Women are propping up the rugby numbers in New Zealand.
While the nationwide numbers crawled through a minimal increase, more girls and women took up the sport as their numbers swelled by 11 per cent to 19,792 playing the national game.
It followed 2014 statistics which showed females made up the largest increase in playing numbers.
Overall, the total number of registered players in New Zealand this season rose by a paltry 163 to 150,727. The All Blacks took out the World Cup again but the women won the battle of the playing numbers.
It was an exciting time for women's rugby with the Blacks Ferns and New Zealand Women's Sevens winning on the world stage and the talent pool growing at grass roots level, general manager community and provincial rugby Brent Anderson said.
"Our women's rugby strategy has ambitious goals and we're on our way to achieving our target of 21,000 female players by 2021.
"Rippa Rugby, a non-contact form of the game played by both boys and girls, is growing in popularity and encourages young girls to take up the game. We're working hard to make sure they have opportunities to play as they move into high school and beyond."
The All Blacks recent Rugby World Cup win and the country's reaction to it demonstrated how deep Kiwis' love of rugby was.
"We''re aiming to turn that support into more men, women, teenagers and kids signing up to play in 2016.
"We had an increase in 2012 after the All Blacks Rugby World Cup win and we hope to repeat that next year. With sevens in the Olympic Games in 2016, it's an exciting time for our national game.
"But we need to make sure we continue to get the basics right - high quality coaching and refereeing, and great experiences for everyone involved."
Rugby by the numbers:
• 150,727 players - small increase of 163 from 2014
• 80,978 Small Blacks (5-12 years) - increase of 549 (1 percent) compared to 2014
• 42,072 teenagers (13-20 years) - decrease of 242 (0.5 percent) compared to 2014
• 27,677 players aged 21 and over - decrease of 144 (0.5 percent) compared to 2014
• 19,792 female players - increase of 1,967 (11 percent) compared to 2014
• 12,109 coaches - increase of 396 (3 percent) compared to 2014
• 1,851 referees - decrease of 33 (2 percent) compared to 2014