St Thomas’ junior rugby looking strong

SPOTTING A GAP: Patrick Elia steps on the gas. PHOTO: Brendan Biggs.

Two St Thomas’ junior rugby teams now hold shields in their competitions and are looking to get their names etched on them at the end of the season.

The under-12 blue team won their shield last week from Christchurch red, who had held it for most of the season.

The under-13 team won the shield in the first game of the season and have successfully defended it for 11 weeks.

Saturday was no exception with St Bede’s defaulting.

The shields were created in 2005 and it is the first time St Thomas’ teams have held both of them at the same time.

A glance at the names etched on them shows no school has held them both at the end of the season, something the college wants to change.

There are three more games in the regular season and, if they can hold on to the shields for those, the teams will have their names engraved, then lock the shields away until next season.

The shields are not defended during the finals.

School sports co-ordinator Neville Brooker said it is a great thing for the future of rugby at the college.

“Junior rugby is very strong (and), as a school, we have decided to put a lot of time and coaching resource into this age group to try and develop the rugby players from a young age,” he said.