Te Atatu Roosters

The Te Atatu Roosters is a rugby league club based in Te Atatū, New Zealand. They participate in the Auckland Rugby League competition. They currently have 25 teams across schoolboy, junior and senior grades. The Roosters premier team began the 2022 season in the Fox Memorial Shield competition.

Te Atatu Roosters
Te Atatu Roosters.png
Club information
Short nameTe Atatu Roosters
ColoursRed, white and blue
Current details
  • Jack Colvin Park
  • Te Atatu South Park
CoachPhil Gordon (assistant, Kevin Charlie)
ManagerAleesha Gordon, Toni Fauonuku (Trainer, John Tomes)
CaptainApi Pewhairangi
CompetitionAuckland Rugby League
2022Fox Memorial Shield
Runners-up1986, 1990, 1993
National Club Champions1986, 1988
Roope Rooster2007
Kiwi Shield1986, 1988
Sharman Cup1970, 1973, 1974, 1976, 1978, 2016
Phelan Shield2015, 2016

Home groundEdit

The Roosters play at the council owned Jack Colvin Park located on the Te Atatū Peninsula, next to the North Western Motorway. Junior teams also play at Te Atatū South Park.


The Te Atatū club was founded in 1955 after the opening of the North-Western motorway led to suburban growth in the Te Atatū area. The first team was a 7-aside team formed to represent Te Atatū North and South. They initially had to wear Glenora jerseys (who were a club based in Glen Eden) and their first ever game was against Wesley at Fowlds Park. The first training area was in a cow paddock on Edmonton Rd, before they were later able to move to Ramlea Park.

In 1961 Te Atatū won their first schoolboy championship in their Te Atatū colours. In 1960–61 Te Atatū Peninsula Park was developed on Neil Avenue and in 1965 they fielded their first senior side in the Senior B grade. The ground is still commonly referred to as 'Neil Ave'.

In the late 1960s work began on the current club rooms on Toru Avenue. They were built on Crown (council) land arranged with Waitematā Mayor Jack Colvin after 3 club members were elected to the WCC Parks Committee. However, before the club rooms could be built the land needed to be prepared. The land was in such poor condition that no other clubs had bothered applying for it, and life member Ken Pitman described the task of preparing it thus: "What a mess, over six acres of swamp, gorse and pine trees, five feet thick. Well we were all enthusiastic and silly enough to attempt the impossible. We chopped, scrounged, swore, drank and burned our way through the lot". The council also helped by putting a culvert under the motorway and realigned the creek which ran through the park. Eventually the playing fields were established and work could begin on the club rooms.[1]

The club rooms took over 6 years to complete with the foundation stone being laid on 17 December 1962, with the official opening on 19 April 1969 by MP Martin Finlay. Just as the land was prepared solely by club members, so to was the club room built completely by members including Ken Pitman, Tom Hetherington, Ted Quedely, Eric Draper, Ernie Rainbow, Morrie Ramsey, Peter and Bis Pitman, Buddy Jones, Harry McWilliams, Jim Denyer, Gordon McCarten, Pat Fairweather, Don McMeekin, Murray Hill and Ian Pattulo.[2]

By the 1970s Te Atatū were becoming more competitive on the field at senior level and completed wins over all of the top clubs over a period of time, including Ellerslie Eagles, Mt Albert Lions, Glenora Bears, Richmond Bulldogs and Ponsonby Ponies. At this time the club also began producing NZ international quality players such as Dennis Williams who aged only 18 famously scored a brilliant individual try with his first touch of the ball in his debut test versus Great Britain, along with John Smith and John Wilson. In 1973 they won the Senior Competition and the Phelan Shield. In the same year they played the first ever Australian Aboriginal rugby league team in a pre season game, losing 13–17.[3][4]

