League legends lunching for world cup
What a fantastic Rugby Championship test match in Cape Town last weekend, with the All Blacks winning the thriller 25-24 over the much-improved Springboks.
When you consider the Springboks coach Allister Coetzee was in all sorts of bother during the week leading up for saying he did not believe it was reasonable to expect his players to get up and beat our boys, after they were utterly thrashed at North Harbour Stadium last month, he is either a realist or a motivational genius, because South Africa played out of their skins.
I love a great and tense game like that. To me that rugby test was far more enjoyable than when we won 57-0.
And good luck to our Silver Ferns netball team, who lost 60-52 in their Constellation Cup international on Sunday, giving the Aussies a 2-0 lead in the series ahead of game three in Adelaide tonight.
And yes it was a tough week for us Kiwi rugby league fans, but out of every negative there is a positive.
All the publicity caused a spike in ticket sales, and the players defecting from the Kiwis to play for Tonga will make them a stronger proposition for the Rugby League World Cup, which kicks off in just over a fortnight.
All you New Zealand fans out there can show your support for our Kiwis team in three ways.
The first and most obvious is to buy a ticket and be there to show your support and cheer on the boys.
It’s really affordable because there are tickets from just $20. You can grab tickets at the website www.rlwc2017.com.
If you can’t get to the world cup games to watch the action live, why not send the team an email expressing your best wishes. The address you email@example.com.
And the third way is to buy a ticket for the Kiwis Lunch at the Ellerslie Events Centre on Friday, October 27.
There are going to be I do not know how many former Kiwis there, including some absolute legends of the game, and tickets are just $100.
And that also includes a ticket need is to the opening game the next day, New Zealand against Samoa at Mt Smart Stadium.
It is going to be a huge event and where else could you go to get to rub shoulders with men such as 2008 Rugby League World Cupwinning coach Stephen Kearney, or Olsen Filipaina, the man who paved the way for Kiwis to play and excel in the NRL across the Tasman.
The list of former Kiwis attending reads like a who’s who of our game, with guys like Richie Blackmore, Brent Webb, Richie Barnett, Paul Rauhihi, Fred Ah Kuoi, Tawera Nikau, Nathan Cayless, Graeme West and many others.
One man who won’t be there is Ray Cranch, the oldest living former Kiwi.
He can’t make it but he was on hand on Sunday at the Kiwi Association reunion, which was an absolutely fantastic day, and Ray gave a speech that was simply outstanding.
We will miss him at Ellerslie Events Centre for sure, but a great event is guaranteed all the same.
Speaking of guarantees, to make sure you don’t miss out on one of rugby league’s events of the year, visit the website www.ellerslie.co.nz, or call Charlotte on 09 522 3824.
North Queensland Cowboys star Jason Taumalolo played for Tonga in the 2013 Rugby League World Cup, and will again this year, after being considered for selection for the Kiwis.