We hope you enjoy this look back as we look forward to many more years of recording the history of Wairarapa Bush Rugby Union. We acknowledge all the information from the NZ “Rugby Almanack” Series from the season’s 1934 through to 2020 and appreciate their hard and dedicated work in providing this detailed history. Web Admin

Acknowledgments to the NZ Rugby Almanack Franchise:

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2006 Status:
Heartland Championship
Founded 1886 – Affiliated 1893 – Amalgamated 1971
Chief Executive Officer:
Assistant Coach: C.J.Luman
Main ground:
Memorial Park , Masterton
Green and Red

meadscupPerhaps the most lasting impression of Wairarapa Bush’s Meads Cup title will be the team’s tenacious defence, not only in the final against Wanganui, but also the week earlier against North Otago in the semi-final. On both occasions the side had to repel wave upon wave of charges at their line during the final ten minutes of play.

It was desperate defence, players had to make big tackles, get up and tackle again, and again. Had they cracked in the semi·fina1 there would have been no next week for the Bush. Had they cracked in the final there would have been no glory. For many in the team it was their third final in three years, they were accustomed to pressure.

The 2006 team may not have the quality players of former decades when the union was once in the NPC first division, or earlier when the Ranfurly Shield was held but it is doubtful any previous team would have defended more valiantly than the 2006 side. It was the heroic defensive effort which brought home the prize and for that success the team should be long remembered in Wairarapa Bush history alongside the great eras of the past.

Hooker Joe Harwood was an inspiring captain forming a solid frontrow with Dylan Higgison and Albertus Buckle. Former captain Mike Robinson and Tomasi Kedrabuka were a tower of strength at lock with the tall Fijian Langi Peters a handy substitute. Sam Henderson, Sylvanus Iro and Michael Spence were equal to any loose forward trio in the competition.

The inside backs were seasoned players in halfbacks Hamish McKenzie and James Bruce, and first five Patrick Rimene, who set a new point scoring record for the union. Nathan Riwai-Couch was a rock at second five while Simanu Simanu was efficient but did not score the tries he achieved a year earlier. Etuale ‘Junior’ Togia and Francis Seumanutafa were dangerous on the wings, both newcomers from Wellington. At fullback another Wellington player, Peato Lafaele, was a dangerous counter-attacker.

Higher honours went to:
New Zealand Heartland XV:  Harwood, Henderson, Higgison, Iro, McKenzie, Rimene, Riwai-Couch.

2006 Pre-Season Match Record: Played 1 ; Lost 1
Points :For 10 ; Against 96

2006 Heartland Match Record: Played 10; Won 9; Lost 1
Points :For 252 ; Against 163


Tue 11 Jul 2:30 pm Ranfurly Shield Canterbury v Wairarapa-Bush RU 96 - 10
Sat 19 Aug 2:30 pm Heartland Championship Wairarapa-Bush RU v Buller 31 - 13
Sat 26 Aug 2:30 pm Heartland Championship Wairarapa-Bush RU v West Coast 31 - 18
Sat 02 Sep 2:30 pm Heartland Championship Ngāti Porou East Coast v Wairarapa-Bush RU 06 - 10
Sat 09 Sep 2:30 pm Heartland Championship Wairarapa-Bush RU v North Otago 19 - 18
Sat 16 Sep 2:30 pm Heartland Championship Mid Canterbury v Wairarapa-Bush RU 19 - 20
Sat 23 Sep 2:30 pm Heartland Championship Wairarapa-Bush RU v Horowhenua-Kapiti 31 - 11
Sat 30 Sep 2:30 pm Heartland Championship Wairarapa-Bush RU v South Canterbury 47 - 17
Sat 07 Oct 2:30 pm Heartland Championship Whanganui v Wairarapa-Bush RU 28 - 22
Sat 14 Oct 2:30 pm Heartland Championship-S/F Meads Cup Wairarapa-Bush RU v North Otago 25 - 19
Mon 23 Oct 2:30 pm Heartland Championship-Meads Cup Final Whanganui v Wairarapa-Bush RU 14 - 16

Cap# & Wairarapa Bush REPRESENTATIVES 2006 {Total Games}

287 Nathan Leslie Arekateia Riwai-Couch First Five, Fullback Marist 10
307 Michael Raymond Robinson Loose Forward, Lock Upper Hutt – Wellington RU 11
336 James Clayton Bruce Scrumhalf Gladstone 10
343 Patrick Harding-Rimene First Five, Fullback Marist 11
363 Joseph Rua ‘Joe’ Harwood Hooker, Prop Carterton 11
397 Hamish Mavor McKenzie Scrumhalf Eketahuna 11
403 Simanu Filisoa Simanu Centre Eketahuna 11
408 Dylan Morgan Higgison Prop Greytown-Tuhirangi 11
415 Brendan Hiona Walker Prop Eketahuna 10
423 Samuel West Henderson Flanker Gladstone 11
426 Sylvanus Raeburn ‘Silvo’ Iro Loose Forward, Lock Greytown-Tuhirangi 11
429 Tomasi Talacanavatu Kedrabuka Lock Carterton 11
430 Corey Geoffrey Reid Lock Marist 1
436 Thomas Harmon Centre, Winger Pioneer 2
439 Brett Robert Rudman Prop Greytown-Tuhirangi 11
440 Michael Robert Spence Loose Forward Gladstone 11
441 Etuale ‘Junior’ Togia Winger Tawa – Wellington RU 11
442 Peato ‘Cash’ Lafaele Fullback Northern Utd -Wellington RU 11
443 Ross Batty Hooker Gladstone 1
444 Albertus Buckle Prop Carterton 11
445 Langi Daniel Peters Lock Carterton 11
446 Michael Phillip Patrick Shaw Centre Gladstone 5
447 Duncan Charles Rutherford Fullback Gladstone 6
448 Francis Patini ‘Junior’ Seumanutafa Winger Northern Utd – Wellington RU 10
449 Brodie Wayne Duffin No. 8 Carterton 10
450 Lance Douglas Stevenson Winger Carterton 2