By NZRW Editor: Gregor Paul

When Two Tribes Go To War

ATEVERY school there is one opponent that will stand among the others. There will be one school that for whatever reason, will be treated differently. A season can be defined on the result of that one game alone. Lifetime memories can be formed by the events of that one game against the fiercest rival. There is maybe no other level of rugby except test matches that induces the same level of intensity; the same depth of emotion as some of the big First XV rivalries. There are All Blacks, many of them in fact, who say that despite having played for their country at some of the biggest arenas in the world, that they remember more detail about First XV clashes with their biggest rival.

It is a truly phenomenal state of affairs – that the best players in the world can be hazy about what happened on their test debut; or in a big Tri Nations game against the Wallabies; but that they will know every try scorer from the First XV games they played against their biggest rivals. They will know how the game panned out, who played well, where their team went right tactically and where they got it wrong.

The big rivalries can define not only a school’s season – they can define some of the individuals involved. It’s the depth of history that makes some of the traditional fixtures stand out. There is something spell-binding, blood-chilling almost about the weight of history attached to some of the games.

How, for instance must the boys at Timaru Boys’ High School feel when chosen to play against Waitaki Boys’ from Oamaru? On the day of the game, there is a school assembly at Timaru where the school song is sung and the captain is presented with Speedy Oil. This Speedy Oil is a magic liniment which was introduced in 1913 when the school was desperate to break an 11-game losing streak. What a marvellous tradition that links the boys to their forefathers in a unique way. Many schools have similar traditions – special build-ups during the week that see the anticipation and hype build around the school.

The traditional fixtures are, of course, the place where the respective school hakas get their most fierce and proud performances. Over the years the tension when Christchurch Boys’ have played Christ’s College and when Auckland Grammar have played King’s College has been unbearable. All four schools have been out en masse – the hakas passionate and at times inflammatory.
The big rivalries are something to cherish; to enjoy and encourage and we pick 10 of the best to celebrate here.

St Pats Silverstream v Wellington College

First Game: 1931, Wellington won 5-3 and Joey Sadler, a future All Black halfback scored the first try.
Played: 80
Wellington College Won: 30
St Pats Silverstream Won: 43
Drawn: 7
Wellington College Biggest Win: 43-5, 1992
Silverstream Biggest Win: 34-0, 1934
Highest aggregate score: 61 Wellington, 41-20, 2009
Wellington College Most Wins In A Row: 4, 2001-2004
Silverstream Most Wins In A Row: 6, 1933-1939, 1951-1956

Last Five Results (Traditionals Only)
2011: Silverstream, 24-21 (Stream down 3-21 at halftime)
2010: Wellington, 22-14 (On Rugby Channel)
2009: Wellington, 41-20 (Highest scoring game between the schools)
2008: Silverstream, 11-3 (Ended Wellington’s run of 28 wins in a row in the capital’s Premier One competition)
2007: Wellington, 33-14 (First match for the Ken Gray Memorial Trophy)

Christchurch Boys High School v Christ’s College

First Game: 1892, Christ’s won 34-0
Played: 136
Christchurch Boys High School Won: 84
Christ’s College Won: 43
Drawn: 9
Christchurch Biggest Win: 73-0, 2004
Christ’s Biggest Win: 34-0, 1892
Christchurch Most Wins In A Row: 11, 1966-1976, 2001-2011
Christ’s Most Wins In A Row: 4, 1892-1983, 1900-1903, 1916-18, 1987-90

Last Five Results (Traditionals Only)
2011: Christchurch, 43-13 (On the Rugby Channel)
2010: Christchurch, 25-12
2009: Christchurch, 8-3
2008: Christchurch, 13-5
2007: Christchurch, 44-7 (Mason Rosvall 3 tries)

