The 2017 Kia Orana Youth Football Festival was held from Saturday 15th – Saturday 22nd April at the CIFA complex in Matavera.
There was a total of five local clubs that participated: Avatiu FC, Puaikura FC, Tupapa Maraerenga FC and Takitumu (Matavera FC and Titikaveka FC). Three outer island member associations took the opportunity to travel to the main island, Rarotonga to join in the festivities: Aitutaki FA, Mangaia FA and Mauke FA while we have to privilege to host two international teams from New Zealand: Beachlands Fury AFC and Ellerslie Mustangs AFC.
A total of 33 matches were played over five days during the term one school holidays and boy did we capture a lot of individual natural talents, powerhouse teams, amazing football skills and most of all the sheer fun and friendship that each player and team created during the one week competition. Teams were split into two pools with the top two teams from each to challenge each other in the play-offs with the winners playing for first and second placing and the losers playing for third and fourth place.
All teams, match officials and sponsors were invited to an evening of feast and dance at the National Auditorium and trust us when we say all who were there danced, met new friends and enjoyed the island food and cultural performance.
And of course taking top honours in the Under 16 Boys division is our local club Tupapa Maraerenga FC who fought against another local club powerhouse Takitumu by one goal in an epic finale. And taking the silverware in the U-16 Girls Division was our international team from New Zealand, Ellerslie Mustangs AFC.
2017 Winners & Runners Up
Under 16 Boys Division Under 16 Girls Division
1st Tupapa Maraerenga FC 1st Ellerslie Mustang AFC
2nd Takitumu 2nd Puaikura FC
3rd Puaikura FC 3rd Beachlands AFC