Issue 39 : 22 September 2019

Talofa Lava, Kia Orana, Malo E Leilei, Tena Koutou, Hello ...

... and welcome to the latest issue of “For The Love Of The Game”, the official e-zine of the New Zealand Amateur Sport Association Inc. We hope you enjoy reading the articles below. 

If you have any feedback on this issue, ideas for future articles, or would like to contact the Editor, please click here. And, you are invited to forward the e-zine to others you know, who may be interested in reading it.

If you are interested in applying for membership of the Association, please click here.

2019 National Sport Club Survey Commences This Week ...

The Association is interested in learning more about the current state of sports clubs across New Zealand. To this end, we are asking sports club representatives across the country to provide us information about their Club through our second on-line survey.

It’s intended to present the survey findings in Regional Seminars throughout New Zealand, commencing in November 2019. The Sport Leadership & Management Department at Auckland University of Technology (AUT) is a partner in this project, which is proudly supported by Pinnacle Corporation and Dynasty Sport.

This year, we are pleased to advise that Dynasty Sport is offering a Prize Draw of $500 toward the purchase of sports uniforms, for a Club which completes the survey. The Prize Draw will be made on Friday, 18 October and the winner advised directly.

If your Club would like to participate in the survey, please click here to provide your e-Mail contact details. This will enable the survey link to be sent to you.

Ngatapa Takes Initiative To Secure Financial Its Future ...

In 2018, the Committee at the Ngatapa Rugby and Associated Sports Club (former home of new All Black George Bridge), decided to establish an "Endowment Fund" to secure the longevity of the Club. The Club is located at Patutahi, a small settlement 15 kilometres east of Gisborne. Ngatapa Club President, Lou Livingston said the Club Committee worked hard every year to raise funds to maintain the Club’s facilities. “The clubs assets continually need up-keep, whenever we finish one project there’s another waiting around the corner.”

“We hope our Endowment Fund will grow to the point where it can help future Committees with the big task of running and improving the Club, so they won’t have to be reliant solely on seeking sponsorship.” Established in 1957, the Club now has over 500 members coming from as far afield as Tolaga, Matawai and Mahia.

Ngatapa is a family-oriented Club, whose vision is to create a Club with a culture which grows player numbers, as well as encouraging people to join as Coaches, Managers and Volunteers. All donations to the Ngatapa Rugby and Associated Sports Club Endowment Fund are invested with Gisborne’s Sunrise Foundation, a registered Charitable Trust and are tagged specifically for the purposes of the Club. The Association congratulates the Club in undertaking this initiative.

"Pickleball" Boasts 3 Million United States Players ...

A purely amateur sport, “Pickleball” is a hybrid of "paddle-based" sports like tennis, badminton and ping-pong. The 6-by-13-metre pickleball courts are similar to a badminton court (or a ping-pong table), and matches can be played in singles or doubles format.

Pickleball was invented in 1965 on Bainbridge Island near Seattle. While it began gaining traction in the United States about ten years ago as primarily a sport for seniors, player demographics have been trending younger in recent years. The sport has had a 650 percent increase in numbers over the last six years, according to US Pickleball Association (USAPA).

While the game is played indoors and outdoors around the United States, much of the play is indoors due to a lack of outdoor facilities. Pickleball was first introduced to New Zealand three years ago in Rotorua. You can find out more about the growth of Pickleball in Aotearoa, here.

Association Supports Wellington Community Rugby Awards ...

At the 2019 annual Wellington Community Rugby Awards at Pipitea Marae, the Association's President Andy Leslie presented the "Club Community Award" to this year's winner, Paremata-Plimmerton Rugby Football Club.

(Association President, Andy Leslie, presented the 2019 Club Community Award)

In its 60th Anniversary Year, the Award recognised the role that the Club plays in the local community, including the establishment of a fund which has raised more than $10,000 for injured players. The Club has the second largest number of junior player registrations in the Wellington region in 2019, and hosts an annual Queen’s Birthday Junior Sevens Tournament.

(Paremata-Plimmerton RFC Chairperson, Sal O’Reilly-Nugent)

The Inspirational Amateur Story Of New Zealand Underwater Hockey ...

In August, New Zealand won three World Championships in the 5th Underwater Hockey Age Group World Championships, the Under 19 and Under 24 Women and the Under 19 Men. Both women's teams have held the world titles every year, except 2015.

Moreover, last year, New Zealand won the Elite Mens and Womens World Championships. However, as a fully amateur sport, Underwater Hockey did not receive any funding from New Zealand’s principal sport funders; the players all paid their own way to the Tournaments. New Zealand is now World Champion in five of eight possible grades, "a feat never achieved before by any country”, according to New Zealand Underwater Hockey President Tony Colquhoun.

Underwater Hockey is played in at least 36 countries and is spread across six continents. For New Zealand to have established such dominance in a global sport, driven solely by the love-of-the-game, is an extraordinary achievement. With High Performance Sport New Zealand’s Vision to “inspire the nation through winning on the world stage”, investment in the sport to assist its wider development across New Zealand's sporting community, must surely be long overdue.

From The Archives ...



“In sponsoring a proposal to make some tangible recognition of J. E. Lovelock's services to amateur sport, the council of the New Zealand Olympic and Empire Games Association is giving expression to the desires of the many thousands who recognise how faithfully Lovelock personifies the true spirit of amateur games.

In winning for New Zealand the laurels of the Games, Lovelock won our grateful pride. He has since doubled our debt to him by his eloquent interpretation of the spirit of sport. It is seldom that we discover one who has both the power to achieve and the gift to interpret the meaning and purpose of achievement and withal to preserve a modest demeanour. Not only athletes and those actively interested in sport, but all who recognise the character-forming worth of athletic endeavour will be glad to have a part in showing appreciation of Lovelock's example.”

(“He Smiles At Miles” – Jack Lovelock)

Born at Crushington, (near Reefton) in 1910, John Edward ("Jack") Lovelock (the son of John and Ivy) is remembered largely for his athletic achievements, especially his dramatic finish in the 1500 metres at the 1936 Berlin Olympics, which won New Zealand its first-ever athletics gold medal. Educated at Temuka Primary School, Fairlie High School and Timaru Boys High School, he attended Otago University where he studied medicine. In 1930, he was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship to Oxford University.

In 1947 he moved to the United States with his wife Cynthia and their infant daughter, Mary, taking up a position at the Hospital for Special Surgery in Manhattan, working in rehabilitative medicine. In 1949, he accidentally fell beneath a train at the Church Avenue subway station on the New York City subway and was killed instantly, at the young age of 40.

A New Zealand amateur athlete hero, the sentiments of A E Housman’s 1896 poem “To An Athlete Dying Young”, captured the general feeling of New Zealand on learning of Lovelock’s death: “Now you will not swell the rout; Of lads that wore their honours out; Runners whom renown outran; And the name died before the man.”

The Final Word ...

“This is a little country and it needs a lift every now and again."

(Sir Graham Henry KNZM, reflects on the impact of the Rugby World Cup)

© New Zealand Amateur Sport Association Inc. (2669211), 2017

Registered Office, Level 1, 57 Willis Street, Wellington, 6011

P O Box 582, Wellington, 6140

If you no longer wish to receive these emails please click here to unsubscribe.