Capping Off a Great Year
Following their seven-try, record-breaking victory last week against the French in Lyon, the All Blacks continued their run of success in Paris against the host nation at the Stade de France. Despite the French side showing greater resolve in front of a home crowd of 80,000 the All Blacks claimed a hard fought 23-11 victory. Meanwhile, the rugby world’s fascination with Richie McCaw continued as the All Black captain was named International Rugby Players’ Association’s Player of the Year. “It’s special to be acknowledged by your peers, and I’m really grateful for that. The All Blacks have had a good season and my teammates are part of this award too,” McCaw said,recognition of the fact that four of the five category finalists came from the All Black side. Adding to what has already been a highly successful year for Graham Henry’s squad, Jason Eaton was named international newcomer of the year and the All Blacks were awarded team of the year. McCaw and Daniel Carter are also shortlisted for the soon-to-be-announced, International Rugby Board’s Player of the Year award. The Tri-Nations champions conclude their European tour against Wales in Cardiff on Saturday.