What a tournament

October 24th, 2011 at 8:54 am by David Farrar

It has been a tough 12 months for . 11 months ago, we had the Pike River explosion, and then in February the second Christchurch earthquake. On top of that, we’ve watched as countries big (US) and small (Greece) topple on the edge of disaster with debt defaults, and have wondered how badly will we be hit, if one or more countries drown under their debt burdens.

So when we won the hosting rights in 2005, who would have thought it would prove such a tonic for our country. It has captured our collective spirit in a way I’ve not seen with any other sports tournament. Why has it been so good? Many, many factors. Here’s some of the factors and people to thank in my opinion.

  • Jock Hobbs and Helen Clark for winning us the hosting rights. My third favourite moment of the RWC was having Jock Hobbs present Rochie McCaw with his 100th test cap.
  • Leon Grice and the RWC2011 team who implemented the concept of a stadium of four million people. Leon told me at a fairly early stage about the plans (which were part of the bid) to have teams and overseas fans “hosted” by various cities and towns, and it was an inspired idea that worked magnificently.
  • Martin Snedden and the NZRFU who organised the tournament so well. I loved the choirs, and the Oles at each kick off!
  • The four million Kiwis who loved being great hosts. It’s something we excel at.
  • Also those who attended the games and cheered passionately for whichever team we adopted for the day. For many of the teams, they probably played to a bigger more supportive home crowd than they ever got at home.
  • The party central and fan zones. They were brilliant. We are (mostly) social creatures and even the largest pub can only hold so many. They were almost too popular in Auckland, but also made the rest of the country feel part of the action.
  • RWC Minister Murray McCully. Murray gets a fair bit of flak for his hands on management style and one journalist famously said Murray makes Helen Clark’s micro-management look like benign neglect! But in this case, Murray and his team’s attention to detail have  paid off in spades.
  • The RWC Opening Ceremony. The comparison to 1987 RWC is like comparing humans to apes. The ceremony was Olympic-class. It was my second favourite moment of the tournament.
  • The minnow teams. They all played their best games, and all 48 matches were good games to watch. This wasn’t a tournament of three or four countries, but all 20. If it were not for Canada, France would not have even made the quarter-finals, let alone the final.
  • The mighty All Blacks.  They won the average pool game by 60 points to 12 – a 48 point margin. They won their quarter-final by 23 points, their semi-final by 14 points and the final by one point.
  • While it is a team effort, Graham Henry and Richie McCaw impressed and inspired as coach and captain. Richie one day will sit in Olympus as one of the Gods of the game.
  • The French. They hit their top form just when it was needed, to give the All Blacks the fight of their lives. The French and the Welsh should both be proud of their team’s achievements.
  • The Final. I’ve never been so caught up in a game. God knows what would have happened if we had lost. I now understand why 30% of NZers said the outcome of the RWC mattered more to them than the election outcome. I was living in terror of the drop goal. Breating was optional for those last few minutes.
  • The Award Ceremony. This was my number one moment of the tournament, with two parts resonating especially. McCaw holding the Webb Ellis Cup aloft. That moment will become as iconic as David Kirk’s 24 years earlier. But the most emotional moment was when the Cup was taken onto the ground by a Canterbury boy whose mother had died in the earthquake. His beaming smile of joy led to many a tear being shed, as people reflected how rare such smiles has probably been since the earthquake.

So it has been a great six weeks, and the All Blacks are world champions. Despite the euphoria, I think this will be the last we host in New Zealand. But it will be a tournament that I know I, and many others, will never forget.

Feel free to share below your favourite memories. No negativity on this thread please. If you feel the need, go to General Debate.

Tags: ,

56 Responses to “What a tournament”

  1. Tom B (55 comments) says:

    For me it was about 20 minutes into the final when it became clear that the french were on form and that we were going to have to play for our lives. I wanted us to beat the second best team in the world on Sunday and in that game, and maybe only for that game, France was that team.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  2. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    The All Blacks disipline was outstanding, they did not give away silly penalties to put themselves under pressure.

    The French mid field defense was outstanding.

