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The New Zealand national rugby union team, known as the All Blacks, is the representative side of New Zealand in rugby union. Rugby union is regarded as the country's national sport.[3] New Zealand has a winning record against every international rugby team they have played, including the British and Irish Lions.

New Zealand compete annually with Australia (the Wallabies) and South Africa (the Springboks) in the Tri-Nations Series, and have been Tri-Nations champions nine times in the tournament's 13-year history. New Zealand also holds the Bledisloe Cup, which they currently contest annually with Australia and which includes Tri-Nations games between the countries. They have three times completed a Grand Slam (in 1978, 2005 and 2008) of the four Home Nations.

New Zealand are the number one ranked team in the IRB World Rankings[4] and were named the International Rugby Board (IRB) Team of the Year in 2005, 2006 and 2008.[5] Fourteen former All Blacks have been inducted into the International Rugby Hall of Fame, one into the IRB Hall of Fame.

The team first competed in 1884 against Cumberland County, New South Wales, and played their first Test match in 1903, a victory against Australia. This was followed by a tour of the northern hemisphere in 1905.

The team's early uniforms consisted of a black jersey with a silver fern and white knickerbockers. By their 1905 tour New Zealand were wearing all black, except for the silver fern, and their All Black name dates from this time. New Zealand traditionally perform a haka (Māori posture dance) before each match. Traditionally, the haka performed is Te Rauparaha's Ka Mate, though since 2005, Kapa o Pango, a modified version of the 1924 All Blacks haka, Kia Whaka-ngawari, has occasionally been performed.

[edit] Introduction of rugby to New Zealand

The team that toured New South Wales, Australia in 1884.Rugby Football was introduced to New Zealand by Charles Monro in the late 1860s; Monro discovered the sport while completing his studies at Christ's College, Finchley, England.[6] The first game in New Zealand took place in May 1870 in Nelson between the Nelson club and Nelson College. The first union, Canterbury, was formed in 1879.[7] In 1882, New Zealand's first internationals were played when the Southern Rugby Union (later the New South Wales Rugby Union) toured the country. The tourists played Auckland provincial clubs twice, Wellington twice and once each against Canterbury, Otago and West Coast, North Island, winning four games and losing three. Two years later the first New Zealand team to go overseas toured New South Wales; New Zealand played and won eight games.[8]

The first tour by a British team took place in 1888 when a British Isles team toured Australia and New Zealand, but no Test matches were played. The players were drawn mainly from England and the Scottish Borders, although there were representatives from all four home unions.[citation needed]

[edit] International competition begins

The 1905 Original All Blacks.The year 1892 saw the formation of the New Zealand Rugby Football Union representing seven unions not including Canterbury, Otago and Southland.[9][10] The first sanctioned New Zealand side toured New South Wales in 1894 and the following year New Zealand played its first home "international" game, losing 8-6 to New South Wales.[11] The team's first true international Test match was against Australia on 15 August 1903 at the Sydney Cricket Ground, resulting in a 22-3 win.[12]

A representative New Zealand team, since referred to as the Originals, first toured Britain in 1905. Reference to the team by the name "All Blacks" first appeared during this tour when, according to team member Billy Wallace, a London newspaper reported that the New Zealanders played as if they were "all backs".[13] Wallace claimed that because of a typographical error, subsequent references were to "All Blacks". This may be a myth, as the name also describes their playing uniform of black shirts, shorts and socks.[13]

The Originals' only loss on tour was 3-0 to Wales at Cardiff.[14] The match has entered into the folklore of both countries because of controversy over whether All Black Bob Deans scored a disallowed try, which would have earned them a 3-3 draw. A team representing the British Isles — known as the Anglo-Welsh since it consisted of English and Welsh players only — undertook a return tour to New Zealand in 1908 and were defeated 2-0 in the test series by New Zealand.

[edit] Development of a legacy
New Zealand's rivalry with South Africa began in 1921, when the Springboks (as the South African team is known) toured New Zealand for a Test series that finished all square.[15] New Zealand toured South Africa for the first time in 1928; this series also ended in a draw.

The 1924 All Black tourists to the United Kingdom (UK) were dubbed the Invincibles because they had won every game. However, the team were deprived of the chance to complete a grand slam when Scotland refused to play them because of an argument over expenses.[16] The first truly representative British Isles (now known as British and Irish Lions) side toured New Zealand in 1930. Although the Lions won the first Test, the home side regrouped and went on to win the series 3-1. New Zealand toured the UK again in 1935–36, losing only three games (including two Tests) during a 30-match tour.[17] In one of these losses, Prince Obolensky famously scored two tries to help England to a 13-0 win, their first over New Zealand.[18]

In 1937, South Africa won a series against New Zealand when they toured New Zealand, and this 1937 South African team has been described as the best team ever to leave New Zealand.[19][20] It wasn't until 1949, after the end of the Second World War, that New Zealand next played the Springboks when they visited South Africa with Fred Allen as captain. The tour witnessed an infamous All Blacks record — the loss of two Test matches on the same day. This was made possible because Australia were touring New Zealand at the same time. On the afternoon of 3 September New Zealand captained by J. B. (Johnny) Smith was beaten 11-6 by Australia in Wellington.[21] That same afternoon in South Africa New Zealand captained by Ron Elvidge (Allen was injured) lost 9-3 to the Springboks in Durban.[22] New Zealand in New Zealand also lost their second Test, 16-9, which gave Australia the Bledisloe Cup for the first time. Although each Test was very close, New Zealand lost the series 4-0.

