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2023 WRFU Swindale Shield Draw Reconfirmed



Wellington Rugby’s 2023 Swindale Shield draw has today been reconfirmed. Unfortunately, the final version of the draw, initially published on January 30th had to be revoked due to a late change in ground availability at Fraser Park, directly affecting Avalon RFC’s home matches. As a result of this change, a redraw was required.


Round one kicking off on April 1st contains some mouthwatering clashes, headlined by a replay of the 2022 Jubilee Cup final, where reigning Swindale Shield Champions Petone look to avenge their Jubilee Cup Final loss to Northern United in August to kick-off their title defence. 2022 Swindale Shield Runners-Up Hutt Old Boys Marist will be looking to go one better this season, they begin their campaign over the hill in Wainuiomata. Hardham Cup Champions Oriental-Rongotai host Avalon and beaten finalists  Old Boys University will host Tawa at Rugby League Park.


With the transition out to NZCIS for Wellington Rugby and the Hurricanes professional teams, Rugby League Park will be available for community sport in 2023. Due to the impacts of the FIFA Women’s World Cup this year, it will play host to both rugby and football throughout the winter season. Wellington Rugby are excited to have as many local clubs and schools play at this venue this season.


The impacts of FIFA’s Women’s World Cup also have implications for Northern United RFC. As Porirua Park #1 has been picked by South Africa as their training venue, this field is unavailable for the duration of the season. Once the team arrives in New Zealand and begins preparation for the tournament, Porirua Park #2 will also become unavailable, as such, Norths will play their 6 home games within the first ten weeks of competition on the #2 field. WRFU will work closely with the club and Porirua City Council around the hosting of second round fixtures. 


Alongside the big traditional inter-club trophies such as the McBain Shield  and Jimmy Grbich Memorial Shield, other fixtures of note include Marist St Pats hosting Hutt Old Boys Marist for the Father Cleary Shield in Round Seven, Petone hosting Pōneke for the F.J Tilyard Memorial Shield in Round five. Round Nine will see Northern United and Paremata-Plimmerton battle for the Ivan Hargreaves Trophy, before the Bob Lendrum Cup goes up for grabs between Oriental-Rongotai and Upper Hutt in the final round of the competition.