    Ian Smith calling Thierry Dusautoir , Thierry Henry at the MOTM presentation – priceless.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  3. Scott Chris (6,066 comments) says:

    Phew, thank God the “Occupy Queen’s Wharf” movement has finally dispersed, and life can get back to normal. ;)

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  4. MajorBloodnok (361 comments) says:

    We could co-host another tournament, now that we can get our act together. The 1987 world cup was co-hosted by NZ and Australia. The 2003 RWC was meant to be such an arrangement, were it not for “disagreements between the International Rugby Board and the NZRU, over sponsorship, advertising and ticketing” [Wikipedia].

    But it is a good thing that 2019 will be hosted by Japan. Then maybe North America will get a turn.

    A big salute to Brad Thorn, for his final game as an All Black.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  5. iMP (2,366 comments) says:

    MY HIGHLIGHTS:
    1. Total lack of choking last night by ABs under incredible pressure.
    2. The Gaulic spirit and flair under incredible pressure (thnk about the game from their persepctive).
    French soldiers were acknowledged for their tenacity and bravery on the Somme, esp, Verdun. Huge kudos to team.
    3. The Aussie’s Anzac spirit, donning AB flags last night to cheer NZ. We gotta lose the Aussie-bashing infantile nonsense.
    4. Celebration of Maori-tanga in opening ceremony and throughout (horn blowing), haka, Maori players (Weepu et al).
    5. Maori TV’s technical presentation of tourny. Welcome to mainstream and overtaking TV1/3 superficiality Maori TV!.
    6. Regional towns being involved and Kiwi hosting (made NZ proud) after Chch write-off. Smartz to Sneddon.
    7. Lack of drunkness, visitor robberies.
    8. Emergence of tier 2 teams up a rung (Wales, Arg, Tonga).
    9. “Union” song.
    10. Singing of anthems by choirs.

    NZ emerges has a great host and successful event manager. Spirit of 74 Commonwealth Games. Restores my faith in NZ.

    A) Should we host Olympics? NO
    B) Let’s get Sneddon et al to head hunt smaller sporting fixtures (rowing, car racing, sevens, cycling etc), and bring them to NZ.
    C) 2019 RWC in America (hosted by Canada, USA, Arg, Uruguay) to grow game.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  6. tvb (4,366 comments) says:

    I am hopeful we could have a joint bid with Australia long before 24 years, perhaps one pool series, one quarter final and one semi final. But a very successful tournament. I was thinking for want of a goal a match was lost for want of a match a tournament was lost, for want of a tournament an election was lost

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  7. jaba (2,137 comments) says:

    The Irish win over the Aussies was favorite game as the squeezed the life out of them

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  8. nickle (29 comments) says:

    Optional breathing in our house too – apart from all the euphoria of winning, I was stoked to see “Now is the hour” back. This country used to sing it often, but has seem to fallen by the wayside over the past couple of decades. It was very appropriate…

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  9. Neil (579 comments) says:

    Wonderful finish to the RWC. How great to hear Haley Westernra sing Now is the Hour in a an unaffected voice.Emotional
    Great to hear the choirs singing as a choir without help of a soloist. How great to hear the anthems sung like they are meant to.
    Only slight disappointment was not to hear “The World in Union” not being sung in its entirety on Television.
    Hope we don’t revert back to international matches anthems being sung like a rock song !!
    Love the US,Russian,Canadian,Irish,French and Australian anthems. NZ is so so but should use only one version.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  10. OECD rank 22 kiwi (2,746 comments) says:

    I think this will be the last Rugby World cup we host in New Zealand.

    …”because it’s inevitable that New Zealand will have to join the Australian federation in the near term future.” says DPF.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  11. backster (2,152 comments) says:

    Like the MAJOR the end of the awesome International career of Brad THORN marks the end of a career in both League and Rugby unparallelled in my memory. At age 36 he is still the first choice lock and invariably plays the full game. He has been a star since he was Rookie of the Year in the NRL in 1994. He seems to always play for dominating winning sides whether it be the Broncos at their greatest, the Queensland State of Origin, Aussie Rugby League,The Crusaders and the All Blacks.Surely he must be an aspirant to the Sporting Hall of Fame.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  12. Shunda barunda (2,981 comments) says:

    Hospitality is what we do best, if we keep it up, we will always have people eager to come and visit us.

