The Under 19 made a clean sweep of the Blues Region division beating Auckland A 24-20 away and finished as top seed for north of the Bombay Hills. Harbour weathered the early push from Auckland and stuck to their well-practiced systems. First-five Jack Heighton (Capt) got the team underway with an early penalty kick. He followed that up with a try from hard, straight running and converted it to take an early lead. Prop Isileli Kioa broke from the back of a rolling mall showing his strength to grab another try. That was converted to take Harbour to a solid half time lead of 17-6. Auckland teams don’t give up and they pushed Harbour throughout the second half. Reserve prop James Roots finally added some security with a well worked forwards try and from there Harbour held on for 24-20 victory.
The Under 85 had a much improved effort but still the errors and turnovers cost the game again in an 18-41 loss to old rivals Auckland at Pakuranga. Despite early pressure by North Harbour, two penalties to first-five Doug Patterson and territory dominance, the critical turnovers cost North Harbour to be down 6-22 at half-time through three Auckland tries. An early try to Harbour by centre Alex Samuels after some strong running by the forwards closed the score to 22 -11 but Auckland broke through to score again. Harbour bounced back with a try to No. 8 Chris Holmes, converted by reserve full back Cam Dalzell. Auckland powered away in the last quarter with two more converted tries winning 18-41. Player of the day went to Chris Holmes who was outstanding at number 8 both on the tackle and with ball in hand.
The U14 and U16 teams travelled north for their first round of games against the Northland sides. The Harbour U14 Cardinal Team had a great start to the season against Northland North in Kerikeri , however, it took a while for the result to be assured! Northland North were in front at half-time 12-5 with Harbour points coming from winger Independence Anetone but Harbour Cardinal took charge in the second half. The Harbour boys showed much more control throughout the second half, minimising the handling errors and making far more metres with every carry by the forwards. Their efforts resulting in four further tries to reserve hooker Loa Latu (2), second-five Jackson Hayde, No. 8 James Fairbairn, and 2 Logan Wild conversions for a 29-12 win. Man of the Match was awarded to the skipper James Fairbairn. The U14 White team took on Northland South at Kamo and although competitive throughout the game were in touch at half-time 5-14 through a try to captain and No. 7 Chris Finau. Northland ran away in the second half to win 43-10 with the Harbour’s points coming from a try by fullback Dominic Holt.
Under 16 Cardinal also travelled to Kerikeri for a 34-5 win over Northland North but were down early in the piece 0-5 but scored five tries through sustained pressure and good control by centre Rory Taylor (3), fullback Tim Carter, blindside flanker Metui Telefoni with first-five Cam Howell kicking two conversions for a 29-5 lead at half-time. Man of the match Taylor picked up his 4th try early in the second half but the scorer was no longer troubled by the players of either side after that. Northland were a well drilled side and had a very good fullback and equally impressive left wing. North Harbour defended well playing into the breeze against an organised and competitive Northland North side. North Harbour U16 White travelled north to Kamo to play
Northland U16 South. The team was a little apprehensive but were up for the challenge, many wearing the North Harbour jersey for the first time. The team started well using width and moving Northland around the field. Tries to centre Sean Corrigan and second-five George D’Urban Burgess matched 2 tries from Northland. A conversion from half-back Ollie Parsons was the difference, giving Harbour the lead 12-10 into halftime. With both teams bringing on all their reserves, Northland started to dominate territory and the pressure showed. 2 more tries and a conversion from Northland kept them ahead and one solitary try from reserve hooker Ahmed Farid kept Harbour in touch. Unfortunately it wasn’t enough on the day, Northland coming out on top 22-17 however lots of positives to come out of the game.
Mens B/2nd XV had the bye but played a Auckland Samoa XV during the weekend to keep up the momentum.
The Roller Mills squad had a camp in Whangarei and played their mates from the North in a structured training fixture.
This Saturday 8 September will see the U18 Girls commence their season hosting Northland at Mahurangi RFC at 1pm. The U14/U16 travel north to Silverdale United RSC with U14 playing at 11am and U16 at 1pm. The Cardinal sides face Auckland Central and the White teams play Auckland West. Mens B/2nd XV face Auckland at 2.30pm at East Coast Bays with the U85 being the curtain-raiser at 1pm vs Thames Valley Development XV.
The U19 commence the Jock Hobbs Memorial National Tournament in Taupo on Sun 9 Sept vs Tasman 12.30pm, Field 3, Owen Delaney Park, have Semi-Finals on Wed 12 Sept and Finals on Sat 15 Sept.