The two series losses to South Africa made their 1956 tour of New Zealand highly anticipated. New Zealand were captained by Bob Duff and coached by Bob Stuart, and their 3-1 series win was their first ever over the Springboks as well as being the Springboks' first ever series loss against any opponent.[20][23] During the series, New Zealand had introduced Don Clarke and brought back Kevin Skinner in the last two Tests to help secure the win.[20] Skinner, a former New Zealand boxing champion, was brought back after injuries to props Mark Irwin and Frank McAtamney and in the third test having to "sort out" both the South African props whilst Don Clarke would subsequently become known as "The Boot" for his goal kicking.[24][25]

New Zealand' 3-1 series win over the Lions in 1959 proved to be the start of a dominant period in All Blacks rugby. This was followed by the 1963–64 tour to the UK, led by Wilson Whineray, in which New Zealand were deprived of a Grand Slam by a scoreless draw with Scotland.[26] The only loss on this tour was to Newport RFC who defeated New Zealand 3–0 at Rodney Parade, Newport on 30 October 1963.[27] The 1967 side won three Tests, but was unable to play Ireland because of a foot-and-mouth scare.[26] This tour formed part of New Zealand longest winning streak, between 1965 and 1970, of 17 Test victories.[28] Although the 1966 Lions were defeated 0-4 in their New Zealand tour, there was a reversal of fortune five years later when the 1971 Lions, under the captaincy of Welshman John Dawes, beat New Zealand in a Test series, which remains the Lions' only series victory in New Zealand.

The 1972–3 tourists narrowly missed a Grand Slam with a draw against Ireland.[26] The tour was also notable for the sending home of prop Keith Murdoch, who was alleged to have been involved in a brawl in a Cardiff hotel while celebrating the defeat of Wales.[29]

In 1978, Graham Mourie captained New Zealand to their first Grand Slam, completed with a 13-12 victory over Wales. That game generated great controversy after New Zealand won as the result of a late penalty. Lock Andy Haden had dived out of a line-out (sports) in an attempt to earn a penalty, but the penalty awarded by referee Roger Quittenton was against Welsh lock Geoff Wheel for jumping off the shoulder of Frank Oliver.[30] New Zealand' only loss on the tour was the famous 12-0 defeat by Irish province Munster at Thomond Park.[31] Later a play which focused on the loss was written by the John Breen called Alone it Stands.[32]

[edit] Controversial tours
The 1976 All Blacks tour of South Africa generated much controversy and led to the boycott of the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal by 33 African nations after the IOC refused to ban them.[33] New Zealand again failed to win the Test series in South Africa - they did not do so until 1996, after the fall of apartheid. The 1976 Tour contributed to the Gleneagles Agreement being adopted by the Commonwealth Heads of State in 1977.[34]

The 1981 South African tour to New Zealand sparked protests against South Africa's apartheid policy[35] the likes of which had not been seen in New Zealand since the 1951 waterfront dispute.[36] The NZRU had invited the Springboks to tour as the Muldoon government refused to involve politics in sport.[34] Although New Zealand won the Test series, two of the tour's provincial games were cancelled and the whole tour was marred by violence and protest.[37] During the tour the country experienced unrest, and the tour had a significant impact on New Zealand society.[35][37][38]

The 1985 All Blacks tour to South Africa was cancelled after legal action argued it would breach the NZRU's constitution.[38] In 1986, a rebel tour to South Africa took place that had not been authorised by the NZRU and the team, named the Cavaliers, included many All Blacks.[39][40] Those that participated in the tour received a ban from the NZRU when they returned to New Zealand.[41]

[edit] Early World Cups
The inaugural World Cup in 1987 was co-hosted and won by New Zealand, who beat France 29–9 in the 1987 Rugby World Cup Final at Eden Park, Auckland. New Zealand conceded only 52 points and scored 43 tries in six games en route to the title, having swept aside the challenges of Italy, Fiji, Argentina, Scotland, Wales and France.[42]

By the 1991 World Cup New Zealand were an ageing side,[43] co-coached by Alex Wyllie and John Hart. They struggled during pool matches against the United States and Italy, but won their quarter-final against Canada.[44] They were then knocked out by eventual winners Australia 16–6 in their semi-final at Lansdowne Road. In the wake of the tournament, there were many retirements, including coach Wyllie, who had enjoyed an 86% win rate during 29 Tests in charge.[45]