    The good things in this tournament are what we need to define ourselves with, it seems we have been a bit lost as a nation for a bit, but with our reaction to recent adversity and a very successful international tournament, we have much to be proud of.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  13. GPT1 (2,118 comments) says:

    Brilliant all around and thank goodness we won. Although can’t agree with you on the ridiculous contrived Ole nonsense – as if the game package is not good enough in itself.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  14. kiwi in america (2,428 comments) says:

    The Opening Ceremony – world class and a great showcase of modern Maori culture.

    The Irish beating Australia – ensured the elimination of one and the softening up of our other top opponent in a brutal 1/4 final.

    Brad Thorne’s fist pump after we monstered the Wallabies scrum.

    Donald’s look of elation as his penalty kick cleared.

    Brad Thorne’s tears of joy as the enormity of the match and tournament hit home.

    Brian Lochore’s affectionate hug of the Christchurch boy who accompanied him with the Cup to the middle of Eden Park.

    The mile wide grin on John Key’s face as he helped present the Webb Ellis Cup.

    Finally the unsupressed glee with which Ritchie McCaw took possession of the gleaming gold Cup and thrust it aloft to the deafening roar of an elated (and relieved) nation!

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  15. Ross Miller (1,700 comments) says:

    It would be fascinating to learn how many heart attacks there were in NZL over the course of the game.

    I guess my blood pressure was at 190/120.

    NZL (all of us) did ourselves proud.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  16. TripeWryter (716 comments) says:

    Oh, my dicky ticker, as M’sieur Alphonse used to say in ‘Allo ‘Allo.

    To Stephen Donald: all is forgiven. You have been one of the most derided and denigrated players of New Zealand rugby in recent years. I have been one of your detractors. I apologise. People who know you and journalists who have dealt with you say you’re a decent bloke without any big head or airs. So, God has done you a favour. The fourth cab off the rank, you got your chance and you kicked it down the paddock and between the uprights. Well done.

    To French fans I encountered on an inter-island ferry: I shall never forget your good humour the morning after Tonga beat your Les Bleus. As one of your number said: ‘Eet wors terreebler’, but you were not in a national funk and so many of you told me how much you enjoyed being here in New Zealand and that were having such a good time. I also remember how so many of you — and big, burly, beefy hungover South Africans — with good humour made room for my little grandson (2-1/2) as he passed among you and stopped to ‘chat’ with you. Thank you. Merci.

    To the so-called minnows: the Russians, Georgians, Americans, Romanians, Canadians, Japanese … I hope you enjoyed being here. You all played good rugby. None of you should feel ashamed or let down. To the Pacific Island ‘minnows’ — your families living here ignited this tournament with their support. I now know without thinking about it what the Tongan and Manu Samoan flags are. I see them on so many cars. And yes, you ‘minnows’ deserve better treatment than having to turn around every four days.

    To the Welsh and the Irish: I was very sorry for you. For the Irish, your best game was your demolition of the Wallabies. For the Welsh: it was great to see Welsh rugby back at the top again. I am old enough to remember when the All Blacks went on the long, long tours of 1953-54 and 1963-64 and the teams that had to be watched out for were the Welsh. Welsh forwards played like All Blacks’ packs — hard rucking, short-passing rushes, the odd hard fist or two to settle matters. But you need better goalkickers.

    To the Ockers: you were never going to be in the finals. Robbie Deans did the best he could with a limited pool of often exceptional talent. Will Genia, Quade Cooper, James Howill, James O’Connor, and Kurtley Beale will become greats of the game.

    To Quade Cooper: with all respect to your adoring mother and nanny … mate, you need to lose the show-off and ‘I’m the man’ swagger and grow up. When you do you will be a great man and a great rugby player.

