Special trophy inspires pupils

By Jonathan Dine

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Yvaan Hapuku Lambert (left) and Talon Robinson from Karamu High School, Hastings, pose with the William Webb Ellis Cup. Photo / Paul Taylor
Yvaan Hapuku Lambert (left) and Talon Robinson from Karamu High School, Hastings, pose with the William Webb Ellis Cup. Photo / Paul Taylor

The spoils of the All Blacks World Cup battle in Europe last year took a tour around the Bay yesterday.

Karamu, Taradale, Havelock North and Te Aute high schools were fortunate to get a glimpse of the most prestigious prize in world rugby.

The 1st XV captains at Karamu High School were in awe of the William Webb Ellis Trophy and hope to reunite with the coveted cup as a world champion one day.

Yvaan Hapuku Lambert's earliest World Cup memories weren't fond ones.

His introduction to the global tournament saw the All Blacks fail to make the semifinals for the first time in the cup's history.

"My first memory was losing to France in 2007 so to go back to back made me very proud."

He said some of the world's greatest players have held the trophy aloft and it made him want to be a part of it.

"So much effort has gone into bringing that cup home.

It was a pretty surreal feeling, you see Richie McCaw holding up on TV and to have it right there was amazing."

Talon Robinson said it was an honour to be in the presence of the 38 centimetre, 4.5kg trophy.

The All Blacks defeated their traditional, transtasman rivals 34-17 last October to win their third World Cup since the tournament's inception in 1987.

Magpies Jason Long and Ellery Wilson were also in attendance.

Brent Anderson, New Zealand Rugby's general manager community rugby and provincial union rugby, said NZR wanted to share the Cup with communities all over New Zealand and targeting teenagers was the first stage of their programme.

"The local visits were part of a drive to sign up teenagers for rugby around New Zealand."

Mr Anderson said 42,072 teenagers signed up for rugby in 2015 and having more teenagers was a particular focus for New Zealand Rugby.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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