The long-term goal for every side in the Baywide Premier rugby competition is to finish in the top four and secure a spot in the semifinals.

After two rounds, Whakarewarewa and Rotoiti sit third and fourth respectively but both are well aware that it is early days.

The two Rotorua sides met last weekend, with Whakarewarewa winning 23-19 and claiming the Tai Mitchell Shield which Rotoiti had a firm grip on for more than a year.

Whakarewarewa are flying high after the win over their local rivals, but will be up against it when they travel to second-placed Te Puke. Both teams have won two from two in the second round.


Whakarewarewa coach Boxer Smith said a strong start to the second round had been a key focus for his side, but this weekend would provide a true test of how they were tracking.

"This is going to be the benchmark for us this weekend. Our focus has been to start this championship round well. We are currently two from two and we are trying to get a win again this weekend to consolidate our place in the top four, but also top two to get a home semi," Smith said.

He said his forward pack had been training hard after being exposed against Rotoiti.

"Rotoiti found our weakness in the scrum and that is something we have worked hard at this week in training. Our focus will be to shore up our scrum so we can target the set piece. If we can compete and win our own ball and make it hard for them then I think we will do well.

"We do know that Te Puke is very structured. They have big forwards and our hardest job will be to nullify their strengths and exploit their weaknesses."

Meanwhile, Rotoiti host Mount Maunganui, the side that beat them 41-8 in last year's final. However, Rotoiti redeemed themselves in round one this year with a convincing 33-3 win at home.

They will be looking to bounce back from their Tai Mitchell Shield loss.

Rotoiti coach Richard Francis felt there were decisions that did not go his side's way during last weekend's clash with Whakarewarewa, but was pleased with the team's effort, considering the number of players they had out injured.

"It showed our depths in the backs, they did well," Francis said after the game.

Farmlands Co-operative Baywide club rugby draw

Premier 1
(Premier kickoff 2.45pm, Development 1pm)
Te Puna v Tauranga Sports at Maramatanga Park, Te Puke v Whakarewarewa at Murray Salt Stadium, Greerton v Rangataua at Greerton Park, Rotoiti v Mount at Emery Park.

Premier 2
(Premier kickoff 2.45pm, Development 1pm)
Arataki v Te Teko at Arataki Park, Waikite v Opotiki at Bellvue Road, Ngongotaha v Whakatane Marist at Ngongotaha Domain, Marist St Michael's v Rangiuru at Marist Park.

Division One
(Kickoff 2.45pm)
Paroa v Judea at Lawson Park, Waimana v Ruatoki at Waimana Domain, Papamoa v Kahukura at Gordon Spratt Reserve, Poroporo v Murupara at Poroporo Park.