Laurie Mains replaced Wyllie in 1992, and was given the job of preparing the side for the 1995 event in South Africa. New Zealand were again favourites to take the championship.[46] Their role as favourites was confirmed when a young Jonah Lomu scored four tries against England in New Zealand' 45-29 semi-final win.[47] However, the New Zealand team suffered an outbreak of food poisoning before the 1995 Rugby World Cup Final (the source of the poisoning is heavily debated). Despite this, they took hosts South Africa to extra time, before losing to Joel Stransky's drop goal.[48][49] The claim of food poisoning was never used as an excuse by the team after the game, some media members came across the story and it has been considered 'sour grapes' by South Africans. The allegation was later publically backed by Rory Steyn, a former head of security for South African president Nelson Mandela. He was the security liason for the All-Blacks and reported in a book that a gambling syndicate was responsible for the outbreak by bribing a waitress. When this version came out the well respected (and impartial) Sunday Times of London did an story on the incident and was able to confirm the facts of the story by Steyn as well as find some of the hotel staff who admitted to the act.[50]

[edit] Professional era
The professional era in rugby union began in 1995, marked by creation of the SANZAR group (a combination of South Africa, New Zealand and Australia)[51] which was formed with the purpose of selling TV rights for two new competitions, the domestic Super 12 competition and the Tri-Nations.[51] The first Tri-Nations was contested in 1996, with New Zealand winning all four of their Tests to take the trophy.[52]

The 1996 Tri-Nations match in South Africa between New Zealand and Springboks was the first in a historic series. Under new coach John Hart and the captaincy of Sean Fitzpatrick, New Zealand won a Test series in South Africa for the first time.[53] Fitzpatrick rated the series win higher than the 1987 World Cup victory in which he had participated.[53]

The next two seasons saw mixed results for New Zealand, who won the 1997 Tri-Nations before losing it for the first time in 1998. New Zealand won all their Tri-Nations Tests in 1997.[54] However in 1998 New Zealand lost all five Tests in the Tri-Nations and Bledisloe Cup series (two to South Africa and three to Australia), the first time they had lost four Tests in succession since 1949.[55] The following year they suffered their worst Test loss, 28-7 to Australia in Sydney.[56]

New Zealand rebounded in the 1999 World Cup and dominated their pool, handing England a 30-16 defeat at Twickenham. They advanced past Scotland 30-18 in the quarter-finals to play France at Twickenham. They finished the first half ahead 17-10.[56] France then produced a famous half of rugby to which New Zealand had no answer, winning 43-31.[56] Hart subsequently resigned as coach and was replaced by co-coaches Wayne Smith and Tony Gilbert.

Under Smith and Gilbert, New Zealand came second in the 2000 and 2001 Tri-Nations. Both coaches were replaced by John Mitchell on 3 October 2001, who went on to coach New Zealand to victory in both the 2002 and 2003 Tri-Nations, as well as regaining the Bledisloe Cup, held by Australia since 1998, in 2003. After winning the 2003 Tri-Nations, they entered the 2003 World Cup as one of the favourites and dominated their pool, running up wins against Italy, Canada and Tonga before winning one of the most competitive matches of the tournament against Wales.[57] They defeated South Africa, a team they had never beaten at the World Cup, 29-9, but lost to Australia 22-10 in the semi-final in Sydney. Afterwards, Mitchell was fired by the NZRU and replaced by Graham Henry.

Henry's tenure began with a double victory over reigning World Champions England in 2004. The two games had an aggregate score of 72-15, with New Zealand keeping England try-less.[58][59] Despite the winning start to Henry's tenure, the Tri-Nations was a mixed success with two wins and two losses. The competition was the closest ever, bonus points decided the outcome and New Zealand finished last.[60][61] The 2004 season finished on a high, with New Zealand winning in Europe, including a record 45-6 victory over France.[62]

New Zealand playing England at Twickenham in 2006.In 2005 New Zealand whitewashed the touring British and Irish Lions 3-0 in the Test series, won the Tri-Nations, and achieved a second Grand Slam over the Home Nations. They went on to sweep the major International Rugby Board year-end awards in which New Zealand were named Team of the Year, Henry was named Coach of the Year, and fly-half (first five) Daniel Carter was Player of the Year.[5] New Zealand were nominated for the Laureus World Sports Award for Team of the Year in 2006 for their 2005 performance.[63]

In 2006 they again took the Tri Nations Series by winning their first five matches, three against Australia and two against South Africa. They lost their final match of the series against South Africa. They completed their end of year tour unbeaten, with record away wins over France, England and Wales.[64] New Zealand were named 2006 IRB Team of the Year and were nominated for the Laureus World Sports Award for the second time, while flanker Richie McCaw was named IRB Player of the Year.[5][63][65]

The 2007 season started off with two mid-year Tests against France. New Zealand won the Tests 42-11 at Eden Park and 61-10 at Westpac Stadium. A third game between Canada and New Zealand resulted in a 64-13 scoreline, although the game was more competitive than the scoreline indicated.[66]

New Zealand' first Tri-Nations game of 2007 was against the Springboks in Durban, South Africa. New Zealand scored two tries in the final ten minutes of the game to win 26-21. The following week against the Wallabies at the MCG in Melbourne the Wallabies upset New Zealand to win 20-15, New Zealand' first loss to Australia since 2004. New Zealand won both following home games to successfully defend the Tri-Nations Series for 2007.

