THE four Galbraith Shield finalists were decided after the last round of Southland premier club rugby games on Saturday.
The unbeaten Pirates-Old Boys (POB) team will play Star in one semi-final at Rugby Park this Saturday at 2.30pm, while the defending champion Woodlands will play Blues in the curtain-raiser match at 12.30pm.
There were five teams capable of qualifying for the finals before Saturday’s games and it was Marist which was knocked out.
Star required nothing less than a four-try bonus point win on Saturday and it was earned with a 40-17 victory over Marist at Oreti Park. Star also denied Marist any competition points which ended its season.
Blues was soundly beaten 52-17 by POB. Blues was still able to sneak past Marist on the ladder and into the finals due to its superior points scored and conceded differential.
Woodlands finished second after beating the Eastern Northern Barbarians 41-29 at the Les George Oval. The Barbarians were out of contention prior to the match.
Woodlands had been operating on minimal player depth this season and was just getting back to full strength in time for the finals. Unfortunately for Woodlands and the Southland Stags, first five-eighth Marty McKenzie suffered fractures to his face in Saturday’s game.
In division one’s Ack Soper Shield competition, Midlands finished on top after beating Riversdale 27-8 on Saturday. Unfortunately for Riversdale, the Speight’s Shield and its payload was then taken south to Winton.
Midlands will host Wyndham this Saturday, while Waikaka will host Edendale in the other semi-final. Edendale is in top form after thrashing Wyndham 44-7 on its club’s annual Ladies Day on Saturday. Devon McLeod converted all five of Edendale’s tries and kicked three penalty goals.
It was a fitting day to celebrate and thank the local ladies for everything they do for the club and the sport, as the referee on the day was Cassie Watt, who was refereeing her 50th senior club game.
Three of the four finalists in the Gerald Dermody Shield competition are Eastern and Northern clubs; Mataura will host Pioneer at Tulloch Park, while Mossburn will host Collegiate.
The division two competitions have another round robin game still to play this Saturday.
Top qualifier Waikaia hosts the host the Marist/Bluff combined team in one of the President’s Grade semi-finals on Saturday, while Pioneer hosts Wyndham in the other.
The Albion women’s team plays Marist in a qualifying final on Sunday at 1pm.
Saturday’s draw. All games 3pm unless stated:
Premier grade: Galbraith Shield: Woodlands v Blues at Rugby Park at 12.30pm; POB v Star at Rugby Park at 2.30pm.
Division one: Ack Soper Shield: Midlands v Wyndham at 2.30pm, Waikaka v Edendale at 2.30pm.
Gerald Dermody Shield: Mataura v Pioneer at 2.30pm, Mossburn v Collegiate at 2.30pm.
Division two: CJ Soper Trophy: DLS v Bluff at Drummond, Wakatipu v Riverton, Te Anau v Star B.
Life Members’ Trophy: Marist B v POB B at 7pm LG Oval Friday, Waiau Star v Blues B.
Past Presidents’ Shield: Balfour v Woodlands B, Bush Pirates v Ohai Nightcaps Otautau at CP.
Senior women: Marist v Albion at 1pm on Sunday.
President’s Cup: Waikaia v Marist/Bluff at 2.30pm, Pioneer v Wyndham at 2.30pm.
President’s Trophy: Blues v POB, 12pm.
Premier Grade: Galbraith Shield: Pirates Old Boys 42 – Blues 17, Woodlands 41 – E N Barbarians 29, Star 40 – Marist 17.
Division one: Ack Soper Shield: Waikaka 31 – Tokanui 21, Edendale 44 – Wyndham 7, Midlands 27 – Riversdale 8.
Gerald Dermody Shield: Mossburn 19 – Collegiate 17, Mataura 46 – Waikiwi 12, Pioneer 34 – Albion 17.
Division two: CJ Soper Trophy: Te Anau 44 – Riverton 17, Bluff 17 – Wakatipu 15, DLS 19 – Star 17.
Life Members’ Trophy: Marist 21 – Waiau Star 7, Pirates Old Boys 20 – Blues 14.
Past Presidents’ Shield: Balfour 38 – Ohai Nightcaps Otautau 25, Woodlands 45 – Bush Pirates 7.