Never a dull moment for brother and sister where sporting variety is spice of life

Aorere College has a couple of gems in Siope and Theresa Ngata.

Every spare weekend seems to be taken up with sport, at which they both excel.

Siope is the older of the two, a 17-year-old Year 13 prefect and sports captain. He is co-captain of the First XV, leads the team haka and, at first-five, laid on the last pass in the narrow victory over De La Salle recently. Not to mention turning out for the Blues Under-18s at fullback during the July school holidays.

That's just his winter rundown.


In summer he will be kicking goals for whichever AFL Australian Rules team he is playing for at the time, be it the NZ Senior Hawks or with the Hawthorn Hawks in Melbourne, with whom he is into the third year of an international scholarship. He has turned out for their third team. The kicking helps his punting in rugby, and his all-year round fitness is an asset.

Younger sister Theresa's achievements in three sports would need half a page to list. Suffice to say she is the family allrounder. Last month, she found herself in Tasmania with the New Zealand Under-16 basketball side, Sydney with the Oceania Eastern Zone volleyballers, and then in Mt Maunganui with the Waitakere Under-17 netballers for the national tournament.

You'll forgive her if she isn't entirely sure what is coming up next on her sporting horizon.

"I don't know where I go to. It just comes up!"

Theresa plays point guard or sometimes forward for the Aorere premier girls basketball side on Tuesday nights. Her skill and athleticism, not to mention standing six feet tall (1.83m), hold her in good stead.

"I focus on what I need to do and for the team too," she says.

The day is fast coming when she will have to make a choice of sport, but it would seem netball and basketball rank highly in her affections. Time management is vital.

"I come home from trainings pretty late, but I try and finish my schoolwork earlier in the day," says the 14-year-old Year 10 student.


The rivalry with Siope is not too intense, but they do like to score goals and tries without getting too competitive about it. Siope freely admits Theresa is "the sportiest" in the family and admires how she can juggle three sports so adeptly.

The Ngata family is hugely supportive and often they will all head to the First XV game on Saturday afternoons after watching Theresa in action on the premier netball court for Aorere in the morning. Brother Albert is a flanker in the First XV.

Siope says playing in the 1A is a big thing for Aorere, and they have staved off the need to go into promotion-relegation games in 2016.

"It's a really massive step, especially coming from 1B. It's a whole different ball game, turning up every week and trying to perform at your best."

So what code will Siope be playing next year?

"I haven't made my call yet. It's a really big decision. I'll talk to my family about it and go with whatever feels right," Siope says.

Recognition and interest has come from both sports and Hawthorn would love him to decamp to Melbourne in 2016. He has already learned plenty from the pro AFL club.

Other schools have tried to lure him to play rugby for them, but Siope has remained loyal to Aorere.

"It's not just about loyalty. It's about showing people that you don't have to leave your school to achieve your goals. It's about hard work and dedication."