News,Northern Swords,Northern Swords Premiers Young Fulop given task of steering the Swords on Debut

Young Fulop given task of steering the Swords on Debut

Young Fulop given task of steering the Swords on Debut post thumbnail image

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


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NZRL hosted Women in League WorkshopNZRL hosted Women in League Workshop

I’m sure many of you have read plenty of news about the 2015 NRL Season Launch, followed by the awesome weekend that was the Dick Smith NRL 9s, but many of you may not be aware that on the same day, NZRL hosted a, Women in League workshop.

3 attendees from the Rugby League Northland community had the opportunity to attend this event – Sharon Bird, Juanita Hool and Toni Haldane.

Key note speakers were – Canterbury Bulldogs Chief Executive, Raelene Castle, Jennie Webster, newly appointed NSW Juniors Competitions Manager (prev. Operations Manager for Balmain Tigers and Yvonne Purtell, Operations Manager for Penrith Panthers Juniors.

Raelene spoke of her experiences to date with the Bulldogs, highlighting the challenges she has faced, not necessarily as a woman in a senior position as some would expect, but rather the challenges faced in such a diverse community. Her key message to us all, when looking to apply for a new position? ”Look at the things you CAN do and not what you CANNOT”.

In contrast, both Jennie and Yvonne cited examples where they have been extremely capable of delivering exceptional operational management, only to be held back through gender bias. Both intelligent and smart women, it was pleasing to hear that they are now recognised and valued members in Australian Junior Rugby League circles.

Jennie is now the Competitions Manager for all of New South Wales (having previously been the Operations Manager for the Balmain Tigers) and Yvonne is the Operations Manager for the Penrith Panthers Juniors. Both of these incredible women are now Directors on the New South Wales Junior Rugby League Board. Below is an interesting article about Jennie and Yvonne’s election to the Board.

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And the icing on the cake? We were all invited to join the NRL Season Launch, a most excellent event!

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NZRL have promised that there will be more such workshops coming up in the future, so watch this space. My advice, if you get an invitation? Jump at the chance to attend. It will be well worth it. The opportunity to meet your peers both nationally and from across the ditch, to gain an understanding of their challenges and their successes, is invaluable.

Leadership Through League – Kamo High School Festival – Year 4-6 and Year 7-8Leadership Through League – Kamo High School Festival – Year 4-6 and Year 7-8

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An absolutely awesome event yesterday (Tuesday 30th June), saw Rugby League Northland’s Leadership through League program with the Kamo High School year 12 PE students facilitate the festival. We had 14 teams participate in 2 age divisions. With over 230 players it was a great spectacle for rugby league and awesome to see so many enthusiastic students.

The Kamo high school students were guided by the Lowie Rugby League Academy students who assisted with the refereeing aspect of the day. It was a fantastic day with a high level of skills on display from all teams. It was great to see lots of girls mixing it up with the boys. Ruarimu and Tikipunga had some outstanding female participants.

The semi-finals were all very tight games and the winning margins were all under two tries. The Finals were played under a very high level of intensity and it was a great atmosphere to observe. There were lots of parents and supporters.

Click here to view photographs on our Facebook page.

The results were as follows:

Year 7/8

Championship Winners: Huanui
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Playgroup opens at Takahiwai Rugby League ClubPlaygroup opens at Takahiwai Rugby League Club

Kani Epiha and son Rehua Martin are all smiles about the opening of an early childhood playgroup at Takahiwai Rugby League Club rooms. Photo / Michael Cunningham

Kani Epiha and son Rehua Martin are all smiles about the opening of an early childhood playgroup at Takahiwai Rugby League Club rooms. Photo / Michael Cunningham

A Northland rugby league clubrooms normally reserved for after match celebrations and commiserations will make room for a new team of young players.

New Zealand Rugby League officially opened the playgroup at Takahiwai Rugby Clubrooms this week, the first of its type in Northland.

Twice a week mums and their bubs will meet at the clubrooms to participate in early childhood programmes.

One of the parents already on the team is Kani Epiha, who took her 18-month-old son Rehua Martin, to the opening. She has been nominated as the “Parent Champ” and her aim is to encourage as many locals with young children to use the programme.

“There are a lot of young kids out here in the community that don’t get to daycare.

“This gives them the opportunity to play with other kids and socialise and just gives them opportunities.”

Her links to the club are strong with her grandfather, brothers and cousins involved in the Takahiwai club.

The programme is also designed to help parents as well. Some activities would be driven by government agencies with messages on domestic violence, health and safety in the home. New Zealand rugby league has been involved in creating eight playgroups in Auckland league clubrooms since 2013 and said Takahiwai fitted the bill when it came to hosting a playgroup in Northland.

NZRL community playgroups manager Marissa Holland said the playgroups had become an integral feature of the NZRL community plan, helping government agencies communicate with people they had struggled to reach previously. In 2014, Ministry of Education, Accident Compensation Corporation, Health Promotion Agency and NZ Police entered the “More Than Just A Game” partnership with NZRL.

“They already have lots of children around their facilities, so there’s an opportunity for us to work with them to make it a safer environment for them. They will qualify for funding to achieve that,” Ms Holland said.

Studies have shown that infants attending early-childhood playgroups learn more effectively when they enter the schools system.

The club has undergone scrutiny by the Ministry of Education before opening which included health and safety, curriculum, communication with parents and adequate resources to run the group.

Register through or the NZRL Community Playgroups Facebook page.

Northern Advocate