With the Covid-19 nationwide lockdown in the rear view mirror, club sport is back in full swing and providing all the entertainment we could ask for. Reporter David Beck runs his eye over the latest weekend of action in the Bay.
We're a couple of rounds into the Baywide rugby season but it is not quite as we knew it.
The competition is split into sub-unions, Western, Central and Eastern, which for supporters means local derbies to look forward to every weekend.
In the first round in Western Bay of Plenty, we were treated to a rematch of last year's Premier 1 final, this time Tauranga Sports reversing the result to beat defending champions Te Puna 19-3.
Te Puna bounced back with a 41-12 win over Rangataua at the weekend while Tauranga Sports made it two from two with a 40-17 win over Greerton Marist.
However, it is Te Puke who sit atop the table via points difference, after beating Mount Maunganui 16-8 and Arataki 66-5.
In the women's competition, there are household names doing the rounds with several Black Ferns Sevens players, stuck at home due to the Covid-19 pandemic, turning out for their clubs.
As expected, the teams boasting those international superstars are sitting in the top three places on the table. Rangataua are first, followed by Mount Maunganui and Rangiuru. Rangataua and Rangiuru have also had the bye already.
Te Teko and Ōpōtiki joined the women's competition this year and at the weekend Te Teko picked up their first win, beating Rotoiti 38-15.
Four round into the WaiBop Premiership, Flying Mullet Pāpāmoa have lived up to their name and soared to the top of the table with four wins from four. They were in sublime form at the weekend, beating Gisler Architects Te Awamutu 4-0.
Ōtūmoetai went beat Bulk Lines Otorohanga 5-3 in a high scoring thriller at the weekend, their second win of the season. Tauranga City are bottom of the table, yet to record a win.
In the WaiBop Championship, Tauranga City's second team are fourth with two wins, ahead of fifth-placed Pāpāmoa on goal difference. Ōtūmoetai and Te Puke are ninth and 10th while Tauranga Old Blues are bottom.
The Bay of Plenty men's rugby league season got under way at the weekend.
Defending champions Taupō Phoenix made an early-season statement in a rematch of last year's final, beating Pacific Sharks 40-24.
The Pikiao Warriors put a disappointing 2019 behind them, starting their campaign with a 38-20 win over Forestland Falcons.
Mangakino Hawks, Tauhara Te Maunga and Reporoa Razorbacks also started the season with wins over Pāpāmoa Bulldogs, Tauranga Whalers and Ōtūmoetai Eels respectively.
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