Top five mostly good sporting tales

The All Whites celebrate scoring a goal against Italy during the Fifa World Cup. Photo / Brett Phibbs
The All Whites celebrate scoring a goal against Italy during the Fifa World Cup. Photo / Brett Phibbs

Soccer World Cup: New Zealand went into the tournament donkey-last in the betting stakes. Those magic All Whites drew their three games, 1-1,1-1 and 0-0, and were the only team in the 32-nation finals to remain unbeaten. A huge and unexpected achievement. Spain won the tournament.

Commonwealth Games: Amid fears of terrorist attack and, even worse, sanitary breakdowns, Delhi put on a surprisingly smooth Games. Opening and closing ceremonies were spectacular and New Zealand's haul of six gold, 22 silver and eight bronze medals was respectable.

Black Caps: By mid-December, the Black Caps had lost their last 11 one-day internationals, all on the Indian subcontinent. In fact, they had won just six of their 21 ODIs all year. Oh Danny Boy - and the rest.

Rugby League: The Four Nations (Australia, England, Papua New Guinea and New Zealand) tournament title and Kiwis' captain Benji Marshall, as top scorer in the Four Nations, with the Golden Boot award - quite a year.

All Blacks: Our boys played a blinder last year - a series of them, in fact. With one notable exception, against Australia in Hong Kong, 26-24, everything they touched, threw or kicked turned to gold. So, this year, Rugby World Cup - hang on, haven't we been here before?

- NZ Herald

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