Deaf Rugby in NZ

New Zealand loves its rugby, and the Deaf community is no exception. Rugby has played a significant role in the NZ Deaf community, not only for the basics such as fitness and discipline, but also a chance to bond as a Deaf team. Rugby has also given the chance to many youths who may be entering the Deaf community for the first time, to find a connection and place to belong. The Deaf rugby battlefield has seen many epic regional and international clashes, and the rivalries are intense right up to the final whistle!

  1. 1998
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    Deaf Black players to tour Wales selected at the 1998 National Deaf Rugby Interzonal Championship

    The deciding match of the 1998 National Deaf Rugby Interzonal Championship played in Wellington over Easter weekend, and cementing a place in the New Zealand Deaf team that toured Wales in November 1998.

  2. 1991
    Donated by Rodney Roberts Image of Rodney Roberts

    Northern Deaf XV vs Southern Deaf XV

    Northern Deaf XV vs Southern Deaf XV held at Linton Military Camp near Palmerston North on 31 March 1991.

  3. 2000
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    Central Zone holds onto the Shield!

    Footage of all three men's games of the 2000 National Deaf Rugby Championships at the Canterbury Rugby League Stadium, combined into one clip. Includes pre-match Deaf cheerleading display.

  4. 1992
    Donated by Rodney Roberts Image of Rodney Roberts

    First National Deaf Sevens tournament

    The first National Deaf Sevens tournament was held at the Linton Military Camp, located just south of Palmerston North, where the Central boys won a points-based competition.

  5. 1992
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    The beginnings of Easter Deaf Rugby: Northern Region vs Southern Region

    The third game of 15-a-side Deaf rugby tournament in New Zealand: Southern Region seek to avenge their earlier defeat to the Northern Region.

  6. 2000
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    First National Deaf Womens’ Sevens Tournament

    On an Easter Friday afternoon, 22 April 2000, for the first time in history the National Deaf Women’s Seven Tournament was played between the Southern and Central teams at the Canterbury Rugby League Stadium.

  7. 2002
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    Māori & Pacific Island Deaf play against Japan Deaf Rugby XV

    TVNZ’s Marae programme features the friendly game between Deaf Māori & Pacific Island Invitational XV and the Japan Deaf Rugby team. It includes the pre-match team talk with coach Richard Peri, karakia from kaumatua Ivan Tamepo, and discussions with assistant Togia Lanefale. It concludes with highlights of the match which was closely fought but finally won by Japan 20-17.

  8. 1995
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    Deaf Blacks’ first ever international match

    Holmes’ Jo Malcolm catches up with the Deaf Blacks team at their training in Christchurch in preparation for the first of three upcoming test matches against the visiting Deaf South Africans - the first ever international match for both sides.

  9. 1995
    Donated by Richard Peri Image of Richard Peri

    Second test: New Zealand Deaf vs South Africa

    The first ever International Deaf Rugby Test Series was held in New Zealand in 1995 between New Zealand and South Africa. South Africa won the series 2-1.

  10. 1998
    Donated by Kevin and Lynette Pivac Image of Kevin and Lynette Pivac

    NZ Deaf Rugby Team in Wales

    See Hear reports on the New Zealand Deaf Rugby team’s tour of the UK in 1998.

  11. 2002
    Donated by Kevin and Lynette Pivac Image of Kevin and Lynette Pivac

    Extended version: Deaf Rugby World Cup final - New Zealand vs Wales

    Extended version: New Zealand play Wales in the Deaf Rugby World Championship final at Eden Park, Auckland in 2002.

  12. 1970
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    Deaf social rugby match: Married vs Single men

    An informal annual rugby game between teams of Deaf men, married and single, which was played on one of Kelston Deaf Education Centre’s fields.

  13. 2002
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    Inside Out: Inaugural World Deaf Rugby Championship

    Inside Out features the inaugural World Deaf Rugby Championship, including coverage of the final between New Zealand and Wales at Eden Park, Auckland in 2002.