Nerves before local derby

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The Arrowtown Premiers rugby coach eyes Saturday’s home derby against Wakatipu nervously despite thrashing them 32-15 in the first round. 

“I’m pretty worried,” Hayden Finch says. 

“Wakatipu are on a good roll, they’ve obviously got a lot of confidence.” 

Arrowtown still head the Central Otago competition – one point ahead of Wakatipu – but lost 18-7 to Clyde-Earnscleugh in Clyde last Saturday. 

Finch: “It seems to happen at this time every year with Arrowtown, with frozen grounds, people just slacken off training. 

“Hopefully the Wakatipu game will be motivation.” 

Wakatipu coach Kelvin Middleton (above) won’t buy his opposite’s gloominess, saying he thinks Arrowtown are clearly the best team in the competition. 

“That was a thrashing Arrow­town gave us in the first game … we know that Jack Reid Park is a difficult ground to come away with victory from.” 

Saturday’s game will be preceded by an Arrowtown junior club day and prizegiving. 

All six junior teams play at 10.30am – the under-sevens at Arrowtown School and the under-eights and under-10s are at Jack Reid Park. 

The junior club has 96 members this year – and junior club chairperson Amy Wilson-White says: “We’ve had a numbers explosion.” 

Meanwhile the Wakatipu Wanderers were pipped 20-16 by Roxburgh in the Central Otago senior competition last Saturday. 

SATURDAY’S DRAW: Arrowtown Premiers v Wakatipu, Jack Reid Park, 2pm; Wakatipu Wanderers v Upper Clutha Seniors, Queenstown Recreation Ground, 1pm