Maori Female footballers back in action

After the huge success of the inaugural Clash of the Cultures trans-tasman football series against MARIYA (Australian First Nations) in January, the Women’s Aotearoa Maori side will soon be back in action.

The Jaunary trans-tasman matches saw the women’s team, MAURI, complete a resounding 5-0 victory while their male counterparts, MANAWA, also won their corresponding fixture 3-2.

MAURI will soon be back in action with matches lined up against Auckland Croatia, New Caledonia’s Cagous, OLE Football Academy and finally the NZ Communities Football Cup to see out 2018.

“What the success of the Clash of the Cultures trans-tasman series against the Australian First Nations proved to me is that there is a real desire and appetite to play football by Maori. I foresee the Clash of the Cultures platform evolving into a brand of it’s own quite quickly,” Aotearoa Football Charitable Trust Chairman and MAURI Head Coach Phillip Pickering-Parker said.

“The purpose of these upcoming exchanges is to promote and raise awareness of our football brand and what it represents; A lighthouse, a guiding light for those that may feel disengaged in some way.

“It may be in social, sporting or cultural context, but our aim is to connect our people together and support them through the vehicle of sport and in this case, football.”

Pickering Parker is particularly excited about the squads trip to Wellington in late October where they will spend a weekend at the OLE Football Academy.

“This trip is about building and gnurturing relationships with like-minded environments for our whanapoikiri wahine (female footballers).

“The group will travel down to the OLE Football Academy and be involved in a female empowerment workshop with the female players at the academy and then play a match the following day before flying home.”

All three matches are part of the preparation for the 2019 Clash of the Cultures trans-tasman series in Australia against the Australian First Nations in which Maori Football NZ will be sending 3 or 4 teams to compete including the MAURI (Women), MANAWA (Men), TOKI TOA (U-14 Boys) and TE AO MARAMA (U-14 Girls – TBC).

It doesn’t stop there for the female side, with Pickering-Parker ecstatic to have been able to establish and grow cultural relationships with countries across the Oceania region.

“What is really exciting is the opportunity to nurture our cultural relationships through football with our Pacific brothers and sisters particularly in Tahiti where we are looking to form a strong bond of culture and football experiences through the Festival-des-lles Tournament in April 2019.”

The SPRING/SUMMER schedule as of 24 August 2018:  

September/October 2018

22 or 23 September 2018 – MAURI (Nga whanapoikiri punga wahine) vs. HNK Auckland Croatia – Auckland, NZ  

21 October 2018 – Clash of the Cultures: Pacific Shield series – MAURI (Nga whanapoikiri punga wahine) vs. New Caledonia national women’s team – Auckland, NZ 

26 – 28 October 2018 – Wellington showcase – Talent identification & trials – friendly match vs. OLE Female Academy squad – Wellington, NZ

November /December 2018

10-11 November – Akokura Football Festival – U8 | U10 | U12 | U14 | U16 | U10Girls | U12Girls | U14Girls – Auckland, NZ

24-25 November – NZ Communities Football Cup _ U13Girls | U13Boys | Women’s Men’s – Multicultural Society of NZ, Auckland, NZ 

January / February 2019 

17 – 21 January 2019 – Clash of the Cultures: Trans-Tasman Indigenous series – MAORI (Aotearoa) vs. MARIYA (Australian First Nations), Wollongong, Aus

  • MAURI – Nga whanapoikiri punga wahine
  • MANAWA – Nga Poraka Ma Whanapoikiri Tane
  • TOKI TOA – U14 boys
  • TE AO MARAMA– U14 girls (pending decision) 

27 – 23 February 2019 – Winston Reid Foundation – International Camp, Auckland NZ

April 2019  

1 – 5 April 2019 – Clash of the Cultures: Festival-des-Iles  – Federation Tahiti Football: Culture & Football tournament – Papeete, Tahiti

May 2019

1-5 May 2019 – Clash of the Cultures: Pacific Shield series – MAURI (Nga whanapoikir punga wahine) vs. Letherbridge University Canada – Auckland, NZ

June 2019

TBC – Clash of the Cultures: Pacific Shield series – MAURI (Nga whanapoikir punga wahine) vs Football Federation Samoa – Apia, Samoa

Photo courtesy of Young Rob Photography