Greytown captain Tana Isaac with a photograph of Finn Yeats and the team before the Toiora Cup match. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

EMMA BROWN
emma.brown@age.co.nz

The Greytown and Carterton rugby clubs came together on Saturday to play for the new Toiora Cup, in memory of Finn Yeats and to raise awareness for mental health.

From now on, the second-round game each season between Carterton and Greytown senior rugby teams will be played for the cup.

At the start of the season the Greytown club retired Yeats’ number 11 jersey for the season, after he took his own life in January.

There was a large turnout for the game and people were encouraged to wear gumboots in support.

Greytown coach Eli Telford came up with the idea after seeing the impact Yeats’ death had on other young men.

‘Toiora’ was chosen as the name for the cup, as it means protection from negative influences, to be sound, and well-being.

Telford described the cup as not just a trophy but a way to make a statement about mental health

“It is easy for us to say ‘talk to somone’, but the issue is a lot deeper and we need to find other ways to combat it as it doesn’t always happen,” Telford said.

He talked about how coaches are always worried about their players physical well-being, so they are fit for the game, but that “we should also be aware of our players mental well-being”.

“When I first played in the 90’s you were told to harden up and take a concrete pill. Things are forever changing and we need to get over those types of things,” said Telford.

He said he was very proud of how the players conducted themselves and came together to create a special day.

In the week leading up to the game there was a lot more talk in the locker room about mental health.

“They really thought about what they were playing for.”

The two teams fought hard with Greytown taking the cup in a 38-25 win.

Where to go for help

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