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Final weeks of Waikato Club Rugby fixtures for 2024

“It's really just a reflection of a fantastic season that my Melville team has played. I'm really blessed and thankful for the village that I've had behind me this season.”

Waikato Draught Breweries sign

While the top four have already qualified for the semi-finals of the Breweries Shield next weekend, the teams will fight for positions tomorrow afternoon.

League leaders Hamilton Marist travel across town to face Hamilton Old Boys.

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Marist won the first round comfortably. The Old Boys have come a long way since that afternoon and will be confident of making life difficult for the competition leaders.

A win would put Marist at the top of the table and allow them to host their remaining games in 2024.

A win for Hamilton Old Boys could move them up to second place, depending on the result of Hautapu against the University.

After hard-fought victories last weekend for Hautapu and University, they will be keen to continue their winning streak ahead of the semi-finals next weekend.

A win would see the Students overtake Hautapu, and in the best case scenario they could reach second place if Marist can defeat the Old Boys for a second time in 2024.

Ōtorohanga's season came to an abrupt end last weekend when they lost at home to University before having a weekend off.

Lone Star Championship

As in the Premiership, the top four teams in the Lone Star Championship have been confirmed: Melville, Fraser Tech, United Matamata Sports and Te Awamutu Sports have all qualified for next weekend's semi-finals.

Morrinsville Sports have secured a promotion/relegation play-off against the eventual winners of the Division One Mooloo Shield.

Melville will sit out club rugby tomorrow afternoon and await further results to determine where they finish in the top four.

They currently sit top of the championship but are likely to be overtaken by Te Awamutu Sports if they beat Morrinsville Sports in Te Awamutu tomorrow and the winner of Fraser Tech v United Matamata Sports at Mill Street Park in Hamilton.

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Morrinsville will play for pride and their last chance to gain some momentum ahead of their play-off match tomorrow, while Te Awamutu Sports will be looking to finish in the top two spots to host a semi-final next weekend.

There is a lot at stake between Fraser Tech and United Matamata Sports, with the winner likely to finish top of the league and host a rugby play-off to conclude their 2024 season.

Fraser Tech won 29-20 in Hamilton in early June and will try to win two of two games against the team from Bedford Park.

Follow this game tomorrow afternoon at 2.45pm on Waikato Rugby’s Facebook live stream with commentary from Graeme ‘Mintie’ Mead and Joel Skulander.

Division One Mooloo Shield

There is currently a bit of disarray in the Mooloo Shield points table, with Southern United having won two out of two games, while Suburbs, Hinuera, Putāruru and Ōhaupō have all recorded one win and one loss as they begin their second round of matches.

Tomorrow afternoon, Southern United will host Hinuera in Tokoroa.

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Hinuera were the better of the two sides at Wealleans Park in late April, while Southern United will be looking to maintain their perfect start to the second round, making it three wins from three starts.

Suburbs host Ōhaupō at Flagstaff Park. Both teams put in impressive performances last weekend and will be eager to repeat their first consecutive wins in round two.

Ōhaupō were strong at home against Putāruru, while Suburbs travelled to Hinuera and pulled off an upset in a game they did not expect to win.

In the final game, Leamington travel to Putāruru looking to secure their first win in the second round to gain some ground on the other five teams and keep their play-off hopes alive.

Division 1 Championship

Leading the table with two wins from two starts, Taupiri hosts Te Rapa at Murphy Lane.

Both sides are well rested after Taupiri's last game was on Thursday night last week and can enjoy the long weekend, while Te Rapa also had the long weekend off due to their break in play.

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In the other encounter, the ailing Frankton returns home to welcome Pirongia.

Like Taupiri and Te Rapa, Pirongia are well rested after their match on Thursday night, while Frankton are recovering from a tough loss to Kereone in Morrinsville last weekend.

Pirongia will be looking to get back on track with their first win in the second round and hopefully maintain their chances of making the play-offs.

Colts

After a hard-fought 11 weeks of regular round-robin rugby, the Colts' competition enters its semi-final weekend.

While the top four spots remained broadly the same throughout the season, there were slight shifts in the order of their placings, with only two wins separating fifth-placed Hinuera from tenth-placed Leamington.

In the top four semi-finals, Hautapu hosts Hamilton Old Boys in Cambridge, while Hamilton hosts Marist Pirongia on the grass.

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The Marist boys have something to prove after losing a game for the first time in several seasons in a surprise loss to Pirongia earlier this year, finishing second behind Hautapu.

While Hautapu beat the Old Boys just over two weeks ago. There is a lot at stake in the crucial rugby and the men from Hamilton will travel to Cambridge with plenty of motivation to beat the home team.

In the next play-off group, Hinuera have already won their game against University and now await the winner of Suburbs against Thames Valley United to see who they host in the Colts Championship final next weekend.

The Suburbs beat the Thames Valley boys in a close 38-33 match last month and are determined to repeat that tomorrow afternoon.

In the Colts plate matches, Morrinsville Sports hosts Fraser Tech and Leamington United hosts Matamata Sports.

Under 85 kg

After the long weekend break, the U85kg teams are well rested and are looking forward to their semi-final weekend.

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League leaders Morrinsville Sports host Hamilton Marist at Campbell Park and will be looking to make it three wins from three attempts and secure a clean sweep against the Hamilton-based club in 2024.

It will also be the first time since 2021 that the two teams will not face each other in the final, with one of them being eliminated a week earlier than in previous years.

In the other semifinal, Fraser Tech will face Melville at Elliott Park. After a 17-17 draw on the opening weekend – the only draw in this competition all season – Melville won the second game on Fraser Tech's home turf 17-11.

Tech must make that equaliser this weekend in front of their home crowd to secure their first place in the finals since 2021 if they beat their opponents tomorrow 16-15.