Pita Alatini

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Pita Alatini
Full name Pita Faiva-ki-moana Alatini
Date of birth (1976-03-11) 11 March 1976 (age 38)
Place of birth Nukuʻalofa, Tonga
Height 1.79 m (5 ft 10 in)
Weight 90 kg (14 st 2 lb; 200 lb)
School King's College
University University of Otago
Notable relative(s) Anthony Alatini
Sam Alatini (brothers)
Rugby union career
Playing career
Position Centre
Professional / senior clubs
Years Club / team Caps (points)
1995–1996
1997–1998
1999–2001
2002–2003
2004–2006
2006–2013
Counties Manukau
Southland
Otago
Wellington
Suntory Sungoliath
Kamaishi Seawaves
30
21
16
14
21


(20)
(10)
(42)
Super Rugby
Years Club / team Caps (points)
1996
1997
1998–2001
2002–2003
Crusaders
Chiefs
Highlanders
Hurricanes
5
3
48
16
National team(s)
Years Club / team Caps (points)
1995
1999–2001
 Tonga
 New Zealand
1
17
(0)
(30)
Coaching career
Years Club / team
2013– Pakuranga United
Rugby union career

Pita Faiva-ki-moana Alatini (born 11 March 1976 in Nukuʻalofa) is a Tongan-born New Zealand rugby union footballer. Alatini is a midfield back who played in 17 tests for the All Blacks between 1999 and 2001, scoring 6 test tries.

Alatini played 81 NPC matches for four different provinces (Counties-Manukau, Southland, Otago, and Wellington), and 72 Super 12 matches for four different franchises (Crusaders, Chiefs, Highlanders, and Hurricanes).[1] He has also played professionally in Japan for Suntory Sungoliath and Kamaishi Seawaves.

Alatini is married to pop singer and actress Megan Alatini. His brothers Tevita, Anthony and Sam Alatini have played for the Tonga national rugby union team.

Career overview[edit]

Alatini moved to Auckland from Tonga as a child. He attended King's College, and played for the national secondary school side in 1993-94 and the national under-19 team in 1995. He played 30 matches for the Counties-Manukau NPC team in 1995-96, and five matches for the Crusaders in the Super 12 in 1996. He represented the New Zealand Colts and played three Super 12 matches for the Chiefs in 1997.[1]

In 1997-98, Alatini played for Southland in the NPC, and began to specialise as a midfielder (up until then, he had often played as a fullback). Alatini played for the Highlanders in the Super 12 from 1998 to 2001, and it was during this time that he became a regular selection for the All Blacks.[1]

In 2002 and 2003, Alatini played for the Hurricanes in the Super 12 and Wellington in the NPC. By this time, he had fallen out of favor with the All Black selectors,[1] and in 2004 he moved to Japan to play for Suntory Sungoliath.[2] In 2006, he left Suntory to play for Kamaishi Seawaves.[3]

In 2013, Pita started a new role as Director of Rugby at Pakuranga United Rugby Club in Auckland's eastern suburbs. In his first year of coaching the premier side, he led Pakuranga United to their first Gallaher Shield victory in the club's 48-year history.

All Black career[edit]

Alatini made his debut for the All Blacks on 11 June 1999, in a 22-11 victory over New Zealand A at Jade Stadium.[4] He played his first test on 26 June 1999, in a 54-7 victory over France at Athletic Park.[5] He was selected for the 1999 Rugby World Cup squad, playing in a pool match against Italy which the All Blacks won 101-3,[6] and coming on as a replacement for Tana Umaga in the third-place playoff against South Africa, which South Africa won 22-18.[7]

Alatini was the All Blacks' first choice second five-eighth during the 2000 Tri Nations, and was selected for the All Blacks' end-of-year tour to France and Italy. He was dropped from the starting line-up for the tests against France, with the selectors preferring Daryl Gibson at second five-eighth due to his more physical defense.[8] He played as an unused reserve in the second test against France, and started the test against Italy.[9] He regained his place as the All Blacks' first choice second five-eighth for the 2001 domestic tests and Tri Nations. Alatini played his last test for the All Blacks on 1 September 2001, in a 29-26 loss to Australia at Stadium Australia.[10]

After the 2001 Tri Nations, the All Blacks coaches Wayne Smith and Tony Gilbert were replaced by John Mitchell and Robbie Deans. Alatini was selected for the All Blacks for the last time on the 2001 tour of Ireland and Argentina. He was relegated to the mid-week team, with the new coaches preferring Aaron Mauger at second five-eighth for the test matches due to his superior distribution skills.[11]

Personal life[edit]

Pita married Megan Alatini in 2000, they met in 1994. He has three children: Two daughters, Tonica, born 13 May 1995 and Tiara born 2002, and one son, Trey, born 2005.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Knight, Lindsey. "Pita Alatini profile". New Zealand Rugby Museum. Retrieved 2008-02-23. 
  2. ^ "For All Black Alatini to play in Japan". AP Worldstream. 19 March 2004. 
  3. ^ "Top League Profiles 2006-7 (6) Suntory Sungoliath". Rugby in Japan 3 (33). 10 October 2006. Retrieved 2007-01-18. 
  4. ^ "New Zealand vs New Zealand 'A' at Jade Stadium". Rugby Museum Society of New Zealand. Retrieved 2008-07-23. 
  5. ^ "New Zealand vs France at Athletic Park". Rugby Museum Society of New Zealand. Retrieved 2008-07-23. 
  6. ^ "New Zealand vs Italy at McAlpine Stadium". Rugby Museum Society of New Zealand. Retrieved 2008-07-23. 
  7. ^ "New Zealand vs South Africa at Millennium Stadium". Rugby Museum Society of New Zealand. Retrieved 2008-07-23. 
  8. ^ Gray, Wynne (9 November 2000). "Now it's nine for red and blacks". The New Zealand Herald. 
  9. ^ "New Zealand vs Italy at Luigi Ferraris Stadium". Rugby Museum Society of New Zealand. Retrieved 2008-07-23. 
  10. ^ "New Zealand vs Australia at Stadium Australia". Rugby Museum Society of New Zealand. Retrieved 2008-07-23. 
  11. ^ Gray, Wynne (16 November 2001). "Mehrtens in tune for test". The New Zealand Herald. 

External links[edit]