All Blacks

Short Passes 4 November (Monday evening edition)


A successful day of sevens rugby on Saturday down at Onepoto. For the teams there it was a competitive morning and afternoon of rugby, with several eye-catching contributions across the leading grades. Defending American Ambassador’s champions Northern United took the honours in the Men’s grade and are odds-on to retain the American Ambassador’s Trophy when

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Aisle be Back: The World Cup exit and the reboot begins


Above: The All Blacks may not out-sing the Welsh, but they will be hoping to beat them on Friday night in the third-fourth playoff. PHOTO: Getty Images via NZR media.  By Kevin McCarthy Next comes the great Convulsion. You’ll remember the last one, when we crashed out of the Rugby World Cup in 2007 in

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Aisle be Back: All Blacks v England RWC semi-final


By Kevin McCarthy How are your nerves? I strangely don’t have any ahead of the semi-final. Kind of confident the All Blacks will dispose of England and set up a shot at the three-peat. Not that sort of arrogant confidence that a few indulged in after the blitzing of Ireland. The sort that assumes what

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Short Passes 21 October


Another blockbusting game by Lions No. 8 Teariki Ben Nicholas on Saturday – he would be a worthy pick-up by a Super Rugby side when the squads are confirmed soon. PHOTO: Mike Lewis Pictures. It was a case of one from two for the Wellington teams in the National Provincial Championship semi-finals on Saturday. The

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Aisle be Back: The RWC quarter-finals


By Kevin McCarthy Guy who writes this blog has to confess he’s going to be stuck on a commercial plane flight right through the All Blacks’ quarterfinal against Ireland. Seriously. How do you manage to organise that rugby-watching apocalyptic scenario, you might ask. Or less politely, is he a complete idiot? Let’s say it’s complicated.

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Wellington Lions: five memorable semi-final wins


Above: Kemara Hauiti-Parapara and the Lions scrum will need to fire up when they play Canterbury this coming weekend. PHOTO: Hugh Pretorius. Since 1992, when the present finals format was introduced into the National Provincial Championship, Wellington has played in a number of Semi-finals. Here’s a look back at five of those wins: 2000 v

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Short Passes 14 October (lunch edition)


Pepesana Patafilo in action for the Lions on Saturday. Short Passes thinks that he could be in a Super Rugby squad and not in Tawa’s next year. PHOTO: Hugh Pretorius. A big weekend of rugby to look forward to this coming Saturday. There are three sevens tournaments – details, teams and draws to be published

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Twenty years since Athletic Park closed


Thirty thousand patrons entered Athletic Park for the final time 20 years ago today, 10 October 1999, to watch the Wellington Lions play Otago in round nine of the National Provincial Championship. Athletic Park had been the home of all rugby in Wellington for 97 years. The Lions were also having their best season for

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Short Passes 7 October


+++++ Job done and a perfect representative season for the Wellington Maori side. A late change to proceedings saw them only needing to play once in Saturday’s Te Tini A Maui tournament, taking on Hawke’s Bay Maori for the trophy. A 22-15 win to Te Upoko saw the Hikaia Amohia Trophy put back on the

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