Issue 66 : 18 October 2020

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. An archive of earlier editions of the e-zine can be found here.

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

The 2020 Election : What's Next For Amateur Sport? ...

A notable feature of the 2020 Election campaign was the glaring absence of policy from most political parties in the area of sport and recreation. Other than the "Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand", few seemed interested in publicly articulating a clear vision as to the future of community sport on the campaign hustings.

Admittedly, the future of sport is not a matter for government to determine from the top-down, rather it relies on society and communities to build from the bottom-up, (in collaboration with government, where appropriate). Given the significant taxpayer resources tied-up in the government’s crown entity for sport, it would have been useful to hear, from all parties, their views as to how those resources could best be deployed and used in the future.

However, with the votes now counted and an absolute majority gained by the parliamentary Labour Party, it is now time to re-focus on the previous government’s $265 million promised investment in sport and actively debate how this will be used for benefit of all New Zealanders.

2020 National Sport Club Survey (NSCS) : Some Initial Insights ...

NSCS data indicates that many more sport clubs are losing money in 2020 (11%) than were in 2019 (5%). A higher proportion of clubs connected to New Zealand’s most traditional sports like rugby, cricket and netball report being “hit hard” by the impact of COVID-19 (15%) compared to other team sports (6%), primarily individual sports (4%) and racquet sports (3%).

Based on longitudinal NSCS data, it’s emerging that sport club membership is shrinking. The average membership of a sport club has decreased from over 200 in 2018, to 190 in 2019 and now 175 in 2020. This corresponds with an increase from 22% of clubs reporting their membership shrinking in 2018 to 30% in 2020. Digging deeper, it has emerged again in 2020 that smaller clubs are shrinking further and most clubs that are growing were already large.

You can read more, here and download the initial infographic of results, here.

Taranaki's Urenui Golf Club Wins Dynasty Sport Prize Draw ...

The Urenui Golf Club has won a $500 contribution toward club sports apparel, courtesy of National Sport Club Survey sponsor, Dynasty Sport. Located around 30 kilometres north of New Plymouth, the Urenui Golf Club was first elected a member of the New Zealand Golf Council in 1938, although there are reports indicating that a golf club was in existence in the early 1930’s, with William Henry Fuller, a Waitara store-keeper competing in the New Zealand Open Championship in that era, with some success.

Over the past nine decades, the Club has continued to provide affordable access to the game of golf for the local community and visiting holiday-makers. Earlier this month, the Club successfully defended the “Ryder Cup” against the nearby Manukorihi Golf Club, (the successful team is pictured above). The Association congratulates Urenui on winning the Prize Draw and thanks Dynasty Sport for their generosity in supporting community sport.

High School Athletes Report Anxiety and Depression Since Pandemic ...

A recent survey of high school athletes in the United States suggests that the cancellation of youth sports since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic has taken a significant toll on the mental health and well-being of adolescents.

The study, completed by a team of physicians, child health experts and researchers from "UW Health" and the "University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health", found that approximately 68 percent of the 3,243 student-athletes surveyed reported feelings of anxiety and depression at levels that would typically require medical intervention - (a result which is up 37 percent from past research studies).

The study also reported that physical activity levels were 50 percent lower than they were for youth prior to the pandemic and that quality-of-life scores were lower than researchers had ever found in similar studies of adolescents.

In New Zealand, the fact that some sporting codes in different areas of the country have been able to offer sport to teenagers, has made a big difference to the mental well-being of youth in this part of the world, reinforcing the public health role that organised amateur sport plays in creating and maintaining healthy and vibrant communities.

(This weekend's Hurricanes School Rugby Sevens, was a great experience for regional youth)

Viewpoint : Why "Availability" Does Not Necessarily Mean "Accessibility" ...

Data from the 2020 NSCS which revealed that only a minority of sport clubs have received COVID-19 financial relief, with an increasing number of clubs also reporting that they are losing money and membership, may be surprising to government and its crown agency for sport, given the COVID-19 financial support packages made available this year.

It's perhaps less of an indication that financial support is not required by New Zealand’s sport club community, and more likely an indication that there are barriers to that support being accessed by those who need it most. COVID-19 may have exposed a dangerous disconnect between the organisations strategising for sport and the organisations largely responsible for delivering it to local communities.

This idea seems to be supported by the steady stream of incorporated sport clubs being dissolved by the Registrar for failing to meet their fundamental regulatory requirement of filing an annual financial statement, while (in the main) still continuing to operate without the legal protections that their incorporated status formerly provided.

