Easter is over and that means it's officially time to get back to rugby. You might remember rugby as that sport we've heard nothing about for the last few months, while we enthralled with the cricket.
I went to the Caketin on Good Friday for what I thought would be another poorly attended fairly dull game of rugby. Instead what I saw was a big crowd at full volume who got a humdinger of a game.
The boos and anger that flowed out of the crowd at Canterbury's final try (and it was a try, see Mike's awesome shot below) was some of the best crowd noise I've heard. Previous best include the Tall Blacks beating Australia; the Pulse winning their first game (and possibly their only win the way they're going) and, of course, the Phoenix.
Highlight of the night was a group of young guys who had banners saying "Hey Dan [Carter]" with a picture of a hand pulling "the fingers" and another depicting Dan Carter as an anthropomorphised penis. Satire is far from dead.
I imagine the crowd numbers this weekend will spike around the country. It was a holiday weekend, the weather was mild, and the (NZ) match ups were against local teams or scary South Africans. For example the Blues match (in half a stadium) was sold out.
And I assume that this is where the Super 14 becomes interesting, in week… um… eight. Wow, eight already? Also, I had to go look that up.
I did feel a little like I had started watching a TV show in the middle of the season. "Who's that?" "I thought they had that guy? Oh he left?" "So is the number 8 still good? No, ok"
In the meantime, the World Cup pre-ticket sales campaign continues to be news for some reason. @dubdotdash's bootleg version of the ad highlight's something interesting:
There is a lack of New Zealand in the ad, meaning that it's probably shown overseas and that they're going for more of a "world party" theme than a "come to "New Zealand we're pretty" theme. Or perhaps it's more of a "don't put any more pressure on the All Blacks than we need to" thing.
Don't mention the World Cup!