Bishop with some alcohol facts

August 27th, 2015 at 9:03 am by David Farrar

Pleased to see Parliament vote 99-21 to allow bars to easily open during the Rugby World Cup. Kudos to David Seymour for getting this law change through Parliament.

I was thinking about the Greens demanding that bars near schools not be allowed to open, even though only three out of 58 games will take place on a schoolday morning. If they had their way I imagine the Backbencher pub in Wellington would have to remain closed, despite it being a very popular rugby destination. You see the Backbencher is very close to not one, not two, not three, but four schools. How terrible. In fact I’m surprised the Greens are not demanding the Backbencher be never allowed to open at all, as hell kids walking down Molesworth Street at 3.30 pm may see people in the Backbencher!

During the debate Chris Bishop addressed some of the claims that alcohol use and abuse in New Zealand has got worse since the laws were liberalised.

I want to put on the record some actual facts around alcohol consumption in New Zealand society. Firstly, the World Health Organization in 2014 did a global report on the use of alcohol in society. Actually what that report shows is that by international standards New Zealanders actually drink a moderate amount. We are 96th in the world for alcohol consumption. We drink about 13.7 pure litres of alcohol per capita. That places us 96th in the world. It is slightly less than the United Kingdom; it is slightly more than France. So actually we are, internationally, average drinkers. What about binge drinking? Well, by international standards New Zealanders are very low binge-drinkers. Our prevalence rate of binge drinking is 5.6 percent. That is half that of Australia’s

So 96th in the world, and a binge drinking rate half of Australia’s.

That is half that of Australia’s, it is a quarter of Canada’s, and it is one-sixth of the United Kingdom’s binging prevalence rate. So is the assertion that we are a nation of binge-drinkers correct? No.

Some NZers binge drink regularly. By far most do not.

The proportion of young people who drink has dropped 25 percent in the last 5 years—that is from 2007 to 2012. It is one-third that of the rate in 2000. What about the number of people who are regular drinkers? That dropped 9 percent between 2007 and 2012. The number of people who are regular drinkers is half that it was in 2000—this is amongst young people. What about the people who are young binge-drinkers? What about the number of people who say that they binge drank in the last month? Between 2007 and 2012 the number of young people in New Zealand who say that they binge drank in the last month has dropped by 18 percent.

And youth drink driving is also well down. The trend for youth drinking is decisively going down – the exact opposite of the impression the wowsers give.

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Sign the petition to support the All Blacks

August 19th, 2015 at 9:59 am by David Farrar


We all want the All Blacks to win (again) the Rugby World Cup. They’re looking good, but victory is by no means assured.

Over the last few years the Labour Party has declared a number of issues to be a crisis – the manufacturing sector, power prices, domestic milk prices, Auckland house prices and the dairy industry, and demanded the Government take action.

Without fail, each time Labour has declared something to be in crisis and demanded Government intervention, that industry or issue has immediately and remarkably improved. Just this week global diary prices rebounded for the first time this year, just one week after Labour declared they were in crisis and demanded the Government act.

So this petition implores the Labour Party to declare New Zealand Rugby and the All Blacks to be in crisis. Based on history, this should propel the All Blacks to victory in the Rugby World Cup.

So support the All Blacks by petitioning Labour to declare NZ Rugby in crisis.

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Dom Post on Rugby World Cup bars

August 13th, 2015 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

The Dom Post editorial:

Changing the rules, however, proved much more tortured than it needed to be. The ACT MP David Seymour saw an opportunity to throw off the yoke of alcohol licensing laws, and introduced a bill to let pubs open for all cup games. Yet the Greens at first scuppered the effort, concerned, they said, about drunks spilling out of bars as parents dropped children off at school.

So Prime Minister John Key said he would consider urgent legislation, and levelled that the Greens were eternally “opposed to anything that’s sort of vaguely good fun”.

It’s true that the political rituals of this are wearying – the male politicians bragging about how much they enjoy beer, the charge that all those concerned about alcohol harm are wowsers.

Yet the Greens’ complaints were too precious by half. This wasn’t the issue on which to make a heroic stand about the perils of drink. Relatively few people will race to a pub to see the All Blacks stomp on Namibia at 7am on a Friday – and only a handful will drink too much as they do so.

