Exciting performances could be ahead for North Otago touch rugby players following the arrival of three top class players to the district.
Glen Campbell, Lisa Dyer and Matt Brown are all employed as primary school teachers and are enthusiastic about being part of the local competition and the upcoming representative season at the end of the year.
Campbell has played for Canterbury, Southland and Otago, most recently in the Otago 40s which played at the national tournament in Auckland in March.
Campbell was also selected in the Japan 30s men’s team for the 2011 World Cup in Scotland after residing in Japan for three years.
More than 80 school teams have been playing the Oamaru competition on a Tuesday night and Campbell said he is aiming to get as many North Otago rep players into the Otago sides as possible.
“We’ve got some amazing talent and it’s just getting them involved,” he said.
Last rep season Campbell, who has Level Two New Zealand Touch Rugby coaching certification, coached U15 and U17 North Otago teams and said the biggest challenge is to get the older kids to practice and tournaments.
Dyer was an U15 Otago rep and was selected in the U17 girls New Zealand team (on paper). In 2010 she played in the New Zealand U21 women’s team continuing through and last year was named ‘Most Valuable Player’ .
Matt Brown has been coaching Otago representative players for the past few years and during his time as U21 assistant coach his side won the national competition in Auckland. While he prefers to play, ongoing injuries have prevented this.
By LINDA MCCARTHY
PHOTO: LINDA MCCARTHY
KEEN TO COACH: New Zealand representative touch rugby player, Lisa Dyer (left) and provincial coach Matt Brown. Absent is Glen Campbell.