    To Les Bleus: you were an exceptional team last night at Eden Park. You have nothing to be ashamed of. Your best team turned up. You were unrecognisable from the side that got frightened by the Japanese and the Canadians, beaten by the Tongans, and the bunch of oafs who couldn’t put away a Welsh side who’d lost their skipper.

    To Graham Henry: you’ve been vindicated.

    To the All Blacks: well done, all of you. Congratulations. I wondered for a while whether you were going to get there, but you did.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  17. Steve (4,547 comments) says:

    Dom Post on Saturday
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/blogs/opinion/cartoons
    How did Tom Scott know?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  18. Elaycee (4,378 comments) says:

    Oops!

    “Meanwhile, social media was buzzing in the wake of the game following an on-air blunder by Sky TV commentator Ian Smith. Smith twice called French captain Thierry Dusautoir by the name of the former French national football team skipper Thierry Henry in a post-match interview. Dusautoir was clearly not amused by the error and the mistake rapidly spread on Twitter, trending in New Zealand for several hours after the game. Trending topics are the most tweeted phrases on the site at any given time.”

    Not good. An elementary blunder. Time that Smithy was put out to pasture. But some could say he’s already there!

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/rugby/all-blacks/5838974/Jane-leads-Twitter-return-Smith-lampooned

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  19. Viking2 (11,417 comments) says:

    http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/s320x320/299173_10150360148311248_581681247_8103341_719800398_n.jpg

    TOUGH AT THE TOP.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  20. Courage Wolf (557 comments) says:

    The Final. I’ve never been so caught up in a game. God knows what would have happened if we had lost.

    Does anyone remember what it was like in Australia when they lost to England in 2003?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  21. Courage Wolf (557 comments) says:

    iMP (348) Says:
    October 24th, 2011 at 9:42 am

    MY HIGHLIGHTS:
    1. Total lack of choking last night by ABs under incredible pressure.

    Weepu…

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  22. kowtow (8,326 comments) says:

    As Wellington said of a different French encounter…….’a near run thing.”

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  23. stephen (4,063 comments) says:

    Does anyone remember what it was like in Australia when they lost to England in 2003?

    I can’t imagine the reaction would’ve been anything like ours if we had lost!

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  24. adze (2,105 comments) says:

    My highlights:

    The opening ceremony. Fantastic exposition of Maori culture, and the general level of creativity.

    The Ireland-Australia game. The future looks bright for Ireland if they can capitalise on that performance.

    The satisfaction of seeing Wales step up a notch, as their public deserves after putting up for so long with a second rate team.

    The fans (esp Tonga), giving the tournament an almost Sevens feel to it.

    Good to see that the visitors felt welcome too.

    The relief at the end of the final, after seeing France play like warriors!

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  25. ben (2,377 comments) says:

    You could make a movie out of these events. Some narratives:

    1. Donald’s redemption.
    2. History repeating in the final 87 vs 11
    3. All Blacks get their revenge after 99 and 07
    4. McCaw’s long journey is completed. At last he is a Jedi.
    5. The widely-derided long shots who all want to kill each other very nearly get up. Again. After losing to Tonga.
    6. The tragedies of Carter and Muliaina
    7. McCaw and Muliaina make their 100
    8. Henry’s (and Smith’s x 2) redemption, plus the Deans rivalry resolved
    9. Weepu’s rise and near-fall
    10. NZ overcoming the odds and a slightly shakey start to host a great tournament
    11. The epic and unexpected nature of the final.

    Someone go write a book.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  26. ben (2,377 comments) says:

    I hope France is invited to go on the parade. I always remember Team NZ taking the beaten Italians (I think) on their winning parade in 1999. Classy.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  27. Johnboy (16,077 comments) says:

    Full credit to Helen Clark and that master organiser, Trevor Mallard, for enabling us to enjoy this great victory.
    No thanks to that dreadful poser John Key and the AB’s who just turned up to get the photo-op….What…???
    Oh,…sorry! Thought I was commenting at the Standard!!! :)

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  28. 3-coil (1,215 comments) says:

    PeeWee obviously peaked a week too early, and then Cruden breaking down…but the brilliance of this 2011 RWC squad was that they could reorganise and somehow hold it together, even when everything was not going to plan. No individual was bigger than the team – an historic win for the gutsy All Blacks, that we will all remember.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  29. ben (2,377 comments) says:

    What about the sign language for the anthem? Outstanding performance.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  30. Dave Stringer (188 comments) says:

    Choakers! – Yeah Right!

