Okay, I must be bored. Its over three months till the Mitre 10 cup starts and World Cup Cricket is set to dominate my life for a big part of that. However I am slightly curious as to how the BOP rugby team is shaping. Given the disaster that was last year I am hoping that 2019 delivers something better. I'm interested to know what others think of the team makeup for this coming season. Below is a breakdown of the team from last year and possible changes for 2019...for all its worth :-
Hookers...Harris, Polwart and Siataga.
Harris and Polwart are still around but I'm unsure whats happened to Siataga. They ended up using a variety of other players last year as a result of injuries.
Props...Geldenhyus, Lay, Mafileo, McHugh, Ross, Sakalia and Thwaites.
Lay has gone and I'm unsure of where Sakalia is.
Locks...Ardron, Le'aupepe and Wardlaw.
They are all still about. I guess you could throw in Aaron Carrol to the mix. As an outside pick, Alex Ainley is another possibility. At 38 he is still looks impressive playing for Rangiuru.
Loose Forwards...Blake,Cane,Karpik and Latimer.
Blake, Cane and Karpik are still about but Lats has officially retired (although still impressing for Rangiuru) so a spot opens up here.
Number 8... Mua and Matenga.
Mua will be back but I don't know where Matenga is. Kapeli is on the fringes of Super rugby so may step in here. Given how loose forwards and locks swap positions, many selections are possible.
Halfback ...Judd and Campbell.
Assuming both are available they will be back this year. There are others on the scene if injury strikes.
First Five...Delany and Robertson.
Delany is,of course, gone. I understand both Reese MacDonald and Dan Holinshead (remember him from a couple of years back) are signed so this will be interesting.
Midfield...Foketi, Hepetema, Steel and Joass.
Hepetema is in the UK and are unsure of the availabity of the other three. Several young guys are putting their hands up Lalomilo is one that comes to mind.
Outside backs...Garland, Fuatai, Trask, Simonsson and Tiatia.
Simonsson is now playing league for the Canberra Raiders, I don't know what Tiatia and Fuatai are doing come NPC time but Garland and Trask are still playing locally. The young Narawa and Forbes must surely "be in the picture".
Coaches. I thought they deserve a mention. Gibbs and Hill are gone so the replacements will hopefully bring some new imput. I wonder if McMillan is feeling vulnerable ? Given our player numbers and resources we really should be doing better than what the last few years under his coaching have produced!!
Okay People..Its your turn. Does anyone know the whereabouts of the players that I have mentioned ? Does anyone know of other club players putting their hands up? Am I being to mean on McMillan? What players don't deserve to be resellected ? Whats your honest expectations for this coming season ?
Donsteppa last edited by
Sounds like Ardron will be away with the RWC with Canada, so that will be another hole in the squad.
Have they appointed new Assistant Coaches as yet?
I heard Ainley is already signed and Trask is first five too
@Donsteppa Bugger. We will miss him. My guess is that Mike Delany will be involved in some capacity as he has been with McMillan in the 10's and with tonight's "Bay team" against the NZ under 20s. Its a bit disappointing really as he has no real coaching experience.
@Yeahtheboys Thanks for that. I've been told that Matenga is still about and will have another season with us also.
Chris last edited by
@Snollygoster Siataga is playing in the Christchurch club competition as was recently named in the Canterbury wider training squad.
@Chris Cheers for that. I'm hearing murmurings that one of our Super players may skip this Npc this year for the cash in Japan so there may be a few more holes needed to be filled.
2019 Steamers Management:
Head Coach: Clayton McMillan
Assistant Coaches: Mike Rogers, Marty Bourke and Mike Delany
Manager: Wayne Brill
Player Development Manager: Ati Aaifou-Olive
Head Strength & Conditioning Coach: Thomas Stebbing
Assistant Strength & Conditioning Coach/GPS Analyst: Connor McNeill
Assistant Strength & Conditioning Coach: Scott Joblin
Physio: Paul Cameron
Head Analyst: Koichi Kinoshita
Assistant Analyst: Hannah McDonald
Narawa has re-signed with the Steamers for the 2019 Mitre 10 Cup
I see Chris Eves has signed.