Around this time other branches of the club were formed at Ranui (which later led to the formation of the Waitemata Seagulls), and Massey. Teams playing at Moire Park in Massey were known as Te Atatū Massey. The nickname 'Roosters' was adopted along with the Eastern Suburbs (now Sydney Roosters) style jersey. In 1976 they turned 21 yrs old and celebrated with a ball at the Mandalay in the city. In 1979 club members looking for a summer activity to continue bonding and to develop player skills formed the Te Atatū Roosters Softball Club. The softball club has since relocated to the Massey Rugby Club and plays at Rosedale Park on Auckland's North Shore, but has retained the name Roosters Softball Club.[5][6]

In the 1980s the club finally began experiencing the success on the field they had sought after for many years. In 1986 they were runners up in the Fox Memorial Shield to Mt Albert losing 31-4 but weeks later were crowned National Club Champions after defeating the same opposition 36-10. Then in 1988 they won the Fox Memorial Shield beating local rivals Glenora 22–16 in the final at Carlaw Park and a month later won the National Club title for the second time by again defeating Glenora at Eden Park as curtain-raiser to the Kiwis – Kangaroo World Cup final.[7]

In 2016 Te Atatū formed their first women's premier team. They played six seasons and won the 2nd division title twice (2016 and 2019).[8] They are not fielding a women's team in 2022 however.


Te Atatu players in a match against Point Chevalier in 2011

Te Atatu's first ever senior trophy was the Gillette Cup in 1968. They won it again in 1974. Their other trophies early in their existence were in the Sharman Cup where they won it in 1970, 1973, 1974, 1976 and 1978.

Te Atatu had a historic year in 1986 when they won the Rukutai Shield for winning the minor premiership and making the Fox Memorial grand final (both for the first time) where they lost to the Mt Albert Lions 31–4. A month later they had revenge when they beat the Lions by 36–10 to claim their first National Club title at Carlaw Park, defeating Randwick and Upper Hutt along the way.

Te Atatu scoring v New Lynn in 2016

Te Atatu finally won the coveted Fox Memorial Shield, awarded to the Auckland club champions in 1988 with a win over local rivals the Glenora Bears. They also went on to win the Lion Red National Club Final against Glenora at Eden Park 18–8 in the same year. The match was televised live as it was the curtain-raiser to the New Zealand – Australia Rugby League World Cup final which Australia went on to win 25–12 in front of 45,363 spectators.

In 1990 they again made the Fox Memorial final but lost to a Tawera Nikau inspired Otahuhu Leopards. In 1993 they made the Fox Memorial final for the 4th time but were again defeated by the Northcote Tigers 29–10.

In 2005 the Roosters celebrated their 50th Jubilee. In 2007 Te Atatu won the Roope Rooster (which by this time had become a trophy the winning team defended on their home ground). They defeated Mt Albert to win it and defended it for 3 matches before losing it to the Richmond Bulldogs.

In 2010 they finished 4th at the end of the regular season in the Fox Memorial and defeated 3rd placed Howick in the minor final, before losing to Otahuhu in preliminary final. The 2011 to 2014 seasons were largely uneventful, spent in the lower divisions. The 2014 season was arguably one of the worst in the club's history with just 2 wins from 18 games, both over the last placed Manukau Magpies.

The club then rebuilt in 2015 by appointing Revell Neil and bringing in many new players to the premier team. This saw a massive reversal in results and over the 2015 and 2016 seasons they won a remarkable 35 games, with 2 draws and just 3 losses. In 2015 they had their 60th Jubilee which featured a celebratory match with local rivals Glenora and was won by Te Atatu 38–28. They also won the Phelan Shield in this time.

Te Atatu v Mangere East at Jack Colvin Park on May 7, 2022

In 2016 they won the Phelan Shield again along with promotion back to the Fox Memorial when they beat the Bay Roskill Vikings 31–22 in the Sharman Cup final. In 2017 they were competitive in many matches but failed to convert this into wins. They were relegated back to the Sharman Cup and in 2018 were forced to rebuild after losing many of their players to other teams. Former Te Atatu player Lawrence Tagaloa was appointed head coach.

