Hastings Rugby & Sports Club, the city’s newest rugby club quickly gained success with the premier team reaching the semifinal of the Maddison Trophy and the Senior Reserves winning their final in the club’s inaugural rugby season, 1996. From this foundation the club’s rugby teams consolidated with the premier side reaching a peak in 1999 when it shared the Maddison Trophy with Clive after a tense 15-all draw in the final.

Hastings Rugby & Sports Club has four mens and one womens adult rugby teams. These grades include Premier, Development, Senior 3, Womens and Colts (Under 21). The club also has a large Junior Rugby division with over 350 players and 25 teams. The Celtic Netball Club is also affiliated to the rugby club. Some years  the netball club has up to nine or ten womens teams and is the largest club in Hastings.

The club was formed at the end of 1995 with the amalgamation of Hastings Celtic and Hastings High School Old Boys Rugby Clubs and started playing in 1996. The clubs logo is representative of the four main secondary schools in Hastings – Hastings Boys High School, St Johns College, Karamu High School and Lindisfarne College. Notable amongst these is Hastings Boys High School (the former feeder school to Old Boys) and St Johns College (to Hastings Celtic).

History of Hastings Rugby & Sports Club

Hastings Rugby and Sport emerged from the amalgamation of the Hastings (approximately 70 years in existence at the time of its merger with Celtic in 1990) and Celtic Clubs (85 years) with Hastings High School Old Boys (71 years) in 1995. The Hastings Rugby Football Club (one of the Hawke’s Bay Rugby Union’s four founding clubs in 1884) had previous experience of a merger when it teamed up with Joe Warbrick’s Heretaunga Club late in the 1884 season to form the Hawke’s Bay County RFC which disbanded in the1890s and Hastings re-formed again in 1918.

Hastings Rugby and Sports Club and the Hawke’s Bay Polo Club own the grounds at Ellwood Road jointly with the rugby club. The new club retained strong links with the four main secondary schools in the city – Hastings BHS, St John’s College, Lindisfarne College and Karamu High School – and also maintained a powerful presence in primary and intermediate schools competitions.

1999 was to be the most momentous year for the club when the premier side performed “the Double” in winning both the Spillane Trophy tournament for North Island Marist clubs and the prestigious Maddison Trophy. In 1999 the club was selected as Hawke’s Bay Sports Club of the year at the Hawke’ Bay annual sports awards function.

Although not quite reaching the lofty heights of 1999, the club has performed with exemplary consistency in mostly remaining in the top four of the premier ranks through to 2007.

The clubrooms in Alexandra Crescent were sold in 2007 and the decision was made to move to the Ellwood Road property where new facilities were op