The Chiefs have re-signed halfback and All Black Tawera Kerr-Barlow for the next two years.
Chiefs coach Dave Rennie said the 24 year-old has displayed an amazing work ethic recovering from his horrific injury during an All Blacks match late in 2014.
“Tawera is incredibly professional. His dedication to rehab and developing other parts of his game throughout his time out has been impressive. He is in fantastic condition."
“He is now one of our senior players who contributes greatly in our environment. I know he is hungry to get back to top level footy.”
The tenacious halfback said “It is an exciting time to be a rugby player in New Zealand and it is great to have certainty around my future for the next few years.
“I am fortunate to be in two exceptional world class teams that have phenomenal environments and people, which make it very appealing to continue playing in New Zealand.
Kerr-Barlow has also signed on with the Waikato Rugby Union for a further two years.
“I am proud to be from Hamilton and I love the Chiefs and Waikato, so am rapt to have recommitted till 2017,” said Kerr-Barlow.
Kerr-Barlow has 56 Chiefs matches to his name, after making his debut in 2011. He has played 15 Tests for the All Blacks after making his first appearance against Scotland on the Northern Hemisphere end of year tour in 2012 and has notched up 39 matches for Waikato since debuting in 2009.
The highly dedicated player has represented New Zealand in school rugby and was part of 2010 IRB World Championship winning side.
“Tawera is a Waikato man through and through and we are delighted to retain his services,” Waikato head coach Sean Botherway said.
“He is a product of our academy system and has been signed to Waikato since he was at high school. We are very proud of his achievements in his career to date and look forward to his ongoing contribution to our Union."
Kerr-Barlow is expected to feature in the early rounds of this year’s ITM Cup as he continues his encouraging return from injury. He is working towards a return to the All Blacks and has already played with the Maori All Blacks and his local club Hautapu.
Chiefs Assistant Coach and Manu Samoa Technical Advisor Andrew Strawbridge and the Doctor credited for saving his life in Samoa, Dr David Galler, have spoken publicly for the first time since Andrew’s near death experience.
Strawbridge, who is not yet up for visitors, remains in a stable condition and spoke from his Waikato Hospital bed saying, “I am extremely grateful to Dr David Galler and his team for saving my life.
“I have a beautiful wife, three wonderful children and a very special mother and sister who still have me here thanks to Dr Galler and his wonderful team at Moto'otua National Hospital in Samoa and the team at Waikato Hospital.”
“It is only now that the events of the last two weeks have become clearer and I now realise how fortunate I am to be here. It is a very emotional time and I know the road back is a long and challenging one. I woke up to discover that my wife and her friend Deborah had set up a Givealittle appeal in a gesture of gratitude to the people of Samoa and the Moto’otua ICU.
That selfless act by my wife has made me realise how loved I am.
“We are overwhelmed by the support for the Givealittle appeal for equipment for the Moto'otua National Hospital ICU and I can’t believe we have already raised over $24,000. I want to thank everyone who has generously donated and hope people continue to support it.
“My family and I really appreciate the messages of support from family, friends, the Chiefs whanau, the Manu Samoa aiga, New Zealand Rugby, the wider rugby network, and complete strangers. It has been very touching. The outpouring of support has been extremely humbling,” said a very emotionally moved Strawbridge.
“We also appreciate those media outlets who have respected our family’s privacy in what has been an absolute rollercoaster ride and those who did not film me on life support when my children and mother had not seen me in that state.”
The man who is attributed for saving Andrew Strawbridge’s life, Dr Galler said from his Intensive Care Unit in Samoa; “All of us who work for the Samoan National Health Service are thrilled that Andrew Strawbridge is on the road to recovery. I know that the prayers of many are for Andrew in the hope and expectation that his recovery will be swift and complete.
“We in the ICU are deeply grateful to the Strawbridge Family for launching this appeal to improve the services we can offer at the nation's only Intensive Care Unit. We will do that through improved training for staff and the procurement of essential equipment. We wish to thank each and every donor for the effort they have made to contribute and for their contribution itself.
“Our gratitude is clearly matched by that of National Health Service here and, if the local papers and television are an indication, of all of Samoa too.
“All nations, no matter their GDP, face great challenges in the affordability of healthcare, Samoa is not alone in that regard. The service here is slowly evolving in a way that will be appropriate for the Samoan context. The generous donations from this appeal will accelerate that growth greatly, both because of what we will be able to procure but more importantly because of these individual acts of kindness. The impact of people’s generosity is simply enormous. Fa'afetai lava.“
The Strawbridge Givealittle appeal will provide medical equipment for the Moto'otua National Hospital Intensive Care Unit. The appeal continues with a full list of medical care equipment aiming to be purchased with the funds listed on the Givealittle page.
Continuing on from the highly successful Chiefs regional U18’s camp held last week at St Paul’s Collegiate, two Chiefs teams have been selected to play two Blues U18’s teams on Monday 13 July.
Both fixtures will take place at St Paul’s Collegiate with the first match kicking off at 12.30pm and the second at 2.30pm.