New Plymouth Boys High School v Francis Douglas

First Game: 1996, New Plymouth, 34-7 (Francis Douglas only loss in 24 games)
Played: 16
New Plymouth Won: 12
Francis Douglas Won: 3
Drawn: 1
New Plymouth Biggest Win: 70-3, 2000
Francis Douglas Biggest Win: 15-3, 1999
New Plymouth Most Wins In A Row: 3, 1996-98, 2000-02, 2004-06, and 2008-10
Francis Douglas Most Wins In A Row: Never won consecutive games
1999: Conrad Smith played halfback when Francis Douglas won for the first time, 15-3

Last Five Results
2011 Francis Douglas 1913 New Plymouth
2010 New Plymouth 12-10 Francis Douglas
2009 New Plymouth 14-9 Francis Douglas
2008 New Plymouth 22-19 Francis Douglas
2007 New Plymouth 25-25 Francis Douglas

Otago Boys High School v Southland Boys High School

First Game: 1902, Otago won by 3-0
Played: 97
Southland Boys’ High School Won: 48
Otago Boys’ High School Won: 38
Drawn: 11
Otago Boys’ High School Biggest Win: 42-0, 1905.
Southland Boys’ High School Biggest Win: 44-0, 1959.
Highest aggregate score: 47, Otago, 36-11, 1920, Southland, 28-19, 1990.
Southland Boys’ High School Most Wins In A Row: 11, 1955-1965.
Otago Boys’ High School Most Wins In A Row: 5, 1924-1929, 1966-1970.

Last Five Results [Traditionals Only]
2011 Otago Boys’ 19-13- Southland Boys’
2010 Otago Boys’ 10-10 Southland Boys’
2009 Otago Boys’ 14-8 Southland Boys’
2008 Southland Boys’ 23-13 Otago Boys’
2007 Otago Boys’ 32-12 Southland Boys’

Palmerston North Boys’ High School v Napier Boys’ High School

First Game: 1904, Napier won 16-0
The Polson Banner: A Blue and white banner presented by Napier Boys’ High School principle Mr A.S. Polson in 1907. Results are sewed on and go back to 1904
Played: 108
Palmerston North Boys’ High School Won: 63
Napier Boys’ High School Won: 40
Drawn: 5
Most Wins in a Row for NBHS: 6, 1999-2004
Most Wins in a Row for PNBHS: 12, 1972-1983
Biggest Win for PNBS: 45-3, 1981
Biggest Win for NBHS: 43-14, 2002

Last Five Results (Polson Banner Games Only)
2011: PNBHS 12-10 NBHS
2010: PNBHS 39-31 NBHS (Highest Scoring Game)
2009: NBHS 28-25 PNBHS
2008: PNBHS 27-10 NBHS
2007: PNBHS 17-5 NBHS

Timaru Boys’ High School v Waitaki Boys’ High School

First Game: 1884, Waitaki won by 3-1
Played: 141
Waitaki Won: 68
Timaru Won: 63
Waitaki Biggest Win: 70-0, 1908
Timaru Biggest Win: 66-3, 2003
Waitaki Most Wins In A Row: 11, 1902-1912
Timaru Most Wins In A Row: 9, 1988-1996

Last Five Results
2011: Timaru Boys’ 22-14 Waitaki Boys’
2010: Timaru Boys’ 41-23 Waitaki Boys’
2009: Waitaki Boys’ 7-5 Waitaki Boys’
2008: Timaru Boys’ 15-13 Waitaki Boys’
2007: Timaru Boys’ 27-13 Waitaki Boys’

Note: From 1898-1912 Waitaki won 17 of 18 matches and from 1903-1912 kept Timaru scoreless. In 1913 Timaru changed their jerseys to the now familiar white strip and won! This match has been played every year since 1884 making it the longest continuous fixture in the country. The oldest game in the country is between Otago Boys’ High School and Christ’s College. First played in 1883, the two schools have clashed 125 times with Otago enjoying 66 wins to Christ’s 53. However the fixture wasn’t played in 1918, 1923 and 2009 and Christ’s have only won once since 1985, in 1999 by 24-5.  

