The Grammar TEC, New Zealand twin of the UBB

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The Grammar TEC, New Zealand twin of the UBB

On Monday, the French women’s team discovered their training ground from the week before the exciting semi-final against the Black Ferns Saturday (7:30 a.m. French time). It was the Grammar TEC club, located in the eastern suburbs of Auckland, in Orakei, which provided its facilities to Les Bleues. They were able to see with amusement that there was like a piece of France in this town on Okahu Bay.

Looking up at the entrance panel or the windows of the clubhouse, we discover that the Grammar TEC shares the same logo, or almost, with the Union Bordeaux-Bègles. Only small nuances – a green border and not burgundy, a lion oriented in the other direction – make it possible to differentiate the two crests. The address should have tipped us off, since the club is located on Reihana Street, like former All Black Bruce Reihana (3 caps), who played for UBB (2011-2014 ) before joining the Girondin staff (2014-2017).

The Grammar TEC and UBB emblems have some subtle differences

To understand the nature of this strange similarity, we have to go back to the creation of the Grammar TEC, which, like the UBB, is the result of a merger between two teams, the Grammar Carlton and the Teachers Eastern, on the edge of the 2015 season. “We needed a new name, a new jersey and therefore a new logorecalls Brandon Jackson, the president of the club at the time of its creation. And we had to go fast to start the season with all our equipment. I remember designing the jersey took months, figuring out what sort of blue to choose and where to put certain touches of green and yellow! »

“Everyone loved that of the UBB, in particular thanks to the history of this club which was born from the meeting of two teams. It resonated with us.”

Randon Jackson, former President of the Grammar TEC

As the months progressed, the Grammar TEC still did not have a fixed crest. So Jackson and his coach searched the Internet for logos from around the world to find one they liked. “The Bordeaux-Bègles logo was part of our final listspecifies the former president, living memory of the club. We took the decision of our new emblem in committee and everyone loved that of the UBB, in particular thanks to the history of this club which was born from the meeting of two teams. It resonated with us at the time, because we wanted to take on the same challenge as UBB and survive as a new club. »

TJ Vaega with the Grammar TEC shirt (Photosport)

TJ Vaega with the Grammar TEC shirt (Photosport)

The Stade Bordelais lion has simply been replaced by that of Auckland Grammar School, while the Béglais checkerboard has taken on the lighter shade of the Teachers Eastern crest. “It was a very different logo from those of the old teams but there were enough colors to make everyone happy”smiles Jackson.

Common knowledge

The links between Bordeaux-Bègles and the Grammar TEC do not stop there. By looking a little, we discover that several players have worn the colors of both teams. Kiwi fly-half Simon Hickey played for two seasons at UBB after making a name for himself with Grammar TEC and then the Auckland Blues (2016-2018). Before him, Lachie Munro who had tried the Gironde adventure, when the club had just reached the Top 14 (2012-2013) But the versatile back had only evolved at Grammar Carlton, before the merger with Teachers Eastern .

More recently, the powerful winger Ben Lam added an episode to the funny common history between UBB and GTEC. Before joining Montpellier this summer, he wore the scapular for the past two seasons (2020-2022). “We are very happy with our logo, not at all disappointed to have chosen that of the UBB by adapting it to our own history”, is satisfied Brandon Jackson. Before concluding : “I hope that the people of Bordeaux see the history of our emblem as a tribute to the UBB. »

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