The main lessons that all All Blacks supporters must learn are the following

  1. Don’t count your chickens
  2. Don’t count your chickens

I think that is pretty much all of the important things.

Gripe about the quality of the tickets

When we purchased our tickets for the Cup we opted to pay the extra money and get the second best of the four categories available. This led to us getting some great seats and some pretty dismal seats. In some stadiums like Marseilles and Toulouse we had amazing seats. But in Lyon, Edinburgh and Cardiff we were stuffed up behind the goal posts on the lower levels. They were hardly the second best seats available in those stadiums as it is very difficult to understand what is going on in a game of rugby from seats like these. The root of the problem seems to be that some stadiums like Marseilles seem to have a clear understandable hierarchy of good seats and bad seats. Some other stadiums like Cardiff and Edinburgh you can end up sitting almost anywhere regardless of what you pay. My personal conspiracy theory is that this is done by home stadiums to charge away fans a premium price and still give them rubbish seats.

These pictures should show you what I mean. The first one is Marseilles and is pretty good. The last two are Cardiff and Edinburgh and the good seats are all over the place. The order of the seating quality is

  1. Pink (best)
  2. Blue
  3. Green
  4. Orange (worst)

Merseilles seating plan

Murrayfield Edinburgh seating plan

Millenium Stadium Cardiff Seating plan

This is definitely something that should be looked at for future world cups and international tests in general.

Kiwis need some bloody better songs to sing at the rugby

A lot of the time during the semi final ther was so much French singing and general noise that it felt like the game was being played in Pais. Basically the fans need to lift our game in the stands when the All Blacks need more support on the field.

Liverpool has “Never Walk Along”. England had “Swing low”. The French have at least two anthems about blood letting that they all know and sing like there is no tomorrow. These songs fill the stadium with noise and must give a hell of a lift to the players on the field. All we have is “All Blacks, clap clap, clap”?. It’s depressingly slow even compared to dirges like “Never Walk Alone” and “Swing Low and I don’t imagine it provides much emotional support for the players on the field.”

We have loads of great songs as a nation we just need to choose a few to belt out at the rugby. I have decided on the following criteria:

  1. All Kiwis must know all the words – we can work on this
  2. It must be easy to sing
  3. If must be a song where the tune is mostly held in the words
  4. It must be uniquely Kiwi and emotionally motivational

I am open to suggestions.

Russ and I are starting a Facebook group to get some discussion going on this.

Give the Japanese a go

The other Facebook group that we are starting is one backing Japan to host the Rugby World Cup after New Zealand in 2015. They have already hosted a thoroughly successful and much larger football world cup in 2002 and they deserve it. Also I would love to spend 7 weeks in Japan backpacking and getting to know the locals :)

The French have hosted an excellent World Cup

Those of us who have been to all the games agree that the French have thrown the best world cup ever. The stadiums have been sold out even for the games between small teams from far away places. The way the French have throw themselves behind the World Cup and the general atmosphere has been awesome. They even managed to convince the locals not to whistle when opposition goal kickers are taking shots at goal. Add to that the sunny weather in Southern France and the French food, French wine, not to mention the topless beach and it has been a magical few weeks in France.

If the intellectual titans at NZRFU don’t send a delegation to France to look long and hard at how the French organised this world cup then they will have missed a golden opportunity. Mind you these are the same monkeys who when they had a golden opportunity to build a brand new stadium for the World Cup in NZ in 2011 instead managed to secure temporary seating for run down old Eden Park. Not a good omen.

Unanswered questions

  1. Why did we lose to a third rate French side away from home? I am still not sure.
  2. Why do all the French smoke so much? Don’t they know it is bad for you?

That is all I have to say for now.