I play on my home schools rugby team. I joined freshman year, after the senior sitting next to me in choir on the first day told me I should. On a random feeling of, “hey, why not?” I went to rugby practice a few days later. Within that first two and a half hours, I KNEW that I would love this sport, even if I didn’t really understand it yet. (To be honest, 2 years later, I’m still not convinced I understand it completely.) Since that day, I have been dedicated to my team and to the sport, and I have had the time of my life playing. I can be quoted as saying that joining was the best decision I had made since coming to college – though now my study abroad experience will have to come at a tie with rugby for that highly coveted position. Needless to say, when I found out that I was coming to New Zealand, there was one thing that I needed to find out before anything else – were the All Blacks going to play in Christchurch while I was there?
Once I found out that the All Blacks would indeed play in Christchurch while I was here, I forced myself not to buy a ticket while still in the US, but rather wait until I got to Christchurch to hopefully find someone who would go with me. On the second day that we were here, I woke up to a message from one of my flatmates to me and another friend: “Hey, so I bought the tickets to All Blacks this morning… Hope you’re alright with that!” We had looked at tickets the night before but there were none available – some had apparently become available by the next morning. We were going to the All Blacks!!
September 17th, 2016. 7:30pm, AMI Stadium, Christchurch. New Zealand All Blacks vs. South Africa Springboks. 20,896 people in attendance – and I was lucky enough to be one of them. The game was absolutely incredible, from start to finish. The Haka was even better to see in real life than I had thought it would be – honestly, the whole game was like that. All day, leading up to the game, (and even repeatedly, while in the stadium) I was basically jumping up and down, going on and on about how JAZZED I was for this game. The camaraderie of all the people in the crowd was incredible, a wave got started a couple times around, and every time the All Blacks scored a try, the entire stadium leaped to their feet, yelling, cheering, and clapping – it was exhilarating!
The All Blacks finished strong, with a score of 41-13, crushing the Springboks. This was an evening I will literally never forget, not only because of seeing the All Blacks play IN CHRISTCHURCH, but also because of the feeling of the entire evening! I’m not much one for sports – I’ve gone to baseball games and the like back in the states, but this game was absolutely THRILLING from start to finish, I couldn’t keep my eyes off the pitch. I’m writing this in my room, about two hours after getting back from the game, and I am still practically shaking from the excitement of the game. Truly an evening I will not forget.
As a side note, I somehow managed to forget my camera for this amazing experience so unfortunately, the accompanying photos will be lower quality, seeing as they were taken on my phone!
More Blogs From This Author
<p>Hi there, I'm Sarah! I've lived in the midwest my whole life (moving around between Wisconsin and Minnesota). I'm a junior at Gustavus Adolphus College, and am pursuing a major in Geology, and a possible minor in Sociology and Anthropology. I play rugby, sing in the choir, and am in love with travelling and seeing what this great wide world has to offer me!</p>