WRFU Academy Profile: Iona Apineru

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The 2017, St Patrick's College, Silverstream First XV was one of the more dominant sides Wellington schoolboy rugby has seen in recent seasons.

Silverstream won the Premiership and established a record for most points scored in a season. The team didn't attempt a single penalty shot. 

Can Silverstream match those feats in 2018?

"It'll be tough, but no team will run through the middle of us," responds Iona Apineru a Year 13 lock and member of the WRFU Academy.

"We've got most of our forwards back from last year. We're big, strong and pride ourselves on dominating our opposition," Apineru continued.

What about the backs?

"Quite frankly I don't care as long they can tackle," bristles Apineru.

It's this conviction that sets Apineru apart on and off the field. Iona is the first head prefect and of Tokelauan extraction at Silverstream and has been a regular Wellington age group rugby representative.

Why does Apineru believe he was appointed head boy at Silverstream?

"It's a huge honour to be the head boy and it's something I don't take for granted. I think I'm able to connect with different people. I'm not just about rugby. I take a keen interest in social issues. I enjoy an argument, but I try to get to know people," Apineru responded.

What does Apineru make of Donald Trump?

"He's interesting, but would struggle to run lineout," he laughs.

Silverstream certainly knew each other last year. In a squad of 26 players, 23 scored at least one try. Collective responsibility was a big part of the success.

"We play our first game on Saturday, but we have no idea who the captain is yet. I'm guessing the role will be shared around like it was last year. Everybody has a role to play and that's important in any team," Apineru theorises.

Iona's mum Ann works for Inland Revenue and his father Ali is a social worker. Older brother Nev is a building apprentice and plays in the front row for the Upper Hutt Rams.  

Apineru is a keen basketball fan and is joined at the WRFU academy by schoolmates Josh Southall (flanker) and Luke Chisholm (prop).


Fast Five
Favourite player: Brad Thorn, Reece Plumtree
Celebrity Crush: Sommer Ray, Harrison Boyle
Favourite Food: Potato 
Favourite Musician: Kenny Rogers
Favourite Subject: Benediction