'The best team we've ever seen' – French fans swoon over All Blacks at Paris meet and greet

French fans got up close and personal with the All Blacks at a sponsor's event in Paris overnight.

Fans lined the streets for hours, as Vaea Fifita, Patrick Tuipulotu and Nathan Harris signed autographs and posed for photos with the French fans, ahead of their Test match in Paris tomorrow morning.

"It's the first time I can see the All Blacks for real," one fan said.

"They're the best team we've ever seen in rugby."

While the fans were happy to meet the men in black, it didn't change their loyalties ahead of tomorrow's clash - asked who they were going to support.

"France, but the All Blacks will win. They never lose."

The locals got a chance to rub shoulders with the men in black overnight. Source: 1 NEWS


Topics



'He’s too valuable': Hansen says All Backs won't risk 'flattening' a sick Sonny Bill

Sonny Bill Williams is out of this Saturday's Rugby Championship Test for the All Blacks against the Springboks at Westpac Stadium in Wellington.

Williams was initially named on the bench in the All Blacks' 23 man squad, but hasn't recovered from tonsillitis he suffered earlier in the week.

Confirmed! Ma'a Nonu signs one year deal with Tana Umaga's Blues for 2019

"He's had tonsillitis all week and at the end of the day it was whether we chuck him out on the reserve bench and flatten him if he has to come on and play 80 minutes or take the risk and he only has to play 20," coach Steve Hansen said.

"In the end he's too valuable to do that to and we've got good replacements." 

He is replaced by teammate Jack Goodhue on the bench.

Williams hasn’t played since he injured his shoulder in the French Test series in June.

The All Blacks coach discussed the risks associated with SBW making his comeback to rugby off the bench against South Africa. Source: 1 NEWS


Topics


Wallabies ready for 'very passionate' Pumas coach Merio Ledesma's challenge

The Wallabies hope they are still profiting from lessons learnt under their former forwards coach Mario Ledesma, as they prepare to face an Argentinian team now under his stewardship.

Former Pumas hooker Ledesma had a strong association with Australian rugby and especially Wallabies coach Michael Cheika.

He was forwards coach at French club Stade Francais under Cheika, who brought him to Australia to help out at the NSW Waratahs and then the Wallabies.

Recently appointed Argentina's national head coach, Ledesma will lead the country of his birth into battle against Australia in Saturday's Rugby Championship match on the Gold Coast.

"Very passionate but also quite technical," Wallabies' prop Scott Sio said of Ledesma.

"He knew when to take you aside and have a one-on-one chat and then he also had the ability to really get the team up and get them going for a session.

"He was a great believer in how you train is how you're going to play on the weekend and making the most of your training.

"That was one thing we really got from him and I think hopefully it's something that we've kept."

After leaving the Wallabies in late 2017, Ledesma enjoyed success with the Jaguares, leading Argentina's Super Rugby representative to the playoffs for the first time, in his only season at the franchise.

Appointed Pumas head coach at the start of last month, they have shown promising signs in their first three outings under his leadership.

They had a 13-point away loss and a home win by the same margin in their matches against South Africa.

In their most recent game last weekend, they lost away to New Zealand by 22, a smaller margin than Australia's two defeats by the world champion All Blacks in the first two rounds.

'The scoreline didn't reflect how that game actually went on the weekend for them." Sio said.

"I thought they had some great play in attack and really challenged the All Blacks for quite a lot of time in that game.

"So just looking forward to the battle, I think it will be a physical 80 minutes and then we look forward to seeing him (Ledesma) after."

Sio revealed one aspect of the Wallabies Ledesma found hard to appreciate.

"He was never happy about the different coloured boots that we wore," Sio said.

"He was always a big believer - like my dad - in black boots all the way."

Argentina coach Mario Ledesma during the Argentina rugby team training session ahead of the Rugby Championship test match in Nelson on Saturday against the New Zealand All Blacks, Alexandra Park, Auckland. Tuesday 4 September 2018. © Copyright Image: Andrew Cornaga / www.photosport.nz
Argentina rugby coach Mario Ledesma. Source: Photosport


Topics

TODAY'S
FEATURED STORIES

All Blacks great Sir Bryan Williams inducted into World Rugby Hall of Fame

All Blacks legend Sir Bryan Williams has been inducted into the World Rugby Hall of Fame overnight (NZ time), in ceremony held in England.

Sir Bryan was joined by former Irish international and Crusaders assistant coach Ronan O'Gara, former French flyhalf Pierre Villepruex and former Welsh women's player Liza Burgess to be inducted in the Hall of Fame.

The 67-year-old Williams joins the likes of former All Blacks of Jonah Lomu, Sir Colin Meads and New Zealand women's legend Farah Palmer who have received the prestigious honour.

He is the 22nd New Zealander to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Upon receiving the accolade Sir Bryan said he was proud to be named amongst greats of the game.

"It is a great honour to be inducted to the World Rugby Hall of Fame,"he said.

"I remember my first game in 1961 was a curtain-raiser before an All Blacks game, they were all my heroes and they inspired me.

"Nine years later, I was playing my first Test for them. I loved my time in rugby and I'm lucky to say that rugby has loved me back."

Sir Bryan made his debut for the All Blacks against South Africa in 1970 and played 113 matches for New Zealand and played 38 Tests.


Topics


404

Error 404

Guru Meditation:

XID: 682502738


Varnish cache server