Tuteauru Maipi scoring for Te Atatu, 21 May, 2022

They finished the season with a 7–7 record and lost to New Lynn in the Sharman Cup championship final. 2019 saw another change with new coaches (Keith Hanley and Phil Gordon) appointed and many new additions to the team. The 2022 season sees Phil Gordan in charge again as head coach after he had assumed sole responsibility in 2021.

Year Trophy
1968 Gillette Cup
1970 Sharman Cup
1973 Sharman Cup
1974 Sharman Cup & Gillette Cup
1976 Sharman Cup
1978 Sharman Cup
1986 Rukutai Shield, National Club Championship & Kiwi Shield
1988 Fox Memorial, National Club Championship & Kiwi Shield
2007 Roope Rooster
2015 Phelan Shield
2016 Phelan Shield & Sharman Cup

Current Season and Season Finishing PositionsEdit

2019 Fox Qualifying Championship Results
Home Score Away Score
1 Te Atatu 34 Manukau 18
2 Hibiscus Coast 34 Te Atatu 32
3 Bye
4 Te Atatu 22 Ellerslie 12
5 Waitemata 18 Te Atatu 52
6 Pukekohe 14 Te Atatu 24
7 Te Atatu 44 Ponsonby 12
8 Te Atatu 78 Papatoetoe 0
9 Te Atatu 30 Pakuranga 14
10 Otara 20 Te Atatu 38
11 Te Atatu 72 New Lynn 0
12 Northern Brothers 6 Te Atatu 44
13 Te Atatu 48 Mt Wellington 22
2019 Fox Memorial Championship Results
Home Score Away Score
1 Te Atatu 36 Manurewa 16
2 Te Atatu 26 Ellerslie 24
3 Richmond 26 Te Atatu 18
4 Pukekohe 22 Te Atatu 34
5 Te Atatu 22 Papakura 28
6 Te Atatu 36 Bay Roskill 8
7 Hibiscus Coast 14 Te Atatu 42
Major Semi-Final Te Atatu 23 Papakura 22 *AET
Grand Final Te Atatu 8 Papakura 38

Men's Season RecordsEdit

Year Competition Pld W B D L PF PA PD Pts Position (Teams) Notes
2003 Sharman Cup 14 7 0 0 7 - - - 14 Fourth (Ten) L v Northcote in Elim SF 18-20
2009 Fox Qualification 7 4 0 0 3 - - - 8 Fourth (Eight) Qualified for Fox Memorial
2009 Fox Memorial 14 3 0 0 11 - - - 6 Seventh (Eight) Zensei Inu (ARL Standoff of the Year), Zac Tippins (ARL Hooker of the Year), Stephen Shennan (ARL Rookie of the Year)
2010 Fox Qualification 7 4 0 0 3 228 158 +144 8 Fourth (Eight) Qualified for Fox Memorial
2010 Fox Memorial 14 8 0 0 6 412 332 +124 16 Fourth (Eight) W v Howick 26-8 in Minor Final, L v Otahuhu 14-28 in preliminary final
2011 Sharman Cup 14 7 0 1 6 412 294 +140 15 Fourth (Eight) L v Mangere East 16-19 in minor final
2012 Sharman Cup 18 7 0 2 9 379 524 -145 16 Seventh (Ten)
2013 Sharman Cup 18 4 0 1 13 412 533 -121 9 Ninth (Ten)
2014 Sharman Cup 18 2 0 0 16 290 723 -523 4 Ninth (Ten) Sala Falelua (Sharman Cup Player of the Year), Bill Norrie (ARL Volunteer of the Year) [9]
2015 Sharman Cup 17 15 0 1 1 826 277 +549 4 First (Fifteen) W v Ellerslie 26–22 in minor final, W v Bay Roskill 32–26 in major final, L v Richmond 16–45 in GF
2016 Sharman Cup 17 15 1 1 0 706 186 +520 29* First (Fifteen) * -2 pts for a rule breach, L v Waitemata 14–21 in qual final, W v Hibiscus Coast 54–18 in SF, W v Ellerslie 42–12 in major final, W v Bay Roskill 31–22 in GF
2017 Fox Memorial 18 3 0 1 14 289 510 -221 7 Tenth (Ten) Relegated to Sharman Cup for 2018, Johnny Falelua (ARL Rookie of the Year)
2018 Sharman Cup 15 6 1 0 8 308 285 +23 14 Tenth (Fourteen) W v Pakuranga 30–6 in SF, L v New Lynn 24–29 in GF
2019 Fox Qualifying 12 11 1 0 1 548 179 +322 24 First (Thirteen) Qualified 1st including 10 game winning streak (rounds 3-12)
2019 Fox Championship 7 5 0 0 2 214 140 +74 10 First (Eight) Qualified 1st, W v Papakura in major semi-final 23-22 (aet, L v Papakura in grand final 8-38.
2020 Fox Memorial 8 2 0 0 6 176 198 -22 4 Ninth (Twelve) Season cancelled after 8 rounds into 11 round competition due to covid-19
2021 Fox Premiership Qual 11 0 2 1 8 252 368 -22 5 Tenth (Twelve)
2021 Fox Championship 6 3 0 0 3 172 90 +82 6 Fourth (Eight)
2022 Fox Memorial (section 2) 2 2 0 0 0 118 0 +118 4 First (Ten)