The Chiefs annual U18’s Development camp was held in Hamilton with players from the Chiefs Provincial Union’s taking part in the five day camp.
Invited players from Bay of Plenty, Counties Manukau, King Country, Taranaki, Thames and Waikato attended the regional event that covered all aspects of what is required to play rugby at the next level.
Chiefs Player Identification and Development Manager Dave Dillon said “The matches will be a good opportunity for these players to put some of what they have learned at camp into practice and for us to view them up closely in a game situation.”
TEAM ELLIOT 12.30pm Kick off
1 Gordon Fullerton (St Paul's Collegiate)
2 Nick Souchon (Hamilton BHS)
3 Te Hira Roberts (Te Wharekura)
4 Kaydin Budd (Te Wharekura)
5 Hadleigh Morgan (Hamilton BHS)
6 Ben Brady (Matamata College)
7 Nanga Iloa (Manurewa College)
8 Viliami Taulani (Manurewa HS)
9 Sam Takai (Tauranga BC)
10 Ollie Polson (Francis Douglas MS)
11 Steven Snoxall (Francis Douglas MS)
12 Enele Fidow (Francis Douglas MS)
13 Will Ngatai (Tauranga BC)
14 Michael McDonald (New Plymouth BHS)
15 Rewita Biddle (Opotoki College)
16 Luke Dravitski (Francis Douglas MS)
17 Sole Lisiate (Cambridge HS)
18 Oscar Preece (Hamilton BHS)
19 Soakimi Havili (Wesley College)
20 Samipeni Finau (Manurewa HS)
21 Tamaki Kopa(Te Kuiti HS)
22 Dylan Du Plessis (Alfriston College
23 Paea Lavaka (Tauranga BC)
24 Mitchell Murphy (Thames HS)
25 Reece McDonald (Tauhara College)
26 James Williams (Tongariro Area School)
27 Tane Hotham (Hamilton BHS)
28 Brayton Northcott - Hill (New Plymouth BHS)
COACH Alf Daniels
COACH Warren Hodges
MANAGER Paul Galetta
PHYSIO Shane Derry
TEAM CANE 2pm Kick off
1 Alex Mitchell (St Paul's Collegiate)
2 Samisoni Taukei'aho (St Paul's Collegiate)
3 Ryan Coxan (St Peter's School)
4 Tom Florence (New Plymouth BHS)
5 Louis Duffels-Des Forges(New Plymouth BHS)
6 Patrick McCurran (Hamilton BHS)
7 Jacob Norris (St Peter's School)
8 Jackson Morgan (St Paul's Collegiate)
9 Liam Blyde (New Plymouth BHS)
10 Ramekia Poihipi (Hamilton BHS)
11 Masiu Vainakolo (Western Heights HS)
12 Brad Armstrong (Tauranga BC)
13 Prince Lafaele (Wesley College)
14 Spencer Jones (Cambridge HS)
15 Sam Toa (Hamilton BHS)
16 Chad Petersen (New Plymouth BHS)
17 Bradley Slater (New Plymouth BHS)
18 Mitchell O Neill (New Plymouth BHS)
19 Viliami Taulani (Manurewa HS)
20 Kaylum Boshier (New Plymouth BHS)
21 Haupeke Brown (Manurewa HS)
22 Ollie Polson (Francis Douglas MS)
23 Quinn Tupaea (Hamilton BHS)
24 Mua Tuumaialu (Manurewa HS)
COACH Paul Hodder
COACH Brendon Webby
MANAGER Cam Kilgour
PHYSIO Cam Simiss
Asipeli Mafuataimi (St Paul's Collegiate)
Jevone Forbes (Hamilton BHS)
Tokan Kaninteang (Hamilton BHS)
Nakoa Marcroft (St John's College)
Harrison Courtney (Hamilton BHS)
Josef Meek (Hamilton BHS)
Sevu Reece (Hamilton BHS)
Suetena Asomua (Wesley College)
Fuifatu Asomua (Wesley College)
Hawai'I Paeniu (Wesley College)
Cole Blyde (New Plymouth BHS)
New Zealand Rugby have this morning confirmed the full schedule of domestic fixtures for 2016 and 2017, covering All Blacks Tests and the British & Irish Lions Series.
The Chiefs, Waikato Rugby Union and Waikato Stadium are pleased to announce that we will host the following matches:
All Blacks v Argentina
Saturday 10 September 2016; Waikato Stadium Hamilton
Chiefs v British & Irish Lions
Tuesday 20 June 2017; Waikato Stadium Hamilton
The British & Irish Lions Tour is likely to be one of the most significant sporting events the country has hosted since Rugby World Cup 2011 and the Chiefs are excited to be part of this incredible event. Other games in the Chiefs region will be hosted at Rotorua International Stadium and Yarrow Stadium New Plymouth.
We expect to see a draft draw for Investec Super Rugby 2016 in the next few weeks, so once this is released by Sanzar and New Zealand Rugby we will begin to put together our membership packages.
Please be assured that as our loyal members you will be the first to receive information on our membership packages and the All Blacks and British & Irish Lions matches.