Shirley Rugby Stalwart Roger Smith has retired as Manager of the Shirley Sports Club

Shirley Rugby Stalwart Roger Smith has retired as Manager of the Shirley Sports Club after an impressively long time.

He has been involved with Shirley Rugby in some shape or form since the early 70’s.  That’s over 50 years!

Frankly Roger aka Smithy deserves a medal for his contribution to Shirley Rugby, Shirley Sports Club and the North Beach Surf Club over the years.  He is a true local identity that ‘NZ Club land’ seriously depend on for clubs to prosper.

Smithy first made the Shirley Rugby senior team in 1972, which was his second year out of school, and played until 1982. He was a central part of what was acknowledged as one of the strongest forward packs in the senior competition for many years. 

He was a highly respected team member on and off the field.  He was part of the club’s memorable rugby trip to Fiji in 1974 - Three games were played in Suva, Savu Savu and Lautoka. Smithy ended up in hospital with concussion the night of the first game, after trying to tackle head on, a 16 stone Fijian in full flight for the line. He missed one of the best nights of the tour back at QVSOB clubrooms in Suva!

In 1982 he made the move to Wellington for work and enjoyed playing for the Wairarapa for a few years before heading back to Christchurch. 

Upon his return to Christchurch, he came back to Shirley Rugby where he got involved in the club again.  Landing himself several integral voluntary roles over the years including Club President 2009 - 2019, Shirley Sports Club Director and Bar Manager from 2003 to 2023. 

We are sure we will see you on the sidelines but meantime a big thanks for your massive contribution and unwavering loyalty to the Shirley Rugby Club Smithy!

A true legend.

Article added: Friday 13 October 2023


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