Warriors Orange Peeler
Jun 21, 2012
Mt. Wellington, Auckland
Isaiah Papali'i
Starting a player discussion thread on Isaiah Papalii who has been signed up by the Warriors. Kid has some awesome sporting ability. A name you will definitely hear more of in time...

Gold medals for weightlifter
November 2014


Congratulations to Year 11 student Isaiah Papalii, who came home from the Oceania Power Lifting Championships in New Caledonia with two gold medals.

Isaiah won the Youth (U17) 94kg+ division, and the Junior (U20) 105kg division with a 107kg snatch and a 125kg clean and jerk.

Isaiah, who is still only 15 years old, is also a member of MAGS' First XV.



Mount Albert Grammar crowned 2016 national secondary school rugby champions after tense final
Sun, Sep 4
Brodyn Knuckey
Isaiah Papalii 2016 1st XV.jpg

MAG's co captains, Waimana Reidlinger-Kapa (L) and Caleb Clarke (R) fool around with Isaiah Papali'i (centre) with the trophy.

Mount Albert Grammar have claimed the national secondary schools title this afternoon with a gritty 14-13 win in wet conditions over Hastings Boys' High School.

An impressive outing in Palmerston North from MAGS open side flanker Isaiah Papali'i spearheaded the determined outing from the Auckland side who showed touches of class with their kicking game and sheer muscle at scrum time.

But poor discipline late in the game from blind side flanker Thomas Barlow almost cost his side, after his dangerous tackle saw him sit out the final ten minutes of the game with a yellow card.

With fourteen men, MAGS held on to their 14-6 lead, thanks in part to Hastings' captain and halfback Lincoln McClutchie evening player numbers once.

McClutchie was yellow carded for the final minutes of the game after the referee had had enough of his niggling back-chat throughout the tense final.

Despite not losing a game all season prior to the final, Hastings Boys' were unable to get forward ball for most of the game and relied on the prefect boot of Danny Toala who went 3-from-3 off the tee to keep them in the game.

A consolation try on the hooter may leave the team ruing the bold decision in the 43rd minute to use their penalty on a lineout instead of three points when they were just 18 metres out.

The players from Hawke's Bay lost the ball two phases after the lineout and left MAGS' 22 with no points to show for their efforts.

both teams struggled to keep the ball in hand in the fast-paced game, with both sides reaching double figures in handling errors early in the second half.

But a dominant outing from Mount Albert's forward pack looked to be the difference as time and time again they dominated at the scrum and remained composed in countless pick-and-goes.

The title is Mount Albert Grammar's third since the tournament first began in 1982.

The Cheap Seats

1st Grade Fringe
May 18, 2015
Have you seen him play league Mt Wellington?

I'm picking Open side flanker will convert into the second row?
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1st Grade Fringe
May 18, 2012
I read about Isaiah's weightlifting exploits at that time but never realised until now he is the same kid at our club, needless to say I am pleasantly surprised and will be looking forward to seeing him in FG.
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Negative Nancy
Mar 30, 2012
Hes only 15 and won the under 20 division? Damn thats impressive! Definitely one to look out for in the future!


Warriors 1st Grader
Sep 1, 2015
If he is a powerlifter he is competitive. We could do with some of that.
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The Batman

1st Grade Fringe
Nov 9, 2012
Not exaggerating when I say that he was already being talked up as a future All Black such was his reputation. By far the most dominant openside flanker in the NZ 1st XV system this year and we all know how revered openside flankers are in this country and the Rugby game in general...
No wonder Jim had to offer him a 3 year contract! Kid is a gun, ardie savea type explosive power. Future ball playing dominant tackling lock?


1st Grade Fringe
Oct 14, 2015
Have known this family through church sports camps since he was a wee boy! GREAT parents. His Mum played for Kiwi Ferns and has played lots of rep union too.

Mum and Dad opened up a cross-fit gym in Avondale a few years back and Isaiah just naturally grew into that environment. Richmond roots and he's an awesome kid.

Warriors have nurtured him through the union / league system and they're very encouraging of their players wanting to have a stint at union. So Isaiah has become a product of that balancing between the two codes and the national First XV exposure has opened it right up for him. The world's his oyster right now.

As far as I'm aware league has always been that family's passion, but union will always be competing for someone like Isaiah who's got it all really.

(he trained with the first grade squad beginning of this year too and easily held his own in terms of fitness and conditioning!)


Warriors Orange Peeler
Jun 21, 2012
Mt. Wellington, Auckland
This probably got lost amongst the OP post but watch this video. Think he's only 11 here. Not much to it but speaks volumes about his work ethic and attention to detail. 1%s as people like to call it and little wonder he won a couple gold medals in this discipline.

Also this one shows a Secondary School rugby nut fizzing at the bung about this kid and his ability...



1st Grade Fringe
Jul 18, 2013
From the sounds of it he is way ahead of Jason at the same age.
I don't know about that one. Taumalolo had already made his NRL debut at the same age as Isaiah is now.
In saying that, I don't think Isaiah will be too far away, they'd be looking at getting him involved in the nines and preseason games next year i'd imagine and potentially debuting by 2018 with majority of next season spent in ISP.

Definitely see him developing into a lock in the future, like others have said, prop is a waste of his ball playing skills and his ridiculous motor and workload, but I don't think he's fast/agile enough to play second row to an elite level. Lock perfectly suits his aggressive, high motor style of play.

He is smaller than Taumalolo but is very similar to him as a cannon ball bustling type runner, but IMO he's technically far more sound on defence then Taumalolo probably ever will be.

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