Camp a perfect start to the season

GLENN MCLEAN
Last updated 05:00 14/02/2014

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The success of last year's senior rugby match at Waitara's Pukekohe Domain (Camp Reserve) has prompted Clifton to return for this season's opener against Southern.

More than 1200 people turned up to see Clifton play Inglewood last season and the club has ambitious plans to try and double that number on April 5 in what will be a repeat of the 2014 senior A final, won 15-14 by Southern.

"As an old player who used to play at the Camp [Reserve] and was brought up at the Camp, it was pretty special to go back there and to have another go at it. Hopefully it will be even better," Clifton club spokesman David Casey said.

"One of the great things about the Camp used to be the walk-up crowds we used to get because it's right in the middle of town."

Clifton's home ground is at Tikorangi but the Taranaki Rugby Football Union and the New Plymouth District Council have granted permission for the sides to play at the reserve.

Casey said a number of events were planned for the day. "We only had about three weeks marketing for the game last year, so we were scrambling about trying to pull it together. This year we are going to have a better buildup, we're going to have the TSB Superscreen there, Grassroots Rugby are going to be there covering it, a lot of food stalls and we're playing Southern, which is a good way to start the season."

Three Southern teams - colts, senior B and senior A - will travel to the ground, with the first game starting at 11am.

Like last year, Clifton will play in an alternative strip, this time a 1920s version of the jersey worn when the club won the northern division title. The jerseys would be auctioned later in the night.

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