10 Jun 2024

Monday 10 June 2024

See below for a wrap up of the weekend's games. 

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First XV 15 vs 12 Kelston Boys' High School

The First XV fought back from a 12-point halftime deficit to defeat Kelston Boys’ High School 15-12 in their 1A clash at King’s College on Saturday.

The visitors made a rapid start to the game and enjoyed plenty of early territory and possession as King’s were forced to make many tackles.

After absorbing the pressure, King’s finally got their hands on the ball as the game pushed past the 15-minute mark, but handling errors stifled their progress.

That left the door open for Kelston and they took their opportunity with the first points of the game courtesy of an unconverted try in the 20th minute.

With the action concentrated in the middle of the field, the low-scoring affair rumbled on and Kelston added to their lead with another try just before halftime.

Down on the scoreboard, whatever coach Ian Robinson said to the team at the break must have got through because they started the second spell with enthusiasm and grabbed their first points of the match when wing Robbie Noble (Year 13, Greenbank) scored in the corner.

As the game moved inside the final 20 minutes, halfback Marco Miln (Year 12, Selwyn) added a penalty to slash Kelston’s advantage to only four points.

King’s had a considerable amount of possession in the second half and they took the lead with 10 minutes to go when fullback Calvin Harris-Tavita (Year 11, Parnell) beat a handful of tackles to score. Miln then added the extras to extend a small advantage that King’s never relinquished as the team secured their most impressive win of the season.

Hooker Charlie Burn (Year 12, School) had an impressive game, while Jamie Ludbrook (Year 11, St John's) made an impact from the bench with several strong carries in the second spell.

The match marked Sione Manuopangai’s (Year 12, Peart) milestone 30th game for the First XV, while Tom Boucher (Year 12, Greenbank) debuted.

The win saw King’s jump to third on the 1A points table.

Now the focus turns to Auckland Grammar School with the traditional fixture to be played at King’s on Saturday 15 June with kick-off scheduled for 2.30pm. 

Robinson said they were ready to embrace the moment against an Auckland Grammar team that sits on top of the 1A ladder with four wins from four matches.

“It’ll be my first Grammar game, but I’m hearing all about it … It’s just another game for us. I know there’s a lot of noise and I know there’s a lot of excitement and we can’t get away from the fact it’s a big occasion and it’s our longest rivalry, but the reality for us is we are just taking it week by week, stage by stage, step by step.”

Tries: Robbie Noble and Calvin Harris-Tavita 

Conversions/penalties: Marco Miln (2)


Second XV 38 vs 12 Wesley College

The King’s College Second XV took a few steps closer to their true potential this Saturday against Wesley College 2A with a convincing win of six tries over Wesley’s two. Man of steel, lock Christian Collins (Year 12, Major) proved his worth from start to finish with his charging ball carries on attack and demonic tackling on defence, while fullback Ryan Young (Year 12, Parnell) marked his return from injury with a thrilling try in the last 10 minutes of the match.

Getting straight to work from kick-off, the Second XV boys applied pressure over a sustained period of attack, culminating in an early try (unconverted) by Kace Hipkins-Taimai (Year 12, Parnell), who scored off an expertly timed and well-directed grubber by first five-eighth Zion Savaka (Year 12 Peart). After successfully defending an enthusiastic wave of Wesley attack, Halfback Ruka Smythe (Year 11, Parnell) combined well with Savaka to claw back territory through phase play and accurate kicking to set up more forwards phase play in Wesley’s 22. Hooker Evile Tu’umatavai (Year 12, Major) carried agressively in the midlield, and was was supported by the front row club, props Logan Marsh (Year 12, School) and Keneti Fanuatanu (Year 12, St John’s). Tu’umatavai was soon rewarded with a well-earned try (unconverted) close to the sticks from a pick-and-go off the base of a ruck.

Wesley replied with determined and strategic carries mid-field, forcing our defensive line backwards, eventually leading to us defending hit-ups on our try line. Solid ruck defence by the boys under pressure kept Wesley at bay. A quick line drop-out preceded a successful exit from our danger zone. Fullback Ryan Young and centre Spencer Capper (Year 12, Parnell) combined to take play left downfield. A wayward Wesley punt was received by Savaka, who quickly distributed right to fullback Young, who off-loaded in a double tackle to centre Capper, who beat three defenders to close off the first half with a try under the goal posts. Centre Capper’s drop kick converted his try to bring the halftime score to 17 – nil.

