Were not here to make up the numbers – Zakk Finlay

Rosmini College

“We might not have the best players, but we always seem to make it work,” Zakk Finlay asserts when attempting to explain the success of Rosmini College sporting teams.

Despite being smaller than many of their rivals, Rosmini are the National basketball champions and local First XV rugby and First XI cricket title holders.

In April, Rosmini stunned Saint Kentigern College in the final of RH Marryatt Cup to qualify for the First XI National cricket finals in Palmerston North for the first time.

Rosmini haven’t shown that kind of form in the early part of this season, beaten heavily by Saint Kentigern College and Westlake Boys’ High School. Can Rosmini arrest their form slump?

“Absolutely. I think St Kent’s and Westlake we’re pretty determined to show they are better than us after what happened in April, and maybe they are, but we don’t care because we’re headed to Nationals. We hit some form on Saturday against King’s. We made 270-odd and have King’s 50 for 5 after day one of a two-dayer,” Finlay responds.

Finlay and Ryan Harrison have been absent from Rosmini’s roster. Both boys trialled for a place with the Auckland Under-19 team. The National Under-19 tournament is at the same time as the secondary schools finals. Harrison has been picked for Auckland while Finlay is a non-travelling reserve. Harrison’s non-attendance in the Manawatu will hurt Rosmini.

“Ryan’s our best bowler so not having him will be big, but we have a strong pace attack and a good off spinner. Bowling is our strength and I’m confident the boys can fire without Ryan,” Finlay says.

The Rosmini squad for the Auckland final was: Ryan Harrison, Zakk Finlay, Tom Barham, Niko Weerakoon, Seamus O’Reilly, Giles La Ville, Finn Delaney, Luke Buxton, George Brajkovich, Daniel Winter, Cameron Lowry, Jacob Edmonds and Daniel Windelburn.

The team is fully healthy. La Ville and Weerakoon are a particularly fine pair of bowlers, while Edmonds is often a source of big runs with the bat.

Finlay has recovered from a broken hand in the winter and believes Rosmini’s slow start to the summer is not entirely dissimilar to the fortunes of the First XV of which he was a member.

“At the start of the season we couldn’t win a scrum or a lineout, but if you looked at us at the end of the season, you wouldn’t have believed were the same team. The brotherhood is strong at Rosmini and were not going to Palmerston North to make up the numbers,” he warns.

Finlay has already played for the Takapuna Premier men’s team. In 2018, Finlay will shift to Wellington and intends to study commerce at Victoria University.

The National First XI cricket finals are in Palmerston North from December 4-8.