New Zealand entered the 2007 Rugby World Cup as favourites, and trumped their pool beating all their challengers, Scotland, Italy, Romania and Portugal by 40 points or more. However, they then suffered a defeat to hosts France in the first knockout game, the quarterfinals. Following the loss to France coach Graham Henry's job was on the line with then Canterbury Crusaders coach Robbie Deans a likely contender as the next All Blacks coach, but Graham Henry managed to keep his job. Robbie Deans then accepted a position as coach of the Wallabies.

The 2008 season started with three mid-year Tests, the first against Ireland at Westpac Stadium, Wellington, New Zealand. The final two games were against England, the first game at Eden Park and the second at AMI Stadium in Christchurch. New Zealand played their first Tri-Nations game against South Africa at Westpac Stadium in Wellington winning 19-8 but a week later at Carisbrook in Dunedin they lost to South Africa 28-30, ending a 30-match winning streak at home, their previous loss in New Zealand being against England in 2003. New Zealand played their next Tri-Nations match on 26 July against Australia at Stadium Australia in Sydney, losing 34-19 but a week later against Australia at Eden Park New Zealand won 39-10. The greatest victory for New Zealand in the 2008 season was beating South Africa 19-0 on their home ground, Newlands Stadium. New Zealand played their final match on 13 September against Australia at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane winning 28-24 and retaining the Bledisloe Cup and the Tri Nations.

The 2009 season began on June 13 with the All Blacks playing France at Carisbrook, the All Blacks lost this game 22-27 but a week later the All Blacks beat France 14-10 at Westpac Stadium. Unfortunately the win in the second game was not enough for the All Blacks as the points difference in the two games meant France took home the Dave Gallaher Cup. This is the first time the All Blacks have lost the Dave Gallaher Cup in the nine years the two teams have been competing for it. A week later the All Blacks played Italy at a very empty AMI Stadium winning 27-6. The All Blacks finished second in the Tri-Nations Series, with South Africa claiming overall honours losing just one game. New Zealand finished a rather mediocre series of performances with a resounding 33-6 victory against Australia in Wellington.

[edit] Jersey
All Blacks jerseys

The 1905 jersey
The current jerseyThe current All Blacks jersey is entirely black, with the Adidas logo and the NZRU silver fern on the front. The 1884 New Zealand tour to Australia was the first overseas New Zealand rugby tour, and featured clothing far different from today's jersey. Back then, the team donned a dark blue jersey, with gold fern on the left of the jumper.[67] In 1893 the NZRU stipulated at its annual general meeting that the uniform would be black jersey with a silver fern and white knickerbockers.[68] However historic photographs suggest white shorts may have been used instead during these early years. Sometime between 1897 and 1901 there was a change; by 1901 the team met NSW in a black jersey, a canvas top with no collar, and a silver fern.[69]

New Zealand jersey is today considered the most recognisable rugby jersey.[70] Recently it has become traditional for New Zealand to wear an embroidered poppy on their jersey sleeve when playing France during the end of year tours.[71] The poppy honours the soldiers who died in the battlefields of Europe. Captain Richie McCaw said "We want to honour the overseas service of New Zealanders. It is an important part of our history as a country and a team.".[72]

Adidas currently pays the NZRFU $200 Million over 9 years, expecting New Zealand to win around 75% of their matches.[73] Nike also looked at sponsoring New Zealand in 1996, but went with Tiger Woods instead.[74]

The change kit has traditionally been white with black shorts. After a few years playing with a change kit consisting of a gray shirt and black shorts, the team announced a return to the traditional change kit of white jersey and black shorts in May 2009.

[edit] Haka
Main article: Haka of the All Blacks

New Zealand perform Ka Mate before a match against France in November 2006.The All Blacks perform a haka (Māori war style dance) before each international match. The haka has been closely associated with New Zealand rugby ever since a tour of New South Wales in 1884. The New Zealand native team that toured Britain in 1889/89 used Ake Ake Kia Kaha and the 1903 team in Australia used a mocking haka, Tupoto koe, Kangaru!. The 1905 All Blacks began the tradition of using Ka Mate and by 1914 this was firmly established as part of New Zealand rugby. The 1924 All Blacks used a specially composed haka Kia Whaka-ngawari, but later All Blacks reverted back to Ka Mate.[75]

In August 2005, before the Tri-Nations Test match between New Zealand and South Africa at Carisbrook stadium in Dunedin, New Zealand performed a new haka, Kapa o Pango, specially composed by Derek Lardelli and "...designed to reflect the multi-cultural make-up of contemporary New Zealand — in particular the influence of Polynesian cultures".[76] Kapa o Pango was to be performed on special occasions and was not intended to replace Ka Mate.[76] Kapa o Pango concludes with what has been interpreted as a "throat slitting" gesture that was a source of controversy and led to accusations that Kapa o Pango encourages violence, and sends the wrong message to All Blacks fans.[77][78] However, according to Derek Lardelli, the gesture represents "drawing vital energy into the heart and lungs."[79]

