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National Under 18 Māori team named to play two matches

National Under 18 Māori team named to play two matches

The National Māori Under 18 team has been selected to play New Zealand Schools Barbarians and Tonga Under 18 later this month.

Chair of New Zealand Rugby Māori Board, Dr Farah Palmer, today announced the team which is made up of talented young players, many of whom were part of New Zealand Rugby’s (NZR) E Tū Toa in 2017.

E Tū Toa is a nationwide programme which uses rugby as a vehicle for young Māori to connect with their culture and learn wider life skills.

Dr Palmer said the national side was created to encourage talented young Māori to stay in rugby and provide them with development opportunities both on and off the field.

“The Under 18 Māori Team provides a genuine rugby pathway for rangatahi (youth) to step up from representing their regions to higher honours.

“What makes this team different is the connection of all players and coaches to ‘Te Ao Māori’ the Māori World. It’s the foundation of all our camps, with players and coaches learning waiata, haka and tikanga which enhance their wellbeing and achievements in rugby and life.”

This is the second year the Under 18 Māori team has been selected. Players from the 2016 side have gone on to represent their respective unions at the recent Jock Hobbs National U19 tournament, as well as achieving selection for other national age-grade sides and Super Rugby academies.

National Under 18 Māori team:

• Jacob Pepper-Edwards – Ashley RFC – Ngai Tahu
• Cameron Huata – Napier Boys’ High School – Ngati Porou
• Te Ariki Te Puni – Auckland University RFC – Ngati Raukawa, Rangitane o Manawatu, Ngati Porou
• Billy Priestley – Gisborne Boys’ High School – Ngati Porou, Te Aitanga a Hauiti
• Jonas Pomare – Hamilton Boys’ High School – Nga Puhi
• Tanara Haenga – Wainuiomata College – Ngati Porou
• Robert Rush – St Kentigerns College – Ngapuhi, Ngati Kahu
• Josh Hill – Otago University RFC – Ngai Tahu
• Donovan Mataira – Hastings Boys’ High School – Ngati Kahungungu
Sam Smith – Wairarapa College – Ngati Raukawa
• Terrell Peita – Mount Albert Grammar – Te Rarawa Kaiwhare
• Tamarau McGahan – Rosmini College – Ngai Tuhoe, Ngati Raukawa
• Keelan Whitman – St Patrick’s College Wellington – Te Arawa, Ngati Rangiwewehi
• Shamara Brooks – Hastings Boys’ High School – Ngati Pamoana
• Stewart Cruden – Palmerston North Boys’ High School – Ngati Kahungungu ki Wairarapa
• Tahu Kaa – Christchurch Boys’ High School – Ngati Porou, Ngai Tahu
• James Simpson-Te Pairi – Kings’ High School – Tuhoe
• Tobias Wickham-Manuel – Kia Toa RFC Manawatu – Ngati Porou, Ngati Tuwharetoa
• Coel Kerr – Paeroa College – Ngati Ranginui
• Nikau McGregor – Napier Boys’ High School – Ngati Kahungungu ki Wairarapa
• John Cooper – Westlake Boys’ High School – Ngapuhi, Ngati Kahungungu Ngati Tuwharetoa
• Jaylen Tuapola – Scots’ College, Wellington – Ngati Tuwharetoa, Ngati Maniapoto
• Eru Tahuri – Ashburton Celtic RFC – Ngati Kahungungu, Ngai Tahu
• Austin Brown – Gisborne Boys’ High School – Ngati Porou
• Ben Strowger-Turnock – Wellington College – Ngai Tahu

Management Team:
• Head Coach: Rua Wanoa, Ngati Porou
• Backs Coach: Kahu Carey, Rangitane, Ngati Apa ki te Ra To
• Forwards Coach: Anthony Rehutai, Ngati Porou
Asst Backs Coach: Stacey Grant, Ngati Kahnungungu ki Wairarapa
• Asst Forwards Coach: Jeremy Wara, Tainui, Ngati Tipa, Ngati Tahinga
• Video Analyst: Tama Walker, Ngati Porou
• Trainer: Hoani Smith, Ngai Tahu, Kati Mamoe
• New Zealand Rugby Maori Liaison: Tiki Edwards, Te Arawa
• Cultural Advisor: Mihaere Emery, Ngati Awa, Tuhoe, Ngati Maniapoto, Ngati Koroki Kahukura, Ngati Raukawa
• Physiotherapist: Nishil Shah, Indian
• Manager: Mark Seymour, Ngati Hikairo
• Kaumatua: Mathew Kiore, Ngati Maniapoto, Tainui, Te Ati Awa

Schedule:

Thursday, 28 September
Assemble in Levin

Monday 2 October – Rugby Institute in Palmerston North
National Under 18 Māori v New Zealand Schools Barbarians
Kick-off 2pm

Friday 6 October – Porirua Park
National Under 18 Māori v Tonga Schools
Kick-off 2pm

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