Judging by past Football World Cup games screened at dawn in Courtenay Place, more fans are likely to eat a pub breakfast on their way to work. In any case, several All Blacks games start at 8am, when pubs can be open anyway.

The Greens pointed out that pubs can already apply for special licences to show cup games. But those require outlets to jump through silly hoops, like imposing a fancy-dress requirement or holding a quiz. No-one needs such frippery at 4am.

By yesterday afternoon, the Greens seemed to have realised this – they withdrew their opposition to Seymour’s bill, apparently after assurances that it would be tweaked.

The bill was always open to amendment at select committee. Nothing has changed there.

The real story is that on Tuesday night, after they refused leave for the bill to be introduced, was the annual function of Saunders Unsworth. This is one of those events where half of Parliament attends, along with scores of business and community leaders, plus media.

It is a great networking event. You have around 50+ conversations with different people, normally on very different topics.

I understand from multiple sources that James Shaw and Julie-Anne Genter had dozens of conversations with people there. But there was only one topic. Why the hell did you stop the bill to allow bars to be open for the rugby. As the night wore on, I think they realised how badly they had stuffed up. This was summed up by this tweet from their supporter, Danyl:

The next day the Greens changed their stance 100%.

The opposition to the bill was obviously led by Kevin Hague who denounced the idea of bars being open as appalling – drunken revellers spilling out of pubs as schools open. I wonder if the new co-leader effectively pulled rank and just told his caucus that they need to back down on this, or be tainted with it for years to come?

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Greens spike Rugby World Cup bars bill

August 12th, 2015 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

The “spiteful” Green Party has blocked a bill that would allow pubs to open for Rugby World Cup matches. 

A bill, introduced to Parliament by ACT Party leader David Seymour on Tuesday, sought to allow pubs to open outside of legal trading hours to show Rugby World Cup matches being played in the United Kingdom.

But the Greens objected, with co-leader James Shaw accusing Seymour of trying to boost his profile. Without the unanimous support of MPs, the bill cannot be rushed through in time for the tournament.

Seymour said the Greens were being “spiteful”.

“Certainly if it’s rejected today, I’ll be texting the PM to say he’s got my vote to put a bill through with the Government. 

“I think it’s the right thing to do, it’s what most New Zealanders want and I’m opposed to the majority being punished due to actions of an irresponsible minority.”

The bill could now only proceed if it was picked up by the Government, something Prime Minister John Key has indicated is a possibility.

He said a decision would be made in the next day or two. 

I hope they do.

Green Party health spokesman Kevin Hague said the bill would see “boozed-up people spilling out of bars just as parents are dropping their children at school”.

Oh that’s just so silly. Apart from the fact you know bars don’t tend to be next door to schools, watching the rugby over a couple of pints is not really being boozed up. People who get up at 4 am to watch the rugby are doing it for the rugby, not the booze. Sure they may enjoy a drink or two during the game, but this is not like a nightclub closing at 8 am.

Labour MPs voted not to object to the bill when its caucus met on Tuesday and leader Andrew Little said he personally supported it.

“There’s hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders who enjoy a tipple, usually when watching sporting games and they do so responsibly,” Little said.

“This is a tournament that happens once every four years and it’s totally in keeping with social intercourse that they have a drink.”

Little said if he was in a pub at 5am and the All Blacks were winning he wouldn’t say no to a drink.

“If we’re losing I’d probably have two beers at 5am.”

Well said Andrew Little.

Just heard on the radio that the Government is likely to introduce a Government bill. Labour will treat it as a conscience vote.


Little backs Seymour’s RWC bar bill

August 11th, 2015 at 11:00 am by David Farrar

The Herald reports:

Act Party leader David Seymour is hopeful his proposal to allow pubs to open in the early hours during the Rugby World Cup will be adopted, though he says it might only be applied to games involving the All Blacks.

The MP for Epsom will table a hastily-drafted bill in Parliament this afternoon which would allow all pubs and bars to remain open during anti-social hours if they were broadcasting live from the tournament in Britain.

The bill will be shot down if any MP refuses to grant leave.

Generally leave will be refused to stop bills jumping the queue. But as this is to fix a problem that is going to occur in the next couple of months, it is appropriate to grant leave in my opinion.

