100 games for club man Ryan

CENTURION: HSOB lock Dene Ryan played his 100th open grade game for the club on Saturday. Photo HSOB

Dene Ryan feels like his 100th open grade game for High School Old Boys has been a long time coming.

After 93 games for the division three team and seven for the HSOB Classics team, the lock has hit triple figures.

“I’ve been working away at this since my first game in 2006, so it’s taken me a while.”

The tenured lock has always been a HSOB club man, having first played under-eights for the club in 1991.

A stint playing second XV rugby at Christchurch Boys’ High School, some time away from the game and living abroad have all impacted the 34-year-old’s playing days.

“I got roped back in after I came home from overseas and, for me, it’s been the social element which has kept me involved,” he said.

“It’s good for the body as literally I do nothing (in the off-season) so this is something I can do to help with the fitness side of things.”

Ryan, who lives in Halswell, said while it may not be the top flight of club rugby, he still goes out there to earn victory.

“Doesn’t everybody, regardless of ability, go out there to win? That’s certainly me.”

Ryan said while he has a wife who would like him to hang up the boots, he can see himself playing to 40. “It’s fun, I enjoy the games and the social aspect,” he said. “There’s one guy who I’ve played the game with for 22 years and that sort of thing becomes special.”