Time to farewell the Webb Ellis Cup

Getty Images     24 Oct 2013     Getty Images

The Cup will be on display at the Queenstown Events Centre (Joe O’Connell Drive, Frankton) from 10am until 11am with All Blacks Richie McCaw, Ma’a Nonu, Cory Jane, Andrew Hore and Francis Saili.

• Final public appearances two years since RWC 2011 victory
• Cup departs New Zealand Saturday for RWC2015 duties

In addition:

• Tonight: The Cup will be making a special appearance in the home of one passionate All Blacks fan on TV3’s Campbell Live show which marks two years since the nail biting victory over France at the final of Rugby World Cup 2011.
• Thursday morning: On TV One Breakfast from 6am with the public invited to view the Cup at the Hobson Street entrance to Television New Zealand (in atrium if wet) between 8am and 9am.

“It’s been a huge privilege to have been the custodian of the Cup for these past two years and we have really enjoyed sharing it with so many people as we promised,” said New Zealand Rugby Chief Executive Steve Tew.

Since the World Cup final thousands of fans have got up close to the Cup and captured their own special memories. The Great Rugby Road Trip last year took the Cup to 41 towns and cities and over 100 schools - from the far north to the deep south and even to the Chatham Islands. Since then it has made countless other public appearances across the country and visited homes, workplaces, rugby clubs and other places.

“We all remember how we celebrated two years ago after the final. Who can forget the huge crowds who turned out at the victory parades – but now it is time to say goodbye.

“This is a pretty special time for New Zealand rugby – we added the men’s and women’s World Cups of sevens to the trophy cabinet this year so we are now world champions across all forms of the game.

“But we are determined to go one better. While it is sad to see Wiremu, as we have dubbed him, go, this week is also all about looking forward to England in 2015 when we hope the stadium of four million once again gets behind the All Blacks as they attempt back-to-back World Cup victories.”

On Saturday the Cup begins its journey to help promote the next World Cup in England in 2015.

The Cup departs New Zealand on Saturday afternoon on a specially branded DHL plane with Rugby World Cup 2015 livery. It is being accompanied on the journey by All Blacks selector Grant Fox.