President’s Report to the 2017 Annual General Meeting

I have been President of the WPA for five years and I intend passing the baton on to a new President at this year’s AGM. I have enjoyed my time as President and I acknowledge all of the support I have had over the past 5 years. It is important for the continued development of Petanque within the Wellington Region that fresh views, ideas and thinking are being expressed and developed. This can only happen by new blood coming into the President’s role at regular intervals.

Special thanks to Michael who has been performing both the Secretary and the Treasurer roles in a very professional and capable manner and to Val Clark for taking the minutes at our meetings.

I would like to acknowledge club delegates who make up the WPA committee for their valuable input and to the Clubs for their continued support of the WPA.

Special thanks to all of the volunteers who have assisted with running WPA tournaments.

It is extremely disappointing that an Association of our size cannot receive one nomination for the Secretary position and this position remains unfilled two years later. I hope this will not be the same for nominations for President. It is an opportune time to state that this Association doesn’t run on its own and if you want WPA to continue its good work then it is important that these positions are filled.

Thanks to Michael for the excellent way he manages the Associations finances and it is due to his prudent management that the fees to the Association are as low as they are now.

Once again the tournament committee has put a huge amount of work in behind the scenes to ensure all tournaments run smoothly and efficiently. Special thanks to Graeme Morris, Claire Bradburn and Claire Wilson for organising the running of the regional tournaments and to all volunteers who have assisted with the scoring, umpiring or running WPA tournaments. It is great to see the number of Clubs that provide personnel to assist on the day with scoring etc. This does lighten the load on the Tournament Committee and is very much appreciated by them.

Jack Gazzard has performed the role of Regional Co-ordinator for our Umpires over a number of years and I would like to acknowledge his contribution. Jack will cease in this role at the AGM but will still be available to umpire at local and regional tournaments. The association is looking for a replacement Regional Umpire Co-ordinator. All players appreciate his commitment to give up his weekends and his own playing opportunities to officiate at regional tournaments.

We have lost friends and colleagues over the last twelve months and on behalf of the Association I would like to pass on our condolences to the families.

It is pleasing to see that a number of clubs have increased their playing numbers with special mention to Upper Hutt and Manawatu. As we all know it has been difficult to increase membership of the clubs and I know clubs have been working very hard to try and attract new members and it is great to see that the hard work is now paying off.

We are continuing to see new club players branching out and playing in the local club and regional tournaments across the region. As I mentioned in last year’s report the structure of our tournaments gives players at all levels the opportunity to win a trophy or medal which is one of the uniqueness’s of our sport and really does give new players the encouragement to continue to develop their game.

Although our representative season did not have the same success as last season it was still pleasing to see the continued development of players that are involved in the representative squad. One of the key areas in the continued development of our players is the increased depth of talent that is now available for selection for the representative squad as well as providing a higher level of competition at our regional tournaments.

This success has been borne out by the number of Wellington regional players being selected to represent New Zealand. It is great to see the enthusiasm and competitiveness at the training days where everyone is keen to learn and develop their Petanque skills further.

The challenge for us this year is to regain the three trophies.

I would like to acknowledge the contribution of Graeme Morris in spending his time in coaching and developing our regional talent. I would also thank those who have assisted Graeme over the year.

I would like to congratulate all players who have played for the Wellington Association over the past twelve months and a special congratulation for those players that represented Wellington for the first time.

The highest pinnacle in any sport is to represent your country and we are privileged in this region to have many players over the season that have gone on to represent New Zealand, some for the first time. Congratulations and well done. With 8 players and 1 reserve the Wellington Region has a huge representation in the upcoming Oceania Tournament to be held in Christchurch in October.

Congratulations to all the winners of our Regional tournaments and also to the Champions of Champion winners.

The Association is run for the Clubs, with the Clubs making the key decisions at committee level it is extremely important that all Clubs continue with their involvement on the WPA Committee through their delegates. I know it is difficult for all Clubs to attend the meetings during the year but your voice can still be heard if you appoint a proxy to voice your opinions. I would strongly urge those Clubs who do not attend the meetings to ensure their views are known on the issues that are discussed at the WPA Committee meetings via a proxy who will not only voice your opinions but vote on your behalf when required.

Once again I thank you for the support I have received over the last 5 years and wish the incoming President and the Executive committee all the best for the next 12 months. I am happy to support the new President in any way I can and I know you will give the President as much support as you have given me.

Thank you all for your support.

Kevin McFadgen