2010 New Zealand rugby league season
The New Zealand rugby league season 2010 was the 103rd season of rugby league that was played in New Zealand. The main feature of the year was the new National Zonal competition run by the New Zealand Rugby League. The premier teams competed for the Albert Baskerville Trophy, which was won by Auckland when they defeated Counties Manukau 14 - 6 in the Grand Final.
- 1 International competitions
- 2 National competitions
- 3 Australian competitions
- 4 Club competitions
- 5 See also
- 6 References
Five test matches took place in New Zealand in 2010. First New Zealand hosted Samoa in a warm up match to the 2010 Four Nations, defeating them 50-6. It was the first time the two nations had played each other in a test match. As part of the Four Nations competition New Zealand played England, Australia and Papua New Guinea in Wellington, Auckland and Rotorua respectively. England and PNG also play each other as a curtain raiser to the New Zealand vs Australia match. The match against England celebrated a centenary of international rugby league in New Zealand and the English and Kiwis both wore 1910 style jerseys to mark the occasion. New Zealand went on to win the tournament, defeating Australia 16 - 12 in the final at Suncorp Stadium.
Coached by Stephen Kearney, the team consisted of: Antonio Winterstein, Bronson Harrison, Greg Eastwood, Adam Blair, Sika Manu, Junior Sa'u, Fuifui Moimoi, Frank Pritchard, Nathan Fien, Jason Nightingale, Jeremy Smith, Issac Luke, Shaun Kenny-Dowall, Frank-Paul Nuuausala, Sam Perrett, Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, Lewis Brown, Lance Hohaia, Simon Mannering, Ben Matulino, Manu Vatuvei, Benji Marshall (C) and Thomas Leuluai.
The Junior Kiwis, originally scheduled to play two matches against the England youth side, instead hosted the Junior Kangaroos in two curtain raisers to Four Nations matches. The team was coached by David Kidwell and included: Pakisonasi Afu, Martin Taupau (C), Glen Fisiiahi, Sebastine Ikahihifo, Mark Ioane, Shaun Johnson, Siuatonga Likiliki, Sam Lousi, Nafe Seluini, Carlos Tuimavave, Bill Tupou, Drury Low, Matthew McIlwrick, Sam Mataora, Isaac Maliota, Kane Morgan, Lama Tasi, Dean Whare and Jason Taumalolo. They lost to Australia 16-24 but won the second match 32-20 after trailing 0-20 at halftime.
The New Zealand Māori rugby league team played England in a curtain raiser to the New Zealand v Samoa test match. After trailing 18-0 the Māori came back to draw the match 18-all. The team was coached by Richie Blackmore and Mark Horo and consisted of: Kevin Locke, Sandor Earl, Timana Tahu, Clinton Toopi, Arana Taumata, Rangi Chase, Jeremy Smith, Willie Heta, Aaron Heremaia, Weller Hauraki, Justin Horo, Bodene Thompson, Kevin Proctor, James Tamou, Sam McKendry and Russell Packer.
A New Zealand Residents team was expected to compete in an end-of-season international fixture, but the team pulled out at the last minute. The Residents still assembled and took part in an opposed training session with the New Zealand Kiwis. The team was co-coached by Ken McIntosh and Brent Stuart and included James Blackwell (Counties Manukau), Junior Salevao (South Island), Shaun Metcalf (Auckland), Matt Wanoa (Wellington), Bureta Faraimo (Wellington), Matt Everitt (Wellington), Trent Wallace (Auckland), Karl Edmondson (Auckland), Darin Kingi (Counties Manukau), Jaye Pukepuke (South Island), Alfred Penese (Wellington), Tane Hart (Auckland), Saulala Houma (Auckland). Bench: Suaia Matagi (Auckland), George Mafi (Wellington), Hemi Kemp (Wellington) and Pauly Tuuta (Heartland).
At the New Zealand Rugby League awards Shaun Kenny-Dowall was named the International Player of the Year while Lewis Brown won the International Rookie award. Shane Rehm was the Referee of the year, Saulala Houma won the Domestic award and Matt Duffie won the Junior player of the year. Nathan Cayless was given a special recognition award. Benji Marshall later won the World Golden Boot Award as best international player while Shaun Kenny-Dowall finished second in the voting and was named at centre in the international team of the year. At the Maori Sports Awards Stephen Kearney won Coach of the Year while Henry Perenara won the umpire/referee award. Richie Blackmore won the Coach of the Year award at the Counties Manukau Sporting Excellence Awards while the Counties Manukau under 17 side, coached by Blackmore, won the Junior sportsteam award.
Rugby League Cup
National Zonal competition
Following the Sparc funded review and restructure of the New Zealand Rugby League, seven new zonal teams competed in the 2010 National Zonal competition. Under 15's and Under 17's competitions were also to be held as curtain raisers to the senior matches. The Premiers competed for the Albert Baskerville Trophy which was won by Auckland, who defeated Counties Manukau 14 - 6 in the Grand Final.
The seven zones are;
- Northland Zone (Northern Swords): Consisting of the Northland and Whangarei districts, the Northern Swords were coached by Revell Neal. The Zone was initially to also include North Shore clubs but the Auckland Rugby League went to court to reduce the financial impact of a three-way split.
- Auckland Zone: Consisting of players from West, Central, North Harbour and Eastern Auckland, the Auckland team were coached by Northcote Tigers coach Ken McIntosh and included Sala Fa'alogo and Malo Solomona. The manager was Mick Lacey from the Ellerslie Eagles.
- Counties Manukau Zone: Consisting of players from South Auckland, including Otahuhu, Counties Manukau was coached by Rusty Matua with Richie Blackmore coaching the under 17's.
