Old rivals to clash again for 131st time

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It all started back in 1884 and has been continuous ever since, with Waitaki Boys’ High School and Timaru Boys’ High School set to battle for the 131st time at Alpine Energy Stadium in Timaru today.

For both teams, it will be their final hit-out of the season.

Waitaki Boys’ High School will be looking to make up for their 38-13 loss at the hands of St Kevin’s over the weekend, while Timaru Boys’ High School will want to make up for their disappointment over being knocked out in the semi-finals of the Press Cup.

Overall, Waitaki Boys’ have more wins, with 68, while Timaru Boys’ have 64.

Both schools have had their dominant patches throughout the years, with Waitaki Boys’ winning 17 of 18 matches between 1898 to 1912, which included Waitaki keeping their South Canterbury rivals scoreless for 10 years straight from 1903-1912.

Some big scorelines have been recorded between the two schools, with Waitaki Boys’ recording a 70-0 win in 1908 and Timaru Boys’ claiming a 66-3 win in 2003.

Over the last 10 years, Timaru Boys’ have held the dominance, with seven victories including a 33-17 win last year in Oamaru.

Waitaki Boys’ First XV coach Ryan Bambry said they were looking to finish the season on a high.

“We have 70 more minutes of rugby left this season and the boys want to finish this season on a high. For some of them, it will be the last time playing for the First XV so a win would be the ideal parting gift.”

Waitaki Boys’ High will be boosted by the return of Loni Fisiihoi who returns to action following a month through suspension.

“We welcome back Loni into the team tomorrow, which is awesome, because he has been our standout player all season.”

Bambry is confident that his side have the goods to defeat the Press Cup semi-finalists.

“We have played some of our best rugby in our interschools against Southland Boys’ High and Otago Boys’ High when we have been underdogs, but we under-achieved a bit against some of the middle to lower teams.”

He is confident if the side play well that they can finish 2014 on a high.

Timaru Boys’ High First XV manager Rod Sparrow said it would be an intriguing battle between the two sides.

“We know it will be an incredibly tight match which could go either way,” he said.

Mrs Sparrow expects a close encounter.

“We have won the last few matches between the two sides, but that doesn’t matter because it’s all about who turns up on the day.”

The match will kick off at 1pm.

The teams are:

Waitaki Boys’ High

1 Jake Greenslade 2 Jacob Butler. 3 Meli Kolinisau 4 Brad Gibb 5 Jesse Lusty Winter 6 Kafa Katoa 7, Hayden James 8, Josh Hayward 9, Kieran McClea 10, Inoke Nafahu 11, George McLennan, 12 Willie Saulala, 13 Loni Fisiihoi ,14 Piliu Tavake, 15 Matt Munro. Reserves 16, Andrew Morley 17 Jake Baxter 18, Tim Craig 19, Hayden Forbes 20, Zac Johnson 21 Scott Paton 22 Cam McClea.

Timaru Boys’ High

1. Graison Dale 2. Jacob O’Connor 3. Jake Lindsey 4. Ben Dewsbury 5. Caleb Grace 6. Hamish Mackay 7. Tim Colson 8. Sukhwinder Bolina 9. Steve Phillips 10. Nathan McCloy 11. Ofa Manuofetoa 12. Zac Saunders 13. Marc Rooney 14. James Wilson- Bishop 15.James Hawkey (Captain) 16Jake Edwards 17. Felila Taukeiaho/ Kurt Whittaker-Prendeville 18. Makatapu Tangitau 19. Siua Maile 20. Corrin Miller/ Caleb Lightfoot 21. Tyler Blackburn 22. Chris Hogan

By BRAYDEN LINDSAY

PHOTO: BRAYDEN LINDSAY

THREAT: Loni Fisiihoi will be looking to help his side to a season-ending victory against Timaru Boys’ High School today.