    Blodd, sweat, tears and 24 years
    But ultimately right on the night!

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  31. David in Chch (516 comments) says:

    The French are the ‘canes of the international rugby world. You never know which team will show up.

    Well last night, the best French team showed up … and I watched the entire last 10 minutes with my hands on either side of my head, not being able to watch, but not being able to look away. I kept having to stop holding my breath and take a deep intake before holding my breath again. It was an amazingly tough battle in the trenches! But our guys showed a poise and maturity they lacked in 2007.

    Well done to both teams!! They made it a final to remember.

    And TripeWryter – I think you captured it well.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  32. MajorBloodnok (361 comments) says:

    Perhaps Fitzy was on to something… If only we’d abstained for the cause, the margin would’ve been much greater?

    Yeah, right.

    :-)

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  33. Courage Wolf (557 comments) says:

    ben (2,184) Says:
    October 24th, 2011 at 12:32 pm

    You could make a movie out of these events. Some narratives:

    1. Donald’s redemption.
    2. History repeating in the final 87 vs 11
    3. All Blacks get their revenge after 99 and 07
    4. McCaw’s long journey is completed. At last he is a Jedi.
    5. The widely-derided long shots who all want to kill each other very nearly get up. Again. After losing to Tonga.
    6. The tragedies of Carter and Muliaina
    7. McCaw and Muliaina make their 100
    8. Henry’s (and Smith’s x 2) redemption, plus the Deans rivalry resolved
    9. Weepu’s rise and near-fall
    10. NZ overcoming the odds and a slightly shakey start to host a great tournament
    11. The epic and unexpected nature of the final.

    Someone go write a book.

    Don’t forget the CEO being refused entry into Eden Park, ROFL.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  34. TripeWryter (716 comments) says:

    To David in Christchurch: cheers…

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  35. Dave Mann (1,218 comments) says:

    I’m not really a big rugby fan and when the Cloud was being planned it was a big yawn for me…. but OMG how well did good old New Zealand do in its hosting of this magnificent event when the time came! The atmosphere in the Auckland fanzone was amazing the times I went there and I think the whole extravaganzj was a real credit to the whole country. After all this a final loss by the All Blacks would have been a tragedy and the win put the icing on the cake big time. What a blast!

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  36. freedom101 (496 comments) says:

    Brian Lochore with his arm around the shoulders of the boy as they left the field. That’s what’s great about NZ.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  37. TripeWryter (716 comments) says:

    I wanted to say something about some really low media moments earlier, but the request was to keep comments ‘positive’.

    But I can’t let pass a comment about how at times The Royal New Zealand Herald was simply crass.

    1. – The beat-up about Cory Jane having a fag and a few drinks. For God’s sake! Where was the story there? It doesn’t even answer what used to be crusty old chief reporters’ first question: ‘So what?’
    The Herald behaved like the neighbourhood tittle-tattle.

    2.- Wynne Gray’s menstrual moment about Ali Williams and Sonny Bill Williams playing silly buggers at a media conference. Here’s a question for the nation’s sports hacks, and not just those at The Royal New Zealand Herald: do you think, chaps, that if you could bring yourselves to ask interesting questions to elicit interesting answers the people you’re asking the questions of might be interested in considering giving you an interesting answer? D’you think? And here’s another thought to that: why don’t you can a lot of the media conferences anyway. For over 20 years now we’ve had the mumblings of rugby players gathered at what seems like compulsory media briefings translated in bulletin-leading ‘news’. Do you think, chaps, that if that happened, we’d be no worse off? D’you think?

