Queenstown’s top rugby and soccer sides are fighting a turf war.
The Arrowtown Rugby Club and Queenstown Rovers soccer outfit have been in a tussle over the Events Centre’s main oval at Frankton on Saturday.
Arrowtown wanted it for one of the games of the season – its semi-final against Wakatipu Premiers.
With its home ground frozen and too dangerous to risk playing on, Arrowtown club bosses asked the Rovers if it would mind vacating the Events Centre oval. The Rovers, booked to play a Dunedin side at 2.45pm, is refusing to budge.
Rovers president Steve Henderson is surprised Arrowtown even asked.
“They’ve got a good home ground out there. Why would you want to give up home advantage?”
The Events Centre surface is in no better state than any other grounds, he says.
Arrowtown co-coach and player Hayden Finch says he’s gutted because it would have been a great spectacle for the Wakatipu.
“We also thought we’d have the after-match at the Events Centre because our clubrooms aren’t that big.”
The rugby match is now scheduled at the Events Centre’s number two ground at 2pm on Saturday.
Arrowtown wrested the White Horse Cup back off Cromwell last Saturday with a 42-5 victory. Wakatipu had a 55-12 win over Alexandra. History suggests a close result – they drew 8-all in April and Arrow-town won 10-7 last month. In the other semi, Maniototo play Cromwell.
In the seniors, Wakatipu’s Wanderers beat Cromwell 47-10 in a home semi last weekend. They play the final against Upper Clutha in Wanaka this Saturday.
The Wanderers have lost two of three games against Upper Clutha but Wanderers coach Grant Murphy says:
“We’ve improved each week and we’ll be up for it.”
Rovers on a roll
The Queenstown Rovers soccer side takes on Dunedin’s bottom-placed Green Island at 2.45pm at the Events Centre on Saturday. The Rovers beat Dunedin’s University 3-1 last weekend and lie seventh on the Footballsouth Premier League table.