The New Zealand Heartland XV, formerly known as the New Zealand Divisional XV, was established in 1988 to expose players from Divisions Two and Three in the Air New Zealand NPC to rugby at a higher level. In 2006, Heartland Championship replaced the former Air New Zealand NPC Divisions Two and Three, and the competition has given more players the chance to push for national honours. The first New Zealand Heartland XV side toured the Pacific Islands in 2005 and they played six games (which they won), including matches against Tonga and Fiji. Since then the team has toured Argentina in 2006 and the United States in 2008, beating the Pacific Coast Grizzlies and a USA Select XV.
The team has been the launching pad of many All Blacks' careers including Carlos Spencer and Justin Marshall. Other players who made appearances for the New Zealand Heartland XV early in their careers include Jeff Wilson, Todd Blackadder, Norm Hewitt, Simon Culhane and Matthew Cooper.
|08.Nov Albany, Auckland||New Zealand Marist XV 31||vs||46 Heartland XV|
|11.Nov Nikao, Rarotonga||Cook Islands 6||vs||64 Heartland XV|
|14.Nov Nikao, Rarotonga||Heartland XV 33||vs||20 Cook Islands|