The eyes of the world’s media may be on the team at the Rugby World Cup in Japan, but All Blacks coach Steve Hansen is not going in to his shell as far as his joke telling goes.
Not when he’s presented a golden opportunity in the form of a question about Wales coach Warren Gatland using baby oil on balls to prepare his team for the humid and slippery conditions in Japan.
“Do you want to rephrase what you said then?” Hansen asked.
“You said Warren Gatland has been putting baby oil on his balls, that’s probably not the headline you want, old son.”
Gatland's lubricant of choice for his team's balls at practice also provided some light relief at the South African media session, with Springboks assistant Mzwandile Stick cracking up at one question from 1 NEWS reporter Matt Manukia.
Jokes aside, Hansen said the team had done everything they could to prepare for the muggy and potentially stormy weather in Japan including using water on the balls at practice rather than baby oil.
“No, we’ve just been using plain old water, seems to be working alright,” he said.
“We’ve done other things as well that we’re not going to tell you about but we think we’ve prepared as good as we can do.”
“Since we’ve got here, we’ve had everything, a couple of days in the 30s, and weather like today.”
“The big thing will be the ball, that will be the constant thing, humidity will be high and the ball will be wet, skills will be really important.”
“Kicking game will be really important, you can’t have a running game without a kicking game because the kicking game shapes the defence.”