Kristian’s boot saves the day

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1997

Co-coach Mark Milne says he would’ve bought Kristian Hall-Smith a beer on Saturday, but the youngster doesn’t drink.
None the less, the former Garin College first-five deserved some reward after saving the day for Star & Garter Waimea Old Boys.
Kristian, who started on the wing and moved into first-five for the final 20 minutes, secured an unlikely 36-35 victory for Waimea by whipping in a left foot conversion from the side-line right on full-time. “I would’ve [bought him a beer], if he drank,” Mark says. “He’s a young boy. He was at Garin College last year. They didn’t have a team so he had to go and play a little bit of B rugby at Marist but we’re happy to have him. He’s got a hell of a lot of talent but he’s young and hasn’t played a lot of rugby yet.”
Mark says Kristian, who has also played for the Waimea B team this season, was handed a spot on the wing to “give him more game time. We wanted to take the pressure off him.”
But eventually Kristian was thrown in the deep end, and stepped up to the mark to seal the win. “He’s a great little player with some great skills, but to be honest I didn’t expect him to knock that kick over. It’s great for his confidence. He’s down at the Garin College field every other day kicking goals so it just shows that sort of thing pays off.”
Waimea Old Boys will host Wakatu Marist at Jubilee Park this Saturday, for the club’s second home game. Marist have lost games to Taylor’s Contracting Wanderers and Kahurangi, but did record a win over Galbraith Nelson in round two.
Mark expects them to have a real crack, especially with former Waimea flanker Dan Hytongue on their roster. “He won’t be coming down here with his troops to lie down. We’ll have to be a million times better than we were on Saturday.”
Both Ben Coman and Kaide Whiting, who missed Saturday’s match due to injury, are in doubt for this weekend’s match.

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