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2017 North Harbour U85s Champions

Our 2017 season started mid-Feb, we were encouraged by seeing a few new faces and set a goal to go one step further than last years semi-final loss.

After close losses in our first two games, we got on a roll winning 10 of our last 10 games leading into the semi-final. This despite losing our well-performed 2nd five Paul King with a broken forearm.

In the semi we turned on one of our best performances silencing a boisterous Silverdale crowd, winning 31-22.

We faced top qualifier Kumeu in the final. Under the direction of head coach Eddie Meechan, we had worked the guys hard, knew we were fit and our defence was solid. The club put on a supporters bus, and the support on the sideline from all the old boys and the club as a whole was humbling.

The boys had a few nerves and got off to a shaky start, leading 6-3 and hard on defence, our 2nd five and captain Jimmy Napier grabbed an intercept and ran 60 meters to score out wide. Our 1st five Nick Burcher had an outstanding match, nailing some difficult kicks, helping us pull away to a well-deserved 19-10 win, enabling the Gnomes to play our part in securing 3 x senior championships for the club.

The 1st win for the U85’s since 2006 when the coaching team of Eddie Meechan, Andrew Chatfield, Jason Greene and myself were also all involved.

Special thanks to Colin Young our manager who was there week in week out doing it for the boys.

We did the Mahi and got the treats, we were a champion team, rather than a team of champions, having a real desire, belief in each other, and strong will to take out the championship.

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