Mr Seymour was confident it would progress, but he said getting cross-party support might require some concessions. He said National had been supportive of the proposal, but had asked whether the scope could be reduced so that it covered only New Zealand games.

Justice Minister Amy Adams would not comment yesterday, except to say the National caucus would consider the law change this morning.

United Future leader Peter Dunne also has some concerns about the scope of the bill.

Mr Seymour said he might agree to limit the policy, but he hoped it could be applied to all fans. “There’s a quarter of a million British-born New Zealanders, 50,000 Australians, and big South African, Tongan and Samoan populations. So wouldn’t it be nice to have all teams rather than just the one?”

Labour, New Zealand First and the Maori Party would also decide their positions this morning.

Labour leader Andrew Little supported the law change. “It’s a Rugby World Cup, it only comes around every four years … so the opportunity to meet in a bar and watch a game and have the odd pint is the perfectly normal thing to want to do. Personally, I think we should try to facilitate it.”

Good to see Little supportive.

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ACT wants world cup matches easy to view

August 1st, 2015 at 7:00 am by David Farrar

David Seymour has announced:

ACT Leader David Seymour intends to introduce a Bill to let people watch the 2015 Rugby World Cup in bars and function rooms.

“For such an important one-off event as a Rugby World Cup on the other side of the world, outside our time zone, I think sports enthusiasts should be able to celebrate the occasion in the same way they would if these matches were within normal New Zealand hours,” said Mr Seymour.

“I know many Kiwis overseas who watched the last World Cup from the UK, in pubs that were able to open and screen live matches. In England they changed their licensing laws to accommodate viewing the English matches during the 2014 FIFA World Cup held in Brazil.

“Current licensing arrangements are too inflexible to allow for this special occasion. Bars seeking special licenses are having to jump through all sorts of ridiculous nanny-state hoops. Police have indicated to licensees that they will oppose applications unless the licensees agree to conditions like ticket-only sales, fancy dress, live music, quizzes, guest speakers or themed food.

Totally support this. requiring every bar in NZ to get a special liquor license just so they can screen Rugby World Cup games after their normal closing time is silly.

“On the first sitting day after recess (11th August) I intend to seek leave to table a short Bill allowing bars and function rooms to open for the broadcast of any Rugby World Cup matches.

“I will seek advice from the police on how best this should be monitored.

“I have asked the Clerk’s office to assist in drafting a short Bill which will accomplish this.

“If my motion to table a Bill is accepted by the House, I will ask the Prime Minister to advance this as a government Bill, so that the Bill doesn’t languish ineffectively at the bottom of the order paper until the World Cup is over.

Hopefully no MP will oppose such a sensible bill.

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Contrasting two stories

July 23rd, 2015 at 3:00 pm by David Farrar

Interesting to contrast two stories on the parliamentary rugby team travelling to England to defend the parliamentary world cup title they hold.

The Herald story:

MPs will be jetting to the United Kingdom to take part in the Parliamentary Rugby World Cup after being granted special leave.

The team will take part in a tournament from September 10 to 23 – dates which overlap with the start of the real tournament.

Politicians going include Corrections Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga – who is currently under pressure over the issue of alleged violence in prisons – and New Zealand First MP Winston Peters, who turned 70 this year.

New Zealand are four times champions in the tournament, which happens prior to each Rugby World Cup.

It is understood the upcoming trip is funded through sponsorship. Players will also be dipping into their own pockets – when asked how the trip was funded, Mr O’Connor said: “my bank account”.

Pretty factual and not sensational. And I’m all in favour of MPs keeping fit by playing sport, and even better beating the Aussies and English. I don’t see this as any different to any other employer giving people time off for an international sporting fixture.

And the Stuff story:

Nine MPs – including two ministers – are taking leave from Parliament to travel to England for the Rugby World Cup.

Corrections minister Sam Lotu-Iiga, his Cabinet colleague Commerce minister Paul Goldsmith and NZ First leader Winston Peters are among those who will skip parliamentary sessions in lieu of the September junket.

So the first two paragraphs make it look like they are merely going to England to watch rugby rather than play rugby – a huge difference.

They’ll play in the Parliamentary Rugby World Cup which runs alongside the tournament.

Also on the team are Labour’s Damian O’Connor, Stuart Nash, Peeni Henare and Kelvin Davis, and National’s Alfred Ngaro and Mark Mitchell.

