The 85’s under the Coach, David Fa’atafa, have for some years been performing at a very high standard and have built for themselves a proud record.
In recent years they have played in a number of finals but have yet to win that elusive title.
Team name:Tawa Titans
Competition currently playing: U85 kg Restricted Division 1
Home ground: Lyndhurst Park, Tawa.
Team origins: The originally named Tawa Blue team (as the club also had a Div 2 side named Tawa Red which has since disbanded) was founded by original player/coach and 80/80 legend Graeme Ross, his retirement and that of many of the original players led to the re-naming and new identity of the Tawa Titans. A culture has since developed in the Titans based around enjoying the social aspects of being part of a team off the field yet maintaining the high standards set on the field by the early founders of the Tawa Blue side.
Biggest rivals: MSP Blues. The two juggernauts of division 1 U85kg rugby have always had a fearsome rivalry. MSP have set the benchmark for a number of years now and up until last year had not lost a game in 3-4 years.
Magic moments: There’s been many magic moments with the Titans, most of them off the pitch. The best that springs to mind is a game in Wainuiomata 5 or so years ago. Our winger at the time had beaten his man on the outside but was soon taken out by the covering fullback – Nek Minit – the winger who was beaten came sprinting in, assumed the Bruce Lee fly kick position and nailed our winger square in the ribs. Sensational. The final round robin game of the 2nd travel to Lyndhurst with the winner claiming home-field advantage through the semi’s and final. We managed to tip them in the last 2 minutes with a penalty goal to win by 2. Lastly, seeing our coach dress up as Little Red Riding Hood for our court session will go down in history as one of the most hilarious things one would see in their lifetime.
Team rituals and traditions: Much like every other team going around there are two court sessions each player MUST attend. One at the end of round 1 and the second at the end of round 2013 saw the unbeaten, arrogant MSP Blues the season. These are generally held at the Tawa Clubrooms as things often get way out of hand.
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Where do I begin?
Chris “Kahui” Hopkins The lady killer
Bernard Dodds One of the founding members of the notorious ‘Warlock Hunters’
Jonny Budge Everybody knows Jonny Budge
Sam Butters The old bull. Moans the most and cries like a girl but he will never leave the Titans
Graeme Horo Easy laughs boys *queue chair throw*Wilson – Loud, proud and often inappropriate
Joseph Denyer I run fast and kick goals, that’s what I do
David Fa’atafa Coach/physio/manager/bus driver
Daniel White a.k.a Mr Never In The Wrong Rhys Martin – Apparently well known for being no.1 guy on ‘Hot or Not’.
We just know him as the guy that eats.
The team's famous players:
A couple of players need be named;
Gene Johnston Titans 1st 5; previously played for the Premiers and was last year named in the
representative Wellington 8080 team.
Mr Consistent. Tony Natoli Titans 2nd 5; played alongside Geno in the Wellington rep team and was named in the
Barbarian team at the tournament. You won’t tackle him.
Jonny Budge Titans no.7; best flanker in the division. His work rate is second to none. Excel would have a
hard time calculating his game stats.
On player retention and rejuvenation: The Titans bring in 2-3 new players each year but generally you’ll find it’s the same boys from years past turning up to put their bodies on the line. We’ve been together for 10+ years now and the commitment shown at trainings and on match days is the same now as it was back then.
The last word: “Titans on 3 – 3, 2, 1 TITANS!” – shot Fats.
The team's experienced players:
Dave Tye – Captain