A spot for Taylor in PN Marist team

A timely text message has been sent from Palmerston North to ousted Black Caps captain Ross Taylor.

"There's always a spot in the Marist team for you and you could captain the team."

That came from Marist Cricket Club patriarch Gerard Gillespie, whose sons played alongside Taylor at Palmerston North Boys' High School and who recruited him for Marist. Gillespie regularly keeps in touch with Taylor and supports him.

Taylor, still a Manawatu affiliate in cricket terms, only left Palmerston North for Hamilton so his wife Victoria could have family support there.

Gillespie, who until recently served on a New Zealand Cricket committee, said he would believe anything Taylor said "100 per cent".

"He didn't deserve to be treated this way. He has a lot of integrity. We are all disappointed for him and for how the process of handling something like this has been played out."

■ Representative cricket captain Luke Murray jocularly suggested they put the SOS out for Ross Taylor to come back and play for Manawatu.

Like others, he felt the dumping had been harsh. "If the coach wants a particular person to be captain, he's got the right to do that; but I guess the way he went about it wasn't too flash."

United captain Robbie James: "They handled that pretty poorly. It's the way they went about it."

Old Boys' club captain: Kerry Jaques: "It's pretty disgusting the way they've done it."

■ Beware well populated car parks.

After break-ins to cars at the Fitzherbert Park hockey car park and at the Manawatu Golf Club, it pays players to be watchful because these crooks are doing their worst under cover of numbers milling about. Perhaps an ambush should be set up during the two women's hockey tests tomorrow and Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the teenaged perpetrator of the $25,000 arson at the hockey turfs in June has done more than 200 hours of community service there to the satisfaction of Hockey Manawatu and the Palmerston North City Council.

■ It was almost a supreme effort by the Manawatu-Wanganui men's golf team in the national interprovincial final at Balmacewan, Dunedin, on Saturday. They were due for a win to back up their victory at the Southland Invitational in March, for the first time since 2002. But it was tough for Foxton's revived Junior Tatana being forced to go to the second extra hole at Dunedin and falling to a birdie by Bay of Plenty.

Manawatu-Wanganui were semifinalists in 1986, 1994, 1996, 1997 and 2003 and have won the title only five times in 61 years.

■ A void has been left in Palmerston North speedway now photographer Steve Green is no longer with us.

He died in his sleep on Friday night at his home at Waitarere Beach. In recent years his action pictures have appeared in the Manawatu Standard and he was at the speedway for more than 20 years. A freelancer, Steve's day job was as a technician for Chorus (telecommunications).

He also ran the Motorcycle Marketplace website and workshopmanuals.co.nz and was a former drag-biker.

Manawatu Standard