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WEST COAST RUGBY FOOTBALL UNION – 1954

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1954 Season

WEST COAST COLOURS: RED AND WHITE HOOPS
(Founded, 1890; Affiliated, 1893)
Selector: Mr.B.Watkin

Attracting attention by the early season defeat of the strong visiting Canterbury side, West Coast confirmed the good opinion created by the subsequent easy capture of the Seddon Shield from Buller , and it was therefore somewhat of a surprise when Nelson in turn carried the Shield away a fortnight on. Later West Coast gave the Ranfurly Shield holder a good game, and closed the season with an attractive display against the “star-studded” Centurions Club side.

What the forwards lacked in weight they made up for in vigorous and lively loose play, their quick breaking proving unsettling to their opponents, whilst the defence of both backs and forwards was first-class. Nelson again proved an inspiring leader, and playing this season in the front row he had much to do with the success enjoyed. The other prop, Eastgate, brother to the All Black, was in grand form, almost out-rivalling his more famous brother on the occasions they met. Foster, a new representative, was a good line-out forward, and with Hibbs, locked the scrum. Bird and Roberts were always on the ball in the loose. Henderson returned to the side after a year’s absence and a new representative in Ross filled the hooker’s position ably.

Another new representative, Caldwell, was behind the scrum, and Breeze, until he was injured, Heenan, who had arrived from Canterbury, and Dawson, proved solid five eighths, good tacklers and alert on attack. With two such promising and speedy wingers as Lindbom and Gugich, who experienced a good season, Gillan was placed at centre, and performed quite creditably. Brown was an enterprising and sound full-back, a good fielder and lengthy kick. Of the other players, W. T. Williams played for Nelson in 1953, Houston and Bryant had last appeared in 1952, and Steel in 1949, whilst eleven of the 32 required were newcomers. Gugich represented South Island, and also played for the Rest of New Zealand.

1954 Squad

K.J.Brown (Hokitika St.Mary’s O.B.)
A.A.McNabb (Hokitika Excelsior)
J.R.Steel (Blaketown)
F.W.Gugich (Hokitika Excelsior)
A.J.Lindbom (Cobden)
J.D.Cowan (Greymouth Marist Bros.O.B.)
J.E.Gillan (Greymouth United)
A.G.Dawson (Blaketown)
R.K.Breeze (Hokitika St.Mary’s O.B.)
E.J.Heenan (Hokitika St.Mary’s O.B.)
M.J.Houston (Hokitika St.Mary’s O.B.)
N.K.Williams (Greymouth United)
A.J.Caldwell (Hokitika St.Mary’s O.B.)
Gordon Richardson (Blaketown)
W.T.Williams (Greymouth United)
N.R.Venis (Ikamatua)
Leonard Mason (Greymouth United)
T.A.Bird (Blaketown)
K.C.Foster (Hokitika St.Mary’s O.B.)
G.W.Nelson (Greymouth Star)
B.L.Rom (Hokitika Excelsior)
T.P.Roberts (Hokitika St.Mary’s O.B.)
R.R.Eastgate (Hokitika. Kiwi)
Keith Hibbs (Blaketown)
K.P.Henderson (Hokitika St.Mary’s O.B.)
G.J.Howat (Hokitika Kiwi)
Ralph Richardson (Greymouth Star)
T.W.Bryant (Hokitika St.Mary’s O.B.)
C.H.Richards (Greymouth Star)
G.R.Adams (Cronadun)
P.J.Punch (Hokitika St.Mary’s O.B.)
D.W.McKendry (Blaketown)

MATCH RECORD

Played 9 ; Won 6 ; Lost 3 ; Points: For 111 ; Against 87

June 7 v CANTERBURY at Rugby Park, Greymouth Won 3 to 0
K.J.Brown, penalty goal.
Referee: Mr.A.Forrest (West Coast)

June 19 v BULLER at Cass Square, Hokitika Won 22 to 19
J.R.Steel, R.K.Breeze, K.P.Henderson, E.J.Heenan, J.E.Gillan and G.W.Nelson, tries
K.J.Brown, 2 conversions
Referee: Mr.J.B.Hughes (Buller)

July 10 v BULLER at Westport Won 6 to 3
F.W.Gugich and A.J.Lindbom, tries

July 21 v GOLDEN BAY-MOTUEKA at Rugby Park, Greymouth Won 11 to 3
J.E.Gillan and R.K.Breeze, tries
A.A.McNabb, penalty goal and conversion
Referee: Mr.A.S.Fong (West Coast)

August 7 v BULLER (Seddon Shield) at Westport Won 21 to 0
A.J.Lindbom (2), F.W.Gugich, E.J.Heenan and G.W.Nelson, tries
A.A.McNabb, 3 conversions

August 21 v. NELSON (Seddon Shield) at Rugby Park, Greymouth Lost 6 to 12
F.W.Gugich, try
K.J.Brown, penalty goal
Referee: Mr.G.S.Northcote (Golden Bay-Motueka)

September 11 v CANTERBURY (Ranfurly Shield) at Christchurch Lost 0 to 8

September 18 v. MARLBOROUGH at Blenheim Won 15 to 10
J.D.Cowan (2), F.W.Gugich and Leonard Mason tries
K.J.Brown, penalty goal

October 2 v CENTURIONS CLUB at Rugby Park, Greymouth Lost 27 to 32
J.E.Gillan (2), A.J.Lindbom, A.G.Dawson, D.W.McKendry and G.R.Adams, tries
K.J.Brown, penalty goal and 3 conversions
Referee: Mr.A.S.Fong (West Coast)

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