I know it has been awhile, but there has been a lot going on. I am going to try to catch up on a lot of it now.
In the States, for pro sports, we have football, soccer, basketball, baseball, etc. Here, for pro sports, they have cricket, rugby, netball, soccer, etc. Three of those are very different from any sports that we have in the states. I have explained to me the workings of those sports, and I still don’t fully understand them.
Cricket is probably the most confusing, but I picked it up the easiest. There are 11 players on the pitch at one time. Two bowlers, and nine fielders for one team. for the other team, they simply have two batters. There are wickets, fours, sixes, no ball, leg ball, power plays and many more terms. It is a slow game, but it has the potential to have very fast paced times. I went to the Fill the Basin, which was a charity event to raise money for Christchurch. While there, I got to watch Russel Crowe, PM John Key, the Stig from Top Gear, and many more people play cricket. I also got to meet Sir Ian McKellan. For those of you who don’t know, he plays Gandalf in the LOTR trilogy, and Magneto in X-Men. It was a fun-filled day, full of bonding, playful banter, and sun shine. Besides the relaxed atmosphere of the charity event, I also watched the Cricket World Cup with some of my kiwi friends. New Zealand made it to the semi-finals, and only lost by three runs. India proceeded to win the World Cup.
Another sporting event that I have been to would be one of the Hurricanes home rugby games. The Hurricanes are Wellington’s rugby team. I went with a bunch of people from the IFSA-Butler group. They played the Chiefs, who are from down south (I’m not exactly sure where). Unlike American football, you cannot throw the ball forward. It must be thrown backwards to teammates, and ran forward. The ball can be kicked forward, but on those occasions, it resembles a punt, because the other team now has possession. It is a very fast paced, physical game. The players do not wear pads, and run full force into each other. It is a continuous, non-stop game. There is no play clock to pick a play. To score, you can either kick it through the ‘field goal posts’. Like American football, this counts for three points. To score a try, which is like our touchdown, you must cross the try line, and actually touch the ball to the ground. That counts for six points, then they have an extra point attempt. The Hurricanes won by three, I do believe.
Netball. This one, I have not had explained to me. I just watched it on television, and tried to pick up on the rules and everything. However, that did not go very well. It is almost like a combination of Ultimate Frisbee and basketball. When you get the ball, you can’t move, there is no dribbling, you shoot baskets, and there are five players on the court from each team. Other than that, I was not able to pick up on much more. It is another very fast paced game.
While at Victoria University, I have joined the Ultimate Frisbee club. We get together twice a week and practice. This consists of learning new strategies, running plays, working on defense, working on passing, and playing a game. It is a lot of fun, and I have met a lot of great people. The VUW frisbee team is one of the best in the Pacific. These are some really great players. At the end of April, I will be participating in the Super University Games, held in Auckland this year. Universities from all over New Zealand come together and compete, working as a university, to score points that go towards the winning the University Shield. From what I have heard, it is a lot of fun, and a great chance to meet lots of awesome people. I cannot wait.
Before I left to come to New Zealand, I knew I would get involved in sports, whether it be watching on television, or playing on a team. By hanging out with all of the people I have met, I have learned so much about sports that I never really understood.