In 2006, the clans will be gathering throughout the Highlanders franchise in preparation for the Rebel Sport Super 14.
From Central Otago to North Otago, the Highlanders squad will be fine tuning their preparations for the inaugural Rebel Sport Super 14 campaign. For the week 20th ‘ 27th January, the Highlanders will be basing themselves in Queenstown and will play in two pre-season games, against the Crusaders on 21st January, and the Chiefs on the 26th January. Both games will be played at the Queenstown Events Centre. The Highlanders then take on the Queensland Reds in Oamaru on February 2nd for their final pre-season game.
Greg Cooper, coach of the Highlanders, is looking forward to the team’s time around the region, ‘The Highlanders represent the entire region south of the Waitaki, and having a camp in Queenstown and having games in both towns gives us an opportunity to connect with the strong supporter base we have in the areas, and also provides us with the opportunity to train and play in warm conditions that will be similar to some of our playing destinations in the early part of the campaign.’
As part of their time in Queenstown, the players will also be participating in a number of community activities, including an Open Day for kids to meet and undertake some fun skills and drills with the players on Sunday morning after the match against the Crusaders and a community BBQ in Arrowtown on the evening of Monday 23rd January. Team trainings during the week at the Recreation Ground will be public, and people are welcome to go along and watch.
The team will then travel to Oamaru for a final pre-season game against the Queensland Reds on Thursday 2nd February at 6:00 pm.
Both games will seek to replicate the typical Highlanders game experience in the pre-match enhancement. ‘We are focusing on providing all those things that people love about Highlanders games when we play in Queenstown and Oamaru ‘ as well as the game, people will also experience the music, atmosphere and entertainment of a match at Carisbrook; the Highlander will be there, and plenty of action prior to the game,’ enthuses Chris Green, Marketing Manager for the Highlanders.
‘There’s ticket prices to suit everyone, including families, so we look forward to people getting the face paint, body paint and banners out to support the team. People in the south are renowned for their passionate support of their teams and we are sure to see people get in behind and show their colours!’
Tickets are available from the Queenstown Events Centre (visit or phone on 03 442 5151), www.ticketdirect.co.nz, i-sites in Queenstown and Oamaru, Lake Wanaka Information Centre, Rugby Southland or by phoning 0800 CARISBROOK (0800 227 472).
The Highlanders will be taken to Queenstown by Otago Southland Waste Services and Northern Southland Transport. Northside Tavern are bringing the team to Oamaru.
Highlanders Pre-season Schedule at a glance
Friday 20th January
Highlanders arrive in Queenstown
Saturday 21st January
Highlanders v Crusaders, 5:30pm, Queenstown Events Centre
Sunday 22nd January
Open Day ‘ Meet the Team, 12 ‘ 2pm, Queenstown Recreation Centre
Thursday 26th January
Highlanders v Chiefs, 6:00pm, Queenstown Events Centre
Sunday 29th January
Open Day ‘ Meet the Team, (1-2pm), Carisbrook
Thursday 2nd February
Highlanders v Reds, 6:00pm, Centennial Park, Oamaru