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Coach and Club finalists

Today, CHRIS COGDALE profiles the coaches behind the winners and the finalists in the Club of the Year in the Wairarapa Times-Age Sports Awards.

COACH OF THE YEAR

Cameron Lindsay – Football

Cameron Lindsay coached the Rathkeale College First XI that qualified for the National Secondary Schools Premier Championship in Napier, where they came up against the strongest school sides in the country.

Rathkeale lost all three games in pool play and eventually finished 30th of the 32 teams. Just qualifying for the premier tournament was a meritorious achievement, given the resources of most of the other schools.

Lindsay did a great job developing and growing players, several of who have moved on to the Central League and the National League. He has now taken up a role at the Christchurch United Academy.

Keely Riwai-Couch
– Netball

Keely Riwai-Couch coached Wairarapa College A to their second consecutive title in the Netball Premier One Championship, beating Celtic 47-37 in the final.

The win came after an intense week of tournament play at the Lower North Island secondary school championships in Napier, where Waicol finished a credible 17th.

Under Riwai-Couch’s coaching, Sovaia Sabutu was named as a trialist for the NZ Secondary School team and, along with Maggie Shields, was selected for a Central Pulse development programme.

Mark Harris – Athletics

Mark Harris is currently coaching around 25 athletes from all over the country and two internationally.
Of these athletes, eight are nationally ranked, and several are world ranked. The highest on the world ranking lists is race walker Lucas Martin who is in the top 100 in the
world for his age and is now ranked number one in New Zealand for racewalking. Lucas shaved over two minutes off his personal best [PB] for the 10000m Walk and was only 3.5sec off bettering the New Zealand U19 3000m record.
Other highlights include Liam Lamb, who is on the pathway to qualifying for the Olympic games, William Larkin, who took 47sec off his 3000m time and Allie Domanski, who took .90sceond off over 100m sprint. There were many more who have achieved significantly with placings at the North Island and New Zealand secondary school events.

Russell Geange – Swimming

Carterton swimming coach Russell Geange guided talented teenager Ava Wilson to three gold medals at the 2022 New Zealand Secondary School Championships in the 400m freestyle, the 100m and 200m breaststroke, and silver in the 100m and 200m freestyle, and bronze in the 100m individual medley.

Another of Geange’s charges, James Church, also had an impressive meet, swimming into a bronze medal and making nine finals in the boys’ 15 years age group.

Geange also coached Wilson to a gold and silver medal at the New Zealand Open Water Championships, which earned her selection for the New Zealand team to compete in Australia.

SPORTS CLUB OF THE YEAR

Athletics and Cycling Masterton [ACM]

ACM is a combined athletics and cycling club .with largely autonomous sections, “A club for all ages and abilities”, ACM attracts participants ranging from three to 90 years. Both sections of the club have recognised the need for change and innovation to increase participation and attract younger members.

The athletics section introduced a free 5km series over the summer, and the cycling section introduced new events such as the Ngaumu Gravel Grind.

The club tasted success with gold medals to Tony Price and Sue Bankier at the National Road Champs, to Price and Graeme Butcher at the North Island Cross-Country Championships and a gold medal to Pete James at the Cycling National Road Championships.

Carterton AFC

The Carterton Football Club continues to grow with 23 junior teams, three men’s teams and a women’s team in 2022. The club has undertaken vast renovations this year and secured the future of football in the Carterton area. This is shown by their continued growth, where the club is again on track to have more teams than the year gone.

Carterton AFC shows manaakitanga to all other clubs and believes it is held in high regard. As a club, Carterton gives back to the community, allowing children’s teams from other clubs to use their facilities free of charge. They also held free clinics as well as hosting school groups from across Wairarapa.

Greytown Junior
Football Club

The Greytown Junior Football Club continues to grow year after year and, in the 2022 winter season, had over 160 registered players, well up on previous years.

The club hosts regular school holiday programmes and pre-academy child and youth clinics with the A-League’s Wellington Phoenix club.

Greytown JFC also hosts school holiday programmes in conjunction with the Phoenix, who send some of their coaches along to co-host with local coaches.

The club has a strong committee that focuses not just on the day-to-day running of the club but also strategically, looking at the future to make the club sustainable.

Martinborough
Bowling Club

The Martinborough Bowling Club had just five competitive members at the end of the 2019-21 season, but by 2021/22, the club had grown to 35 full-time members. In addition, around 100 locals turned up for Thursday night community bowls.

The club enjoyed unprecedented success on the greens at both the local and national level, winning both the men’s and women’s Wairarapa interclub competitions.