Parliament’s business committee gave leave for the absence from September 10 – 23, which means the MPs will be in England for the opening, but will miss the October 31st final.

Later on it mentions they are actually playing rugby. Also as one can see they are there for very little of the actual Rugby World Cup.  The first game is on 18 September so they are there for only eight out of 40 pool games and none of the eight knock out games.

Now you can have views on whether the MPs should get time off to defend the world title – that’s fine. But making it look like they are primarily going to watch the RWC is unfair, when in fact they are there for just a small fraction of the RWC.

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Stephen Donald should get this framed

October 24th, 2011 at 4:00 pm by David Farrar

This is Tom Scott’s Saturday cartoon. He must be a time traveller! Maybe it helped inspire Donald to score what turned out to be the winning three points!

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What a tournament

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

It has been a tough 12 months for New Zealand. 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 Rugby World cup 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.

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Well done the French

October 23rd, 2011 at 10:52 pm by David Farrar

Well the New Zealand All Blacks are the world champions by 8 points to 7. Let the celebrations begin!!!!

But full credit to the French who played a magnificent game, and performed so very very well that they must be gutted not to have won, but should be proud of their play.

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Rugby World Cup 23 October 2011

October 23rd, 2011 at 8:36 am by David Farrar

Only one topic today. Our first Rugby World Cup Final in 16 years.

A few months ago most of us were braced for disappointment. We had been through this before. The All Blacks peaked too early or choked or something, and we lost.

But then as the pool play got underway, our optimism has risen and risen. We won all four games convincingly, scoring 240 points and conceding just 49. We picked up a bonus point for every game, meaning we scored at least four tries.

In our pool France barely qualified. If Tonga had beaten Canada, France would have not made the quarter-finals.

England was the only unbeaten team in Pool B, but lost at the quarter-finals, as did Argentina.

Amazingly in Pool C, Australia finished second behind Ireland. That gave us hope for the semi-final.

Pool D has the Springboks win all their games, but they held Wales off by one 1 point. They were arguably our biggest threat, but then they got knocked out by Australia despite playing the stronger game. I think it was at this point that things were really looking good. We were confident we had Australia’s measure, and sure enough they couldn’t score a try against New Zealand in 80 minutes.

So today is the day, starting at 9 pm, where we’ve got the best chance since we won the inaugural trophy to regain the title World Champions. Of course the result is far from guaranteed. France can play amazingly effective rugby when they hit top form. They have twice before beaten us at Rugby World Cups. But tonight, it should be the All Blacks’ day.

What are your picks for the score or margin? I’m saying the All Blacks by 13.


Rugby World Cup 22 October 2011

October 22nd, 2011 at 3:27 pm by David Farrar

I loved the full time try to Wales. They lost, but I have never seen Wales play as well as they have in this World Cup.

So it all ends tomorrow. Where will you be watching the final, if you are?


The triumph of Maori TV

October 22nd, 2011 at 1:53 pm by David Farrar

Joseph Romanos writes at Stuff:

A second Rugby World Cup has been playing out behind the scenes in New Zealand, and it’s been just as torrid as the one that has so engrossed us since September 9.

Rugby fans have been able to watch key World Cup matches live on no less than five New Zealand channels – TV One, TV3, Maori (English version), Maori (Maori language version) and Sky.

The battle for viewers has been fascinating.

TV One began sensationally, drawing 1.015 million viewers for the first match, New Zealand against Tonga. This immediately followed the opening ceremony, also a TV One triumph.

For that first match Sky had an audience of 442,000 and Maori Television, 177,000.

As the tournament has progressed, however, the big mover has been Maori Television.

By the quarterfinals, Maori Television was the most popular of the free-to-air channels. At times its audience was virtually the combined viewership of TV One and TV3.

For the New Zealand v Argentina quarter-final, Maori Television drew 501,000, behind Sky (628,000), but well ahead of TV One (420,000) and TV3 (236,000). It has continued to rate extremely well.

Maori TV have done an excellent job with their coverage and viewers have voted with their feet. The fact they started off with 20% of the audience of TV One, and at the quarter final had more viewers is a huge tribute to them. They are showing that in many ways they are becoming our national public service broadcaster.

