A local pub and restaurant was full of cheers and groans as the NFL Super Bowl 2017 unfolded on the TV screens.

The New England Patriots faced off against the Atlanta Falcons yesterday..

Steve Smith, from New York, was one of the numerous tourists from America who had stopped in at the Pig and Whistle to catch the action.

He said he was going for the New England Patriots, though normally New Yorkers liked the Giants or the Jets and hated the Patriots.

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He said he was cheering for the Patriots because he was not an original New Yorker and because they were the "best professional sports team in North America in the last 10 years".

He said, back in America, Super Bowl celebrations would usually involve the evening in a bar like the Pig and Whistle, though it would be packed, or at someone's house who was having a Super Bowl party.

It was usually at the house of the person with the biggest TV, he said.

Mr Smith said he liked NFL Football in general but the Super Bowl was a fun spectacular, and everyone remembered it.

He said he was in New Zealand for two weeks, travelling all around the country.

Mr Smith said he missed being in New York at this time for the Super Bowl because of being with friends and just the general hype.

He said they found out the Pig and Whistle was showing the Super Bowl because they "spoke to a wise local who told us to come here".

Hailey and Jason White from Tennessee were also at the Pig and Whistle to catch the game, though said they would have been cheering for anybody but the Patriots.

Mr White said this was because the Patriots were always in the Super Bowl and he was not a big fan of their player Tom Brady.

He said in America they would probably be watching it at home with friends and neighbours because he had a 63-inch (160cm) TV.

There would also always be beer and food, the American couple said.

Mr White said when away from home he tried to make sure he still watched it.

Mrs White said they were not missing being at home for the Super Bowl because their teams were not in it to make it a lot more interesting.

"It's definitely a tradition. If you don't watch it for the teams you watch it for the commercials."

She said a lot of money was put into the commercials and they were either dramatic or funny.

They said they were in New Zealand on holiday for two weeks, trying to travel all of the North Island and South Island.

"It will be quite an adventure."

Super Bowl 2017
- The New England Patriots versus Atlanta Falcons.
- Lady Gaga headlined the halftime show.
- The halftime show is the most-watched musical event of the year.
- More than 116.5 million viewers in the United Sates watched last year's show.
Source: www.nfl.com