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Three rugby clubs held their opening days in March 1958 in blustery weather. They were Invercargill, Pirates and Collegiate.
The Old Boys were suppose to hold theres but the rain put an end to it. Marist held its opening day yesterday.
The best that has been seen for several years was participation at the opening runs and indications are that strong teams will be fielded this season.
More than 60 players attended the Pirates opening, with a newcomer to the club in B. Ellis who played half back for Mid-Canterbury last year. The whole of the last year's senior team will again be seen this year. The clubs 75th jubilee will be held this year in August and the main aim is to erect a new clubhouse. Already half the necessary money has been raised.
There are several new players for the Collegiate club including R. O'Callaghan, a Southland representive of third grade five years ago.
He has been playing in Australia and was in the Wallabies trials for their tour of Britain and France.
Also playing will be E. Thomas who was reserve hooker for the Canterbury University team and Athol Dalzell, one of Southland's best forwards last season will again be available.
Nearly all last years Invercargill XV turned up for the opening run and there was a big muster of second graders. The backline of the senior team should be strengthened when Peter Knight who showed a lot of promise two seasons ago returns from an overseas tour.
The Invercargill second grade team will play a Thames touring team at Easter.
Fifty five players took part in the Marist opening yesterday, with the senior team being much the same as last year and the second grade team is expected to be a lot stronger.
Although yesterday was the opening day, players have been in training for some time for the Easter tournament in Ashburton.
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