Tahu Potiki, a director of Maori TV, also writes:

I recall the many sceptical, sometimes scathing, comments when it was announced Maori Television was to be the lead broadcaster for the Rugby World Cup, and the political stoush that surrounded the bidding process, but it certainly seems to have been a good choice. It is unclear what the differentiating factor is, but the uninterrupted broadcast is most likely playing a part.

I know I got home late one day and turned television on just in time to catch the last bit of the national anthems. Immediately the teams had finished singing the coverage halted and we crossed to an advertisement or a promotion. I realised then I was watching the wrong channel and changed quickly to Maori TV.

I’ve watched some on Sky Sports and some on Maori TV. Have not decided yet for the final but will probably be Maori TV to hear Keith Quinn hopefully declare the All Blacks the World Champions!

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Apples for Julia

October 17th, 2011 at 2:56 pm by David Farrar

Hawkes Bay Today reports:

Hawke’s Bay apple producer Apollo made a cheeky but tasteful offer to Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard for the Rugby World Cup semifinal between the All Blacks and Wallabies.

Apollo’s director, Bruce Beaton, packed a carton of New Zealand Queen apples and asked Napier MP Chris Tremain to transport the fruit to Prime Minister John Key’s house in Auckland at the weekend.

“The idea was that if Julia was over watching the rugby with John in Auckland, she could have a tasty New Zealand apple to munch after the game,” Mr Beaton said.

She wasn’t there, but hopefully the apples will get to her in Australia.

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Who watched the rugby last night?

October 17th, 2011 at 11:29 am by David Farrar

Just seen the viewer stats for the rugby last night. As you know it was broadcast on Sky Sports, TV One, TV3 and Maori TV. Each broadcaster tends to only trumpet their own viewers, but let’s add all the individual figures up. This is the percentage of all adults and children (only excludes under five year olds) watching each channel, and the approx number of viewers:

  1. TV One 17.0%, 680,000
  2. Sky Sports 16.7%, 668,000
  3. TV3 10.0%, 400,000
  4. Maori TV 6.8%, 272,000

That adds up to 50.5% of New Zealanders or 2,020,000 Kiwis who watched the semi-final. One can only wonder what the final will get?

Which other “programmes” have had 2 million viewers?


All Blacks 20 – Australia 6

October 16th, 2011 at 10:50 pm by David Farrar

Well a pretty impressive effort to stop the Wallabies from scoring even a single try in 80 minutes. Amazing that this will be the first time in 16 years we actually make a RWC Final. Now we just have to repeat this performance with the French.

I did reflect during the game about how much larger the win margin would have been if Dan Carter had not been injured!

Anyway back to the drinking – have a great night celebrating everyone!


Rugby World Cup 16 October 2011

October 16th, 2011 at 10:18 am by David Farrar

Oh Wales got so very very close. They played to the best of their ability and would have won if the penalty had occurred one metre closer to the try line. The last few minutes were intense, as Wales got into the French territory but never quite got the opportunity for a drop goal.

One shouldn’t be overly confident, but hell if New Zealand wins tonight, we should beat France in the final. They have not shone, if they can only beat a 14 man Welsh team by one point.

So all eyes of All Blacks v Wallabies tonight. What are you predictions. I’m going for All Blacks by 10 points.


Rugby World Cup 10 October 2011

October 10th, 2011 at 8:17 am by David Farrar

Wow that first half against Argentina had me worried. The final score was somewhat generous to us. Kudos to Argentina for a great game, and exposing the areas where the All Blacks need to close their vulnerabilities.

The atmosphere for the All Blacks v Wallabies semi-final will I am sure be every part as intense as the actual final.

For the other semi-final I imagine there will be 50,000 or so Kiwis who discover some distant Welsh ancestry and cheer them on against France.

The hopeful and likely final is New Zealand vs France. In one sense a nightmare as we have often crashed at their hands in the RWC, but on the other hand we thrashed them in pool play, and have shown we can have their measure.


Rugby World Cup 9 October 2011

October 9th, 2011 at 6:08 am by David Farrar

Well they were two enjoyable quarter-finals. I was hoping Ireland would win against Wales, but Wales totally deserved the win – the best I have seen them play this tournament.

And oh it was wonderful to see France smash England. My only concern is that if we play France in the final, they might beat us!

