Andy aims for Amber Army

Facebook following first step to filling stadium with fervent fans

MATT RILKOFF
Last updated 05:00 02/07/2011

The call is loud and clear, the Amber Army is here. Want to join the Amber Army: Go to "The-AmberArmy Taranaki'' on Facebook. Have a chant to suggest: send them to andy.jackson@dailynews.co.nz

tdn amber
TARANAKI DAILY NEWS
ONE MAN ARMY: Photographer Andy Jackson is recruiting members for the"Amber Army''.

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One man's dream to turn Yarrow Stadium into a rugby chanting cauldron of passion has quickly become a Facebook hit.

Just days after Taranaki Daily News photographer Andy Jackson set up his Amber Army Facebook page, he already counts former New Plymouth mayor Peter Tennent and former Taranaki captain Tony Penn as one of his 137 soldiers, or at the very least, Facebook friends.

The popularity of the fledging rugby chanting group has surprised even Mr Jackson whose dream is to see the northern embankment full of cheering and chanting Taranaki supporters all singing from the same song sheet, literally.

"We'd have chants printed up and handed out and chant leaders to make sure everyone knew what was going on. I've got a few in mind already but I'm looking for more right now," Mr Jackson said.

He believes the Amber Army could turn Yarrow Stadium into a cauldron of passion to strike fear into the heart of visiting teams.

"I guess I got into chanting at high school. That's how we supported our first XV and when I came to Taranaki games they always seemed a bit quiet."

That could all change with the Amber Army. The idea has the full support of the Taranaki Rugby Football Union, which hopes it will bring extra passion to this season's five home games.

"Nothing beats a large crowd of passionate Taranaki rugby fans at Yarrow Stadium," said TRFU marketing executive Nikita Hall. The TenderLink Taranaki boys get a real buzz from the Amber and Black sideline support. We are looking forward to getting our 2011 ITM Cup season under way and seeing the Amber Army out in force,"

The Amber Army's first foray into battle is against Wellington, Saturday July 16 at 7.35pm.

Want to join the Amber Army? Go to "The AmberArmy Taranaki" on Facebook.

Have a chant to suggest? Email andy.jackson@dailynews.co.nz

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- Taranaki Daily News

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