    3.- The Royal New Zealand Herald again: what has Conrad Smith done to earn the sniping of Chris Rattue? Twice now he has sniped that Smith has been hardly in a test. I don’t know where Rattue was in the last two tests, but I was at home. Conrad Smith tackles and cleans up. Rattue, who is paid to watch rugby and comment on it, should have seen that as well as I or anyone else. Smith is the brains of the All Blacks backline. A lot of what Smith does is not obvious. Smith is part of why Ma’a Nonu plays so well. Smith, when he retires, will be a huge loss to the All Blacks (and Hurricanes) backline. So I don’t know what Rattue wants or expects Smith to do … but Conrad Smith is the guy out there, and rarely does he make a mistake.

    4.- Peter Bills. The Herald should kick this man to touch. I just wish he would stop banging on about hotel and food and other prices. As a guy from Europe, he will be aware of how much he could get charged in any European capital, or even in any medium-to-big European city. I expect an avalanche of stories next year on how expensive London is because of the Olympics.

    5.- Stephen Jones, in a few of his commentaries on Stuff turned out to be surprisingly generous at times to the All Blacks and New Zealand. But generally he is one of those worst of the human species — a moaning Welshperson

    6.- Mark Reason. Has inherited his late father’s anti-New Zealand attitudes. John Reason and JBG Thomas were notorious in the 50s and 60s for writing diatribes about all that was wrong about New Zealand and New Zealand rugby. Only Vivian Jenkins seemed to like us.

    7.- Some of the best rugby commentary came from Fairfax’s own writers from the smaller papers. Two guys from The Southland Times, from memory, whose names I have forgotten.

    A good tournament, really.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  38. David in Chch (516 comments) says:

    The French played so well and were so gracious in defeat, I think we should cheer them on 4 years from now, when they are playing the English in the final in England.
    ;) :D

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  39. Viking2 (11,417 comments) says:

    The Best thing (well almost) about the RWC.
    It kept our miserable politics to a minimum.
    Thank Goodness.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  40. Viking2 (11,417 comments) says:

    Player of the Tournament?
    Maa Nonu.

    http://video.theaustralian.com.au/2159080404/World-Cup-etched-in-Black

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  41. Dean Papa (784 comments) says:

    “To Quade Cooper: with all respect to your adoring mother and nanny … mate, you need to lose the show-off and ‘I’m the man’ swagger and grow up. When you do you will be a great man and a great rugby player.”

    Well, perhaps. Still no excuse for the behaviour of some NZers and sections of the media. We can only hope that one day New Zealand might also grow up.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  42. Viking2 (11,417 comments) says:

    http://screencast.com/t/uaoSoetH

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  43. Manolo (13,590 comments) says:

    The bloody French put the fear of God in millions of Kiwis last night.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  44. Nookin (3,284 comments) says:

    Manolo
    Damn right they did — and didn’t it make for a terrific final?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  45. Nookin (3,284 comments) says:

    “Well, perhaps. Still no excuse for the behaviour of some NZers and sections of the media. We can only hope that one day New Zealand might also grow up.”

    You colour all New Zealanders by the behaiviour of a few. Do you not think that there is a certain lack of logic in that?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  46. dhsmith (6 comments) says:

    33 million (perhaps slightly more) would have watched the final on Sunday.
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/sport/news/article.cfm?c_id=4&objectid=10761073

    Compare this with just English football:

    “The Premier League has a global “reach” into 613 million homes, and estimates a typical live audience for a single match of around 79.5 million.”
    http://tinyurl.com/3hw5dav

    There are 380 english premier league games alone each season.

    Add in a whole lot of other sporting events which eclipse the rugby world cup, I doubt the RWC final on Sunday night will make the top 400 most watched sporting events of 2011.

    The endless masturbation over this very minor sporting event is pathetic and reflects poorly on us as a nation.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  47. kiwi in america (2,428 comments) says:

    dhsmith
    Size of audience is meaningless you tosser. In the case of soccer bigger is not better.

    You can keep those 380 games where after 90 minutes there might be a goal or two scored, where so many games are influenced by the refs, where players routinely milk penalties with their pathetic Hollywood antics on the field, where the overpaid spoiled brat players strut like pathetic primadonas and then there’s the endless corruption of FIFA!