Stargazer last edited by Stargazer
@Snollygoster I wouldn't trust Wikipedia for squad info, but you can find the source of the info about Chris Eves in this article about North Harbour:
Loosehead prop Chris Eves has departed for Bay of Plenty,
Okay, A few teasers on the BOPRU instagram site :-
Joe Webber seems to be back. I thought he had signed with Tasman.
Kurt Eklund . A hooker from Auckland is here.
Pryer Collier. A back who previously has played for Auckland but now playing for The Mount is signed.
Duluth last edited by Duluth
Kurt Eklund . A hooker from Auckland is here.
He's a good player. I thought he should have been in the Blues 2018 squad. He looked ready to break through to the next level.
He hasn't played much rugby recently. He had a serious injury playing for the Blues Dev side at the start of 2018 that kept him out for a year.
He's had a few club games in 2019 (playing in the BOP region) plus a match for the Blues Dev side last month
Bop 43...Harbour 12 in preseason.
@Snollygoster Great to hear Webbers back, Do we know if Tom franklin has signed?
@bop78 Sorry, No, I haven't heard officially but I have noticed his name mentioned recently on social media as being a BOP player.
@Duluth Thanks for that. It will be interesting to see how much game time he gets behind Harris (All Black) and Polwart (Super rugby player). Good to see there is some depth in that position.
Harris, Polwart, Ekland, Geldenhys, Eves, Mafileo, McHugh, Ross, Thwaites, Sakalia, Wardlaw, Ainley, Carroll, Blake, Cane, Karpik, Franklin, Mua, Matenga,
Judd, Campbell, MacDonald, Holinshead, Lalomilo, Weber, Pryor, Forbes, Garland, Fuatai, Trask, Narawa.
Just kidding !!...Its not the official team but a rough guess with several assumptions. I'm assuming The Rugby World Cup will take Le'aupepe, Ardron and Kapelli off to represent their countries. Also, I'm assuming Franklin won't be in Japan because of the Cup. Theres still room for one or two backs and Im hoping Tiatia (who isn't included in the Wellington team) may be available. Robertson is another that may be added. Obviously several on the list are just a stab in the dark.
As usual, I'm sure that those involved with the clubs will know who is in the High Performance group and who is in the running to make the team. The team for next Saturdays game should pretty much be close to the final Steamers selection so it will be interesting.
Ravouvou signed from 7s/Auckland, will provide some x factor to our backline. Joe Johnston & Abe Papalii in the flankers.
Former Roosters NRL league player Abraham Papali'i has signed to play for the Bay of Plenty Steamers for this year’s Mitre 10 Cup.
More info in the media release.
Canes4life last edited by
@Snollygoster Isn't Leaupepe (Hurricanes) a Steamer?
@Canes4life He'll probably playing at the RWC.
The 2019 Steamers squad has been announced:
Daffy Jaffy last edited by
@Stargazer 3 hookers and 2 props out of the Auckland front row supermarket.
Team looks a lot stronger and more balanced than last year. Must have signed Vella/Eklund thinking Harris was going to be with the AB's, tough slog for the other 3 as they'll try give Harris as much time as possible.
Interested to see how Archie White goes, presuming that is part of the NZ Rugby/Harlequins relationship.
KiwiPie last edited by
Anyone want to have a guess at the starting XV for Sunday? Not seen any rugby this season so I can't rank a lot of the players.
Alex Ainley could be a good acquisition for a season, we have struggled to retain locks over the years.
@KiwiPie Ross Harris Thwaites Wardlaw Carroll Blake Karpik Papalii Judd Hollinshead Fuatai Garland Webber Narawa Tiatia started last week when they beat Counties 34-0. Be surprised if they change anything. Ainley didn't play last week so not sure where he is in the pecking order.
Tim last edited by Tim
Higgins last edited by
Is that the thing being run by the guy that is the driving force behind the Western Force?
If I can find more info on the Steamers' rapid rugby plans, I'll post it in that thread.