Lock Andy Haden Key Player in AB History
All Blacks lock Andy Haden, who “was an exceptionally talented, intelligent and resilient lock, among the best in the world in his era,” has died in Auckland, aged 69. The Japan Times has published an Associated Press article about the life of the Whanganui-born rugby union player.
“Haden made his All Blacks debut in 1972 in an unusual match against a New York team at Downing Stadium. He waited five years more for his test debut, which he made at home against the British and Irish Lions. From that point until his retirement he was a key member of the New Zealand team,” AP reports.
“He was also ahead of his time, foreseeing rugby’s move to professionalism and often tripping the boundary line between the amateur and professional games.
“While he played 117 in All Blacks matches, including 41 tests – eight as captain – between 1972 and 1985 and is regarded as one of the finest second rowers to have played for New Zealand, Haden became a controversial figure because of his penalty-winning ‘simulation’.
“He was investigated and exonerated by the New Zealand Rugby Union for breaching rugby’s amateur code and went on to become the union’s marketing adviser and one of New Zealand’s first player agents. He also represented New Zealand-born supermodel Rachel Hunter.”
Original article by Associated Press, The Japan Times, July 29, 2020.