We've seen the All Blacks, NZ Maori All Blacks and All Blacks Sevens ... why not the All Black Ferns?

But the Black Ferns seem unlikely to change their team any time soon, despite a renewed call to treat them more like their male counterparts.

The NZ women have become the toast of the nation, after stunning defending champions and favourites England to claim the Rugby World Cup crown on Sunday morning (NZT).

Compared to the All Blacks, their programme runs on a shoestring, with most of their players holding down real jobs to supplement their careers.

Advertisement

But NZ Rugby chief executive Steve Tew doubts a change of team name will change any of that, even it would provide some reflected glory from the well-established brand.

"When we name teams, we talk to the athletes and I know this group is very proud of the Black Ferns name," said Tew, at Auckland Airport to welcome the Black Ferns home.

"It's got a lot of mana now and won five World Cups, so any change would have to be very seriously considered and athlete-driven, as much as anything else."

Attaching the "All Blacks" name to other programmes, like the Maori and Sevens, hasn't always gone down well, especially as the men's sevens team has fallen away as a force on the international circuit.

But for the moment, the women's 15s and sevens sides - both current world champions - would certainly add value to the brand.

"[We're] immensely proud and very pleased for the girls," said Tew. "Both on and off the field, they were outstanding ambassadors for the game and for our country.

"A number of these athletes are in the sevens programme, so they're effectively professional, because there is a full-time programme of activity for them to play and train for.

"We'll reflect on this tournament and nut out what's next. The reality of the 15s programme is it doesn't sustain a full-time athlete at this stage, but the game is growing quickly, we have big ambitions for the women's game and we'll just keep working hard."

Advertisement