In November 2006, at the Millennium Stadium, Cardiff, New Zealand performed the haka in the dressing room prior to the match — instead of on the field immediately before kick-off — after a disagreement with the Welsh Rugby Union, which had wanted Wales to sing their national anthem after the haka.[80]

In 2008, New Zealand played Munster at Thomond Park. Before the match, Munster's four New Zealanders challenged New Zealand by performing the Haka first.[81]

On the same tour, Wales responded by silently refusing to move after New Zealand's haka, and the two teams simply stared at each other until the referee forced them to start the game.[citation needed]

[edit] Record
[edit] Tri-Nations
New Zealand's only annual tournament is the Tri-Nations played against Australia and South Africa. New Zealand's record of nine tournament wins (the most recent in 2008) and 40 match wins is well ahead of the other teams' records. The Bledisloe Cup is also contested between New Zealand and Australia, and the Freedom Cup between New Zealand and South Africa, as part of the Tri-Nations.

Nation Games Points Bonus
points Table
points Championships
played won drawn lost for against difference
New Zealand 62 42 0 20 1657 1220 +437 27 195 9
South Africa 62 26 1 35 1279 1539 -260 20 126 3
Australia 62 24 1 37 1277 1454 -177 30 128 2

Updated 22 September 2009

[edit] World Cup
Main article: All Blacks at the Rugby World Cup
New Zealand have won the World Cup once in the 1987 inaugural competition held in New Zealand and Australia. In 1991, they lost their semi-final to Australia before winning the playoff for third. In 1995, they improved by reaching the final, before losing in extra time to hosts South Africa. They finished in fourth place in 1999, after losing their semi-final and then the third-place playoff game. In 2003, New Zealand were knocked out by hosts Australia in their semi-final, before finishing third. The 2007 World Cup saw their worst tournament, being knocked out in the quarterfinals by the host nation France;[82] until this they were the only team to have reached the semifinals of every tournament.[83]

New Zealand hold several World Cup records: most points in one match (145 versus Japan in 1995),[84] most cumulative points over all World Cups (1,711),[85] most tries overall (232),[85] and most conversions (173).[85] Several individual players also hold World Cup records; Jonah Lomu for most World Cup tries (15 over two World Cups),[86] most appearances held by Sean Fitzpatrick (17 from 1987 to 1995), Marc Ellis with most tries in a match (6 versus Japan in 1995),[87] Grant Fox with most points in one tournament (126 in 1987), and Simon Culhane with most points in a single game (45 versus Japan in 1995).[87] New Zealand are the only team to top their pool in every world cup so far and not to lose a pool match.

[edit] Overall
See also: List of All Black tours and series
New Zealand have the best winning record against every nation they have played, and have won at least two thirds of their games against every country, with the exception of South Africa. They have won 339 of their 456 matches, a win percentage of 74.4% (see table). By this measure, New Zealand are the most successful international rugby union team ever and one of the most successful teams in world sport. When World Rankings were introduced by the IRB in October 2003, New Zealand were ranked second. Since then they have dominated the number one rank, holding it from 2004-2007 before relinquishing it to South Africa after the World Cup, and regaining the top spot in 2008, before losing it to South Africa once again in 2009 and then regaining it.[88]

Their all-time points difference for Tests (and international level matches) stands at 11426-5639 (as at 22 September 2009) - they have scored more than twice as many points as their opposition. Many national teams' worst defeat was a match against New Zealand - the national teams of France, Ireland, Argentina, Fiji, Samoa, Tonga, Japan, and Portugal all suffered their record defeat to New Zealand.

Their Test match record against all nations (listed alphabetically), updated to 22 November 2009, is as follows:[89]

IRB World Ranking Leaders
Opponent Played Won Lost Drawn % Won
Argentina 13 12 0 1 92.3%
Australia 136 92 39 5 67.9%
British and Irish Lions 38 29 6 3 76.3%
Canada 4 4 0 0 100%
England 33 26 6 1 77.4%
Fiji 4 4 0 0 100%
France 48 35 12 1 72.9%
Ireland 22 21 0 1 95.5%
Italy 11 11 0 0 100%
Japan 1 1 0 0 100%
Pacific Islanders 1 1 0 0 100%
Portugal 1 1 0 0 100%
Romania 2 2 0 0 100%
Samoa 5 5 0 0 100%
Scotland 27 25 0 2 92.6%
South Africa 78 42 33 3 53.8%
Tonga 3 3 0 0 100%
United States 2 2 0 0 100%
Wales 25 22 3 0 88.5%
World XV 3 2 1 0 66.7%
Total 457 340 100 17 74.4%

[edit] Players
[edit] Current squad
A 33-man squad was named on the 17 October 2009 for New Zealand's Tour to Japan and Europe. Four uncapped players were named by Henry, first five Mike Delany, winger Zac Guildford, winger/fullback Ben Smith and utility back Tamati Ellison. [90] Aled de Malmanche was called up to the tour to cover for the injured Corey Flynn. [91]

