Tuesday, January 27

In a league of its own

Rarotonga rugby league got under way on Saturday with a two day pre-season seven-a-side tournament.
Eight teams in two pools of four battled it out for bragging rights; two each from Avatiu, Arorangi and Ngatangiia plus Titikaveka Bulldogs and Takuvaine Warriors.
Day one was held at the recently upgraded Avatiu Swamp but the finals were moved to Ngatangiia so the Avatiu field wouldn’t get too cut up.
Although the rain stopped on Saturday afternoon I was expecting plenty of mud and puddles – makes for interesting pictures! But Nukupere Park, the Ngatangiia sports ground, was firm and dry, not a puddle in sight. Must be because it’s just about on Muri beach, very sandy soil so the rain drains away rapidly.
A lot of younger players were strutting their stuff, no doubt hoping to catch the eye of selectors for the mini games in September.
The season proper gets going on February 6 and will include a team from Aitutaki, the Sharks.