September 26, 2023
Māori flavour to tamariki league tournament
New Zealand Māori Rugby League kaumatua Hemana Waaka says last weekend’s tamariki tournament in Whakatāne shows it’s still one of the most popular sports for whānau.
The tournament drew 96 teams of 10, 11 and 12 year olds from as far away as Christchurch and Hokianga.
And while the aim was to have fun, Māori culture also played a big part.
“They start to learn the discipline. They start to learn about the whakawhanaunga. You know I would have been quite happy to judge the hakas that were out there – and the colourful jerseys with their taonga all over it. You can tell it was a Māori tournament – by Māori, for Māori,” Mr Waaka.