    In future I’d keep your masturbation fantasies to the privacy of your bedroom.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  48. dhsmith (6 comments) says:

    dhsmith
    Size of audience is meaningless you tosser. In the case of soccer bigger is not better.

    That was not my argument. If you like rugby, well rugby is better. Soccer fans will beg to differ. I’m keen on neither.

    My point was the rugby world cup, in terms of world interest, is not a major event. It is a minor event on the world stage.

    If you like rugby, then of course you will find it better than the FIFA world cup. That is your opinion.

    But on a factual basis, the Rugby World Cup is a relatively unimportant event watched by about 0.4% of the world’s population.

    A ‘world’ cup? Really?

    Only in the fevered imaginations of some New Zealanders.

    I’m sure even the IRB do not believe their own outlandish stats.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  49. kiwi in america (2,428 comments) says:

    dhsmith
    How trite and silly you sound. The AFL is watched by even fewer people – outside of Vic, SA and WA its played by expats from those states in useless leagues of older slower men. But try telling that to Melbournians during the AFL Grand Final Weekend.

    Same here in the US. Who else plays Gridiron? The Canadians …. and their teams are definitely 2nd string. The rest are struggling competitions of American expat teams. But try telling Americans during the Superbowl that the world couldn’t care less about their game.

    Your posts are churlish and pointless. NZ hosted an awesome tournament. Rugby IS a global and growing sport but will never be as big as soccer. But like the Americans and their football and the residents of Vic, SA and WA and AFL, to them their sport is EVERYTHING and good on them. I love the passion that AFL crowds show watching their sport. I get caught up in Superbowl fever even though I think rugby is a far superior sport.

    To describe NZ pride in the ABs winning the World Cup as “endless masturbation” is small minded, petty and mean spirited.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  50. Nookin (3,284 comments) says:

    125 countries are members of the IRB. Not bad exposure.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  51. David in Chch (516 comments) says:

    In addtion, dhsmith, DPF had clearly said right at the start that this was the spot for favourite memories and that anything negative was to go to General Debate. You obviously need to learn to read as well.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  52. adze (2,105 comments) says:

    What is it with N00bs signing up to diss the world cup? Go suck lemons in General Debate if you must. It was a fantastic tournament.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  53. dhsmith (6 comments) says:

    “But try telling Americans during the Superbowl that the world couldn’t care less about their game.”

    True…the world couldn’t care less about their game…they care even less for rugby.

    Note the NZ Herald article – the Superbowl is THREE times bigger than the Rugby World Cup.

    “Rugby IS a global and growing sport”

    I would hardly rank a sport with fewer registered players than handball a global sport.

    I would hardly rank a sport which only three or four tiny nations (with a combined population less than one quarter that of New York) have adopted as their national game a global sport.

    “…but will never be as big as soccer…”

    Classic understatement….but correct. Soccer has 260 million registered players, rugby 3 or 4 million. So soccer is only about 65 times bigger than rugby.

    “But try telling that to Melbournians during the AFL Grand Final Weekend.”

    I would not. Unless they made outlandish claims about their events importance, such as drawing absurd comparisons with the Fifa world cup or the olympics. Then I would correct them.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  54. Dave Mann (1,218 comments) says:

    @dhsmith: Fuck off and do it somewhere else. The owner of this blog specifically asked for a sharing of favourite memories, not a negative rant.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  55. Nookin (3,284 comments) says:

    4 billion viewers. Not bad!

    http://www.rugbyworldcup.com/destinationnewzealand/news/newsid=2036054.html

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  56. Tauhei Notts (1,693 comments) says:

    dhsmith;
    I once thought like you but not now.
    I even got an e mail from a nephew in Warsaw about N.Z.’s win. Yeah, he was a soccer player. The only time he ever played soccer on a grass pitch was here in N.Z. I got him roped into the local team as a visitor. He was rapt. Only pro’s play on grass in Greece.
    I know that Warsaw is not in Greece but his maternal grandparents come from Poland and he has gone to see them.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.