This week's Hawke's Bay Premier Club rugby competition MVP winner Tyson Sau is a wave ready to go beyond the call of duty for his club.
At age 37, Altherm Window Systems Napier Technical Old Boys has not had many leading games in him for many years. But after playing 80 minutes for the Texan reserve course side in a 59-10 win against Napier Pirate Rugby and Sports Saturday, he played the first 60 minutes of his prizes page 19-16 win against their Pirate colleagues in Tamatea Park in the opening round of Tui Maddison Trophy competition.
Sau got the SOS call after Magpies props Mark Braidwood and Tim Farrell withdrew. To add to the enormous challenge, Sau had to try against Magpies tighthead Pouri Rakete-Stones.
His gutsy effort made Sau the logical choice for the tenth weekly winner in the battle to become the 2019 holder of the McDonald's Hawkes Bay Today Club Rugby Player of the Year award.
"I prefer to play reserve class these days but will play for the prizes if required. That's what the Tech Club is all about. Saturday was my first trip to the prems this season," said Sau.
"I was a little sore, but I do a lot of cycling that keeps me reasonably fit.
"It was one of the toughest leading games I had been involved in and one that could have gone in any way."
An old William Colenso College guy who first played for Tech at Colts level in 2001 represented Sau Hawkes Bay in open guard and high school in his younger days. Formerly All Black lock Bryn Evans, former Maori All Black Loosie Colin Bourke and former Maori All Black within the back Callum Bruce were teammates from his back then.
"I've had some good times in rugby. But I know I've only got a few seasons back before I put up my boots. I still want to be involved as a coach and I'm also keen to get into some judges. "
Father-of-Two has a seven-year-old son who is nearly ready for rugby, and Sau predicts that he will give him his ticket to remain with the code.
A Pacific Health navigator for Totara Health in Hastings offers sheep that help Pacific families get what they need from doctors.
"There are lots of families from Hastings Rugby and Sports and MAC clubs that give me lots of shame about working in Hastings and not playing for any of their clubs. It's fun," said Sau.
He also works as a relief teacher and often comes across teachers and students involved in other clubs, so there is also no workplace shortage.
We could not leave Sau without quizzing him about the controversial penalty awarded in Saturday's leading game. Both leaders, Pirates Charles Reid and Tech's Cyril Whitburn were surprised to be awarded.
Sheep disagreed with the couple.
"I was closer to them to the place. Definitely a punishment test."
Best & Fairest
Tech v Pirate: 3, Tyson Sau (Tech); 2, Damien Scott (Pirate); 1, Pouri Rakete-Stones (Pirate).
Hastings by Havelock North: 3, Mason Emerson (Hastings); 2, Jayden Rihia (Hastings); 1, Albert Hemopo (Havelock North).
NOBM v MAC: 3, Zac Donaldson (NOBM); 2, Sean Skeet (NOBM); 1, Lewis Marshall (MAC).
Taradale v Clive: 3, Ian Rore (Taradale); 2, Eru Wano (Taradale); 1, Joseph Fuimaono (Clive).
Central of Tamatea: 3, Braydon Hardwidge (Central); 2, Lincoln McClutchie (Tamatea); 1, Ben Parsons (Central).
Leaderboard: 8pts: Sean Skeet (NOBM), Donovan Mataira (Clive). 7pts: Elijah Martin (Tech). 6pts: Iakopo Mapu, Humphrey Sheild (both Taradale), Pouri Rakete-Stones, Damien Scott (both Pirate). 5pts: Eru Wano, Jacob Baker, Jordan Kupa, Toby Single (all Taradale), Liam Edwards, Zac Donaldson, Matt Gardner (all NOBM), Jayden Rihia, Neria Fomai, Shamara Brooks (all Hastings), Jacob Stephenson (Havelock North) , Lincoln McClutchie (Tamatea), Tom Iosefo (MAC).
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