Rugby great Colin Meads has decided to accept a knighthood.
Meads, who played 55 tests for the All Blacks in the 1960s and 70s and was voted the player of the 20th century, told the Otago Daily Times today he would take the title of Sir.
But he doesn't want to be called Sir.
Meads, 72, said it was not an easy decision to take the title, and he had to consult his wife Vera and other members of the family.
"I think of my great friends and guys who I have played under like Sir Wilson Whineray and Sir Brian Lochore.
"But they were perfect gentlemen while I was a bit rougher," he said.
"It was a harder decision that I thought. But just don't call me Sir. All my mates say they won't call me Sir, and I don't want them to."
Titles were abolished in 1999 but Prime Minister John Key announced in March they would be reinstated from July for the people made principal or distinguished companions of the New Zealand Order of Merit since 2000.
Meads was made a distinguished companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2000.