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NZ Rugby World

NZ Rugby World December - January 2018-19

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New Zealand Rugby World is the premier authority on our national game; with sharp analysis and irreverent humour the two key components. In both style and content the writing is award winning and provides an unparalleled depth of insight into the people who play the game and the issues that matter to the fans. The cast of contributors is world class as is the photography and lay-out. Pick this magazine up and you won't want to put it down - rugby has never been so much fun.

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New Zealand
Dark Horse Collective Ltd
6 Issues

in this issue

4 min.
editor’s letter

IT’S ALWAYS A SOURCE OF INTRIGUE AND NO LITTLE AMUSEMENT TO OBSERVE the national reaction to a tough patch endured by the All Blacks. It’ particularly interesting when said tough patch follows a period of extreme domination. Perspective, balance, common sense and rational thinking… they all go out the window. There were some truly dumb, odd terrible and nonsensical things said and written about the All Blacks in the latter part of the year. Most of the lunacy surfaced in the wake of the loss to Ireland and a process of re-writing history began while also alluding to a dark and doomed future. There was widespread criticism of Kieran Read for his performance in Ireland. He did make two high profile mistakes – he failed to gather the kick he charged down, which if…

7 min.
gateway to the wild frontier

If everything goes to plan for the All Blacks at the World Cup, they will play at Yokohama Stadium twice. They have the guarantee of starting their campaign there against South Africa and the promise of going back if they make it to the final. For those planning to head to Japan to watch them, first of all consider getting there with Fiji Airways who have direct flights to Tokyo from Nadi and if you leave from Auckland, it means a stopover…which is no bad way to start a visit anywhere. Secondly, realise now that it would be a mistake to gamble on exploring the Kanagawa prefecture – of which Yokohama is the major city - only if the All Blacks make the final. Best to knock it off in week one because it…

5 min.
the breakdown

READO TO CALL TIME AFTER RWC All Blacks skipper Kieran Read has confirmed that he is now in the last 10 months of his test career. Read, who will turn 34 at the World Cup, says he won’t be looking to extend his New Zealand contract and instead will head off shore after the tournament. Having been with the Crusaders since 2007 and playing his first test in 2008, the veteran loose forward says it will be the right time for him to move on. “So for me I think it probably won’t be in New Zealand,” he told NZ Rugby World about his post-2019 future. “We have always thought as a family that we would like to go overseas and use that experience for the kids. That is probably the main option at the…

10 min.
world awards

NZ RUGBY WORLD PLAYER OF THE YEAR Richie Mo’unga We will be honest and say this came down to a straight choice between Richie Mo’unga and Codie Taylor. We went with the former on the basis that while he didn’t play as many tests as Taylor, his contribution throughout the year was still enormously high and influential. Mo’unga steered the Crusaders to their second consecutive title and while it was a genuine team e. ort, he provided the tactical control the composure and the creativity that set them apart. He was brilliant in the knockout rounds – every bit as good as Beauden Barrett had been in 2016 when he led the Hurricanes through the playoffs with some huge performances. And when Mo’unga played for the All Blacks, he made his impact. He made a difference…

40 min.
the 50 most memorable moments of 2018…

01 ARDIE SAVEA’S LATE TRY IN PRETORIA At 30-18 down and nine minutes left, the All Blacks weren’t a great bet to win the final Rugby Championship test of the year in South Africa. The pessimism wasn’t driven exclusively by the scoreline, it was more the fact the All Blacks had been outplayed all game and had no momentum. But test rugby is a mad old business and suddenly things turned. The All Blacks won a scrum penalty, kicked for the corner and drove the lineout over to cut the gap with four minutes left. Another prolonged period of good defence saw Ardie Savea win a crucial turnover penalty which Richie Mo’unga banged out to five metres on the bounce. Another lineout drive, another controlled series of pick and go from the forwards and on…

14 min.
the last big push

This is it for Kieran Read, the last big push. He will retire from test football after the World Cup – cart his battered body off to some foreign clime where he and his family can have the overseas experience they have always dreamed of. A test career that began in Edinburgh, November 2008 will end, he hopes, in Yokohama, November 2019. He’s already made his mind up that he will pull up stumps after the World Cup. He’ll be 34. He’ll have played at his third World Cup and be certain he’s not going to make it to a fourth. And he obviously feels, without needing to say it, that there will be nothing left to aim for by then. He’ll have achieved just about everything he could. He’s already got two World…