in their 13-9 victory over Porirua – Titahi Bay United.