Saturday, July 13


Year By Year , Our History ~ 2011 ~

We hope you enjoy this look back as we look forward to many more years of recording the history of Buller Rugby Union.
We acknowledge all the information from the NZ “Rugby Almanack” Series since 1934 and appreciate their hard and dedicated work in providing this detailed history. – Web Admin



2011 Status:
Heartland Championship
Founded 1894– (affiliated NZRU 1894)
B.A.(Brian) Ahern
C.W.(Craig) Neill
C.M.(Craig) Scanlon
Main ground:
Victoria Square, Westport
Cardinal and Blue

After four rounds undefeated Buller led the Heartland Championship, a remarkable achievement for the tiny union. Then followed three losses in succession, none by more than three points, and Buller dropped to the Lochore Cup playoffs and suffered a two-point loss to Poverty Bay in the home semi-final. In three of the four losses, including the semi-final, the opposition snatched victory only within the final four minutes of play. Not since 1949 has Buller scored a greater number of tries and a larger points differential.The ordering off of outstanding number eight Lee Nelmes, for a dangerous tackle, just 20 minutes into the Mid Canterbury game, and his subsequent suspension for two weeks, affected the team performance late in the season.

Defence was one of Buller’s strengths while on attack there was a dangerous midfield combination with Pene Nabainivalu and William Saukuru. As in the previous year Buller had a settled squad well led by Phil Rossiter, his fellow flanker being the evergreen Luke Brownlee who completed his 13th season without missing a game and set a new NPC record of 105 games in succession.

Former Buller loose forward Thomas Stuart had held the record with 104 games. Lee Nelmes’ efforts at the back of the scrum earned him selection in the Heartland team. Shane Grieve and Bevan Tetai were a strong locking pair while in the front row Logan Mundy, Scott McIlroy and match centurion Phil Beveridge completed a forward pack that was never bettered. Beveridge played for NZ Marist against the Heartland team in October.

Andrew Stephens and Origin player Phil Gibson were a tidy inside back combination, the former also representing NZ Heartland. Nabainivalu and Saukuru were a constant threat on attack and scored 11 tries between them. Nineteen-year-old Reuben Elley, Sam Marris and Tema Faifua were the wings with Matt Bonisch or Scott Neighbours at fullback.

Higher honours went to:

New Zealand Heartland: L.M.Nelmes, A.P.Stephens

2011 Match Record: Played 9 ; Won 5 ; Lost 4
Points : For 218 ; Against 163

2011 Fixtures & Results

Sat 06 Aug 5:00 pm H Heartland Championship Poverty Bay 18 - 14
Sat 13 Aug 5:00 pm A Heartland Championship King Country 20 - 34
Sat 20 Aug 5:00 pm A Heartland Championship Wairarapa Bush 11 - 26
Sat 27 Aug 5:00 pm H Heartland Championship East Coast 34 - 08
Sat 03 Sep 5:00 pm A Heartland Championship Thames Valley 22 - 20
Sat 10 Sep 5:00 pm H Heartland Championship North Otago 08 - 11
Sat 17 Sep 5:00 pm A Heartland Championship Mid Canterbury 30 - 27
Sat 24 Sep 5:00 pm H Heartland Championship/Rundle Cup West Coast 21 - 15
Sat 01 Oct 5:00 pm H Heartland Championship/Lochore Cup Semi Final Poverty Bay 30 - 32


    Position PL
Andrew Craig Duncan Scrumhalf 6
Andrew Paul Stephens Scrumhalf 9
Placeholder Benjamin Francis 'Ben' Coman Lock 5
Placeholder Bevan Patrick Te Tai Flanker, Lock 9
Blair Stewart McIlroy Flanker 2
Craig Gerard Adams Fullback, Winger 3
Glen Anthony Duncan Hooker, Prop 2
Placeholder John Robert Noble Centre 1
Placeholder Lee Martin Nelmes Flanker, No. 8 7
Placeholder Logan James Balsom Hooker 1
Logan Matthew Mundy Lock, Prop 9
Luke George Brownlee Flanker 9
Matthew Paul Bonisch Fullback 4
Placeholder Michael Peter Mumm Centre 2
Penijamini Nabainivalu Centre 9
Philip.J.’Phil’ Beveridge Hooker, Prop 8
Philip John Rossiter Flanker 8
Placeholder Phillip Roger Gibson First Five 8
Placeholder Reuben Patrick Elley Winger 8
Placeholder Samuel Allan 'Sam' Marris Winger 7
Placeholder Scott John McIlroy Hooker, Prop 8
Scott William Neighbours Winger 4
Placeholder Shane David Grieve Flanker, Lock 9
Stephen Murray Lowe Lock 7
Placeholder Temi Faifua Winger 9
Placeholder Warwick James Knox Hooker, Prop 6
Placeholder William Ross Saukuru Centre, Fullback 9

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