Thinking and talking about rugby every day for 50+ years
17 September 2015
THINGS YOU MIGHT NOT HAVE KNOWN ABOUT THIS YEAR'S NEW ALL BLACK WORLD CUP PLAYERS
by Keith Quinn
Codie Joshua Dane Taylor
His Christian name is correctly spelled; Codie not Cody.
He was born in Levin on 31 March 1991
Taylor is of Ngati Raukawa and Muaupoko Maori tribal origins.
The town of Levin had not 'provided' an All Black since local lad Carlos Spencer arrived in 1995 and played until 2004.
He was a Junior and Secondary School rep for Horowhenua-Kapiti
He attended Horowhenua College in Levin before transferring to Feilding High School in Feilding.
He made the New Zealand Under 17 squad while still at school.
In 2009 he played for New Zealand Secondary Schools.
He is one of three Feilding High School ex-pupils in the 2015 All Black Rugby World Cup team (also Aaron Smith and Sam Whitelock)
In the last 12 years Feiding HS has provided five All Blacks (add George and Luke Whitelock from above) and add two Black Ferns (Sara Goss and Charlotte Scanlon) (Adam Whitelock was also a Sevens All Black in 2014??)
Codie grew up for some years in Australia and played rugby league there.
Like Dane Coles he has been a 'resident' of the Kapiti Coast, on the east coast north of Wellington. His immediate family watched the announcement of the Rugby World Cup tream in Levin.
When he transferred to Christchurch in 2010 he joined up with the Sydenham Club. Along with Nepo Laulala he was a new All Black from the club in 2015. (other recent All Black front-rowers have come from that club; Dave Hewett, Con Barrell and Corey Flynn)
At Sydenham and with Canterbury TaylorF has been a hooker and loose forward on occasions.
He is already a Rugby World Cup winner (with NZ Under 20 in 2011) New Zealand beat England 33-22 in Padua. (Future All Blacks in that team were TJ Perenara, Charles Piutau, Beauden Barrett, Lima Sopoaga, Sam Cane, Waisake Naholo, Luke Whitelock, Brodie Retallick, Steven Luatua, Ben Tameifuna, Francis Saili, Dominic Bird and Brad Weber.)
He toured Japan with New Zealand Maori in 2014.
He made his test debut for New Zealand in Christchurch in 2015 v Argentina, scoring a try on debut.
Feilding High School's list of All Blacks is; Nelson Ball, Jack Finlay, Richard 'Tiny' White,' Stuart Freebairn, Perry Harris, George Whitelock, Sam Whitelock, Luke Whitelock, Arron Smith and Codie Taylor.
Taylor's great great grandfather, Walter Peter Pringle, also represented New Zealand, playing five games against Australian state and invitational sides in 1893
NEHE RIHARA MILNER-SKUDDER
born 15 December 1990 at Otaihape, near Taihape, New Zealand.
He is of Tongan/Maori descent
On the Maori side he is of the Ngati Porou and Tapuika tribes but also is of Tongan descent. His Grandparents are originally from Mu'a/Lapaha/'Ata'ata island in Tonga.
Nehe's parents are Richard Skudder from Te Puke and Heneriata Milner from Ruatoria. One published story this year has it that his parents (his father was an Army Engineer) were driving from from Waiouru Army camp to Palmerston North hospital but the baby 'arrived' in Otaihape on the outskirts of Taihape)
Nehe's father Richard is a younger brother of George Skudder (George represented the All Blacks also as a winger in 1969 and 1972). Henrietta Milner is a cousin of the late All Black centre Henare 'Buff' Milner, an All Black in 1968-1970. Skudder and Milner never played in the same All Black team.
Another All Black Tanerau Latimer (five tests; six games 2009) is Nehe's first cousin. Ben Atiga was another All Black (1 test 2003) from the same wider family. Their forefathers were born and raised in Lapaha, Tongatapu in Tonga, before they left to New Zealand. Two members of the earlier generations of the Skudder family were part of 94 a group of Tongans who volunteered to join the Maori Battalion and Niue Battalion during WW1.
Nehe did his secondary schooling at Queen Elizabeth College in Palmerston North. He attended for five years, making the first XV and leaving in 2008. In 2009 he was trialling as a rugby league hopeful with the Canterbury Bulldogs in Sydney. Also at the Bulldogs at that time was All Black Sonny Bill Williams.
Not having made it into the top team at the Bulldogs Nehe returned to Palmerston North in 2011 and resumed playing rugby union for Old Boys Marist Club then Massey University. In his first year back he made the Manawatu Turbos representative team. He also played in the New Zealand Touch team.
Impressive form in 2014 saw his rise begin to come into All Black consideration. He went on the 2014 Maori All Black tour of Japan, then played Super 15 rugby in 2015 for The Hurricanes. His exciting, elusive running as a winger/fullback had him in the All Blacks for a 2-try test debut in Sydney in August 2015.