Auckland Grammar v King’s College

First Game: 1896, Grammar won 45-0
Played: 197
Grammar Won: 124
King’s Won: 57
Drawn: 16
Grammar Most Wins In A Row: 12, 1932-1938
King’s Most Wins In A Row: 6, 1926-1929, 1946-1949
Biggest King’s Win: 36-10, 1997
Biggest Grammar Win: 58-0, 2000
Biggest Points Aggregate: 59 points (39-20 to King’s, 1996, A Moascar Cup Match)

King’s have the head to head count as played: 196, Grammar 123, King’s 56, Drawn 16. However Brendan Boyce a teacher, rugby enthusiast and fine researcher of this subject at Grammar pointed out there were two games in 1967 which are recorded in the Grammar chronicle:
As a rule, any game against King’s is seen to be competitive, even if non-comp (e.g. the 3rd game in 1919 which both take as a true game and was won 21-11 by Grammar after two draws (3-3) and 6-6). The scores of the two games in 1967 were 19-6 to Grammar and 14-3 to Grammar, the former game is the one disputed by King’s.
King’s were kept scoreless in 19 of the first 24 games, 61 games have been decided by five points or less with 16 draws as well.
The two schools met in the 2002 and 2006 1A finals, Grammar won both.

Last Five Results
2011: King’s 25-21 Grammar
2010: King’s 23-5 Grammar
2009: Grammar 14-11 King’s
2008: King’s 17-3 Grammar
2007: Grammar 15-14 King’s

Nelson College v Marlborough Boys’ College

First Game: 1947, Nelson won 9-6 (MBC only defeat in 19 games)
Played: 49
Nelson College Won: 35
Marlborough Won: 11
Drawn: 3
Nelson Biggest Win: 55-6, 1971
Marlborough Biggest Win: 43-14, 2006
Nelson Most Wins In A Row: 9, 1996-2005
Marlborough Most Wins In A Row: 3, 1991-1993

Last Five Results
2011 Nelson 33-5 MBC
2010 Nelson 37-0 MBC
2009 Nelson 17-9 MBC
2008 MBC 20-18 Nelson
2007 Nelson 31-13 MBC

Westlake Boys’ High School v Rosmini College (North Harbour Comp Only)

First Game: 1985, Westlake, 16-6
Played: 51
Westlake Won: 30
Rosmini Won: 20
Drawn: 1
Westlake Most Wins In A Row: 5, 1988-1991
Rosmini Most Wins In A Row: 4, 1992-1994
Westlake Biggest Win: 76-8, 2006. (North Harbour Final)
Rosmini Biggest Win: 37-0, 2002
Note: Since the inception of the North Harbour competition in 1985, Westlake have won 11 championships and Rosmini six; this is always a big home and away game.

Last Five Results
2011: Rosmini 13-11 Westlake
2011: Rosmini 23-22 Westlake
2010: Westlake 28-15 Rosmini (North Harbour Final)
2010: Westlake 14-9 Rosmini
2010: Westlake 24-18 Rosmini (On Rugby Channel)

Te Aute College v Wanganui Collegiate School

First Game: 1897, Wanganui won 6-0 in Palmerston North, the 100th game also in Palmerston was won 23-15 by Te Aute.
Played: 112
Te Aute College Won: 56
Wanganui Collegiate Won: 50
Drawn: 6
Te Aute Most Wins In A Row: 8, 1919-1926
Wanganui Most Wins In A Row: 8, 1971-1978
Te Aute Biggest Win: 48-4, 1983 (Te Aute unbeaten with 21 wins and 2 draws in 83)
Wanganui Biggest Win: 83-7, 2010

Last Five Results
2011: Wanganui, 65-5 Te Aute
2010: Wanganui, 83-7 Te Aute
2009: Te Aute, 33-22 Wanganui
2008: Wanganui, 22-17 Te Aute
2007: Te Aute, 37-22 Wanganui

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