Te Matatini day three: Kapa Haka finalists announced

7:39 am on 24 February 2019

The top nine finalists performing to become the overall national Kapa Haka champions at Te Matatini have been named.

 Kawa-i-ngā-rangi Simiona

Kawa-i-ngā-rangi Simiona Photo: RNZ/ Ana Tovey

Tainui group, Mōtai Tangata Rau have made the finals for the first time.

The crowd were shocked when they discovered past champion Auckland group Te Waka Huia had not made the finals.

Reigning champions Whāngārā Mai Tawhiti have made the finals, which will give them a chance to defend their title.

Finals start tomorrow morning, where all nine groups will perform again for the judges.

Kapa Haka finalists in order of performance:

  • 8.40am - Te Mātārae I Ōrehu
  • 9.17am - Mōtai Tangata Rau
  • 9.54am - Te Kapa Haka o Te Whānau a Apanui
  • 10.44 - Ngā Tūmanako
  • 11.21am - Tūhourangi Ngāti Wāhiao
  • 11.58am - Te Pou o Mangatāwhiri
  • 1.13pm - Whāngārā Mai Tawhiti
  • 1.50pm - Te Iti Kahurangi
  • 2.27pm - Piki Kōtuku

The finals will mark the fourth day of the national Kapa Haka festival held at Wellington's Westpac Stadium, with 46 groups competing for first place.

On Saturday, the third day of the festival, the final pool of 15 groups performed to an enthusiastic crowd of around 12,000.

Past winners Te Waka Huia wowed the crowd with their strong performance and their powerful haka about suicide.

One of the nine groups will take the supreme title of Toa Whakaihuwaka.

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