They may represent the same club but there will be no holding back when Geyser City Cricket Club's two senior teams go head-to-head at Smallbone Park today.

Last year, the club joined forces with John Paul College and Western Heights High School to create two new "old boys" teams, in an effort to create better pathways for young cricketers.

After their only meeting to date, in the Rotorua/Taupo reserve grade 40-over competition in October, it was Geyser JPC who claimed bragging rights and "The Wood", the trophy that is up for grabs whenever the two sides play each other.

Geyser JPC captain Manny Kumar said the teams knew all about their opposition's strengths and weaknesses and enjoyed playing against each other.


"It's very competitive, we've both got really good sides with some really good players. For us, we need to field well and take our chances.

"The first time we played we did the basics well and batted our 40 overs. We knew their danger batsmen and we got them out early, that's the key," Kumar said.

Geyser WHHS captain Joe O'Donoghue said his side were eager for redemption.

"There's a lot of friendly banter. The first game, JPC won quite easily, so this one is about Western Heights restoring a bit of pride. This season we've been lacking the finishing touch - we've always started well, but finishing off the innings is where we've fallen short," O'Donoghue said.

Geyser City John Paul College Old Boys captain Manny Kumar, left, and Geyser City Western Heights Old Boys captain Joe O'Donoghue with coveted trophy
Geyser City John Paul College Old Boys captain Manny Kumar, left, and Geyser City Western Heights Old Boys captain Joe O'Donoghue with coveted trophy "The Wood". Photo / Supplied

Geyser City spokesman Kane Vanner said the new initiative had "exceeded the expectations of everyone involved".

"A great mix of current and former school players has developed at the heart of each team, with the greatest surprise the fantastic inter-team and inter-school rivalry that has built almost from the first day the new initiative was spoken out loud," Vanner said.

Related articles:

10 Feb, 2018 2:00pm
3 minutes to read
10 Feb, 2018 7:00am
2 minutes to read
9 Feb, 2018 9:18am
2 minutes to read
6 Sep, 2017 10:00am
4 minutes to read

He said the newly created pathways had already proven fruitful.

"An early example of this is young Western Heights wicketkeeper-batsman Cam Ingram, who has been promoted to the Central Indians premier team as a Geyser player. He has become somewhat of a lucky charm as they have won every game that he has played in. He has also been selected in the Rotorua team to take on the New Zealand Army this Sunday.

"The success of new system and the rivalry between the two camps has led to almost all club members being available and wanting a spot in their team for this latest encounter. This is apart from those carrying injuries or school players who return to their school teams this Saturday.

"While clubmates and good friends off the field, come Saturday rest assured the gloves will be well and truly off," he said.

Club treasurer Karl McKnight said: "On a personal note, I've got to say that as one of the two co-founders of the club, this is the most exciting development in its 27-year history."

In the weekend's other senior reserve grade games, Taupo Old Boys 1 play Bay of Plenty Indians and Taupo Old Boys 2 play Central, both at Owen Delany Park in Taupo. Lake Taupo have the bye.