Rugby legend Andy Leslie continues family links as patron of Wellington club

Former All Blacks captain Andy Leslie has become the patron of Wellington’s Petone FC, continuing a family bond with the club that goes back almost a century.

Leslie (79), awarded a NZ Order of Merit in 2023 for his services to sport, is the first patron to be elected by Petone members in nine years.

Main photo: Andy Leslie receives his ONZM from Governor General Dame Cindy Kiro.

Petone’s Chatham Cup-winning team from 1928.

Announcing the appointment, the club told members and supporters: “As well as being a former All Black captain, and Petone identity, Andy has long been a supporter of the club.

“His father, also named Andy, was a club legend, having captained Petone to two of its Chatham Cup wins and coached the third.”

Andy Leslie, senior, led Petone to Chatham Cup success in 1928 and 1930, and then coached the winning side in 1949.

His son captained the All Blacks in the 1970s and also represented New Zealand in softball and water polo.

He has been the president of the New Zealand Rugby Football Union, the New Zealand Rugby Foundation, and the New Zealand Amateur Sports Association.

Petone’s executive committee for 2024.

Meanwhile, Craig Deadman has been elected president at Petone.

“Craig has been chair of the management/executive committee for 12 years and also a successful manager and coach,” the club said.

“Craig is well known throughout the club and was awarded life membership in 2019 for his then 27 years of hard work for the club.”

The executive committee has appointed Michael Pickering as club captain, the first time in almost 20 years the club has made such an appointment.

“Mike is well known, having been a regular in the men’s first team, with 176 games and he also served on the executive committee for five years,” the club said.

Matt Bliss will chair the executive committee, his sixth year in that role.

“Matt was also was awarded life membership at the 2023 AGM, in recognition of more than 30 years of hard work for the club in a variety of roles.

“He will be familiar to many because of his work as ground announcer and leading the after-match announcements in the clubrooms.”

Other members of the executive committee for 2024 are Barry Pickering -(club secretary), Bruce Jensen (treasurer), Sarah Clifton (recording secretary), Brendan May, Ellen Flett, Mark Fairfield, Jody Siegel, Jeremy Bowen and new members Linda Roeters and Todd Bryant.

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