Tagata Pasifika

The Pacific voice on
New Zealand television
since 1987

Tagata Pasifika

The Pacific voice on
New Zealand television
since 1987

“It has been a privilege to be part of this special journey” Aaron Mauger reflects as he departs Moana Pasifika at the end of 2023 season

Public Interest Journalism funded through NZ On Air
Aaron Mauger resigns from his head coach role for Moana Pasifika.
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Neueli Mauafu | Reporter

After two years in the role, Aaron Mauger has resigned from his head coach role for Moana Pasifika.

Mauger originally had signed a contract in 2021 for three years, but is reported to have informed the club of his departure last week, with two games remaining for the season. Mauger will lead the team in these last fixtures before farewelling at the end of the season.

Aaron Mauger. Photo: Photosport

Reflecting on his time with the team, Mauger expressed his love and appreciation for the club saying, “I love this team immensely and it has been an absolute privilege to be part of this journey for Moana Pasifika and the pacific community”.

“I have given everything for the cause in testing conditions but it’s now time for me to turn home to my family and give my best back to Amy and my four beautiful children” he added.

Moana Pasifika’s Chair La’auli Savae Sir Michael Jones expressed gratitude to Mauger on behalf of the board.

“We accept Aaron’s resignation and understand his decision to prioritise his family. We thank him for his dedicated work as Head Coach in developing a roster of largely inexperienced players.”

He added, “Under Aaron’s leadership, we have witnessed the growth and progress of our Pasifika players. His commitment to fostering their skills at a professional level has had significant impact”.

Photo: Photosport

Such progress was reflected last year, with 27 Moana Pasifika players aiding the Ikale Tahi and Manu Samoa squads for the Pacific Nations Cup in 2022.

Moana Pasifika are still on the hunt for their maiden win of the season with some close encounters against Fijian Drua, Blues and Western Force. Despite its form for the year, there have been notable standouts from the side showcasing the potential brilliance within the squad.

Moana Pasifika Levi Aumua (L) and Timoci Tavatavanawai (R)

Winger Timoci Tavatavanawai and midfielder Levi Aumua have both equalled the most defenders beaten this year, lighting up the rugby field with their explosiveness. The duo who are of Fijian heritage have made their presence felt in Moana Pasifika’s two years.

It is unsure what the future holds for Aaron Mauger, but for now he is committed to finishing the season with his team on a high note calling out to the community for their continuous support.

“Your spirit and support have been hugely uplifting for the team. Keep the faith and ride the waves with the team, they acknowledge and play for you every week!

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