This year’s Pollock Cup starts on Sunday at Avondale with three new clubs, hosts Avondale, Harewood and Waimairi Beach involved this season.
Russley meet Waimairi Beach in the opening match of the round and while Russley’s young squad of Alisia Ren, Jasmine Clancy, Estelle Lin, Vanessa Lim, Jessie Mercer, Eva Yin, Junie Chang, Yana Ye and Alice Fry at first glance looks light on experience with a number of the squad making their first appearances in Pollock Cup, their top order combined have accumulated 33 wins from 56 appearances so should get their side off to a good start. Waimairi Beach’s squad of former Canterbury Rep Georgia Wayman, Pam Chapman, Fetoni Humm, teenagers Deanna Matthews and Zaria Bourne, together with imports Lyn Robertson from Amberley and Angela Gerken from Timaru will be keen to start with a strong performance in the club’s first appearance since 2019.
Harewood returning to Pollock Cup after a gap year meet Waitikiri and there are bound to be some close matches with both squads brimming with experience. Harewood’s squad of Catherine Knight, Lynn Brand, Jo McNicholl, Debbie Scott, Pam McTaggart, Kirsty O’Neill, Julie Jones, Katherine Maloney and imports Sally Rossiter from Pegasus and Lynda Brown from Timaru will be excited at the opportunity to again be involved in this premier competition. For Waitikiri, Masters Reps Kim Moggach and Naomi Wallace will head their squad with Chris Marple, Suzette Eastmond, Jenny Ahn, Rosalie Neaves, Helen Smith, Sharyn Taylor, club stalwarts Pam Ellis and Cheryl Kemp and imports Nicky Muir from Hororata and Ginny Bolderston from Geraldine combining to make up a very competitive side.
The final match of the round should be a belter, with last year’s finalists Christchurch and Clearwater facing off. Clearwater’s squad of Masters Reps Rachel Eder and Jo Kent (Import from Rangiora), Virginia Faass, Lynda Vieceli, Di Kay, Justine Sheppard, Jo Carolan, Marg-Mary Coughlan, Julie Battersby and teenager Lexi Thomson-Hall making her Pollock Cup debut, will be keen to avenge last year’s final defeat at the hands of Christchurch. Current Champions Christchurch however, will definitely be up for the fight with a relatively unchanged line-up boasting Canterbury Captain Catherine Bell, Reps Olive Tapu and Mel Newburn (Merle Barley Salver Winner), together with Nicky Webb and the experience of Mel Brew, Robyn Gillespie, June Edwards, Jennifer Cho, Ina Lee-Hall, Hellen Kroeger and Jasmine Rou their former Canterbury Rep import from Burnham, returning after several years away from top flight competition.
Avondale’s squad of Nicole Hamilton-Cross, Jaimee Leach, Kawhena Rangihaeta, Rhonda Hira, Janet McGrath, Maggie Wright, Kasey Cross and imports Judith Smith from McLeans Island and Sharon Worrall from Kaiapoi will also be relishing the opportunity to be back in the big time, but will have to cool their heels for another week as they have the bye this Sunday.
Click here to view the draw.