The women’s team went on to finish fourth in New Zealand. Tanya Wheeler won a gold medal in the NZ champion of Champion singles, a first for a Wairarapa player, and the men’s club fours team won a silver medal in the NZ champion of champion fours. Martinborough players won nine out of the total of 16 open titles on offer in Wairarapa during the season. “A club for all ages and abilities”, ACM attracts participants ranging from three to 90 years. Both sections of the club have recognised the need for change and innovation to increase participation and attract younger members.

The athletics section introduced a free 5km series over the summer, and the cycling section introduced new events such as the Ngaumu Gravel Grind.

The club tasted success with gold medals to Tony Price and Sue Bankier at the National Road Champs, to Price and Graeme Butcher at the North Island Cross-Country Championships and a gold medal to Pete James at the Cycling National Road Championships.

Carterton AFC

The Carterton Football Club continues to grow with 23 junior teams, three men’s teams and a women’s team in 2022. The club has undertaken vast renovations this year and secured the future of football in the Carterton area. This is shown by their continued growth, where the club is again on track to have more teams than the year gone.

Carterton AFC shows manaakitanga to all other clubs and believes it is held in high regard.

As a club, Carterton gives back to the community, allowing children’s teams from other clubs to use their facilities free of charge. They also held free clinics as well as hosting school groups from across Wairarapa.

Greytown Junior
Football Club

The Greytown Junior Football Club continues to grow year after year and, in the 2022 winter season, had over 160 registered players, well up on previous years.

The club hosts regular school holiday programmes and pre-academy child and youth clinics with the A-League’s Wellington Phoenix club.

Greytown JFC also hosts school holiday programmes in conjunction with the Phoenix, who send some of their coaches along to co-host with local coaches.

The club has a strong committee that focuses not just on the day-to-day running of the club but also strategically, looking at the future to make the club sustainable.

Martinborough
Bowling Club

The Martinborough Bowling Club had just five competitive members at the end of the 2019-21 season, but by 2021/22, the club had grown to 35 full-time members. In addition, around 100 locals turned up for Thursday night community bowls.

The club enjoyed unprecedented success on the greens at both the local and national level, winning both the men’s and women’s Wairarapa interclub competitions.

The women’s team went on to finish fourth in New Zealand. Tanya Wheeler won a gold medal in the NZ champion of Champion singles, a first for a Wairarapa player, and the men’s club fours team won a silver medal in the NZ champion of champion fours. Martinborough players won nine out of the total of 16 open titles on offer in Wairarapa during the season. “A club for all ages and abilities”, ACM attracts participants ranging from three to 90 years. Both sections of the club have recognised the need for change and innovation to increase participation and attract younger members.

The athletics section introduced a free 5km series over the summer, and the cycling section introduced new events such as the Ngaumu Gravel Grind.

The club tasted success with gold medals to Tony Price and Sue Bankier at the National Road Champs, to Price and Graeme Butcher at the North Island Cross-Country Championships and a gold medal to Pete James at the Cycling National Road Championships.

Carterton AFC

The Carterton Football Club continues to grow with 23 junior teams, three men’s teams and a women’s team in 2022. The club has undertaken vast renovations this year and secured the future of football in the Carterton area. This is shown by their continued growth, where the club is again on track to have more teams than the year gone.

Carterton AFC shows manaakitanga to all other clubs and believes it is held in high regard.

As a club, Carterton gives back to the community, allowing children’s teams from other clubs to use their facilities free of charge. They also held free clinics as well as hosting school groups from across Wairarapa.

Greytown Junior
Football Club

The Greytown Junior Football Club continues to grow year after year and, in the 2022 winter season, had over 160 registered players, well up on previous years.

The club hosts regular school holiday programmes and pre-academy child and youth clinics with the A-League’s Wellington Phoenix club.

Greytown JFC also hosts school holiday programmes in conjunction with the Phoenix, who send some of their coaches along to co-host with local coaches.

The club has a strong committee that focuses not just on the day-to-day running of the club but also strategically, looking at the future to make the club sustainable.

Martinborough
Bowling Club

The Martinborough Bowling Club had just five competitive members at the end of the 2019-21 season, but by 2021/22, the club had grown to 35 full-time members. In addition, around 100 locals turned up for Thursday night community bowls.

The club enjoyed unprecedented success on the greens at both the local and national level, winning both the men’s and women’s Wairarapa interclub competitions.

The women’s team went on to finish fourth in New Zealand. Tanya Wheeler won a gold medal in the NZ champion of Champion singles, a first for a Wairarapa player, and the men’s club fours team won a silver medal in the NZ champion of champion fours. Martinborough players won nine out of the total of 16 open titles on offer in Wairarapa during the season.

Chris Cogdale
Chris Cogdale
Chris “Coggie” Cogdale has extensive knowledge of sport in Wairarapa having covered it for more than 30 years, including radio for 28 years. He has been the sports guru at the Wairarapa Times-Age since 2019.

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