Taonga, historic trophy up for grabs in North v South rugby match

Not one, but two trophies will be hoisted in Wellington by the winner of Saturday's North Island versus South Island game.

Te Matau a Māui – The Fishhook of Māui (left) and the Loving Cup (right). Source: NZ Rugby

New Zealand Rugby have unveiled, Te Matau a Māui (the fishhook of Māui), which will be handed to the victor.

The trophy is a carved rimu fish hook on a kauri base, designed and carved by Ngāi Tahu father and son, John and Dave Burke.

In Māori mythology the demi-god Māui-tikitiki-a-Tāranga fished up Te Ika a Māui (the great fish of Māui) from his canoe Te Waka a Māui (the canoe of Māui).

An old rugby relic is also up for grabs, with the Loving Cup back in contention for the first time since 1932.

The trophy was lost for 88 years but was recently found in the depths of Eden Park.

Historian Ian St George went public with his search for the old cup while working on a book about a New Zealand silent film star living in London.

If the North v South match ends in draw, which has happened on three previous occasions, both trophies will be shared.