SBHS set for return to Otago competition

Southland Boys' High School is poised to return to the Otago Premier Schools tournament after a four-year absence.

The school has been invited to compete in the 2019 tournament but will have to agree to terms which will probably include travelling for most of its games.

There are two other major developments.

Wakatipu High School, which has been playing its rugby in Southland, has entered the grade and Kavanagh College and Taieri College will join with Kaikorai Valley College and compete as a combined schools team.

King's High School will field just one team this year, meaning there will be 11 teams from Otago. The expected return of Southland Boys' would eliminate a bye.

Otago Secondary Schools Rugby Council chairman Greg Heller said a ''slight majority'' of Otago schools had supported Southland Boys' potential return. And he stressed the entry of Southland Boys' hinged on further discussions which will take place early next year.

''What we've done is we've extended a provisional invitation to Southland Boys' High School through the Southland Rugby Union to join,'' Heller said.

''But we are using the word provisional because we would like to meet with them and hammer out some terms, basically.''

The Otago schools do not want to be lumbered with the extra expense of travelling to Invercargill.

''[Southland Boys'] will most likely have to travel or have some provision to support teams travelling down to Invercargill. But that is a discussion that we need to have with them.''

Taieri College and Kavanagh College fielded separate teams this year but have opted to combined with Kaikorai Valley College and field a combined schools team.

Logistically, there will be a few issues for the new side. But Heller is confident the schools can make it work.

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