allblacks.com 14.May.2012Getty Images
- Gordon Tietjens inducted into the IRB Hall of Fame.
- Tomasi Cama wins IRB Sevens Player of the Year.
- New Zealand win 10th IRB Sevens World Series title.
New Zealand Sevens Coach Gordon Tietjens received the ultimate rugby honour this morning after being inducted into the IRB Hall of Fame, the first Sevens Coach recognised this way.
Tietjens induction follows New Zealand's record breaking 10th IRB World Series win in London overnight.
To cap off a great night for New Zealand, Tomasi Cama received the IRB Sevens Player of the Year award. Cama also finished the season as leading points scorer with 390 points.
NZRU Chief Executive Steve Tew said the accolades were testament to the consistent excellence of the team.
"I am delighted for Gordon that his remarkable achievements in Sevens have been recognised by the IRB in this way. He has been at the top of his game for 17 years and has led the New Zealand Sevens team to all 10 of their world titles and four Commonwealth Games gold medals - an amazing accomplishment for any coach.
"The team has had an incredible season picking up three tournament wins in what was a very competitive Series this year. To come away with our tenth World Series win is just fantastic, and we are very proud of them".
Mr Tew also congratulated Sevens playmaker Tomasi Cama on winning the IRB Player of the Year award.
"Tomasi has been an integral part of the New Zealand Sevens team for seven seasons. He is one of the most exciting players I have seen in the game and has had an outstanding season," he said.
Tietjens joins a group of great New Zealanders that have already been inducted in to the IRB Hall of Fame, including All Black greats Sir Brian Lochore, Sir Wilson Whineray, David Kirk, the 1988 Natives team and Joseph Warbrick, Dave Gallaher and Jonah Lomu.
Usually inductees to the IRB Hall of Fame are required to have stepped down from active duty in playing or coaching for at least three years before being considered for induction. However, the IRB Hall of Fame panel viewed Tietjens' achievements to date as so outstanding that, in his individual case, they were willing to overlook that criteria for induction.
New Zealand secured the title in a 36-0 win over South Africa in the Cup quarter final at Twickenham in the final leg of the HSBC Sevens World Series. New Zealand went on to finish third at the tournament beating Argentina 40-0 in the third and fourth play-off.