Wanganui rugby can take a bow! - 10/10/2005The performance of the Wanganui rugby team in its last year of the NPC second division "brought real credit to the team, coaches, union and province. On behalf of Wanganui, I want to say 'well done'," Wanganui Mayor Michael Laws said.
"They were desperately unlucky at times, but their 27-15 victory over perennial powerhouse and 2006 first division team Nelson Bays was just outstanding.
"When you think of the resources at the squad's disposal, and the number of first division teams in the Hurricanes catchment area – four in 2006 – then Milton Haig and his team deserve enormous credit."
Mr Laws, who also hosts SKY Sports' 'The Press Box', said that the future for non-professional teams in 2006 and beyond "is often portrayed as bleak. The fact is that rugby is a very important tool in lifting a province's profile nationally. So 2006 will be a testing year but Saturday's result shows that Wanganui is in good heart".
"For two years in a row, and with an inadequate club competition, Wanganui's rugby representatives can deem themselves unlucky not to be in semi-final contention. Nevertheless, their showing has made the province proud."