Women's Season RecordsEdit

Year Competition Pld W BYE D L PF PA PD Pts Position (Teams) Notes
2016 Women's Pennant 5 2 1 1 1 150 40 +190 7 Second (Five) W v Pt Chevalier 18–14 in SF, L v Mangere East 22–26 in the Championship Final
2017 Women's Pennant 8 5 2 0 1 272 82 +190 14 First (Five)
2018 Women's Championship 5 0 1 0 4 54 238 -134 2 Fifth (Fifth)
2019 Women's Championship 7 6 0 0 1 260 130 +130 12 First (Eight) W v Glenora 32-24 in the championship SF, W v Manukau 10-8 in the grand final

Notable Past PlayersEdit

Te Atatu's first Kiwi International was Dennis Williams in 1971. He went on to play 31 tests for New Zealand. The majority of the NZ representatives were to come from the late 1980s and early 1990s when the club experienced considerable success on the field With the likes of Peter Brown, Mark Elia, Mark Horo, Ron O'Regan, Dean Orr, and Sam Panapa in the side. In the early 1990s brothers Henry and Robbie Paul represented the Kiwi's though Robbie moved to play professionally in England at a young age and due to the difficulty for players from England being able to return to New Zealand or Australia for tests he did not represent New Zealand as many times as he would undoubtedly have. His brother Henry Paul also moved to play professionally in England and he later switched codes representing England in rugby union, and in Rugby Sevens. He was not the only Te Atatu Rooster to represent another country in Rugby Union. Shontayne Hape switched codes and was selected for the full English international side who he represented 13 times, and more recently James O'Connor who was a Te Atatu Schoolboy was selected for the Wallabies, the Australia national rugby union team.

NZ RepresentativesEdit


NZ Maori

Junior Kiwis

NZ Under 19s

NZ Secondary Schools

NZ Under 16s

NZ Universities

Auckland Representative TeamsEdit


New Zealand Warriors

NZ Warriors U20s


Canterbury Bulldogs

Gold Coast Titans

Paterika Vaivai (10 games) Newcastle Knights

Paterika Vaivai (6 games) Sydney Roosters

Parramatta Eels

Penrith Panthers

Western Suburbs

Super League/EnglandEdit

Bradford Bulls

Castleford Tigers

Featherstone Rovers

Halifax R.L.F.C.