Caps updated before the Autumn internationals.
Head Coach: Graham Henry

Pos. Player DoB/Age Caps Club
HK Aled de Malmanche 11 September 1984 (1984-09-11) (age 25) 2 Chiefs
HK Corey Flynn 5 January 1981 (1981-01-05) (age 28) 5 Crusaders
HK Andrew Hore 13 September 1978 (1978-09-13) (age 31) 43 Hurricanes
PR John Afoa 16 October 1983 (1983-10-16) (age 26) 20 Blues
PR Wyatt Crockett 24 January 1983 (1983-01-24) (age 26) 1 Crusaders
PR Owen Franks 23 December 1987 (1987-12-23) (age 21) 6 Crusaders
PR Neemia Tialata 15 July 1982 (1982-07-15) (age 27) 37 Hurricanes
PR Tony Woodcock 27 January 1981 (1981-01-27) (age 28) 58 Blues
LK Anthony Boric 27 December 1983 (1983-12-27) (age 25) 10 Blues
LK Tom Donnelly 1 October 1981 (1981-10-01) (age 28) 3 Highlanders
LK Jason Eaton 21 August 1982 (1982-08-21) (age 27) 13 Hurricanes
LK Brad Thorn 3 February 1975 (1975-02-03) (age 34) 33 Crusaders
FL Jerome Kaino 6 April 1983 (1983-04-06) (age 26) 22 Blues
FL Tanerau Latimer 6 May 1986 (1986-05-06) (age 23) 3 Chiefs
FL Richie McCaw (c) 31 December 1980 (1980-12-31) (age 28) 76 Crusaders
FL Liam Messam 25 March 1984 (1984-03-25) (age 25) 2 Chiefs
FL Adam Thompson 23 March 1982 (1982-03-23) (age 27) 12 Highlanders
N8 Kieran Read 26 October 1985 (1985-10-26) (age 24) 12 Crusaders
N8 Rodney So'oialo 3 October 1979 (1979-10-03) (age 30) 60 Hurricanes
SH Jimmy Cowan 6 March 1982 (1982-03-06) (age 27) 28 Highlanders
SH Andrew Ellis 21 February 1984 (1984-02-21) (age 25) 11 Crusaders
SH Brendon Leonard 16 April 1985 (1985-04-16) (age 24) 12 Chiefs
FH Dan Carter 5 March 1982 (1982-03-05) (age 27) 62 Crusaders
FH Mike Delany 15 June 1982 (1982-06-15) (age 27) 1 Chiefs
FH Stephen Donald 3 December 1983 (1983-12-03) (age 25) 16 Chiefs
CE Tamati Ellison 1 April 1983 (1983-04-01) (age 26) 0 Hurricanes
CE Luke McAlister 28 August 1983 (1983-08-28) (age 26) 28 Blues
CE Ma'a Nonu 21 May 1982 (1982-05-21) (age 27) 42 Hurricanes
CE Conrad Smith 12 October 1981 (1981-10-12) (age 28) 29 Hurricanes
WG Zac Guildford 8 February 1989 (1989-02-08) (age 20) 2 Hurricanes
WG Sitiveni Sivivatu 19 April 1982 (1982-04-19) (age 27) 39 Chiefs
WG Ben Smith 1 June 1986 (1986-06-01) (age 23) 1 Highlanders
FB Cory Jane 8 February 1983 (1983-02-08) (age 26) 8 Hurricanes
FB Mils Muliaina 31 July 1980 (1980-07-31) (age 29) 77 Chiefs

[edit] Notable players

Captain of the Original All Blacks and International Rugby Hall of Fame inductee Dave Gallaher.Main article: List of All Blacks
Fourteen former All Blacks have been inducted into the International Rugby Hall of Fame; Fred Allen, Don Clarke, Sean Fitzpatrick, Grant Fox, Dave Gallaher, Michael Jones, Ian Kirkpatrick, John Kirwan, Sir Brian Lochore, Jonah Lomu, Colin Meads, Graham Mourie, George Nepia and Wilson Whineray.[92][93] One of them, Whineray, has been inducted into the IRB Hall of Fame.[94]

Dave Gallaher played in New Zealand' first ever Test match in 1903 and also captained the 1905 Originals. Along with Billy Stead, Gallaher authored the famous rugby book The Complete Rugby Footballer.[95] At the age of only 19, George Nepia played in all 30 matches on the Invincibles tour of 1924–25.[96] Nepia played 37 All Blacks games; his last was against the British Isles in 1930.[96]

Fred Allen captained all of his 21 matches for New Zealand, including six Tests, between 1946 and 1949.[97] He eventually moved onto coaching New Zealand between 1966 and 1968. New Zealand won all 14 of their Test matches with Allen as coach.[97]

