2016 U18 KL Tour


Written by Haydon Ross, NZ Harlequin Committee

How this all started was Dave Hall and myself got talking to a parent when we were away on our annual trip last season for the U17s. He told us about the Kuala Lumpur International 10’s, which was played in Kuala Lumpur every year. He lived in KL and said it was a great tournament to be involved with. After a few days Hallie and I got together again and said could this work. We spoke to a few others around costs etc... and then put it to the committee who jumped on board and supported us 100%. Many thanks must go to them for looking into the future with some foresight.

We had a very short timeframe, we then spoke to coaches, who were available and that would fit the mould for our trip. The trip was an outstanding success and we came back with the U18 title by winning the competition. Its the first time that a New Zealand team had ever been to the KL tournament and the first time most of our boys had ever been out of the country. We never had a point scored against us. One of the best things I was told when we got back was we took away boys and brought back men.


This is a club first and were excited to enter a team that went to Kuala Lumpur on the 16 February 2016.
Final Team for NZ Harlequins U18 10 aside Team was:
Forwards: Mathew Letoga, Jackson Morgan, Sam Cooper, R.Kelly Paikau – Rush, Sione Levao, Sam Pene, George Dyer, Jake Norris
Backs: Matt Maua’i, Karly Karauna, Nakoa Marcroft, Kaea Hongara, Logan Karl, Connor Collins, Rhys Dickinson
Head Coach: (Forwards) Tanirau Manawaiti
Coach (Backs): Warren Hodges
Team Manager: Dave Collins
Team Physio: Shane Derry
Assistant: Dave Cooper


Written By Dave Collins NZ Harlequins Committee member and Team Manager

We arrived in KL on the 16th FEB after a long 14 hour flight. The boys were very excited as we stayed in the heart of KL, the Federal Hotel was our base for the next 8 days. Great food, swimming pool and hospitality 2nd to none. After experiencing the sites nearby and the abundent bargain shopping the focus was on tournament weekend. Early morning trainings at the KL Saracens home ground helped with preparation. The heat and risk of dehydration were the concerns leading in. We had prepared well while in NZ and this assisted with our preparations.

Day one tournament day we played Sabah Rugby Academy, KL Tigers and Sekolah. A great start as we went into the day with minimal knowledge of our opposition. Day two we played Sabah Rugby Academy and KL Saracens. The boys were very focussed and entertained the large crowd with a lesson in tens rubgy, NZ style. The final was against Marlborough, we were simply too good and finshed with another great result.

The players and management conducted themselves like true professionals. We were the talk of the weekend and had many offers to be involved in future tournaments. The Haka was preformed after the final, a crowd favourite.

This group will remember the trip for a lifetime. I am sure that many of these players will go on to higher honours.


We played 3 qualifying games on the Saturday first up:
v Sabah Rugby Academy Won 58-0
Try Scorers:
R.Kelly Paikau-Rush, Connor Collins, Jacob Norris,Sam Cooper, Nakoa Marcroft, Karly Karauna, Matt Maui, Kaea Hongara, Matt Letoga

2nd Game V KL Tigers Won 32-0
Try Scorers
Sione Levao x2, Connor Collins, Matt Letoga, Matt Maui

3rd Game V Sekolah Won 72-0
Try Scorers
R.Kelly Paikau-Rush x2, Kaea Karauna, Matt Letoga, Nakoa Marcroft, George Dyer, Sam Cooper, Logan Karl, Sam Pene, 
Rhys Dickinson

Sunday Finals Day

Played last years champs Sabah Rugby Academy Won 27-0
Try Scorers:
Sam Pene, Sam Cooper, Nakoa Marcroft, Matt Letoga, Kaea

Semi Final V KL Saracens Last years runner up and hosts
 Won 34-0
Try Scorers:
Matt Maui, R.Kelly Paikau-Rush x2, Jacob Norris, Sione Levao, Nakoa Marcroft, Matt Lotoga

Final V Marlborough , team made up of English Schoolboys based in Singapore Won 42-0
Try Scorers:
Sione Levao, Sam Cooper x2, Kaea Hongara, Nakoa Marcroft x2, George Dyer, Matt Letoga

Outstanding effort by boys on and off the field 265 points for 
and 0 against.

Thank you to our sponsors

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