Adam Blair Trophy,News Warriors Academy to play NorthTec Adam Blair Representative XIII

Warriors Academy to play NorthTec Adam Blair Representative XIII

Warriors Academy to play NorthTec Adam Blair Representative XIII post thumbnail image

The match against the Warriors Academy has become an annual highlight on the RLN Calendar, 2015 will be the third time it is played. The game will be part of a Rugby League Northland extravaganza of League with two RLN Premiership games being played on the same day at Central Rugby Ground – Lindvart Park in Kaikohe. For the hopeful College players it’s a great opportunity to gauge their skills against future Warriors players.

In 2014 the Adam Blair XIII team was incredibly competitive, narrowly losing 42 – 28, with the Warriors scoring a couple of late tries. Two players remain from the 2014 squad – Whangarei Boys’ High Centre – Caleb Aekins and Okaihau half-back Stevie Ray Haenga-Albert.

Coach Jim Larkin was incredibly happy with the squad announced, “We are definitely seeing an improvement in the quality of Rugby League being played at college level. I have picked a squad that work to the intensity, equal to what the Warriors will play to. We lack a little bit of size up front, but what we lack there, will be made up with speed and a big work rate”.

School First Name Last Name School First Name Last Name
BOI Jarrod Hona Kaitaia College Marlon Harris
Dargaville Thomas Anderson Kaitaia College Jackson Sparksman-Brott
Dargaville Kane Pomare Kaitaia College Ranapiri Tau
Kamo James Witahira Kaitaia College Brody Tamarua
Okaihau Kingston Croft-Haenga Kaitaia College Cale Te Paa
Okaihau Stevie-Ray Haenga-Albert Tikipunga Nathan Godsall
Okaihau Xavier Johnson Tikipunga Nabil Loto’Ahea
Okaihau Joseph Ngere Tikipunga Tahi Subritzky
Northland Tamati Leach WBHS Caleb Aekins
Northland Jayde Moana-Pou WBHS Bernard Cowan
Northland Kaleili Tanginoa WBHS Jayd Kapa
Northland Kalani Waa WBHS Nathan Newton
Kaitaia College Dalton Armstrong WBHS Joel Tugaga


Season Launch Poster 2015


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Rugby League Northland Farewells Neville RudolphRugby League Northland Farewells Neville Rudolph

Neville Rudolph and Jody Thorpe

Neville Rudolph and Jody Thorpe

Rugby League Northland Referees Association Chairman, Neville Rudolph, has departed Northland for the bright city lights of Brisbane, Australia. I first met Neville on my second day as General Manager of RLN, with Neville telling me that we only had three active Referees and that I would have to become one too! Which I did, and to this day, do not regret.Refereeing is a hard job and managing them is even harder – so I thank Neville for his hard work and commitment. In a testament to his work, the RLN Referees Association had 11 active referees in 2013. Neville has also played a key part in the development of Tane Kaiwai, who has progressed to become a part of the Auckland Referees Academy.

The Referees Committee is in the process of restructuring and held a hui on Wednesday 11th December. If you feel you’ve got something to say, either on or off the field – you can help make a difference! Join the newly formed Referee Committee OR better yet, sign up and become a Referee (all Grades Juniors to Seniors) for the 2014 season – FULL TRAINING WILL BE PROVIDED.

Contact: Alex Smits – or 021 273 6975

Young Fulop given task of steering the Swords on DebutYoung Fulop given task of steering the Swords on Debut

Daniel Fulop Daniel Fulop v3 Daniel Fulop v2Daniel Fulop, who represented Northland at the recent NZRL U18s Kiwis trial is given the task of standoff and the role of steering the Northern Swords Premiers around the paddock, in his debut Premier Match for the Northern Swords, against the Wellington Orcas at the Petone Recreation Ground in Wellington this Saturday.

Incumbent standoff, Herewini Edmonds, Grand Final winning Captain from Otangarei, is unavailable this year due to his sons’ Rugby commitments, has given Fulop a great opportunity.  Fulop impressed NZRL High Performance Manager Tony Iro this year at the U18s trials, “He’s a cool customer and has great communication skills as well as an eye for opening.” Iro said.

Fulop will be steering around a strong Swords team that sees representation from 6 of the 10 premier clubs.  It has a youthful look to it, with three players making their debut from Swords U17s, in Rikki Tarau, Kelsin Harding and Daniel Fulop.  In total there will be 8 debutants this weekend.  They will be looking to Joel Freeman, at Hooker, to guide the team around the paddock. Freeman was inspirational throughout the RLN Multikai Cooker Premiership for the Takahiwai Warriors.