WAISAKE RATUNIDEUBA NAHOLO
Born 8 May 1991 in Sigatoka, Fiji
He lived in Fiji until 2007 when he was accepted into Wanganui City College in New Zealand. He came to New Zealand as part of Wanganui City College's Junior Rugby Academy. WCC is a decile 2 school with a roll of only 400 pupils.
Early in 2009 he showed a hint of his future speed when he won the 100 metres at the North Island Secondary Schools athletic championships.
His rugby was making its mark too. Also in 2009 while still at WCC he made his debut for Wanganui, playing under the name 'Waisake Ratunideuba.' While his first provincial game was actually against Murray Mexted's International Rugby Academy XV his first-class debut was as a substitute in Wanganui's challenge for the Ranfurly Shield. He played 11 games for the province that season. He was listed everywhere as W.Ratunideuba.
In 2010 he had shifted north, crossing into the Taranaki rugby province. He joined the Spotswood United Club from where he made his Taranaki debut. The following year he made the New Zealand Under 20 team which travelled to Italy and it won the IRB's Under-20 Rugby World Cup. By 2015 13 of that team had become full All Blacks. (see list in Codie Taylor profile on this page)
In 2012 Naholo's brilliance as an attacking runner had also caught the eye of sevens guru Sir Gordon Tietjens and Naholo, starting at the Wellington sevens of 2012 he travelled to four of the HSBC World Sevens Series tournaments. In 2013 as a 22 year old he had won his second World Cup title by being part of the 33-0 thrashing of England in the Sevens World Cup final in the Moscow Olympic Stadium.
He also became a regular in the Taranaki rep team in 2012 and also the Blues professional franchise. He shifted to the Highlanders in 2015 and with his excellent form in the Taranaki team which won the ITM trophy in 2014 and with the Highlanders who won the Super 15 title in 2015 his form was such that higher honours seemed inevitable.
And so they came in 2015 with his inclusion in the All Blacks pre-World Cup squad. He made his test debut v Argentina in Christchurch but had to leave the field with a serious leg injury. There was extreme doubt expressed that he would be available for the Rugby World Cup but a highly publicised recovery, aided, it is said by an ancient and traditional Fijian healing process was said to have helped significantly. It was reported Naholo visited a local doctor at his remote village of Nadroumai where Dr Isei Naiova tightly bound his legs with leaves from local trees, some of which are said to have strong anti-inflammatory qualities. Naholo's recovery was said to have been quickened markedly.
Nevertheless his inclusion in the 31-man All Black team for the Rugby World Cup was a surprise, especially as it was said he would not be avaliable to play until the third game of the Cup series. Coach Steve Hansen justified the selection of Naholo by saying the All Blacks needed his 'X-factor' qualities as an attacking winger.
Graham Mourie's touring team was beaten 12-0 by Munster in Limerick; the first win by any Irish team over the All Blacks. And poems, songs, books, films and reunions followed over the years.
The famous New Zealand radio commentator who revolutionised the way rugby commentary was done all over the world.
The Wellington born McCarthy had essentially an outward personality; he loved talking, and he had had time on stage as a lad in the early 1930s in New Zealand. It followed then that he was not phased by nerves when he became a rugby commentator. He broadcast his games with a style so different from the conservative way callers had been first commentated the game in Britain. McCarthy was loud and brazen not afraid to raise his voice and ‘let go’ on the air.
When he was sent by the New Zealand Government to broadcast the 1945-46 Kiwi Army rugby of Britain back to New Zealand his style fascinated the conformist BBC. They took his broadcasts and put them on their stations. They were amazed that he could engender so much excitement. The BBC wanted him to stay on. Instead McCarthy came back to New Zealand, but his style lingered in Britain. Gone were the stuffy, some might say plum-in-the-mouth callers and encouraged was the McCarthy style. The great Scottish TV commentator, Bill McLaren, recalls how, as a young fledgling radio man, he was sent by the BBC to Cardiff in 1954 to stand behind McCarthy and watch ‘how’ he broadcast a game.
Because of the high peaks of emotion surrounding the 1956 Springbok tour of New Zealand Winston’s words of description and catchphrases became the catchphrases of the New Zealand nation. His most famous call was ‘listen….it’s a goal!’ when a shot at goal was taken. He would allow the cheering of the crowd to tell the radio audience first whether a kick was on target or not.
In his time, in the 1940s and ‘50s Winston McCarthy became one of the best-known New Zealanders. He became the eyes and ears of New Zealand’s voracious appetite for listening to their All Black team on tour. It was commonly said around the country that if the All Black selectors of the time could not see every game being played each week they were influenced in their selection of test teams by what McCarthy had said on the air. His words weighed that heavily.
Two of Ireland's most famous players were known as Jackie Kyle and Willie-John McBride; what were the two 'proper' Christian names each man had?