One area where the native Maori and the English settlers definitely have combined to make a fearsome machine in Rugby Union. The Kiwi All Blacks are the most successful Rugby Union team in the modern era.
While the British and their descendants played traditional rugby, the Maori looked on and being a warrior people, the game had instant appeal. It also helped in terms of being something to keep kids off the streets and get involved in something productive.
Bringing their natural strength and explosive pace to the game allowed the All Blacks to evolve into a team with a unique style of play based on the traditional strength of the Europeans and the sheer unpredictability of the Maori.
Going to an All Blacks game is an incredible experience, it is an expression of sporting prowess, unity, Maori culture, British roots and all in all, a great family atmosphere. The NZ All Blacks also perform their famed Haka – a Maori war dance that was used to intimidate opponents before battle. It involves chanting, thigh slapping and grotesque faces being pulled
The first recorded use of the Haka was in 1888, when the native NZ team performed it during a tour of the United Kingdom and Australia. There have been some memorable Hakas, one of which was in the Rugby Union World Cup Final against England, which was played in the U K at Twickenham. When the Haka ended, the English team broke into a rendition of the anthem Swing Low Sweet Chariot and the crowd backed them with a booming rendition. England won the game.
Another notable Haka was at the Millennium Stadium, Cardiff, where the Wales team stood in stony silence after the Haka was performed. The two teams stared each other down and had to be separated by the referee for the game to kick off.