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Nolan John Kotahitanga o te Hau Tupaea
Team of the century
Nolan John Kotahitanga o te Hau Tupaea (my grandfather and papa) is a New zealand professional rugby league footballer of the 1980s, playing at representative level for New Zealand and Wellington, as a Stand-off number 6.
An outstanding stand-off, for Petone and Wellington, Papa was the absoulute choice for this position.After the speical club career with St George, Papa made the transfer to petone in 1980,a switch that gained him selection for the kiwis tour to England and France.In 1973 Papa was selected in the kiwis colts side that made three-match tour of Queensland and the same year he had a season in England playing for Wingan.In 1983 he returned to England with the historic tour by New Zealand Moari.He was in petone’s grand final winning teams of 1980-82 and was a match winner for petone in the distinquised wrangle cup in 1982.
Team of the century:
Papa was a part of the team of the century and he also lead his team even though he was not the captain he still had a plan to win the games.
Nolan played for the St. George club and the Petone Panthers in the Wellington Rugby League competition. Tupaea played for St. George between 1970 and 1979, being part of a winning side in 1977. In 1979 he moved to Petone, winning premierships in 1980, 1981 and 1982. He was also part of their 1982 victory in the National Club Cup.He still plays and at reunions he plays for the club the Wellington Petone Panthers.
Last year there was a Centenary for the rugby club to celebrate the 100th birthday of the club.At the centenary the player of the century was chosen by the club and the player of the centuy was a good freind of papa and it was kevin tamiti.He was also in the team of the century with Papa.
Papa played for Wellington, playing 64 matches between 1971 and 1985. He was selected for the Kiwi Colts in 1973 for a match against Queensland.Papa also played for the Central Districts side in their first five years of the New Zealand Rugby League's district competition. The side won the tournament in 1979, 1980 and 1982.He represented the New Zealand Kiwis in 1980 on their tour of Great Britain and France. He didn't play a test match, but he did play in 11 games for the Kiwis, scoring three tries. In 1983 he toured Britain again, this time with the New Zealand Māori side.He ended his long term representative career playing for Wellington in 1985 with a fourth best 64 apparence for his province.
As well as playing for the petone rugby club he also was married to my mama (Margie Tupaea) and soon after that had two children : Gemma (Mum) and Heemi (Uncle).Papa multi - tasked by leading his family and playing for the club.He always had time for his family.
When the club won, they often sang the victory song and was sometimes lead by Papa :
V-I-C-T-O-R-Y victory victory is our pride all our scores go high,high,high its PETONE,PETONE,PETONE.