Selectors Report 2015-16

NZAA Convenor Of Selectors Report 2015-2016

NZ Team Members

Jason Wynyard Capt., Shane Jordan, Kyle Lemon, Jack Jordan, David McDonald, Faa’ve Sefo, Warren Riddle, Nathan McDonald

Taranaki Test Series

Leading up to the Royal Sydney Show 2016 the NZ Team had competed in a 3 race International Series held in Taranaki. I would like to thank the Taranaki Association, Hawera and Stratford A & P Show Committees and all of those individuals that supported and gave countless hours of their own time towards making this event happen. To the sponsors and donors of monetary remuneration and products for the events thank you.

This series was very important to all of our leading axemen and sawyers challenging for a test singlet and for inclusion into the larger squad of competitors chasing national representation.

Australia had brought a young team that included 5 current or former world champions making up their team of 7.Their Captain-Manager David Foster a household name throughout Australia and the world of wood chopping & sawing ensured the Australians were always going to be very competitive. Excellent competition to test ourselves against prior Sydney.

NZ won the series 2 – 1 and used the opportunity to blood new member Nathan McDonald into international competition. Everyone performed to a high standard and although the races were close NZ ran out the winners of the home test series.

It was great to have a home test series after a number of years. First time a test series had been run in Pinus Strobus, which provided a great spectacle.The wood was of sound density and very even.Thank you Taranaki.

Sydney Royal Show

All of the team members that competed in the international series proved once again within the show competition that the individuals who performed at a high level plus handled the aussie wood better than the other New Zealanders competing were the current team members themselves.

This was very apparent in the sawing events.David McDonald crowned SHS World Champion, three out of four pairs on the dais for the DHS World Title 5 New Zealand Team Members and Willie McDonald who put up the performance of his life on the end of the saw with Jason Wynyard.Page 16

First international race NZ lost convincingly to Australia. Basically we under performed and did not compete at the level required to beat Australia on their home ground. All NZ team members were pretty much gutted afterwards and without any hesitation took it upon themselves to improve our position.

Second race displayed what we do best.NZ Team dug deep and everyone performed at a higher level running out the winners by 4 blows.Was a much-needed gutsy performance against our greatest foe with axe and saw.

Going into the 3rd and final test with one win each created even more pressure, intensity into the whole surrounding atmosphere in the stadium full of 9000 Aussies with a few Kiwis.

The race was thrilling right to the very end with Shane Jordan cutting our last standing block with his opposite Australian competitor having a large lead. Shane cutting very well reduced the lead down to a few blows whilst gaining on the Australian who won bringing the series home for Australia.

I would like to make special mention of the sawyers in the NZ Team Warren Riddle & Faa’ve Sefo DHS and David McDonald SHS.

The NZ DHS pair has competed longer than any other DHS pair in the black singlet. Year after year they have put countless hours of training, time and resources into their chosen sport. They are the oldest competitors in the team who have consistently proved they are a truly a world class pairing.Faa’ve and Warren epitomize what it is all about to wear the black singlet more importantly they have never taken it for granted!!.

David McDonald has proved once again he is the best SHS in the World winning in Sydney. David has progressively committed resources, time and money into his journey to become world champion.Some of you younger guys need to ask David about preparation I’m sure it would help your own performances.

I compare the sawing members of the NZ Team alike to the tight 5 in an All Black Team. They do the hard yards, very skilful, totally different discipline and focus needed as to members using axes.Without them sawing rings off in world class times ensuring we are always putting more pressure on opposition teams through the middle of the race it makes it very hard.

At Sydney this year and in previous years these three guys have consistently out performed their opposition in the Australian Team beating their times in even wood. I think it’s about time our NZ Team sawyers were acknowledged for the effort they have put in.Page 17

Out of 12 tests against Australia over the last three years NZ have won 8.I would like to acknowledge and thank all of our world class teams of individuals that for the last 3 years have maintained this record.To those NZAA axemen and sawyers that are making themselves available for selection this coming season both Willie Able and I welcome the possibility of new members into the NZ Squad.

To the other National Teams NZAA Under 21’s, NZAA Veteran’s and NZAA Women’s Team I take this opportunity to congratulate all members that gained selection to compete for NZ last season.

Although all national teams lost their individual series we are starting to see signs of some depth coming through in all teams.This is important long term for NZ Teams at all levels

Some of the older Under 21’s are starting to make their mark in the bigger arenas of our sport.This is showing not only in your team racing performances but also in International competition.

I take this opportunity to also congratulate the NZAA Women’s Team which went down to USA 2 -1 but certainly put Australia away.There were signs of improvement from the previous year and all the members did their best.The USA certainly looked like they were going to be strong contenders for a while longer.

On behalf of Willie Abel and I we thank everyone that has supported us both over the last season and we look forward to this coming year.

Thank you
Mook Hohneck
NZAA Convenor of Selectors