Whai fans, get ready for an absolute showdown at Baypark Arena!

We're going up against the defending champs, the Canterbury Rams, in their house. And let me tell you, this isn't just another game. This is a statement game.

We know the Rams are a powerhouse. They've got a stacked roster, but here's the thing: we're not backing down. We're a team that thrives on proving doubters wrong. We've been counted out before, and we've risen to the occasion.

Remember last time counted us out? Even without Vance Jackson, we showed the Nuggets that we're a force to be reckoned with. And this time, we're coming back stronger, hungrier, and more determined than ever.

Our guys have been putting in the work on the court and in the gym. They're focused, they're locked in, and they're ready to leave it all out on the floor. We're going to bring our signature relentless defence, our high-octane offense, and our unyielding spirit.

We need you there with us. 

We need your energy, your passion, and your unwavering support. Let's show the Rams what Whai basketball is all about.

It's not just a game. It's a battle. It's a chance to show the league that the Tauranga Whai are here to stay.


Whai Origin Story

Whai is a Te Reo Māori word meaning Stingray. In Māori mythology, the Whai is kaitiaki (community guardians), protecting the areas where shellfish – the successful bounty – can be harvested. The Whai are a feature of the Tauranga moana (sea). Whai is also a verb in Te Reo Māori, meaning “to chase, pursue, or aim for.”

We are chasing, pursuing a vibrant and socially connected Tauranga City where young people have their horizon of possibility lifted.

We do this through our home games and community programmes.

We were deeply honored to have been gifted this name following extensive consultation and collaboration with Mana Whenua in Tauranga and the Bay of Plenty, Waikato and Rotorua, including kaumatua (elders) from Ngāti Pukenga, Ngāi te Rangi, Ngāti Ranginui, Ngāti Raukawa ki Waikato, Te Whānau ā Apanui, Ngāti Whakaue / Te Arawa and Ngāti Pikiao.

Our name represents our community connections and social purpose, and our partnership with Mana Whenua across the region.

Whai HQ is in Birch Avenue, Tauranga connecting us with our local Hapu Ngati Tamarawaho.  The Kopurererua Street which runs close by was used as a training ground by young Māori seeking to catch kia.  Keeping with the history of the area, Whai HQ is used today to help inspire, train and equipment young people for service in the community and prepare them for meaningful work.

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