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The Nelson Photo News



New Rugby Union for Nelson Province

Ranfurly Shield Challenge

The new Nelson Bays Rugby Union Must lodge a challenge with Canterbury for the Ranfurly Shield this year. Elsewhere on this page we have spoken of the incentives that must be offered players if the playing strength is to be raised. What greater incentive could we offer our senior players this year than a crack at the "log of wood"? What would it matter if we lost? The new union would have proved conclusively that from the outset it is prepared to "think big" and we are positive that public support and interest would be intensified. A challenge match - win or lose - could put the seal of success on this great year for Rugby in the province.

The interminable negotiations to form a fully provincial Rugby union, Incorporating the Nelson and Golden BayMotueka unions, came to an end at Lower Moutere last month. Delegates from clubs in both unions came together for the first and last time and unanimously approved the amalgamation of the two unions in ratifying the constitution to cover the joint area. The new union will be called the Nelson Bays Rugby Union.

Along with all those who have the interests of Rugby in the province at heart, we are delighted with the decision to amalgamate. Last year's trial season as a combined union was a tremendous success. A stronger union must mean better competition; that in turn must bring greater interest, and if the new union can offer its players the incentives to train hard and play hard, then Nelson Bays will be a union force to be reckoned with in the future.

This is to be a big year for Rugby in New Zealand and by far the most important in the history of the province. This is the centenary year of Rugby in New Zealand, the Nelson club having played the first game of Rugby in 1870. To commemorate this the inter-island match is to be played in Nelson and the annual meeting of the New Zealand Rugby Referees' Association is also to be held here at Easter.


The interim committee of the new union, front, Messrs L. L. Cederman (chairman), A. Ryder (formerly president of the Golden Bay Motueka union), J. P. Wild, D. B. Fowler (secretary); back, Messrs D. H. Blyth, F. A. Foote, M. L. Brown, R. S. Boyd, W. McCaa, G. J. Anderson (treasurer), and (absent), R. A. Blomfield.


Mr Ivan Rankin J.P., witnesses the signatures to the articles of incorporation.


Club delegates Maldon Whitwell (Huia), Jack Curnow and Tom Mead (Tapawera).


Ian Tait (Takaka) and George Thomson (Rangers)


Wally Williams (Huia), Maurie Biggs, Norman Lochhead and lon Galletly, all Tapawera.