I was kindly invited to speak (on behalf of the mayor and council) at the opening ceremony of the inaugural Trans-Tasman croquet tournament between New Zealand and Australia, held at Nelson’s Hinemoa Croquet club. Enclosed below is my speech. I should add that New Zealand won the tournament (albeit very narrowly)!
Councillor Greening’s Speech to the
Inaugral Golf Croquet Trans-Tasman Test Series
at Hinemoa Croquet Club, Nelson
on Sunday, 29 November 2015, at 6pm
Good evening. It is a real privilege for me to be invited to speak here today, at the opening of this inaugural Trans-Tasman test series.
Firstly, I would like to start by acknowledging the following people, many who are here today:
- World Croquet Federation Management Committee councillors, Peter Landrebe and Geoff Young
- Deputy Chair of the Australia Croquet Board, Bob Godfrey
- Manager of the Australian team, John Compton
- President of Croquet New Zealand and Manager of the inaugural Trans-Tasman test series, Annie Henry
- Vice-President of Croquet NZ and New Zealand team captain, Phillip Drew
- Croquet NZ Councillors, Dallas Cooke and Brian Boutel
- Manager of the New Zealand team, John Christie
- President of Croquet Nelson and President of Nelson Hinemoa Croquet Club, Mike Milstein
- President of Nelson Lawns Tennis Club, Allan Innes-Walker
- Vice President of Croquet Nelson and President of Richmond Croquet Club, Michael McClure
- Vice-President of Croquet Nelson, Wayne Wooff
- President of Riwaka Croquet Club, Keith Faulkner
- Her Worship the Mayor of Nelson, Rachel Reece, for giving such a stirring welcome to Nelson, on behalf of the Nelson City Council
- Nelson City Council Sports Grounds Maintenance Supervisor, Mitch Pownall
Committee members, players, supporters, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
It gives me great pleasure to extend to you all, a very warm welcome on behalf of the Mayor and Councillors of Tasman District Council, and the wider Nelson Region.
I am delighted to see so many people coming together, here, in the Nelson region, the centre of New Zealand, to have some friendly, but competitive, fun!
I am told that croquet is a game of the mind and body. A game of tactics, requiring a wide range of strokes, that require the player to calculate complex angles, vary the strength of shots (from the very gentlest, to the most forceful), and at every turn, consider your options, to advance your own position, or disadvantage your opponent.
To me, croquet sounds a lot like the debating chamber of local body politics? Although, I imagine its a lot more rewarding, and great deal more fun!
Speaking of fun, the Tasman region offers some wonderful opportunities to also have some fun outside of this tournament. And I hope, that during your stay here, you seize the opportunity to explore this wonderful region.
And, most importantly, spread the word, about this fabulous place, we call home.
If you enjoy good food and wine (as I do), then make sure you get the opportunity to visit Mapua (and try some locally smoked fish at the world famous Mapua Smoke house), or Golden Bay’s Anatoki Salmon farm (to catch your very own hot smoked salmon), or enjoy the award winning and environmentally sustainable vineyards of Mahana, Neudorf, or Blackenbrook in the wider Moutere area.
If you enjoy crafts, then make sure you do visit the internationally acclaimed Hoglund Glass in Richmond, or the pottery gallery of Sir Royce Mcglashen in Brightwater.
As you can see, events like this one, are not only important to our sporting successes (and, hopefully I have not jinxed our NZ team?), but, also the regions prosperity. And councils are very aware, of the need to support and encourage them, and the people, who make all this happen.
Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the organisers of this wonderful event, and wish you all, on behalf of the Tasman District Council, the very best success, and most importantly, fun, during this inaugural Trans-Tasman tournament!
And, I hope to see you all again, in the very near future! Thank you.