All Blacks - national heroes
The All Blacks, New Zealand's national rugby team, are one of the most feared opponents in the rugby world. Seeing them on the field in their black jerseys emblazoned with the silver fern, performing the haka, stirs pride in the hearts of Kiwis around the world.
The Rugby World Cup 2011 tournament - the world's third largest sporting event - brought 133,000 international fans to New Zealand for the biggest rugby festival ever seen. It culminated with a thrilling final at Eden Park where the All Blacks defeated France.
For those who might not know how the game is played - rugby is a rough and tumble game consisting of 15 players each side, trying to get the oval shaped rugby ball across the try line.
Rising from cities, small towns and country paddocks filled with farmers’ stock, no part of New Zealand’s landscape is quite complete without a set of rugby goal posts.
Rugby enthusiasts visiting New Zealand have the opportunity to come face to face with a first XV of a rare and precious kind - fielded by the country’s national rugby museum.