St. John’s College has a proud rugby tradition, with the 1st XV enjoying great success in the past. Several players have represented Hawke’s Bay and the Hurricanes, and a large number play in the local club premier competition. The school plans to return to those days soon.
The school consistently develops sides which make the local competition finals. This is not an easy task in the sport where New Zealand are Number 1 in the world. The school has recently returned from a Tour to Chile, this was enjoyed by both the U15, 1st XV players and whanau. An overseas Tour will occur every two years and incorporated in strategic plan. This began this year with a thoroughly deserved win over St. John’s Hamilton to win the Cooper Boot back, on national television.
It highly values its place in the CNI competition, as recruitment and retention of players is very competitive in the Hawke’s Bay, with five boys’ schools battling over a small pool of players. The CNI competition provides the school with an important focus for these players.
Rugby Institute has been running for 5 years at the school and coached by two NZRU Level 3 coaches. The benefit of this programme can be seen in the 1st XV and 2nd XV teams in 2019.