Five Hall of Fame inductees, including the first New Zealander named to the IRB Hall of Fame, played during the 1960s. Don Clarke was an All Black between 1956 and 1964 and during this period he broke the record at the time for All Black Test points.[98] Clarke famously scored six penalties in one match — a record at the time — to give New Zealand an 18-17 victory over the British Isles.[98][99] Sir Wilson Whineray played 32 Tests, captaining New Zealand in 30 of them.[100] He played prop and also number 8 between 1957 and 1965. New Zealand lost only four of their 30 Tests with Whineray as captain.[100] On 21 October 2007, Whineray became the first New Zealander to earn induction to the IRB Hall of Fame.[94] In Colin Meads' New Zealand Rugby Museum profile, he is described as "New Zealand's equivalent of Australia's Sir Donald Bradman or the United States of America's Babe Ruth."[101] Meads, nicknamed Pinetree, played 133 games for New Zealand, including 55 Tests.[101] In 1999 the New Zealand Rugby Monthly magazine named Meads the New Zealand player of the century.[101] Ian Kirkpatrick played 39 Tests, including 9 as captain, between 1967 and 1977.[102] He scored 16 tries in his Test career, a record at the time.[102]

The only All Blacks Hall of Famer to debut in the 1970s was flanker Graham Mourie. He captained 19 of his 21 Tests and 57 of his 61 overall All Blacks matches between 1976 and 1982. Most notably, in 1978 he was captain of the first All Blacks side to complete a Grand Slam over the four Home Nations sides.[103]

The 1987 World Cup champions were coached by Sir Brian Lochore who had represented New Zealand in 25 Tests between 1964 and 1971, including 17 as captain.[104] Lochore was knighted in 1999 for his lifetime services to rugby. Four of the 1987 World Cup squad that he had coached are also inductees in the Hall of Fame. John Kirwan played a total of 63 Tests between 1984 and 1994, scoring 35 tries, an All Blacks record at the time.[105] In the 1987 World Cup opener against Italy, Kirwan raced 90 meters to score one of the tries of the tournament.[105][106] An All Black from 1984 to 1993, Grant Fox was one of New Zealand' greatest point-scorers with 1067 points, including 645 Test points.[107] Fox played 46 Tests, including the 1987 World Cup final against France. Known as The Iceman, Michael Jones was one of the greatest open side flankers of all time.[108] Born in Auckland, New Zealand, Jones first played international rugby for Samoa, then for New Zealand, playing 55 Tests between 1987 and 1998.[108] Due to his Christian faith Jones never played rugby on Sundays, resulting in him not playing in the 1991 World Cup semi-final against Australia, and also in him not being picked for the 1995 World Cup squad.[108][109]

The most capped Test All Black is Sean Fitzpatrick with 92 appearances.[110] Fitzpatrick played in the 1987 World Cup after an injury to incumbent Andy Dalton and was appointed All Blacks captain in 1992, continuing in the role until his retirement in 1997.[110] He played a total of 346 first class rugby matches, including 92 Tests.[111]

Jonah Lomu is generally regarded as the first true global superstar of rugby union.[112] He was the youngest player ever to appear in a Test as an All Black, making his debut at age 19 years, 45 days in 1994. Lomu, a wing, had unique physical gifts; even though he stood 1.96 m (6'5") and weighed 119 kg (262 lb), making him both the tallest[113] and heaviest[114] back ever to play for New Zealand, he could run 100 metres in under 11 seconds. He burst on the international scene in the 1995 Rugby World Cup, scoring seven tries in the competition. Four of those tries came in New Zealand' semifinal win over England, including an iconic try in which he bulldozed England's Mike Catt on his way to the try line. He would add eight more tries in the 1999 Rugby World Cup. Perhaps most remarkably, Lomu played virtually his entire top-level career in the shadow of a serious kidney disorder which ended his Test career in 2002 and ultimately led to a transplant in 2004. Even with his career hampered and eventually shortened by his health issues, he scored 37 tries in 63 Tests.[115]

[edit] Individual records
The record for most All Black Test points is held by Dan Carter with 980 from 65 Tests,[116] who surpassed Andrew Mehrtens' total of 967 points from 70 Tests[117] in the All Blacks' win over England on 21 November 2009.[118] Carter also holds the record for points against Australia with 202.[1]

The All Blacks' record Test try scorer is Doug Howlett with 49 tries, who overtook Christian Cullen's 46 during the 2007 World Cup.[119] The world record for tries in a calendar year is held by Joe Rokocoko, with 17 tries in 2003; he also became the first All Black to score ten tries in his first five Tests, as well as the first All Black to score at least two tries in each of four consecutive Tests.[120] In Test matches, the most capped All Black is Sean Fitzpatrick with 92 appearances, a record 51 of which were as captain.[110] The youngest All Black in a Test match was Jonah Lomu, capped at age 19 years, 45 days, whilst the oldest Test player was Ned Hughes at 40 years, 123 days.[115][121][122]

[edit] Coaches
Due to the definition and role of All Blacks coach varying so much prior to the 1949 All Blacks tour of South Africa, the following table only includes coaches appointed since.[45]

