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Whitebaiting to winning World Cup

Whitebaiting to winning World Cup

Delighted: Stephen Donald

Match-winner Stephen Donald, who not too long ago was whitebaiting in Hamilton, was delighted to become an All Black hero in Auckland on Sunday.

Donald kicked his country to glory at Eden Park as they saw off the French 8-7 in a closely-faught encounter that ended 24 years of Webb Ellis hurt.

And it was quite a World Cup debut for the former Chiefs man as he emerged from the sidelines for an injured Aaron Cruden just before half-time.

“It’s a funny sort of feeling. I’m just fortunate to get the opportunity to come into such a great team,” he said about making his RWC debut in a Final.

“There are people out there who undermined my status as an All Black. To get the chance to prove that I am an All Black is good. I think a World Cup Final is a pretty good place to start.”

On his decisive penalty kick, Donald admitted he wasn’t nervous when lining up the effort.

“At the time I didn’t think much of it. It was just a kick out in front and I just put it over,” he said.

“I haven’t kicked a ball in about six weeks. At the time I didn’t think it would be important, but it turned out that way.

“My mates are probably thinking ‘there’s the bloke who was kicking back with a few beers and going whitebaiting with us out in the middle of Eden Park’.”

Meanwhile, retiring lock Brad Thorn struggled to hold back the emotion of becoming a world champion for his country after what’s been a fine career for the former rugby league forward.

“I’m just humbled. I’m too emotional,” he said.

“I’ll be talking about this when I’ve got no teeth.

“You think of all the hard work, just busting your guts. But I’m just part of a great team.”

By Adam Kyriacou at Eden Park


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Who will win The Open Championship at St Andrews?

Poll Results

  • Rory McIlroy 0.00%
  • Sergio Garcia 0.00%
  • Jordan Spieth 0.00%
  • Rickie Fowler 0.00%
  • Justin Rose 0.00%
All times are local:
"NZST = GMT +13 ; BST +12 ; CEST/SAST +11
9th September TongaNew Zealand41-10
10th September RomaniaScotland34-24
11th September ItalyAustralia32-6
WalesSouth Africa17-16
14th September NamibiaSamoa49-12
15th September USARussia6-13
16th September JapanNew Zealand83-7
17th September RomaniaArgentina43-8
FijiSouth Africa49-3
18th September SamoaWales17-10
20th September RussiaItaly53-17
21st September JapanTonga31-18
22nd September NamibiaSouth Africa87-0
23rd September USAAustralia67-5
24th September RomaniaEngland67-3
FranceNew Zealand37-17
25th September SamoaFiji7-27
26th September NamibiaWales81-7
27th September JapanCanada23-23
28th September RomaniaGeorgia25-9
30th September SamoaSouth Africa13-5
1st October RussiaAustralia68-22
2nd October GeorgiaArgentina25-7
CanadaNew Zealand79-15
8th October WalesIreland10-22
9th October AustraliaSouth Africa9-11
ArgentinaNew Zealand33-10
15th October FranceWales8-9
16th October New ZealandAustralia6-20
21st October AustraliaWales18-21
23rd October New ZealandFrance7-8
Pool A
Pos Team P Pts
1 New Zealand 4 20
2 France 4 11
3 Tonga 4 9
4 Canada 4 6
5 Japan 4 2

Pool B
Pos Team P Pts
1 England 4 18
2 Argentina 4 14
3 Scotland 4 11
4 Georgia 4 4
5 Romania 4 0

Pool C
Pos Team P Pts
1 Ireland 4 17
2 Australia 4 15
3 Italy 4 10
4 USA 4 4
5 Russia 4 1

Pool D
Pos Team P Pts
1 South Africa 4 18
2 Wales 4 15
3 Samoa 4 10
4 Fiji 4 5
5 Namibia 4 0

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