Boys secondary school hockey is rapidly approaching the business end of the season with the Rankin Cup being held in Hamilton in September.
In the leading competitions nationwide most finals will happen in the coming week.
There are only five undefeated teams at this stage heading towards the India Shield and Rankin Cup.
The undefeated teams playing in secondary school competitions are: Rosmini College, Hamilton Boys’ High School, Paraparaumu College, Christ’s College and King’s High School from Dunedin. Coincidentally both Rosmini and Paraparaumu qualified for Rankin this year by winning their respective tier three tournaments last year.
It should be noted that some schools play in the men’s competitions such as Whangarei Boys’ High School, Palmerston North Boys’ High School and Tauranga Boys’ College.
Much has been made of Hamilton Boys’ record of 17 unbeaten wins this season, but they only beat 2016 Rankin Cup winners St Paul’s Collegiate by a solitary goal in the first competition match. St Paul’s toured Christchurch last month to play Christ’s, Christchurch BHS and St Andrew’s College. They lost their first game 5-1 to Christ’s, but performed better in their second game only losing 3-2. St Paul’s unfortunately didn’t get to play Christchurch Boys’, because of poor weather
Rosmini heads into the Auckland Super City league final as warm favourites to capture the title. Rosmini has dispatched its opposition convincingly, including beating last year’s third place finisher, Rangitoto College by ten goals along the way.
Although Rosmini only just beat Westlake in their semi-final, they will prove tough to beat at Rankin. What adds further credence to their claim is that they have three field players and a goalie who have been selected as part of the New Zealand U18 Development Camp squad which has just been released comprising 33 players.
Rosmini had the following players in the North Harbour reps: Callum Dempster, Ryan Harrison, Kiharoa Iversen, Joshua Paul, Sam Schofield, Joachim Tan, Issac Houlbrooke and Taimana Iversenand Joe Holloway.
Paraparaumu College is an enigma with no New Zealand representation despite convincingly winning the Wellington round robin with seven wins on the trot and a goal difference of 40-6, a staggering 21 goals better than the next best team Wellington College who has consistently placed in the top eight at Rankin Cup for the last four years.
Paraparaumu beat Wellington College 6-1. Wellington College boast Hunter Stent who has amassed over 100 games for his First XI.
Of note, Rosmini and Paraparaumu played one another in the final of Mayhill Cup in 2010, which Rosmini won. That year their centre half was George Muir who made the Black Sticks two years later.
College Sport Media is dedicated to telling the story of successful young sportspeople in New Zealand