Northland Kauri: PREVIEW 2020

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Position in 2019

3rd in Championship

Talking points

An impressive maiden season from the Northland Kauri in 2019 will set the foundations this year and with the inclusion of some firepower in the forwards and backs we are set to see even more impressive rugby from the Northerners.

As the region prepares to host Rugby World Cup 2021, the Northland Kauri will be instrumental in helping to capture the hearts and minds of the rugby public.

Finishing 2019 with a semi-final appearance in the Championship division, the Kauri will be challenged in arguably a harder North Pool but don’t be surprised to see them pushing competition heavyweights.

Former Black Fern play maker Victoria Subritzky-Nafatali is likely to direct the backline from first five-eighths and with the inclusion of Black Ferns Sevens stars Portia Woodman and Tyla Nathan-Wong, expect big things from the Kauri.

Aroha Savage is set to run out for her 50th Farah Palmer Cup match in 2020, currently sitting on 44, made up of appearances for both Auckland and Counties Manukau.

Black Ferns hooker Te Kura Ngata-Aerengamate was a standout performer for the Kauri in 2019, receiving the team’s Player of the Year, her dynamic play will be key in the Kauri fortunes.


Northland will be bolstered by the inclusion of Woodman and Nathan-Wong, both have headed North while the Sevens World Series is on hold due to Covid-19. While they will add a potent edge to the backline, Aroha Savage’s inclusion adds experience and power to the forwards. Savage, two-time World Cup winner, 33-Test veteran, and previous FPC winner with Auckland and Counties Manukau, will be a force at the base of the scrum.


Notable departures see Savannah Bodman leaving, her try scoring escapades in 2019 saw her named the Most Outstanding Back for the Kauri, finishing third highest try scorer in the competition with eight. Also not returning for 2020 are Mia Anderson, Taylah Hodson-Tomokino and Kararaina Wira-Kohu.

Player to watch: Krystal Murray

Moving from number eight to the front row in 2020, Murray is a talented forward who has represented New Zealand in rugby league. Expect to see Murray lining up shots at goal for the Kauri, having finished last year as the team’s leading try scorer with 58 points.

Northland Kauri Squad

Tui Baker, Georgia Brierly, Rangimarie Chapman-Barber, Danyel Davan, Ngawaiora Davis, Leilani Erwin, Narissa Fale, Madison Johnson, Helen Kapa, Justice Karena, Alexandra Kingi, Timara Leaf, Tui McGeorge, Krystal Murray, Tyler Nankivell, Tyla Nathan-Wong, Amanda Nepia, Te Kura Ngata-Aerengamate, Holli O'Sullivan, Alisha Proctor, Aroha Savage, Victoria Subritzky-Nafatali, Janie Tairua, Louisa Tubailagi, Stacey Tupe, Patricia Vaka, Manaia Webb, Carly Whaikawa, Kamila Wihongi, Hikitia Wikaira, Portia Woodman

Coaches: Cheryl Smith (Head coach), Susan Dawson (Assistant coach)

Northland Kauri Draw

Waikato v Northland

Saturday 5 September

12.30pm University of Waikato

Northland v Auckland

Sunday 13 September

11.35pm Semenoff Stadium

Northland BYE

Counties Manukau v Northland

Sunday 27 September

2.05pm Navigation Homes Stadium

Northland v North Harbour

Saturday 3 October

2.05pm Semenoff Stadium

Northland v Taranaki

Sunday 11 October

12.30pm Kaikohe RFC

Bay of Plenty v Northland

Saturday 17 September

2pm Blake Park


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