Wesley were first to score in the second half with an unconverted  try in our left corner. Winger Joseph Fatuvalu (Year 12, Averill) then finished back play well with two consecutive tries – the first off broken play mid-to-right field (unconverted), and the second try (converted by Hipkins-Taimai) off a draw and pass from ever-present openside flanker Olly Chapman (Year 12, Selwyn). Deep in our 22, lock Collins again carried the ball upfield to halfway, quick ruck ball was then distributed by halfback Fizunny Vakautakakala (Year 11, St John’s) to Hipkins-Taimai who put the ball up high for fullback Young to run onto at pace, past the last line of defenders to score under the goal posts. Despite some enterprising play on attack, Wesley capitalised on some well-held possession in the final minutes of the match and finished the game with an unconverted try in the right corner. Well done on a much anticipated and well-deserved win boys. 

Tries: Kace Hipkins-Taimai, Evile Tu’umatavai, Spencer Capper, Jospeh Fatuvalu (2), Ryan Young.

Conversions: Kace Hipkins-Taimai, Keanu Ezekiela, Spencer Capper, Ruka Smythe.


1R Maroon 41 vs 11 Rosmini College

The 1R Maroon rugby team got its season back on track on Saturday with a pleasing 41 – 11 bonus point win (12 – 3 at halftime) over Rosmini College on the No. 3 field at King’s. Seven tries were scored to Blake Hayes (Year 13, St John's) (3), Dom Lunjevich (Year 13, Averill), Jackson Brown (Year 13, Peart), Nick Withers (Year 13, School) and Evan Nathan-Patuawa (Year 12, School), while Lunjevich also kicked three conversions.

Missing five players who are currently injured or ill, the other 19 players in our squad all took the field and played a part in a very pleasing performance.

Next week we are off to Glendowie College and will be looking to further improve our performance from last Saturday.


1R Gold 73 vs 5 Western Springs College

King’s 1R Gold took on Western Springs College and walked away with a commanding 73 - 5 win on Western Springs home pitch.

King's 1R Gold showed cohesive teamwork, good game strategy and some impressive attacking ability to notch up nine tries and continually pressure Western Spring's defence, resulting in a high-scoring, enjoyable game for the King’s boys.

In the end, it was King’s 1R Gold's consistent performance that secured them the victory. Despite Western Springs College managing to secure a try, King’s 1R Gold maintained their dominance and finished the game well. Malcolm Barrow (Year 11, School) was the collector of three tries along with other backs Tipene Lee-Lemon (Year 12, Parnell) who scored two and skipper Daniel Chitty (Year 12, School), dotting down and converting all nine tries, he was impressive again with the boot. Bassy Tupou (Year 11, Selwyn) dominated with the ball in hand, while vice-captain Denver Olde (Year 12, School) was their industrial self once again. The team needs to refocus after three pre-season games. They start the season against Sacred Heart College this week, who defeated Auckland Grammar in the weekend. The game is scheduled for an earlier kick-off time of 10.30am.

Tries: Olde, Lee-Lemon (2), Whyte, Galloway, Chitty, Barrow (3)

Conversion: Chitty (9)


5A 13 vs 15 Mount Albert Grammar School

After a weekend off for King's Birthday weekend the boys were keen and raring to go against Mount Albert Grammar.  As with the previous games, it was evident that this game was going to be another tight one with both teams strong in defence and the possession shared evenly through the first quarter.

The first score was 12 minutes into the game, after eight phases of well controlled play by King’s.  From the final ruck about 35 metres out from the try line, halfback CJ Hooker (Year 12, Parnell), exploited a gap close to the ruck and raced in to score a great try. 5 - nil to King’s.

At the 20 minute mark, MAGS came back with a converted try of their own to bring the score to 7-5 to MAGS.  As the first half was coming to a close, after multiple phases of good forward and back play, Nico Eddy (Year 12, Marsden) made some space on the left wing and raced in from 30 metres to score in the left corner.  Score was now 10 - 7 to King’s. With only minutes left on the clock in the 1st half, MAGS was awarded a penalty for a ruck infringement in front of the posts. They took the shot and the first half ended with the scores tied at 10 - 10. Another nail biter.

