Coaches Conjure Red Rag to All Blacks

This just in…



From: Graham Henry (
To: Steve Hansen (
Subject:  Pre match motivation – Wales
Date: 01 November 2009 (19:50 NZST)

As per our discussion on the 23rd, we really have to try and come up with an original way of stoking up the guys for the Wales game.  We need fire in their bellies or we could lose for the first time in absolutely bloody ages.

So I’ve looked into the last half dozen away internationals against Wales before we first got hired at NZRU.  Here is what former All-Blacks coaches used in order to get the players really narked before kick-off.

– Made the players repeatedly watch the Max Boyce Live skit about ‘Humpty Dumpty’

– Paid the travel company to ‘accidentally’ get confused about signage arrangements and stick a bloody great “C’mon Australia” banner down the side of the team bus.

– Handed out fake translations of the Welsh national anthem insinuating the colour black is bad, only ponces like silver ferns, and that NZ sheep are inferior to Welsh ones.  

– Convinced them that playing a home Wales international at Wembley Stadium is a practical joke designed to confuse “those stupid Kiwis”. 

– Got the stadium announcer to say “Number Sucks (that’s sucks by the way, not six) – Jerry Collins” when reading out the team sheet.  

– Told the players that ‘Seland Newydd’ means ‘The Wankers Team’

– Booked the team to stay in the Angel Hotel the night before. 

Shitting hell Steveo, that last one was a total masterstroke!!
I keep coming back to how well the whole haka thing played out last time though.  We’re struggling for inspiration here, so maybe we should just spin that again?




From: Steve Hansen (
To: Graham Henry (
Subject:  Re: Pre-match motivation – Wales
Date: 03 November 2009 (11:33 NZST)

The thing is Grayo; we both already agreed it can’t be the haka again.  First it was pretending we weren’t allowed to do the haka on the pitch and getting the guys to do it in Westgate Street car park instead.  Then last time – and we shouldn’t have done two haka related ones in a row, it’s looked too obvious IMHO – warning the boys that the Welsh lads would probably just gaze up at the big-screen looking for Charlotte Church’s baps rather than watch us strutting our ancient ceremonial whatnot.
How about telling the fellas that Dame Kiri Te Kanawa is being held hostage?  In Neath?