A Rugby Nation Welcomes Home their Heroes (Excerpt 2015)

An excerpt from an Last Word On Sports article, as the returning All Blacks are welcomed home as heroes--after claiming the 2015 Rugby World Cup


A rugby nation welcomes home their heroes with some sensational scenes across this tiny nation over the last three days since the all conquering All Blacks rugby side returned from the 2015 Rugby World Cup (RWC) with the biggest prize of them all.

Conrad Smith and Ma’a Nonu celebrate with fans, during the Wellington street parade for their returning RWC heroes (Getty)

A Rugby Nation Welcomes Home their Heroes (Excerpt 2015)

The celebrations have not hardly stopped since. That began as soon as the plane landed at Auckland International airport. Greeted by a Haka performed by the airport ground crew while it was seven o’clock in the morning, that did not stop over four thousand fans cramming into the arrivals lounge.

The view that players discovered as they entered the hall was amazing: flags, All Blacks shirts, face paint and handmade signs welcoming them home were all on view. It humbled many, including the head coach Steve Hansen. He mentioned how “the players were aware of the support we had back home but this is very humbling. We expected to have a bit of a crowd but this is incredible.”

Some chiseled veterans like Keven Mealamu, Dan Carter and Ben Franks all would have been thankful and ‘blown over’ by the turnout. “It’s a real privilege and an honour to be part of it and we’re looking forward to visiting the nation and to then to get home to our families.” Hansen said as he addressed the crowd.

You can read more here.