North Shore Times : January 24th 2013
www.northshoretimes.co.nz 31 NORTH SHORE TIMES, JANUARY 24, 2013 SPORT One challenge and one win at a time For the team: Leon Henry and Mika Vukona stepped up during the latest match in the Breakers hectic schedule and will be in action again tonight. Photo: GETTY IMAGES This has been a tough time of the season for us and yet in a way a good time. Teams or individuals in sport are often at their best when facing adverse situa- tions -- not that we see it this way. Playing four consecutive games on the road and six out of eight away from home may sound daunting but for us at the SkyCity Breakers it is simply a case of taking it one game at a time, one chal- lenge at a time, one win at a time. And Adelaide on the week- end presented a real chal- lenge. They are in a desper- ate fight with what seems like the rest of the compe- tition for a playoff spot (Perth excluded). People keep referencing the record against Adelaide and how many consecutive wins we have had over them, but as players we really don t take any notice. Our only concern is preparing well and scouting well before executing a game plan to get a win. Anything less in this league and you will lose, regardless of history, form, favouritism or the side of the bed you climbed out of! We lost Chief (Alex Pledger) in the warm-up, his ankle injury from last week proving too painful to over- come. Did we panic? No. We simply turned to the next guy in line and expected that we would all do that lit- tle bit extra to cover for our team-mate, to make sure we didn t let ourselves or him down. And in a testament to our depth again, up stepped the likes of Leon Henry to make some big plays and put a smile on Chief s face on the bench. Leon has been finding his range and with it some confi- dence. His work at both ends of the floor has been critical. But while there were con- tributions from so many players in Adelaide, not the least of which were Daryl Corletto, Cedric Jackson and Dillon Boucher, one player who has to be singled out was Mika Vukona. He was playing with a sore back but played like a pain in the backside of the 36ers. He is such a focal point for us emotionally, the things he does and the passion he has for the game and this club and his team-mates is legendary. And so we do it all again this week with another home/away double header, playing the Kings tonight at the North Shore Events Cen- tre in a beach party themed game (put on your loudest shirt and shorts and jandals) and then travelling to Wol- longong for Saturday s game. But we wouldn t have it any other way. We will focus first on the Kings and once that is done, turn our atten- tion to Wollongong and chal- lenge ourselves to once again be ready for the opposition and to make the big plays when we most need them. Black belt follows dad's lead Family fighter: Lucas Carrascosa is dedicated to his chosen martial art, Shorinji Kempo, and has become the youngest black belt in the country. Lucas Carrascosa is Shorinji Kempo New Zea- land s youngest black belt but he isn t the only one in the family to have made the grade. After three years of dedicated training the 15-year-old from North Shore has joined his dad Juan as well as Tenyu Keene and Rob Burnett in being the latest from the club under the guidance of branch master Darren Louie to make black belt status. To pass black belt they had to complete both writ- ten essays on philosophy and a physical exam which included testing of techniques, an embu, or paired combat using a set routine and randori (spar- ring). I chose Shorinji Kempo as my preferred martial art because you do not have to use power or strength to be effective, Lucas says. It also combines both hard technique like punch- ing and kicking and soft techniques like pins and throws which makes it very interesting and practical. Through learning Shor- inji Kempo Lucas has done demonstrations at Japan Day and other events which has helped him to gain self confidence. He also assists at the children s classes. Shorinji Kempo is based on unarmed combat meth- ods, and has been practiced in New Zealand for 30 years. The martial art is made up of three systems: Hard techniques like kicking and punching; soft techniques like wrist throws and esca- pes; and shiatsu (acupres- sure) for improved body health. At basic levels, students spend most of their time learning fighting skills, but as they advance, they are introduced to more sophisticated ele- ments of this marital art. Call Darren Louie on 524 0077 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more about North Shore Shorinji Kempo. Bowlers mark 100th in style Takapuna Bowling Club is certainly making its centen- ary season one to treasure. Two months after Murray Mathieson led his triples team to glory in the New Zealand Open, Chris Taylor skipped his team of Bob Howitt, Trevor Forward and Walter Howden to an upset victory in the centre fours at Helensville. After surviving the pool of death Taylor s men came through to defeat David Eades crack Orewa team 18-9 in the final, Orewa hav- ing won the title in 2012. Takapuna did well to emerge top from a section that included teams led by New Zealand representative Tony Grantham, North Har- bour high performance man- ager Tony Marinkovich and Milford s Russell Hocking. The win gives Taylor four centre titles and Howitt and Forward three each, while it was a notable first for third- year bowler Howden, who has reached the finals of his club s premier and junior championships, in each case with two lives intact. Orewa led the final 9-6 after eight of the 15 ends in challenging windy con- ditions, but did not score again, disastrously dropping five shots on the third-to-last end. The Mahurangi East com- bination of Rosemary Seers and Noeline Holdsworth claimed the women s centre pairs title. They eliminated teams skipped by North Harbour representatives Elaine McClintock and Gayle Mel- rose before outlasting the Browns Bay pair of Lin East and Lesley Langer 16-13. The women s 1 to 5 year pairs title went to the Mil- ford team of Barbara Bowyer and Di Steel, who defeated June Johnson and Carole Wilson (Orewa) 18-11. United seek to make history By TREVOR ROWSE International team training and a large number of local softball players featuring in North Harbour s defence of the national under-19 title wiped out any top champion- ship matches last weekend. Harbour finished second at the under-19 series but most of those players will feature in the association s drive for top senior honours in the future. This weekend sees North- cote, tucked one game behind national champion Auckland United in the Auckland Fastpitch Cham- pionship series, playing in United s 50th anniversary Vic Guth Memorial event at Mt Albert s Fowlds Park, where it has consistently fea- tured in the top four playoffs. The four-day tournament will feature all the Black Sox players with their clubs or as guest players, and the Samoa side members will also be playing, with all eyes on the world series at Rosedale Park starting March 1. Northcote s Brad Rona will be at his fourth world cham- pionship and is expected to be a batting and fielding star. He will also have pitch- ing support from Josh Pettet, a rising star of the game. It will be another in a long parade of tournaments for Dean Wallace, Northcote s most consistent performer for so many seasons. Capable of returning to his pitching, he also stars with the bat and is a fine fielder. Never one of the flashy players, Wallace is the man youngsters and coming players should watch after over 20 seasons at top level. Northcote could take the honours this time, but natio- nal champion United will be making a determined run to create club history.
January 22nd 2013
January 25th 2013