BOP Volcanix set for a big season

Black Ferns captain Les Elder.

Everything is in place for another successful season for the Bay of Plenty Volcanix.

Black Ferns captain Les Elder and Christie Yule have been named as co-captains of the Volcanix to contest the 2019 Farah Palmer Cup.

The squad of 30 players has 17 back from last season plus the impressive Black Fern Luka Connor who missed 2018 with a knee surgery.

The Volcanix will contest the top Premiership division alongside Canterbury, Counties Manukau, Waikato, Auckland, Manawatu and Wellington.

The teams in the Championship division are Otago, North Harbour, Northland, Tasman, Hawke’s Bay and Taranaki.

Christie Yule is excited with the balance of experience and youth that has been selected for this year’s Farah Palmer Cup.

“It’s probably evenly balanced this year, which is good, and the youth certainly provides a lot of passion and enthusiasm that keeps the more experienced players younger.”

The 27-year-old says players like Jade Una Tuilaepa, Sapphire Tapsell, Kelsie Wills and Layla Te Riini will be names to keep a close eye on this season.

“There are some really good young girls coming through with such skill and game-reading ability, that I can’t wait to get out on the field with them.”

Whakarewarewa players selected are Christine Corbett, Natalie Walford, Nadia Flavell, Lily Florence, Janina Khan, Tania-Rose Raharuhi and Autumn-Rain Stephens Daly.

Black Ferns captain Les Elder will be a huge influence on and off the field.

She told sportnz.org.nz about what matters most to her about being a leader among rugby players.

“I’m really passionate about contributing to growing good people, better people make better communities. Sport is the vehicle for which I strive to achieve that.

“Through this program and in my role as Women’s Rugby Development Manager at Bay of Plenty Rugby Union, we talk about being more than just a sportsperson or an athlete, we talk about the life skills that are learnt through playing sport: teamwork, confidence, resilience, the list goes on.

“I want to encourage young people to play sport and families to understand the value of sport for them and their communities.”

The Volcanix have a new coaching group this year.

Head coach Rodney Gibbs was assistant coach of the Bay of Plenty Steamers for the last six seasons and is joined by former Steamers and All Blacks flanker Tanerau Latimer and player/coach from Te Puke Sports Matt Wallis.

The Volcanix open their 2019 campaign against Counties Manukau at Tauranga Domain on August 31 at 2.35pm.

* Congratulations to Rotorua Girls High School First XV who secured a spot in this weekend’s Chiefs Top 4 semi-finals to be held in Hamilton after beating New Plymouth Girls’ High School 27-7 on Saturday.

2019 Bay of Plenty Volcanix squad:
Amanda Aldridge (Rangiuru)
Luka Connor (Rangataua)
Christine Corbett (Whakarewarewa)
Natalie Delamere (Rangiuru)
Les Elder (Rangataua) - Co-Captain
Karli Faneva (Mount Maunganui Sports)
Tynealle Fitzgerald (Rangiuru)
Nadia Flavell (Whakarewarewa)
Lily Florence (Whakarewarewa)
Baye Jacob (Rangiuru)
Janina Khan (Whakarewarewa)
Tracey Lemon (Rangataua)
Azalleyah Maaka (Rangataua)
Mystery McLean Kora (Rangiuru)
Sela Moataane (Rangiuru)
Anahera Mohi (Rangiuru)

Angel Mulu (Rangiuru
Danielle Paenga (Melville)
Tania-Rose Raharuhi (Whakarewarewa)
Kendra Reynolds (Rangiuru)
Olivia Richardson (Rangataua)
Autumn-Rain Stephens Daly (Whakarewarewa)
Sapphire Tapsell (Rangiuru)
Arorangi Tauranga (Mount Maunganui Sports)
Layla Te Riini (Rangiuru)
Jade Tuilaepa (Rangataua)
Natalie Walford (Whakarewarewa)
Renee Wickliffe (Rangataua)
Kelsie Wills (Mount Maunganui Sports)
Christie Yule (Rangiuru) - Co-Captain


2019 Bay of Plenty Volcanix Schedule:


Week 1 vs Counties Manukau at Tauranga Domain, Tauranga - Saturday 31 August, 2.30pm
Week 2 vs Wellington at Jerry Collins Stadium, Porirua - Saturday 7 September, 1.00pm
Week 3 vs Auckland at Rugby Park, Whakatane - Saturday 14 September, 2.30pm
Week 4 vs Waikato at FMG Stadium Waikato, Hamilton - Saturday 21 September, 12.35pm
Week 5 BYE
Week 6 vs Manawatu at Tauranga Domain, Tauranga - Saturday 5 October, 12.35pm
Week 7 vs Canterbury at Orangetheory Stadium, Canterbury - Sunday 13 October, 2.05pm
Quarter Final Saturday 12 October
Semi-Final Saturday 19 October
Final Saturday 26 October

Angel Mulu (Rangiuru
Danielle Paenga (Melville)
Tania-Rose Raharuhi (Whakarewarewa)
Kendra Reynolds (Rangiuru)
Olivia Richardson (Rangataua)
Autumn-Rain Stephens Daly (Whakarewarewa)
Sapphire Tapsell (Rangiuru)
Arorangi Tauranga (Mount Maunganui Sports)
Layla Te Riini (Rangiuru)
Jade Tuilaepa (Rangataua)
Natalie Walford (Whakarewarewa)
Renee Wickliffe (Rangataua)
Kelsie Wills (Mount Maunganui Sports)
Christie Yule (Rangiuru) - Co-Captain

2019 Bay of Plenty Volcanix Schedule:

Week 1 vs Counties Manukau at Tauranga Domain, Tauranga - Saturday 31 August, 2.30pm
Week 2 vs Wellington at Jerry Collins Stadium, Porirua - Saturday 7 September, 1.00pm
Week 3 vs Auckland at Rugby Park, Whakatane - Saturday 14 September, 2.30pm
Week 4 vs Waikato at FMG Stadium Waikato, Hamilton - Saturday 21 September, 12.35pm
Week 5 BYE
Week 6 vs Manawatu at Tauranga Domain, Tauranga - Saturday 5 October, 12.35pm
Week 7 vs Canterbury at Orangetheory Stadium, Canterbury - Sunday 13 October, 2.05pm
Quarter Final Saturday 12 October
Semi-Final Saturday 19 October
Final Saturday 26 October


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