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Giants win two titles

By Jake Beleski

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Kuripuni Sports Bar Giants won two titles on Saturday, but only one team had to work for it.

Both the premier three and President grade men’s teams turned up for finals day at Fraser Park, and both were due to play Wainuiomata.

Club president Allan Clarke said the day hadn’t gone exactly as planned.

“Both our teams won the championship, but the premier three grade was won by default.

“Wainui never turned up.”

It was a disappointing turn of events for the Giants club, who spent $160 on a bus only to get to the park in Lower Hutt and have no opposition for the premier three team to play against.

“We’re very disappointed – it’s a bit of a kick in the pants,” Clarke said.

“We were the top seeds anyway so we were given the trophy but that’s not the point – there has been no explanation.”

It was a different story for the President grade team, who were actually required to win a match to take the trophy.

They proved far too strong for their Wainui counterparts, eventually winning 8-1.

It marked a special occasion for the squad after a season in which they had gone through undefeated, with a number of players now looking at retirement.

“It was great that Ray Stratford, who’s looking at retiring, pitched the final inning of the game to win the championship.”

Kelly Wenstrom, the team’s Canadian import, is also leaving to go back to Canada tomorrow.

For Clarke himself it was also his last softball game after giving 50 years of service to the club.

It was a fitting way to finish, he said.

“It was great after going through the whole season undefeated . . . it was very successful.”

Justin Karaitiana had done a great job on the pitching mound through the majority of the match, and was ably supported by all team members who contributed with good fielding and batting.

Russell Kawana had a great day with the bat, scoring four of the team’s runners coming in.

The team had enjoyed a dominant season, scoring 158 runs and only conceding 21.

For Clarke, it was a great way to finish another successful season for the club.

“There was obviously a bit of disappointment that Wainui didn’t turn up for the premier three match, but both teams have had great season so it was a great day for the club.”


  1. Alan Clark is an inspiration to the game of softball He was mine and The late Jimmy cotters first coach back in the early 70s we were little giants. His dedication and commitment to the game was second to none .He has been the wairarapas Mr softball for 50 years .Thankyou Clarky your one of the greats of the game

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