Don't discount the chances of Napier Boys' High School 1st XV rugby flanker Michael Buckley gaining New Zealand Secondary Schools selection this season.
Okay one shouldn't use one-sided encounters like Napier's 60-10 Super 8 second round drubbing of Hastings Boys' High School in Napier on Saturday as an accurate gauge. But if Buckley can maintain this form and be as dominant in the closer encounters he will go close.
Along with busy No8 Vinny Guildford, Buckley, was prominent as NBHS slaughtered their visitors at the breakdown area. He scored two tries with his tremendous pace and his accurate link and support play contributed to several of the hosts other tries as they outscored the visitors nine tries to one.
"New Zealand Schools is definitely the goal but we will try and make the Hurricanes under-18s first," Buckley said as he was smothered in congratulatory pats on the back from teammates and opponents afterwards. "I was pretty happy with mine and the team's form. We were a little loose at the start but once we settled we were away," Buckley said.
The second year 1st XV player pointed out this year's Napier side is stronger than last year's as it has more second year starters than last year's.
Prop Hadlee Hay-Horton was another to shine in the Napier pack which had no passengers. First five-eighth Ethan Bradey directed the host backline well and finished with 20 points from a try and six conversions and a penalty from 10 attempts at goal.
His try which followed a Napier tighthead and clever interpassing between backs and forwards was the try-of-the-match. Fourteen-year-old year 10 winger Bailyn Sullivan scored Napier's first try.
Hastings lacked the necessary structures, patience and composure to compete with their hosts. Fullback Tiki Greening had some memorable patches.
"We didn't have the right attitude today. It was a bit of that big brother syndrome... they killed us at the breakdown area," Hastings coach Te Ahu Teki said afterwards.
NBHS 60 (M Buckley 2, B Sullivan, E Bradey, Vinny Guildford, D Coombe-Gray, K Whakatake, J Winson, O Penno tries; Bradey 6 cons, pen) HBHS 10 (R Selesele try; B Keefe con, pen). HT: 22-3.