Students in the Lincoln High School Ki-o-Rahi teams with teacher Tihirangi Brightwell

Representing Canterbury at Ki-o-Rahi

by Ann van Engelen

Students from Lincoln High School and Linwood College will be representing their individual schools, and the Canterbury region, in the upcoming New Zealand Secondary School’s Ki-o-Rahi Competition in Hastings.

“Ki-o-Rahi is a traditional Maori ball game, where put really simply, one team tries to reach a barrel in the centre of a circular field, and the other defends it. There is a lot of skill involved, and we are proud that both schools have reached national level in the sport,” says Lincoln High School teacher, Tihirangi Brightwell.

The schools competed against nine other regional teams to gain their places.

“I introduced the sport to Lincoln High School a couple of years ago and competing at the nationals early next year will be a new experience for all of us. Our teams have worked hard to gain their spot, and the students take the sport very seriously. They are as committed as others are to touch, netball and basketball.

“We are not surprised our pupils are able to compete at such a high level. The game is a part of our year nine health and education curriculum, and one particular year group have been participating on a regional level for the last three years.

“It is special that they will get to represent their school in the sport they love before they leave school — they won’t just represent Lincoln, but they will be representing Canterbury, and that is something to be proud of.

“We are looking forward to the event knowing some opponents have been playing at the nationals since it first started, and we want to attend believing in ourselves with confidence and do our region proud.”