The Association suggests that two actions are now required to ensure that he availability of well-meaning top-down financial support can be more easily accessed by sport clubs through the more practical resourcing of bottom-up unpaid volunteers. You can read more here.

Wellington “Play Day” Provides An Equal Opportunity For All ...

On 8 October, Wellington City Mission, with the support of the Association, organised a free-of-charge “Play Day” for primary school children at the National Hockey Stadium in Wellington. The concept, developed by Association Board Member and City Mission Community Development Manager Ray Tuffin, was to provide children from all backgrounds with an opportunity to experience a number of traditional Kiwi sports in a relaxed, fun environment, in many respects harking back to the era when community sport was about being "part of the game" and cost was not a barrier to participation.

Over 80 children from around Wellington City took part in "Play Day", with many parents stating how happy and moving the experience was for their children. However, for some the “pay-to-play” environment of organised community sport today is a serious issue. A number of parents said they’ve pulled their children out of all sport due to the cost as they, or their partner, have lost their job or have had their hours reduced. A number of parents have also taken themselves out of sport due to cost. Some were tearful as they are just finding it so difficult to explain to their children why they cannot play sport with their mates. You can read more, here.

From The Archives ...



“Women cricketers throughout the Dominion will hear with regret of the death of Miss Blanch Te Rangi, which occurred yesterday morning. Miss Te Rangi, who was 17 years of age, had been vice-captain of the Canterbury representative girls' cricket team for the last three years, and was one of its best all-rounders. After a successful season with another club when girls’ cricket was started in Canterbury three seasons ago, Miss Te Rangi took a prominent part in the formation of the Mai Moa Club - of which she was captain - which has been at the head of the Canterbury championship for the last two years, a position occupied largely because of Miss Te Rangi's individual performances, and her enthusiasm in leading the team at practices.”

Blanch Ufarsena Te Rangi was born in 1916, the only child of Hanueri Hohepa (known as James) and Sarah Ann (Madams) Te Rangi. The Te Rangi whanau were of Ngai Tahu descent and lived at 59 Philip Street, Linwood in Christchurch. Blanch attended Avonside Girls’ High School, where through the Canterbury Branch of the YWCA, she was introduced to the game of cricket, developing a reputation as right-hand batswoman and a right-arm medium pace bowler.

(Blanch Te Rangi, second from left, a right-arm mediium-pace bowler)

The Canterbury Girls Cricket Association was formed in 1931, with 12 teams (160 girls), at the instigation of Mary Machin who was the President of the Canterbury YWCA and inaugural President of the Association. The Mayoress, D G Sullivan was the Patron. The Auckland Girls Cricket Association was formed three years earlier, also based on the local YWCA, under the prompting of Jean Begg (MBE, OBE, CBE), with the Hamilton Girls Association formed in 1930.

(Blanch Te Rangi, on the left in both pictures, was destined for higher cricketing honours)

At the age of 15, Blanch was first selected to represent Canterbury Women in a 1932 match against Otago (in later years played for the Mary Machin Shield), taking six wickets for 17 runs. In the same year, she was behind the founding of Mai Moa Cricket Club which joined the Association. In a local match against Harewood in 1933, she took seven wickets for 14 runs.

Selected as an opening bowler for Canterbury in 1934 (when she was Vice-Captain of Canterbury and Captain of Mai Moa), she took three wickets for 16 against Otago. Canterbury also won the New Zealand Girls’ Tournament in Wanganui that year, while in local cricket against Technical, Blanch took five wickets for 20 runs. In 1934, the Mai Moa Club won the Association’s Senior Competition and the D G Sullivan Cup.

A ukelele player with promise, Blanch Te Rangi died suddenly on Sunday, 15 July 1934 from an unexpected illness, at the age of 17 and is buried in Christchurch’s Bromley Cemetery. The Mai Moa Club merged with Burnside West–University in 1975, having won the women’s Senior Championship 12 times since 1931. Of poignant note, Mai Moa was the club to which Ana Rouse belonged. Ana was the first Maori woman to represent New Zealand in cricket in 1957, a laurel that may have been first worn, had she not succumbed to illness, by Blanch Te Rangi.

The Final Word ...

“Ma pango ma whero ka oti”.

(Only by the united labour of everyone, can the task be accomplished)


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

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P O Box 582, Wellington, 6140

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