Waikaia club celebrates 125 years of rugby in style

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Past and present players battled it out alongside a special guest at the Waikaia Rugby Club’s 125th anniversary celebrations during the weekend.

After club photos on Saturday morning, schoolchildren took the field to open playing celebrations.

Waikaia Rugby Football Club celebration committee chairman and life member Al McKee said the club had 32 players turn out in the Golden Oldies match.

There was a bit of banter from the past players and golden oldies on the Friday night, McKee said.

“We weren’t quite sure how many numbers we would have,” McKee said.

“We thought it could be seven-a-side at one stage, so it was good to have 16 each side,” he said.

Former All Black Andrew Hore laced up his boots for the main match, Waikaia club’s Past versus Present match.

“We weren’t keeping count because rugby was the winner on the day but the Past did win,” McKee said.

Hore not only played that game but also featured in the Golden Oldies match, too.

On Saturday night the club had 186 people along for a celebratory dinner at which Hore was the guest speaker.

“It’s been a good turnout.”

McKee described Hore as a very candid speaker.

Former club member Roger McBain was honoured posthumously for his contribution to the club. His daughter, Kerry Stevenson, accepted the honour.

Celebrations continued at the club on Easter Sunday with a champagne lunch.

McKee said the weekend had been fantastic.