“We’ve got some pace out wide with Tarau and Sharif Mangu on the wings. Helping this will be our experienced centre partners,  Wiremu Te Iringa and Ross McFarlane. If our pack can get us in the arm wrestle, we will definitely be competitive in this year’s competition.”  Mark Freeman, Head Coach of the Swords, said.

Freeman is positive in his first season as a Northern Swords Coach, Freeman is an experienced Campaigner as a previous Queensland High Performance Coach and Northland representative coach between 2004 – 2009.  “We’ve got the talent in Northland, but the biggest challenge is getting it on the paddock at the same time, as a number of players rule themselves unavailable due to family, work or travel logistics.”

The Swords have also drafted in fellow Kiwi U18s trialists Piri Croft and Tumoana Halkyard into the squad.  All three players have been playing in the Auckland Rugby League U20s competition. Fulop and Croft with Pt Chevalier and Halkyard with Northcote.  “They’re young guys, but all three have got great potential to play Premiers at a National Level, it’s a great pathway.  Corey Harawira-Naera in 2013 showed how it can work securing a contract with the Penrith Panthers and as result has played every game for the U20s.”  Alex Smits, RLN GM said.  Croft and Halkyard won’t be selected this week but may come into consideration in weeks to come.

The Swords first home game will be on the 31st August when they host the Counties Manukau Stingrays at Toll Stadium.  They will be bolstered by the return from injury of Hori Tuhoro and Adam Donaldson.

Northern Swords Premiers – Team List v Wellington Orcas

No. First Name Surname Club
1 Israel Tahere Northern Wairoa Bulls
2 Sharif Mangu Portland Panthers
3 Wiremu Snowden Te Iringa Hokianga Pioneers
4 Ross McFarlane Takahiwai Warriors
5 Rikki Tarau Takahiwai Warriors
6 Daniel Fulop Northern Wairoa Bulls
7 Samuel Henry Horahora Broncos
8 Christopher Apoua Horahora Broncos
9 Joel Freeman Takahiwai Warriors
10 tbc tbc tbc
11 Te Tuhi Tipene Hikurangi Stags
12 Patrick Tane Northern Wairoa Bulls
13 Kelsin Harding Panthers


14 Jordon Hool Takahiwai Warriors
15 Chris Mellar-Reynolds Hikurangi Stags
16 Andre Lennox Hokianga Pioneers
17 Alex Salase Portland Panthers


Northern Swords 2014 Fixtures

Date Home Away Time Venue
Saturday 23rd August Wellington Orcas Northern Swords 1:30pm Petone Recreation Ground
Sunday 31st August Northern Swords Counties Manukau Stingrays 2:30pm Toll Stadium, Whangarei
Sunday 7th September BYE BYE BYE BYE
Sunday 14th September Central Vipers Northern Swords 1:00pm Cooks Garden, Whanganui
Sunday 21st September Northern Swords Wai-Coa-Bay Stallions 2:30pm Toll Stadium, Whangarei
Sunday 28th September Northern Swords Akarana Falcons 2:30pm Toll Stadium, Whangarei
Sunday 11th October Canterbury Bulls Northern Swords 1:00pm Denton Park, Hornby
Sunday 18th October 1ST Place Qualifier 2nd Place Qualifier 5:00pm Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland


RLN MultiKai Cooker Premiership – Round ThreeRLN MultiKai Cooker Premiership – Round Three

IMG_7524 IMG_7693Takahiwai and Hokianga remain unbeaten and the season front runners.  Takahiwai defeated the Northern Wairoa Bulls 54 – 34 in a high scoring match while Hokianga defeated Horahora 32 – 18.  They are joined at the top of the table by Hikurangi who having played the season launch, have played an extra game.

Portland follow up in fourth place with two wins out of three and look to be serious contenders for the 2014 RLN Multikai Cooker Premiership.  Their 40 – 10 win against Muriwhenua was impressive as it was an away victory.  The rest of the table has only the one win to their credit with the exception of the Kerikeri Makos who have yet to notch their first win.

The Makos went through all of 2013 without a win, however their 32 – 6 loss to Hikurangi demonstrated some potential.  They are a big, fit looking team, and with a new coach in Benson Selwyn they should improve throughout the season and win a few games.

The biggest surprise in 2014 is the lack of form of the Moerewa Tigers who are currently sitting at one win out of four games.  The Tigers were the 2013 minor premiers and in 2013 started their season with 9 straight wins.  They have had a change in coach with Tawio Davis stepping up as a player coach. However their 28 – 12 loss to the Otangarei Knights should come at no surprise as the Knights have been under-performing in 2014.  The Knights played with discipline for 80 minutes and the result was a confident win over the Tigers.

It’s still early in the season for all teams involved, but the 10 team Premiership looks likely to be a closely fought competition from 1st place to 10th place.