Welcome to the Pōneke Junior Rugby Club

The Pōneke Junior Club offers all new and returning players and their families, the opportunity to belong to a club that prides itself on providing all our players with quality coaching and management administration to learn, develop, and play New Zealand’s number one sport – RUGBY, and to do so amongst the culturally diverse community of families which make up the Southern, Eastern, and Central suburbs in the greater Wellington region.


The skills and life long friends our players and their families will make whilst playing for Pōneke, will ensure each child will learn and develop an excellent base training to encourage them to continue to play rugby in their formative years, and to always enjoy playing in an enjoyable and family oriented environment – “You don’t just play, You belong!”​​​​​​​


Pōneke Junior Rugby Grades

The Pōneke Junior Rugby club offer junior grades for all age groups from the Nursery grade (Pōneke Pups) through to the Under 13 Open grade.

What Grades are available?

Junior Rugby can be broken into four different stages of development, aligned with the age of the child. 

  • Nursery Grade for all Under 5s - Pōneke Pups: The Pups is a fun environment for kids aged 1-5 to run and play in doing so are introduced to the very basics of Rippa Rugby. We encourage all parents to participate and join in the fun.
  • Beginning Rugby for Under 6–Under 7 - Rippa Rugby: Rippa Rugby is a very safe, non-contact, easy to play game for both boys and girls alike. Best of all it's fun and exciting for all involved. While the rules are simple and the game easy to learn, Rippa Rugby will promote excellent ball handling and running skills, and give all kids a chance to participate in our national game.
  • NEW GRADE  Under 8–Under 9 (combined) - Rip Rugby: Rip Rugby is non-contact. This is for those kids who don't feel ready, or do not wish to play Tackle Rugby (the U8 grade is where Tackle rugby is introduced).  If your child is an U7 from last year and enjoys Rippa Rugby they will enjoy this format.
  • NEW GRADE  Under 10–Under 11 (combined) - Rip Rugby: Fast Paced 10-aside half-field Rip Rugby. Non-Contact for those who love to play rugby.
  • Learning Rugby for Under 8, 9, 10 & 11 - Tackle Rugby: Kids can start playing tackle rugby once they reach the U8 grade. This is when they will also start to learn a modified version of lineouts and scrums. For safety reasons, weight restrictions begin at this grade. For these grades Rugby is played on half-field and is 10-a-side.
  • Playing Rugby for Under 12–Under 13 - Full Rugby: This is when kids start to play in a 15 a side team on a full sized field with minimal rule modifications.​​​​​​​
  • 5 a side team on a full sized field with minimal rule modifications.​​​​​​​

For more information about the way Junior Rugby is played at each stage you can go to the Small Blacks website

'Pōneke Junior Rugby Code of Conduct

PRIDE: Play with Pride in yourself, your team and club, and play with the Pride and passion of those who have played before you in the Pōneke club jersey.

RESPECT:  Respect the Referee, Respect your Opponents, Respect your Team, Respect your Club, and most importantly, Respect Yourself.

FAIRPLAY: Play hard but always play Fair – There is NO place on or off the rugby field for foul language, verbal abuse or physical violence.

COURAGE: Have the courage to coach the game for enjoyment, to develop and improve player and team skills.  Encourage your team to play the best they can each week and to set the highest standard of behavior for other teams & clubs, both on and off the field.


Pōneke Junior Rugby is founded on the above Code, qualities that have made the Pōneke Rugby Football Club stand out for over 130 years.  We coach, manage, and play by the above Code, so that we can ensure the Pōneke Rugby Football Club continues to stand out for a further 130+ years.