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Friday 11th October 2019

Chronicle HOROWHENUA

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When Tonga came to town By PAUL WILLIAMS

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team of rugby players that were the toast of Horowhenua after beating an international touring side 50 years ago have a reunion planned for tomorrow. The 1969 Horowhenua team beat a strong Tongan team 22-10 in front of a huge crowd at Levin Domain on August 20, 1969 - a Wednesday - and it remains one of the more memorable results for the Horowhenua Rugby Union. They weren’t expected to win, and some Horowhenua players remember being asked during the week by townsfolk “who’s going to bat first”. But they were quietly confident, with some players more than happy to take wagers on the result. The Rugby Almanac of that year stated: “Without doubt Horowhenua was seen at its best in the handsome victory over Tonga, when a vigorous and wellknit pack secured a preponderance of ball and decisive tackling nullified the cleverness of the Tongan backs.” The crowd that afternoon was estimated at 4000. While there won’t be nearly that many in attendance for tomorrow’s match with Wanganui at Levin Domain, a healthy following is expected. The Horowhenua game was part of a 11-match New Zealandwide tour for Tonga, their first of New Zealand, that started in Nelson Bays in early August and finished in Bay of Plenty a month later. They had been pressing for a ■ Continued Page 3

WE CAN CHECK YOUR ROOF, SPOUTING OR LEAKY TAPS ETC

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Back row: Sione Tavo, Siao Selupe II, Sio Motu’apuaka, Fetu’ulele Mailangi, Siaosi Selupe I, Foua Moala, Sione Mafi. Middle: Haueti Veatupu, Tali Kavapalu, Kei Iongi, Kimipu Inoke, Vainikolo Vanisi, Sione Sika, Viliami Pahulu, Supileo Fotu, Malakai Alatini. Sitting: Feleti Muller Fr. D.W.Mullins. Viliami Alipate (c), Prine Tu’ipelehake (patron), Panuve Fakaua (vc), Lupeti Inau (assistant manager), Inoke Lupina, Uhila Tai. Front: Molou Filimoehala, Vailala Fifita, Oleni Eke and Kala Hafoka.


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