Rugby Scholarships

  • The Laulala's moved to NZ, didn't they? Their little bro was born in NZ.

  • @Bovidae said in Rugby Scholarships:


    I read recently that Anesi is now a player-coach in Romania.

    Naholo wasn't a scholarship though. Yes he was 17, but, moved to live with / adopted by his uncle who lived in Wanganui.

    The All Blacks can also thank Meli Nauga, Waisake Naholo's uncle who is Aporosa's cousin. Nauga was the catalyst for the rise of Naholo, from the Wanganui Heartland team, through to the national under-20s, sevens, Taranaki, Highlanders and now All Blacks.

    Fate and family has seen a kid who played with makeshift footballs in the fields of Nadroumai village, to potential world beater in rugby's most famous team.

    Meatworker Meli Nauga left Fiji for New Zealand largely for rugby reasons and played a few games on the wing for Wanganui in the mid-1990s.

    While there are social media reports that suggest Waisake Naholo, who was also an excellent athlete, went to Wanganui City College on a scholarship, his father says this is not correct.

    "It was not part of our plan for him to go to New Zealand but it was his uncle's fault," says Aporosa.

    "His uncle has three daughters and he wanted a boy to be in the family, so he just called and asked about Waisake coming over. He said he would take care of everything, his fares, and we said if you can afford to do that, we can send him over.

  • @Unco said in Rugby Scholarships:

    The Laulala's moved to NZ, didn't they? Their little bro was born in NZ.

    I think the Wikipedia entry for the youngest Laulala is wrong.

  • Here's a piece that mentions all 3 of the Laulala's being born in Samoa.

    I've always thought the Laulala's were all from Samoa. I remember reading an article a couple of years ago which stated that their parents were still living in Samoa, which is pretty normal for guys brought over on scholarship.

  • @Bovidae said in Rugby Scholarships:

    Luteru Laulala's player profile:

    Yeah, that is what his wiki page is probably based on, but I'd say that it is possibly wrong.

    I just doubt the Laulala family permanently moved to NZ in 1995, when Luteru was born, as this pre-dates the times when his Samoan born and raised brothers are getting scholarships to move to NZ.

    I could I suppose start hypothesising on temporary moves to NZ, or being raised by extended family - but I'm starting to feel weird making that many guesses about family situations. Its a small country.

    4 brothers from that family all got scholarships to Wesley, I assume its a Methodist thing going on. But .......

    shocking. Nepo in the Catholic News! at a Catholic school.

    (PS, that link gave me George Stowers to add to the list).

  • @Rapido

    I agree.

    The Tongans at Wesley will probably be Methodists, but the Samoans could be Catholics. I don't think schools are too bothered if you can play rugby. But Sacred Heart missed an opportunity there. I doubt St Kents only recruits Presbyterians either. 😉

  • Other interesting things I learnt while looking all this up.


    " ...... the school’s beneficent trust board (which owns a hunk of Hillsborough and industrial Penrose) subsidises each student’s bed 50 per cent. Decile 1 Wesley also gives special assistance to orphans and the disadvantaged."

    They are about to get into property development. Wesley New Town ....
    From that link: Wesley College, Paerata, is a state-integrated school with a "special obligation to students of Maori and Pacific Island descent and students whose personal circumstances require special care".

    Depending on how you define scholarship. You could describe the entire school roll as 300 scholarships. E.g. all Kids from out of zone. A school in rural south Auckland catering to urban polynesian south Auckland.

    Although they'll be swallowed up by urban sprawl anytime soon anyway.

  • The mighty Porirua college offers scholarships?

  • Mr Laulala is a pilot for Poly Airlines I believe. The family basically has two homes so the offspring don't really fall into the category of being 'poached'. The can choose where they live and the family seems to decide that as little nippers they are better off in Samoa with the extended family then they finish their schooling in NZ.
    They are among the lucky ones that have a legit choice on where to live their lives and ply their trade. To lump them into a category that implies they were identified in Samoa then lured away is Stephen Jones type logic. If there is any 'mercenary' act it is the management of the sons schooling and careers by the father. He is happy to let CM develop them when young but seems to have an agreement with Canterbury to marry them off as soon as they start to bleed.
    I may have this wrong and someone else may know the details but I am reasonably sure the Laulala' have a family home in Counties.

  • Re Fifita. There is a Ferner that knows his story intimately and from the bits I have picked up this is also more complicated than simply being a 'poach for rugby reasons'.
    A lot of people have altruistically put time, money and support into the kid for primarily reasons of wellbeing. The rugby is a side effect of that and a pathway to achieve the outcome they were seeking.
    I would guess this is a similar story with many of these guys and it is a rough assumption that they are being given opportunities in life for rugby reasons. The rugby may be a means to an end or a lucky side effect.
    The schools do go looking for talent, that can't be denied, but in many cases it falls into their laps as well.

    The initial list probably also needs cutting down to those players only eligible for NZ because of residency gained during/after schooling.

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