- Upper Central Zone (Waicoa Bay Stallions): Consisting of players from the Waikato, Coastline, Gisborne and Bay of Plenty districts the Waicoa Bay Stallions were coached by Tahe Morunga.
- Mid-Central Zone (Heartland): Consisting of players from the Taranaki, Wanganui, Hawkes Bay and Manawatu districts the Heartland premiers were coached by Mike Graham. Manawatu and Taranaki played a trial match before the squad was announced, with Manawatu victorious.
- Wellington Zone (Wellington Orcas): Drawn from the Wellington Rugby League competition the Wellington Orcas were coached by Trevor Clark while David Lomax coached the under 17s.* The side included Bureta Faraimo.
- Southern Zone (South Island): Drawn from the Tasman, West Coast, Canterbury, Otago and Southland districts the South Island team was coached by Brent Stuart with Mike Doreen coaching the under 17s. The premiers team included Jaye Pukepuke and Blair Sims. Sims later lost his life in the 2010 Pike River Mine disaster. Otago defeated Southland 26-20 in August.
*Gisborne and Hawkes Bay are included in Wellington Zone for administration purposes but their players play in the Upper Central and Mid-Central representative teams respectively.
|Waicoa Bay Stallions||6||3||0||3||1||186||172||8|
|South Island||28-6||Heartland||29 August||Rugby League Park, Christchurch|
|Wellington||22-8||Waicoa Bay||29 August||Fraser Park, Wellington|
|Auckland||28-16||Counties-Manukau||15 September||Mt Smart Stadium No.2, Auckland|
- Bye: Northern
|Northern||10-86||Counties-Manukau||5 September||Lindvart Park, Kaikohe|
|Auckland||18-24||Wellington||4 September||Cornwall Park, Auckland|
|Waicoa Bay||36-18||Heartland||5 September||Resthills Park, Hamilton|
- Bye: South Island
|South Island||34-36||Waicoa Bay||11 September||Burnham Military Camp|
|Heartland||14-24||Auckland||12 September||Clifton Park, Waitara|
|Wellington||74-0||Northern||12 September||Porirua Stadium, Wellington|
- Bye: Counties-Manukau
|Northern||16–64||South Island||19 September||Jubilee Park, Whangarei|
|Counties Manukau||42–12||Waicoa Bay||19 September||Bruce Pulman Park, Papakura|
|Heartland||10–18||Wellington||19 September||Arena Manawatu, Palmerston North|
|Auckland||28-4||South Island||25 September||Cornwall Park, Auckland|
|Waicoa Bay||72-8||Northern||26 September||Blake Park, Tauranga|
|Counties Manukau||34-30||Wellington||26 September||Bruce Pulman Park, Papakura|
|South Island||36-20||Counties Manukau||3 October||Rugby League Park, Christchurch|
|Heartland||58-6||Northern||3 October||Yarrow Stadium, New Plymouth|
|Waicoa Bay||22-48||Auckland||3 October||Puketawhero Park, Rotorua|
|Wellington||20-30||South Island||10 October||Porirua Stadium, Wellington|
|Counties Manukau||34-26||Heartland||10 October||Bruce Pulman Park, Papakura|
|Northern||6-86||Auckland||10 October||Okura Park, Whangarei|
Bye: Waicoa Bay
|Auckland||14 - 6||Counties Manukau||17 October||Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland|
Mark Graham Cup
The Under 17 competition was named after Mark Graham. Counties Manukau beat Auckland 22 - 12 in the final to become the inaugural holders of the Mark Graham Cup.
Nathan Cayless Cup
The Under 15 competition was named after Nathan Cayless. Counties Manukau beat Wellington Orcas 30 - 16 in the final to become the inaugural holders of the Nathan Cayless Cup.
New Zealand Warriors
The New Zealand Warriors competed in the National Rugby League competition, finishing fifth in regular season before being eliminated after losing their Qualifying Final. The Warriors also fielded an under-20 side in the Toyota Cup who finished second in the regular season before going on to win the Toyota Cup Grand Final. This was the clubs first grand final win at any level. The club also won the Club Championship for being the best performing club during the regular season (combined NRL and Toyota Cup results).
Eight teams competed in the Wellington Rugby League's Premier Appleton Shield in 2010. The Porirua Vikings defeated the Wainuiomata Lions 18-10 at Fraser Park on 14 August. The Lions had earlier finished the regular season as minor premiers.
Eight teams competed in the Canterbury Rugby League's Harringtons Premiership in 2010. The Papanui Tigers won the minor premiership. The Tigers lost 6-22 in the grand final which was won by the Hornby Panthers at Rugby League Park on 15 August.
In March, prop Vince Whare was banned for ten years following a positive test for cannabis after a 2009 Bartercard Premiership match. Whare had previously been warned and fined in 2005 and banned in 2006 for two years for the same offence.
Phil Prescott coached Halswell.
Clubs from the Bay of Plenty, Coastline and Gisborne districts played in a full round championship. The Otumoetai Eels won the competition, defeating the Ngongotaha Chiefs 24-18. The Waikato and Tri-district champions were then scheduled to meet in a play-off however the match was called off after the Otumoetai Eels and Waikato Rugby League could not agree on sharing the revenue. Matthew Spence was the Turangi Dambusters' player-coach while David Peachey played for the Taupo Phoenix.
The Feilding Falcons defeated the Marist Dragons 20-18 to win the combined Taranaki-Manawatu Western Division. Later in the season the Falcons defeated the Linton Cobras 32-6 to also win the Manawatu Rugby League competition.
The Lone Star Hawks won the Otago Rugby League grand final, defeating the Todd Engineering Pirates 28-12.
The Winton Warlords upset favourites He Tauaa 30-22 to win the Southland Rugby League grand final.
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- NZRL Zonal District Draw 2010 New Zealand Rugby League
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