Huddersfield Giants


Kent Invicta


Leigh Centurions

Oldham RLFC

Rochdale Hornets

Salford Giants

Sheffield Eagles

St Helens R.F.C.


Wakefield Trinity

Widnes Vikings


International Rugby League and Rugby UnionEdit







Video of Games and InterviewsEdit

Men's Premiers Matches

Men's Premiers Nines Tournament Matches

  • 2018 ARL Nines v Mt Albert Lions Pool Match (0-34) Full Match
  • 2018 ARL Nines v Waitemata Seagulls Pool Match (10-8) Full Match
  • 2019 ARL Nines v Marist Saints Pool Match (0-10) Full Match
  • 2019 ARL Nines v Mangere East Hawks Pool Match (8-24) Full Match
  • 2019 ARL Nines v Manurewa Marlins Plate Semi Final (12-20) Full Match

Men's Premiers Interviews and Preseason

Women's Premiers

  • 2017 Women's Premiers v Pt Chevalier Pirates Pennant Grand Final (24-14) Full Match
  • 2019 Women's Premiers v Manukau Magpies Championship Grand Final (10-8) 1st Half 2nd Half
  • 2020 Women's Premiers v Otara Scorpions Full Match
  • 2021 Women's Premiers v Ponsonby Ponies R9 (6-60) 1st Half 2nd Half

Women's Premiers Interviews

  • 2020 Women's Interviews with players from The Coconet TV [2]

Men's Premier 1st (Reserve Grade)

  • 2016 Premier 1st v Northern Brothers Full Match
  • 2019 Premier 1st v Hibiscus Coast (50-22) Full Match
  • 2019 Premier 1st Grand Final v Bay Roskill (22-23) Full Match
  • 2020 Premier 1st v Mangere East R2 (64-6) Full Match
  • 2020 Premier 1st v Otahuhu Leopards Fox Memorial R6 (17-16) Full Match
  • 2020 Premier 1st v Manukau (28-18) Full Match
  • 2021 Premier 1st v Marist Saints R6 (24-34) Full Match
  • 2021 Premier 1st v Hibiscus Coast (30-12) Full Match

Other recordings

  • 2017 Kiwi Ferns (Lilieta Maumau and Maitua Feterika) shopping at K-Mart in Henderson for toys for the club room play group.[3]
  • 2021 Te Atatū women's players Karli Hansen (Gold Coast Titans) and Katelyn Vaha’akolo (Newcastle Knights), the first Te Atatū women players to gain contracts to play in the NRL Women’s competition. They are interviewed for Māori TV. [4]


  1. ^ "Te Atatū Roosters Rugby League Club celebrates 60 years". 24 April 2015.
  2. ^ "The History of Te Atatū Rugby League Club". New Zealand: Fox Sport Pulse. 18 February 2012. Retrieved 7 July 2015.
  3. ^ AAP (18 February 1973). "Aboriginal team wins". The Sydney Morning Herald. Australia. Retrieved 10 August 2010.
  4. ^ "Aboriginal Rugby League Stars Recognised After 4 Decades". The Armidale Express. Australia. 8 February 2013. Retrieved 30 July 2019.
  5. ^ "Roosters Softball Club Inc - Club Profile - OnlySport.co.nz - Bringing the Sporting Community together".
  6. ^ http://www.roosterssoftball.co.nz/
  7. ^ "60th Jubilee Speech Notes". New Zealand: Facebook. 20 June 2015. pp. 1–2. Retrieved 6 July 2015.
  8. ^ "Women flock to the te Atatu Roosters' rugby league team". 15 May 2016.
  9. ^ "Snell wins Auckland's top award". 27 August 2014.
  10. ^ "Wallaby star drops in on favourite Kiwi teacher". New Zealand: ODT. 15 September 2011. Retrieved 9 July 2019.
  11. ^ Newsroom. Co. Nz, Ben Stanley of (18 April 2017). "Warriors reject plays test rugby for Romania". Stuff.

External linksEdit