September 07, 2022

University of Waikato Chiefs U18 Development Camp Named

A talented group of young rugby players have been selected to attend the University of Waikato Chiefs Region Under 18 Development Camp. Players from across Chiefs Country were selected based on their ability, performance, and personal commitment that they have shown to the sport. The camp will run from the 1st to the 5th of October 2022 at St Paul's Collegiate School in Hamilton.

The U18 camps are a great initiative facilitated by New Zealand Rugby (NZR) and the Super Rugby Clubs. NZR High Performance Player Development Manager Matt Sexton said, "The camps will allow these players to be exposed to key elements for a future in professional rugby. We want each individual to be able to walk away from these camps with a clear picture as to what their pathway is and what they need to do to achieve their goals.”

The pathway to professional rugby that the camps provide has been followed by many current Gallagher Chiefs players. Current All Blacks; Luke Jacobson, Tupou Vaa’i, Quinn Tupaea, Samisoni Taukei’aho, Sevu Reece, Aidan Ross, and All Blacks Captain Sam Cane have all attended the University of Waikato Chiefs U18 Development Camp.

Chiefs Rugby Club Head of Pathways Kent Currie is excited about the players selected, saying, "They have displayed quality skill sets, fitness levels and work ethic during their respective First XV and club seasons."

"For the second time, we have selected U18 club players to attend our camp to provide an opportunity for those that missed selection last year as U17 Year 13 players. Otherwise, they could fall through the cracks within our rugby landscape."

Last year the camp had to be cancelled due to the pandemic. With business-as-usual returning, the Chiefs Rugby Club is looking forward to being able to host again this year to continue to foster the region's rugby talent.

The experts sharing their knowledge with players at the camp will include former Gallagher Chiefs and All Blacks, as well as the Chiefs Rugby Club coaching staff. "There will be a big focus on skill development and the Chiefs Rugby Club culture before playing two games against the Blues Rugby Club U18 side on the 4th of October at Mount Albert Grammar School," said Currie.

At the conclusion of the week-long camps the 2022 New Zealand Secondary Schools, New Zealand Barbarians, and Under 18 Māori teams will be selected. Those three teams will then compete alongside the Fijian Schools team in a four-team series.

The following players have been selected for the University of Waikato Chiefs U18 Development Camp:
Liam Anderson - Hamilton Boys High School
Maraki Aumua - Rotorua Boys High School
Topia Barrowcliffe - Clifton Rugby Football Club
Niah Church – Jones - Te Awamutu Rugby Sports & Recreation Club
Tai Cribb - Hamilton Marist Rugby Football Club
Wesley Curulala - St John's College
Liam Day - New Plymouth Boys High School
Micah Fale - St John's College
Rui Farrant - St Peter's School, Cambridge
Amilame Finau - St John's College
Grady Forbes - Te Puke Sports & Recreation Club
Fa'angavalu Hammond - Tauranga Boys College
Curtis Hana - Hamilton Boys High School
Abraham Harrison - Hamilton Old Boys Rugby Football Club
Tama Hodgson - Hamilton Boys High School
Patrick Howlett - New Plymouth Boys High School
Max Hutchings - Rotorua Boys High School
Kingston Kahotea - St Paul's Collegiate School
Halen King - St John's College
Jai Knight - Mount Maunganui College
Maloni Kunawave - Rotorua Boys High School
Faauma Kupita - Tauranga Boys College
Breyton Legge - Hamilton Boys High School
Rangiwai Lunjevich - Hamilton Boys High School
Will Martin - Hamilton Boys High School
Oli Mathis - Hamilton Boys High School
Brooke Mitchell - Rotorua Boys High School
Jacob Mitchell - New Plymouth Boys High School
Lenz Morunga - Manurewa High School
Jole Naufahu - University of Waikato Rugby Football Club
Jack O'Brien - St John's College
Reuben Palmer - Tauranga Boys College
Taeao Pomale-Time - Manurewa High School
Caelys Paul Putoko - Hamilton Boys High School
Kyan Rangitutia - St John's College
Toby Robb - University of Waikato Rugby Football Club
Brodie Robinson - Hamilton Boys High School
Harrold Rounds - Rotorua Boys High School
Jack Rusk - St Paul's Collegiate School
Leo Sagato - Rotorua Boys High School
Waisake Salabiau - Rotorua Boys High School
Andrew Smith - Hautapu Sports Club
Matt Stewart - Tauranga Boys College
Jai Tamati - Rotorua Boys High School
Piripi Tapsell - Tauranga Boys College
Te Hamana Te Aute - Rotorua Boys High School
Daniel Ticklepenny - St John's College
Callum Tito - New Plymouth Boys High School
Junior Tolutau - Pukekohe Rugby Football Club
Aki Tulivailala - Hamilton Boys High School
Sione Tupou - Rotorua Boys High School
Cody Vai - St Peter's School, Cambridge
Samuela Vakadula - New Plymouth Boys High School
Aisake Vakasioula - Tauranga Boys College
Adrien Wharawhara - St John's College
Malachi Wrampling - Te Awamutu Rugby Sports & Recreation Club

The Chiefs U18 Selection Panel:
Kent Currie – Chiefs Rugby Club
Dave McLennan – Chiefs Rugby Club
Brad Cooper – Taranaki Rugby Football Union
Rhys Bayliss – Waikato Rugby Union
James Porter – Bay of Plenty Rugby Union
Chad Shepherd – Counties Manukau Rugby Football Union

University of Waikato Chiefs U18 Development Camp Named