We already know how talented our players are on the field, but throughout isolation and now lockdown, we are seeing a whole new range of creativity from all of our New Zealand rugby players away from the pitch. Like all of us, they are having to do all their workouts and training sessions from home. We have seen Black Ferns hooker Luka Connor squatting with sheep, Forne Burkin and Stacey Fluhler constructing workouts on the farm, while Jordie Barrett took his training to the next level over the weekend, by pushing a huge tractor. We are enjoying the watt bike challenge which has been set by former England cricketer Kevin Pietersen. You have 30 minutes to get a max calorie count. Players like Beauden Barrett, TJ Perenara and Rieko Ioane have all given it a shot, but Pietersen still has the best score with 624 calories.
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All Blacks isolation updates
Throughout lockdown and isolation, All Blacks fans have been getting a great insight into what players have been doing to keep themselves occupied. There have been updates from Anton Lienert-Brown and Damian McKenzie who are living together in Hamilton, Codie Taylor who’s been making sure he has some structure to each day by taking his kids out for a walk to the local park. Patrick Tuipulotu showed us around his home gym in his garage and his desk setup where he and a few other Blues teammates have been doing Samoan classes. And Jack Goodhue is having an “extended honeymoon” after recently getting married. He’s stoked he and his wife purchased their coffee machine when they did.
Don’t realise what you’ve got until it’s gone …
Gosh, you really do miss sitting down at 7:05pm to watch a live game of footy. Richie McCaw featured on Sky Sport’s Breakdown show last week and put it really well when he said:
“One thing you hear is that people get sick of seeing rugby or a sport in general if you see too much of it. It’s amazing when you haven’t got anything to watch how important it is to everyone’s lives, from an entertainment point of view or something to talk about. Having no rugby has shown how important it is to New Zealand and once that opportunity to get back out there, whatever form it looks like, people will be excited just to either be back player or back watching. That in the long run might be a positive for our game, remembering how important it is.”
Let’s hope we get rugby back on our screens and in our stadiums soon.
How good is archival footage?
Whilst rugby is on a hiatus, we’ve been thoroughly appreciating all the archival footage Sky Sport have dug up from the vaults. From Dan Carter’s perfect performance against the British and Irish Lions in 2005 to Super Rugby throwbacks from the 90s (where jerseys were twice the size they are now), Sky Sport has you covered for your rugby fix whilst we stay indoors.
Musical, golfing and baking talents
As well as creativity, we’ve noticed a lot of our players have got some musical talents and go alright in the kitchen. Number one on this list is Angus Ta’avao. The man can play a saxophone, a ukulele and write his own lyrics. Take a look for yourself below. Then we have the likes of Sevu Reece and All Blacks Sevens playmaker Kurt Baker who have been showing off their cooking and baking skills. Chiefs flanker Adam Thompson has also got creative in the kitchen and is dehydrating fruit! The Chiefs have shown their golfing skills over the last week as well, with Damian McKenzie and Anton Lienert-Brown even building their own mini driving range in their backyard.
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