Name Years Tests Won Drew Lost Win percentage
Alex McDonald 1949 4 0 0 4 0%
Tom Morrison 1950, 5, 55–56 12 8 1 3 66.7%
Len Clode 1951 3 3 0 0 100%
Arthur Marslin 1953–1954 5 3 0 2 60%
Dick Everest 1957 2 2 0 0 100%
Jack Sullivan 1958–1960 11 6 1 4 54.5%
Neil McPhail 1961–1965 20 16 2 2 80%
Ron Bush 1962 2 2 0 0 100%
Fred Allen 1966–1968 14 14 0 0 100%
Ivan Vodanovich 1969–1971 10 4 1 5 40%
Bob Duff 1972–1973 8 6 1 1 75%
John Stewart 1974–1976 11 6 1 4 54.5%
Jack Gleeson 1977–1978 13 10 0 3 76.9%
Eric Watson 1979–1980 9 5 0 4 55.5%
Peter Burke 1981–1982 11 9 0 2 81.8%
Bryce Rope 1983–1984 12 9 1 2 75%
Sir Brian Lochore 1985–1987 18 14 1 3 77.7%
Alex Wyllie 1988–1991 29 25 1 3 86.2%
Laurie Mains 1992–1995 34 23 1 10 67.6%
John Hart 1996–1999 41 31 1 9 75.6%
Wayne Smith 2000–2001 17 12 0 5 70.5%
John Mitchell[123] 2002–2003 28 23 1 4 82.1%
Graham Henry[124] 2004– 76 64 0 12 83.79%

[edit] Home grounds

⊗ AMI Stadium⊗ Westpac Stadium⊗ Waikato StadiumEden Park ⊗ North Harbour Stadium⊗ CarisbrookLike the other two countries in the Tri Nations, New Zealand does not have an official stadium for its national team. Instead, New Zealand play their Test matches at a variety of venues throughout New Zealand. In 2005 and 2006 New Zealand played matches at: Eden Park, Auckland; North Harbour Stadium, North Shore City; Westpac Stadium, Wellington; AMI Stadium (formerly called Lancaster Park and Jade Stadium), Christchurch; Waikato Stadium, Hamilton; and Carisbrook, Dunedin.

Prior to the construction of Westpac Stadium in 1999, Wellington's Test venue was Athletic Park. Athletic Park was the venue for the first All Blacks Test match in New Zealand against Great Britain in 1904.[125] The first home Test match played outside the main centres of Auckland, Christchurch, Dunedin or Wellington was in 1996 at McLean Park in Napier.[126] The 1987 Rugby World Cup final was played at Eden Park.

Eden Park and AMI Stadium are being upgraded in preparation for the 2011 Rugby World Cup. In 2006, the New Zealand Government proposed the construction of a waterfront National Stadium in Auckland as an alternative to Eden Park's upgrade; this proposal was rejected by the Auckland Regional Council.[127] The NZRU no longer considers Carisbrook as a suitable Test venue (it did however get a Test Match against South Africa in 2008); a covered sports stadium was proposed as a replacement.[128] Dunedin City Council approved the new stadium in March 2008,[129] land acquisition proceeded from August to October of that year,[130] and the new venue is scheduled to open in 2010 or 2011, in time for the World Cup.

Ground Record Recent Win Recent Draw Recent Loss
AMI Stadium, Christchurch (formerly Lancaster Park and Jade Stadium) 80.43% 2009 (ITA) N/A 1998 (AUS)
Athletic Park, Wellington 69.05% 1999 (FRA) 1962 (AUS) 1998 (RSA)
Carisbrook, Dunedin 85.71% 2005 (RSA) 1950 (BRI) 2009 (FRA)
Eden Park, Auckland 80.95% 2009 (AUS) 1994 (RSA) 1994 (FRA)
Westpac Stadium, Wellington 77.78% 2009 (AUS) N/A 2003 (ENG)

[citation needed]

[edit] Venues of All Black Tests
Ground First Test First Test Last Test Tests at that ground Win Percentage
Athletic Park, Wellington, North Island 1904
v British Lions 1904 1999 42 69.05%
Tahuna Park, Dunedin, South Island 1905
v Australia 1905 1905 1 100.00%
Potter's Park, Auckland, North Island 1908
v British Lions 1905 1905 1 100.00%
Carisbrook, Dunedin, South Island 1908
v British Lions 1908 2009 36 85.71%
AMI Stadium, Christchurch, South Island
Formerly Lancaster Park and Jade Stadium 1913
v Australia 1913 2008 46 80.43%
Eden Park, Auckland, North Island 1921
v South Africa 1921 2008 51 80.95%
Epsom Showgrounds, Auckland, North Island 1958
v Australia 1958 1958 1 100.00%
McLean Park, Napier, North Island 1996
v Western Samoa 1996 1996 1 100.00%
North Harbour Stadium, North Shore City, North Island 1997
Fiji 1997 2005 6 100.00%
Rugby Park, Hamilton, North Island 1997
v Argentina 1997 1997 1 100.00%
Westpac Stadium, Wellington, North Island 2000
v Australia 2000 2008 9 77.78%
Waikato Stadium, Hamilton, North Island 2002
v Italy 2002 2009
v South Africa 6 83.4%
Yarrow Stadium, New Plymouth, North Island 2008
v Samoa 2008 2008 1 100.00%
TOTAL 213 80.75%

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PostSubject: Re: All Blacks!!!!   All Blacks!!!! EmptyMon Nov 23, 2009 12:16 pm

long .. drako ur warned ! XD

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