Wynne Gray

Wynne Gray is a Herald columnist

All Blacks hit by stomach bug

Kieran Reed. Photo / Getty Images
Kieran Reed. Photo / Getty Images

Most of the All Blacks have been flattened by a violent but brief illness that has swept the squad in London.

Instead of enjoying the sights of the British capital on their rest day, about 18 players and officials spent much of the day in bed or in the bathroom.

"The guys have had vomiting and diarrhoea and it has been tough," coach Steve Hansen revealed.

Some were given anti-nausea jabs by team doctor Deb Robinson, who was certain the illness, while quite debilitating, would last only a day.

Apparently, some of the team started to feel sick in Wales, and that continued through the week.

"I am feeling a lot better today, but I know the guys had a good guided tour of their bathrooms yesterday," No 8 Kieran Read said.

"I think it is a 24-hour thing."

He would not use the illness as any excuse before Sunday's final test against England, but acknowledged it had affected many members of the team.

"It's just the way it was. It is just something we have to handle."

The episode will bring back memories for some of the food poisoning episode that derailed the All Blacks on the eve of their World Cup final in Johannesburg in 1995.

The coach at the time, Laurie Mains, later said he believed someone had tampered with the coffee in the team room.

But there are no suggestions of any dodgy tactics in this week's episode.

- NZ Herald

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