The second half kicked off in the same vein as the first, with both sides competing vigorously at the set pieces and rucks.  After 17 minutes King’s managed to get the upper hand at ruck time and were awarded a penalty 40 metres out. Matt Cunningham (Year 11, Greenbank) stepped up and confidently converted the long distance kick, changing the lead once again with King’s ahead 13-10.

In the final stanza of the game both teams were still giving everything. With less than two minutes to go, a penalty was awarded to MAGS 60 metres out from the King's try line. The referee stopped time for an injury to one of the King’s backs.  In a bizarre refereeing moment, after about a minute, whilst the player was being treated and the team were in a huddle near him, the referee called time on with no warning. The MAGS player tapped the ball and then ran 60 metres with no-one in front of him, uncontested to score in the right hand corner. MAGS now led 15 - 13 with less than a minute to play. King's kicked off and with the ball going into touch from the ensuing ruck, that was the end of another nail biting game. With six lead changes and a bizarre and extremely disappointing finish, there was a lot for the boys to manage. 

As coaches we would like to say how proud we are of the boys for keeping their cool and showing respect at the end of the game to the referee, opposition and supporters. Sometimes life throws unfairness at you, and this was dealt with showed the true nature of the young men we have in the team. The King’s boys did themselves, their families and the school proud. 

Tries: CJ Hooker, Nico Eddy

Conversion: Matt Cunningham


6A 39 vs 10 Mount Albert Grammar School 

After a challenging loss last week, King’s were eager to strike back and put on a strong performance against Mt Albert Grammar School.

In perfect conditions on a pitch away from home, King’s started the match strongly with a determined forward pack ripping into the break-down area, opening gaps in MAGS’ defensive line. In the 4th minute, the backline spun the ball out wide, and Benson Edwards (Year 9, Selwyn) opened the scoring with a well-taken try. The forward pack continued to dominate the opposition in the first half, leading to a quick tap penalty with Hugh Smithies (Year 10, Parnell) racing through a gap to touchdown in the 18th minute. A few minutes later, King’s had the ball in hand again, and Ollie Bayley (Year 9, Selwyn) bashed his way over the MAGS line, extending the lead to 15-nil. Just before halftime, with some incredible defensive work, King’s withstood attack after attack to keep MAGS scoreless in the first half.

The second half got underway with King’s having the upper hand and starting to control the game. In the 39th minute, Harry Rutherford (Year 11, School) made an awesome run, busting through tackles to score. King’s scored again in quick succession, with Harry Lyus (Year 10, Major) barging over the line from short range. Toby Willis (Year 10, Selwyn) converted the try.

In the 48th minute, with some good work from the back line, Caleb Stephens (Year 10, Greenbank) scored a well-taken try in the right-hand corner, further extending the lead. MAGS kicked into action and started to take the game to King’s, chancing their hand and throwing the ball around, resulting in back-to-back tries. In the last ten minutes of the second half, King’s closed out the game with a smart back move out to Willis with a perfectly timed offload to Smithies running and sidestepping from the halfway line to touch the ball under the post. The try was converted nicely by Charlie Rutherford (Year 10, School).

It was a great effort and well deserved by King’s; credit must be given to MAGS, who battled right to the very end and they showed some tough defence and some good attacking skills throughout the game.

Forward of the day: Archie Gore (Year 10, Selwyn)

Back of the day: Toby Willis (Year 10, Selwyn)

Written by Ollie Perry (Year 10, Marsden)


U15R 14 vs 62 Auckland Grammar School

Kings U15R took to the field against Auckland Grammar School in what promised to be a riveting encounter. Despite feeling the heat of anticipation, Kings' faced off against their opponents with determination, ready to showcase their skills in the second match of the season. From the first whistle, both teams displayed commendable sportsmanship and unwavering commitment to the game. Auckland Grammar School came out firing on all cylinders, quickly gaining momentum and putting King's under pressure with their relentless attack. The first half saw AGS dominate the scoreboard, showcasing their prowess with a commanding lead of 38-0 at halftime.

