Sir Brian Lochore asked for a "farmer's funeral" and that's what he's getting.

Thousands are expected to turn up to Memorial Park in Masterton for Sir Brian's funeral this afternoon.

The former All Blacks captain and coach died on the weekend, after a battle with bowel cancer.

Family friend and funeral organiser Graeme Reisima told Mike Hosking the only thing Sir Brian organised was the caterer and left the rest to them.

Advertisement

He says Sir Brian wanting a farmer's funeral showed he was humble til the end.

"He organised the carter himself, who is a great mate of his, and that's it and he just left the rest to us," Reisima said. "It will be a farmers funeral, it's what he wanted, he said he wanted a farming funeral for a farmer.

"Everyone here has got a connection with him, we're immensely proud of him and what he achieved and everything he's done for us so today is just a day of returning that thanks to him and his family."

The funeral will be broadcast on TVNZ from 1pm.

Meanwhile, Parliament paid tribute to Lochore on Tuesday, with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern saying he was "the quintessential New Zealand sportsman and he will be dearly missed".

"Sir Brian is one of the most admired figures in New Zealand and world rugby, having achieved fame and respect as a player, captain, and later as a coach, manager and selector," Ardern said.

She noted his captaincy in the All Blacks 4-0 win over the Lions in 1966 and the undefeated season the following year through 24 games.

"But what's more impressive is how far his reach extended beyond rugby. The many national and community roles he held include former chairman of the Hillary Commission for sport.

Advertisement

"Despite his extraordinary achievements, he remained a very humble man who was proud of his farming and rural upbringing. He was also well known for offering a helping hand to many people in community groups in need, both on and off the rugby field."