He's one of the most influential figures in New Zealand rugby yet keeps a remarkably low profile, and that's just how Warren Alcock likes it, as Sally Rae of the Otago Daily Times reports.
Warren Alcock spends his days, as he succinctly puts it, mostly arguing about money; brokering deals for some of the biggest stars in rugby.
Deliberately steering clear of the media and a public profile, he has undoubtedly been a pioneer in sports management in New Zealand. And he does it from Dunedin.
The New Zealand Rugby Players Association's first accredited agent has represented more than 80 All Blacks, including such greats as Richie McCaw and Dan Carter.
He's described by New Zealand Rugby Union chief executive Steve Tew as probably the most influential player agent in the country.
Tew says he has an enormous amount of respect for Alcock, who played a pivotal role back in the "crunch point'' in the sport, when rugby turned professional in 1995, and that important role has continued through to today.
"More than that, he's someone who cares about the game. He understands its role in New Zealand, its role in communities. He always has the players' best interests.
"The key thing about Warren is he's incredibly honest ... very upfront, calm and considered. He takes time to consider matters. In the end, he's a man of his word.''
Down-to-earth and affable, Alcock (52) might prefer to keep a low profile but his reputation within professional rugby circles - and the wider sporting world - is huge.
In 2010, he featured at No18 in The New Zealand Herald's list of the 25 biggest power brokers in New Zealand sport.
A year later, he was sixth in NZ Rugby World magazine's 50 most influential men behind Carter, McCaw, New Zealand Rugby Players Association boss Rob Nichol, Tew and then All Black coach Graham Henry.
Writer Gregor Paul noted he was recognised as a tough negotiator whose ability to clinch "the big deal'' was legendary.
In 2015, he was named 24th in the New Zealand Lawyer Power List, which ranks the country's leading and most influential lawyers.
When it came to breaking into the virtually non-existent sports management industry, Alcock reckons it was a matter of perfect timing.
He was a young lawyer playing club rugby alongside - or, as he puts it, getting run over by - the likes of Otago stalwarts Arran Pene, Jamie Joseph and Josh Kronfeld when rugby turned professional.
"Suddenly all these contracts were flying around ... it was like, `Hey Warren, we need a lawyer','' he recalls.
"It was right time, right place. Since those early days, I have just kept picking up clients around the country. It got to the point eventually where I decided I needed to do it full-time.''
Kronfeld, his first big client, is coincidentally now also his brother-in-law, married to his wife Sarah's twin sister.
Most recently, Alcock was responsible for the contract negotiations that saw star Otago back Ben Smith re-sign with the Highlanders and the All Blacks through to 2020.
He negotiated the Sir Gordon Tietjens-Samoa Sevens coaching deal and, also last year, deals involving All Black coach Steve Hansen and assistant coach Wayne Smith, along with re-signing current All Blacks such as Ardie Savea, T.J. Perenara, Ryan Crotty, Beauden Barrett, Brodie Retallick and Julian Savea, to name a few.
Currently, he is working on deals involving All Black captain Kieran Read, players Sam Whitelock, Sam Cane, Liam Coltman and Codie Taylor and assistant coach Ian Foster.
It is not just about All Blacks - he represents Super and Mitre 10 Cup players and some schoolboys - and he speaks of the "enormous potential'' of home-grown Otago boys such as Josh Buchan, Slade McDowell and Ricky Jackson who are "the future''.
Last year, The New Zealand Herald reported senior players could expect a retainer of between $400,000 and $800,000 a year, but it was likely the best could command more.
"Some people might not find it very enjoyable knowing that every day they were going to work to have an argument over money. Basically, that's what I'm doing every day,'' Alcock says.
It is a far cry from the early days when amateur players suddenly became professional and were "happy to get whatever they got''.
"Now the players have a high degree of knowledge of what to expect in a negotiation and so you have to be on your game.''
Brought up in Napier, but originally from Mahia Peninsula and of Rongomaiwahine descent, a law career never crossed Alcock's mind until he won a compulsory impromptu speech competition at school, and his English teacher suggested it.
After a talk with the careers adviser, he was dispatched to spend time with then Napier lawyer Peter Callinicos.
Judge Callinicos, as he is now, encouraged him to study law at Otago, not Victoria, as his own mates had gone south and "had a much better time''. "From that moment on, I was always going to go to Otago,'' Alcock said.
University was initially a daunting experience for the shy teenager who had been "average'' at school and was one of only two known Maori students in his law class.
"I was a bit overwhelmed, to be honest. My academic side wasn't that strong. Suddenly I'm in a lecture theatre, with 500 people, listening to a lecture on legal history.
"In the 50 minutes, I didn't understand anything the lecturer said. I walked out thinking, `I'm in over my head'.''
Had it not been for the great lecturers, he could have persuaded himself out of law. "There's no doubt in my mind that the quality of teaching at Otago law school ranks it as the best law school in New Zealand.''
He graduated with first-class honours, becoming the first Maori honours graduate from the Otago law school. He also did an arts degree in economics.
Alcock continued at law school as a teaching fellow for several years before becoming an assistant lecturer, when he was asked to develop a Maori land law paper.
He was about to begin a block of lectures in the law of evidence when he broke his jaw playing rugby and had his mouth wired and could not talk.
When he finally decided he needed to practise law, it was the first time he had to consider leaving Dunedin. It was a very different proposition from when he first arrived in the city and was unsure how he would endure it.
"Five years seemed like a heck of a long time for me in Dunedin away from home. I remember thinking `how am I going to last five years here?'
"When it got to that point of having to get a job, I couldn't face leaving Dunedin. I was enjoying [it] so much.''
So he applied for a job at Gallaway Haggitt Sinclair, now Gallaway Cook Allan. Rugby was a passion and he described himself as "probably a slightly above average player'', playing club rugby for Alhambra-Union, Dunedin and for Otago B.
"I always wanted to be an All Black but I was too small at 65kg.''
It might have been an advantage that one of the firm's partners was a local rugby referee, although Alcock did not realise he was a lawyer.
"One day, after a game, I tried to explain the golden rule of legal interpretation. It was an amiable chat,'' he says, laughing, "he must have put a good word in for me.''