However, King's College refused to back down. With resilience and sheer determination, they regrouped during halftime, rallying together to mount a spirited comeback in the second half. Despite the daunting scoreline, King's demonstrated unwavering resolve and fought tooth and nail to regain their footing in the match.

In a display of skill and teamwork, King's managed to breach Auckland Grammar School's defence, with James Cunningham (Year 9, Greenbank) scoring a spectacular try in the 2nd minute of the second half, igniting hope and reinvigorating the team's spirits. This was followed by another outstanding try by Taylor Kijowski (Year 9, School) in the 16th minute, showcasing King's unwavering fighting spirit and determination to leave their mark on the game.

With Santi Barton's (Year 9, School) precision kicking, both tries were converted, adding valuable points to King's tally. Despite their best efforts, King's U15R faced an uphill battle against AGS's formidable attack, ultimately falling short as the final whistle blew, with the scoreboard displaying a final score of 62 - 14 in favour of Auckland Grammar School.

While the result may not have been in their favour, King's College U15R showcased commendable resilience, sportsmanship, and determination throughout the match. Their efforts and unwavering fighting spirit are a testament to their character and commitment to the game. As they regroup and reflect on this match, Kings will undoubtedly emerge stronger and more determined to conquer future challenges on the rugby field.


U15 Open 12 vs 12 Mount Albert Grammar School 

With the U15 Open making their No. 1 Field debut for 2024, nerves were a-jangling, and the tension was palpable. Unfortunately, the pre-match hype seemed to get to the boys and the performance levels declined as the referee’s whistle blew to signal kick off! 

Those of you familiar with the “Inverted U Hypothesis” will recognise that we had entered the “catastrophe zone”, due to over-arousal. The negative impact such a psychological state can have on the overall performance was clear to see and the resulting first half performance was error-strewn, played between the two 22m lines and did not require the scoreboard operator to get off his chair! Dropped passes, knock-ons, not-straight throw-ins and losing the ball in contact seemed to be all the rage, and both teams revelled in these new trends. 

The nil – all scoreline at half time was a fair reflection of the game and the players, spectators and coaches alike, were left feeling somewhat bemused and frustrated. Our defence had been solid but our attack, disorganised, frantic and incoherent!

As is the norm, changes were made at half-time. The key instructions given, were “to simplify things” and to “execute the basics with more a little more accuracy. Don’t force it, go through the phases and be patient - the opportunities will come”.

Whilst the second period of play gave rise to more direction, more action, more visits to the scoring zones and a harvest of 24 points (evenly spread between the two teams); all too often, the positive action was punctuated with frustrating errors. Errors in both key attacking and defensive positions thwarted the King’s team’s scoring ambition and, on one occasion, allowed MAGS to scuttle in for an opportune try.

It was a get punched and land a counter-punch performance, with the two teams exchanging four tries at almost five-minute intervals. The kickers landed one and missed one apiece, leaving the scores and teams inseparable come the final whistle.

Draws are a somewhat rare commodity in rugby, and you can be left feeling a bit “meh”. We didn’t lose but we didn’t win… and I can’t help feeling, that we could have and we should have.

Our team has played four, won one, drawn one and lost two and on we continue…  

See you at Field 3, Sacred Heart at 9.30am on Saturday 15 June.


Smashed ‘em Bro Hammer - for two big scores: Reid Thompson (Year 10, School)

Honey BadgerAward - for demonstrating a “never say die” attitude: Finlay Crawford (Year 10, Peart)

Supporter’s Player of The Day: Josiah Fifita (Year 10, Averill)


U14 Open 5 vs 14 Westlake Boys High School

It was a tight encounter with some valuable lessons learned. The young lads travelled well and competed handily against a well-drilled Westlake Boys High School side and the scores were nil-all at halftime. Both teams made a lot of handling errors.

After the team conceded a soft try early in the second half, Captain Mana’ariki Kea-Cameron (Year 9, St John’s) played with slight of hand to put Caden Fuatimau (Year 9, Averill) away in the corner to make the score 5 - 7.

There were plenty of opportunities both ways, but Westlake had the final say with a try converted under the posts. The 5 - 14 scoreline was very disappointing, but plenty of things under our control slipped away.