January 25, 2022
Rangatahi chance to shine at Pacific league tourney
The roar of the crowd will be missing but players at this weekend’s Pasifika Youth Rugby League tournament have a lot to play for.
Covid restrictions will keep the North Harbour Stadium stands almost empty, and Samoa and Tokelau have been unable to send teams.
But New Zealand Māori League chair John Devonshire is expecting tough competition between New Zealand Māori, Tonga, Cooks Islands, Fiji, and Niue.
He says the Australian talent scouts who normally attend will be keeping a close eye on the broadcasts on Sky TV for the NRL stars of the future.
“First and foremost it’s about playing Māori and representing your hapū, iwi whānau and being Māori and celebrating that, and then the opportunities that eventuate from these tournaments and our tournaments, the New Zealand Rugby League tournaments, they’re bonuses,” Mr Devonshire says.
The tournament starts Friday.