Shooting survivor in team

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A Queenstown man with a chequered off-field history but classy rugby CV has been selected in the Wakatipu Premiers. 

Pita Wilson has been picked in the 2013 squad as a flanker, a position he’s played for the New Zealand Secondary Schoolboys team, Southland and North Harbour. 

Back in 2006, the talented rugby player hit the headlines for his off-field exploits, having survived being shot multiple times and left for dead on a secluded road north of Surfers Paradise in Australia. 

A motorcycle gang member accused of Wilson’s attempted murder walked free when Wilson couldn’t be found to attend a subsequent court case in 2009. 

Since then, Wilson has surfaced in the Wakatipu playing rugby for Arrowtown in July, 2009 and in 2006 – after recovering from his bullet wounds – he popped into Mountain Scene’s office to discuss his situation but said he could say little about the shooting as it was before the court. 

Wakatipu Premiers coach Damian ‘Dippers’ Petre says Wilson will be a “huge asset” for the side.