France have to be favoured to beat Wales in their semi-final. We’ll plunge into recession if we don’t beat Argentina to make the other semi. The big unknown is whether we’ll be facing Australia or South Africa. I’m not even sure yet who to cheer for. Normally I subscribe to the “anyone playing Australia” theory but I have to say it would be good to have the Boks eliminated.


Rugby and Politics

October 6th, 2011 at 1:30 pm by David Farrar

Over at Stuff in my By the numbers blog, I look at some of the questions on the election and rugby, including the fascinating fact that 30% of New Zealanders said that the outcome of the Rugby World Cup matters to them more than the outcome of the general election. Amongst under 25s this rises to 55%!

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Rugby World Cup quarter-finals

October 3rd, 2011 at 1:00 pm by David Farrar

So the quarter-finals are:

  1. Ireland vs Wales Sat 8 Oct 6.00 pm Wellington
  2. England v France Sat 8 Oct 8.30 pm Auckland
  3. South Africa v Australia Sun 9 Oct 6.00 pm Wellington
  4. NZ v Argentina Australia Sun 9 October 8.30 pm Auckland (corrected)

If NZ wins, we will play the winner of South Africa v Australia. That match arguably will be the effective final.



Tonga beats France

October 1st, 2011 at 7:50 pm by David Farrar

Well done Tonga – a great performance to beat France 19-14. Sadly France still go through to the quarter-finals as Tonga had lost to Canada earlier.



October 1st, 2011 at 9:14 am by David Farrar

The Dom Post reports:

It is time for Wellington to party – and now it can rock all the way through to the finals.

The waterfront festivities have been extended, with Wellington City Council making an about-turn last night on its decision to shut the fanzone straight after the quarterfinals and put an end to Rugby World Cup celebrations.

Mayor Celia Wade-Brown said the fanzone would now show all four big matches after the quarterfinals, including the two semifinals on October 15 and 16, the bronze final on October 21 and the final on October 23

Excellent, one back-down I thoroughly approve of.


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Save the fan zone

September 30th, 2011 at 12:08 pm by David Farrar

Aaarrgh. This is the stupidest decision ever.

The Herald reports:

The Wellington City Council has been slammed for not applying for resource consent for the city’s Fan Zone past the Rugby World Cup quarter-finals.

While New Zealanders around the rest of the country will be able to enjoy the final and semi-finals at free public fan zones, Wellingtonians will either have to watch the games at home or at a pub.

The fan zone, situated next to the new Wharewaka on Odlins Plaza, fits 3,000 fans and was granted resource consent only up to October 12.

Mayor Celia Wade-Brown told Newstalk ZB it has always been the plan to close the waterfront fan zone on October 9.

She said it is part of a country-wide approach, with many overseas supporters likely to follow their teams to Auckland for the final stages of the tournament.

Oh for fuck’s sake, this is such a stupid decision. What about all the Wellingtonians? We’ve been loving the fan zone. I’ve been raving about it to everyone.

Shit, I was planning to watch the final there. Nothing better than celebrating the All Blacks winning the Rugby World Cup than with 3,000 of your mates. And we would all be mates that night.

Please, please City Councillors change this decision. This is probably the last ever Rugby World Cup in NZ. Any Councillor who votes against keeping the fan zone going should be targeted for eviction in 2013!

UPDATE: If the Council won’t budget, can Murray McCully seize control of the Wellington Waterfront also please. Guarantee you a huge spike upwards in the party vote for National in Wellington!

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Rugby World Cup 25 September 2011

September 25th, 2011 at 10:20 am by David Farrar

Well that wasn’t a bad game at all. After 30 minutes NZ had a bigger lead over France than Australia had managed against the United States.The final score of 37-17 was possibly generous towards the French.

Was great to see Richie McCaw get presented with a literal cap for his 100th test cap – the first All Black to achieve this. Was also moving to see an obviously ill Jock Hobbs present it to him.


  • 3.30 pm – Fiji v Samoa at Eden Park. Go Samoa, who should have a supportive crowd
  • 6.00 pm – Ireland v Russia at Rotorua. Russia are the under dogs but I have to support Ireland.
  • 8.30 pm – Argentina v Scotland in Wellington. As my maternal family tree includes 12 generations of Scots, they’re my pick.