A Homecoming

Dargaville Cricket Kids

I doubt there is a better feeling than the uplift in spirit you get when you give a little something back. Recently Triumph and Disaster was presented with an opportunity to do exactly that, to give a little back in the form of returning to our roots and providing some expertise.

 Growing up in small town New Zealand often means that you miss out on a few things. Trips to the museum or big-ticket items like expert coaching and expensive sports gear – usually you just make do, no stress.

 But when Curtis Gaylor took over the sports Department at Dargaville high school and made the call to Triumph & Disaster to see if we could sponsor some shirts for the cricket team we didn’t hesitate, we said hell yes and set to hatching a cunning plan. Not only would we sponsor the Cricket teams playing shirts but since we have two international cricketers in the ranks and a couple of up and coming young cricket stars working as part timers we thought why not throw in an afternoons coaching session to kick things along and really help out.

The cunning part being we get to film it, write a blog about it, dish out a few soaps and some sunscreen and then tell everyone what good bastards we are. The reality is we ended up getting so much more than that, we learned a little about reciprocity and what it means to be part of a community.

Below is a short picture essay of the day with a few choice words and quotes that hopefully show that the real gold was watching the kids boom it.

Dion Nash Cricket Dargaville

Dargaville high school is situated on Northlands west coast, it is co-ed and boasts around 900 students, drawing them from the greater Northern Wairoa area population of 15,000 or so west coast rebels. It’s my hometown, I attended the school until I was 16. At that time there were six local senior cricket teams in the district, including the high school first eleven. Things have changed, now there is no local competition at all, and until this year, there was not even a single cricket team at the school. If you wanted to play the great English game you needed to travel an hour away by car to Whangarei and join a team over there. Curtis Gaylor is setting out to change all that.

When we arrived a little jaded from the 2.5-hour drive from head office in Auckland, we were met by smiling happy faces of the girls and guys cricket teams. We wasted no time getting down to business. How to hold the ball, types of bowling actions, principles of the batting process, catching and fielding tips.

It was an intense session for everyone but we were constantly reminded of the joy of sport and learning, just by watching the smiles and attitude of the kids. We drove back to the big smoke that night a little exhausted but definitely elated. In return a few days later we heard that both the girls and the guys team had won their next match, smashing the kids from Whangarei – West Coast represent.

For our part we want to acknowledge Curtis Gaylor. We reckon he’s that one teacher you had growing up that got you, that made a difference, the one you remember for the rest of your life. Curtis is a guy who sincerely wants to do good and help the kids and his community. Every place needs more Curtis Gaylors.

And like wise Joey Yovich and Sam from Northland sport who both gave their time and energy and helped make the day an amazing one. But most of all we want to thank the kids. Positive energy makes us all feel younger, if we could bottle it we would be rich men and women. As it is we realized you don’t need to bottle it, you just have to engage and give back a little and there it is right there in front of you, free, pure, uncut, positive vibes – truly as good as it gets.

File this one under the TRIUMPH column.


Cricket Player Dargaville

 Liam showing perfect straight drive form.

Dane Watson Cricket

Dane Watson – Current New Zealand under 19 representative imparted a few tricks of the trade.

Dion Nash Cricket  

The girls were great listeners and would do everyone proud by winning their next three games – Rock & Roll ladies.

Joey Yovich Northland Cricket

‘Long jump meets Karate’ - Joey Yovich Northland legend and another former New Zealand cricketer joined the T&D team to add his input and gave lots of positive energy to the day. 

Kids playing cricket 

There’s always one …on this day it was Mason, the star of the show and player of the day – always positive and with plenty of laughs he is the type of guy you want in your team – well played Mason – keep it up.


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