Rise to Rugby’s Pinnacle: Saint Kentigern Old Collegians Make the 2023 All Blacks and Black Fern Squads

June 21, 2023 at 4:38 PM

The announcement over the weekend of the first All Blacks squad for the upcoming 2023 Rugby Championship has brought tremendous joy and pride to our school community as we celebrate the selection of Old Collegians Finlay Christie (2013), Braydon Ennor (2015), Dalton Papali’i (2015) and Tamaiti Williams (2018).

While Finlay, Braydon and Dalton are already established members of the All Blacks, Tamaiti’s inclusion signals an exciting milestone as one of five official new caps, marking his first call-up to the national team. A strong scrummager, Tamaiti is known for his solid skills with the ball in hand and is dangerous close to the line. He was included in the All Blacks XV in 2022, playing against the Ireland XV and the Barbarians on their tour.

This announcement comes on the back of another significant achievement by Old Collegian Mererangi Paul (2016) who was selected for the 2023 Black Ferns Rugby Squad a few weeks ago and will play in the Pacific Four Series and O’Reilly Cup against Australia later this month. This is another historic moment for Saint Kentigern with our first ever Old Girl joining the ranks of the Black Ferns.

In a separate announcement, we are also pleased to share that two other Old Collegians Etene Nanai-Seturo (2017) and Tevita Mafileo (2016) have been selected to join the 30-strong All Blacks XV squad that will play in Japan next month.

These outstanding athletes who once honed their skills on our No. 1 field now stand on the precipice of representating New Zealand at the highest level in rugby. Their remarkable achievements not only reflect their extraordinary potential but the profound impact of discipline, tenacity and dedicated training and support from their coaches and mentors over the years. They carry with them the unwavering drive for excellence to make their mark on the global stage.

We congratulate these talented and tenacious Old Collegians on these remarkable milestones in their careers and wish them well in the upcoming games.

(* year graduated from Saint Kentigern)

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