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Horwill & Bismarck Du Plessis slaps


Samu Manoa Huge Hit on Billy Twelvetrees


Ben Funnell slamming tackle on Hawkins


Female Streaker has no regrets


Tameifuna's huge hit on Michael Hooper

Friday, December 05, 2008

Richard Cockerill stands up to the Haka in 1997

Richard Cockerill stands up to the Haka in 1997

England hooker Richard Cokerill standing up to the Haka in 1997 will go down as one of the most controversial, and forever spoken about incidents in rugby history.

His in your face confrontation with opposite number Norm Hewitt caused a huge stir as they went eyeball to eyeball during the traditional challenge at the Old Trafford test.

The feud between the two players began then, resulting in it reaching the next level a year later when they were involved in a late-night scrap in Dunedin, leaving Cockerill with a black eye.

While many believe that the England hookers actions prematch overstepped the boundaries of sportsmanship, the man himself disagrees.

"I believe that I did the right thing that day," he said. "They were throwing down a challenge and I showed them I was ready to accept it. I'm sure they would rather we did that than walk away."

Much requested here on RD, have a look at this clip and let us know what you think. Its yet another fascinating moment in the history of the Haka, and how teams and players approach it. 

Time: 01:40

Posted at 3:13 pm | 47 comments

Viewing 47 comments

nico December 05, 2008 3:15 pm

nice! Have to agree with the folks there.

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Anonymous December 05, 2008 3:17 pm

embarrassing considering the final result...

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Eric December 05, 2008 3:37 pm

I've been waiting for this one, having never seen it before and everybody speaks of it, with the recent welsh challenge. Loved it

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Jonathan December 05, 2008 3:40 pm

I have to say, as an Englishman, it is rather embarassing. It is all very well "standing up to the Haka" and being a "tough guy".....and then watching the All Blacks go out and beat you by 20 to 30 points during the game. So you "stood up to the Haka"...so what? By worrying about how the New Zealanders perceive your response, you have already lost the mental battle before a shot has been fired.I still think the disinterested Australian response of hangin out under their own goal posts before the 1991 WC semi was the best. They then proceeded to beat the Blacks with ease. Do your talking during the 80 minutes.

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scot December 05, 2008 3:42 pm

france's team responseto the All Blacks Haka in the RWC2007 quarter-final at the Millenium Stadium was the BEST BEST BEST BEST BEST BESTAller les bleus

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AmerikaLock December 05, 2008 4:16 pm

I agree scot, the French response, standing up to the AB's was terrific it seemed if it supprised NZ and kind of Unnerved them

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minstrel boy December 05, 2008 4:19 pm

the great thing back then was that opposition was 5-10 metres away from the all blacks, nowadays there are at least 20 meters of empty space

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Anonymous December 05, 2008 4:53 pm

how was the score?

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Anonymous December 05, 2008 5:19 pm

"So far, so good... So what!" I know Megadeth has nothing to do in this but I'd like to post that anyway

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Anonymous December 05, 2008 5:27 pm

Willie Anderson's Ireland's response in '89 was better. but again,they got hammered!

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Tanman December 05, 2008 5:36 pm

What i dont understand is why does everybody say that the englishman was the "baddy"?That mental all black pushed him first, if he wouldnt have reacted, it just wouldnt be english!

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Anonymous December 05, 2008 6:05 pm

jonah lomu?possibly the least scariest when doing the haka.

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Matt December 05, 2008 8:47 pm

haha, jonah lumu.. not scary? say that to his face annonymous lol

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Friet December 05, 2008 9:30 pm

The haka should be more challenged :DCould someone post a link of a video where people ignore the haka ( juggle with balls or are in their in goal area ) please?-Thank you

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Don December 05, 2008 10:53 pm

Stand up to us? You canBeat you? We will...80 mins of Rugby always beats 3minutes of pre-game ritualJust put ur ruck where ur mouth is and win the match...that's allAltho, Nonu pissed me off with that comment.

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Anonymous December 06, 2008 1:47 am

yea was brilliant seeing chabal growling at the Haka in the WC07, i think theres a vid on here some where......M

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Anonymous December 06, 2008 4:02 am

hahaha New Zealand going to CHOKE at home in 2011!!!

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K Lu December 06, 2008 4:05 am

I love the haka. I think it should remain as it is, BUT I think every other country should be able to respond in their own form of intimidation anyway that they see fit (as long as its respectful). And the Welsh reaction was NOT disrespectful at all. They were just reminding everyone who's field it was win or lose. But I love all the drama. Kiwis need to be a little less sensitive on the subject. The haka isn't holy nor sacrosanct. Its a powerful tradition, but still one that is not above reaction.

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Anonymous December 06, 2008 10:05 am

Never understood why the hell the rest of the rugby world puts up with the arrogance of the ABs. Sure they're the best team in the world right now, and usually are, but why the hell do they think that gives them the divine right to dictate to their hosts what they will and won't do before a game, and in what order it will happen. They whine about 'respect', and yet pay their hosts not one shred of respect - look at the farce when they threw their rattles out of pram at the Millenium Stadium a couple of years ago, all because Wales wanted to have their anthem after the haka. Doesn't show much respect to the Welsh anthem does it. Typical bloody AB arrogance.ABAB!

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Ref December 06, 2008 12:32 pm

I'm an AB fan, and I think Cockerill got it absolutely right. Passion for passion, respect for respect. That's rugby.

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Anonymous December 06, 2008 12:33 pm

All these stories about haka start to be really boring...looks like all videos and comments on RD are aboput haka and NZ and no more about rugby. Thats a shame.

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ruggerfun December 06, 2008 4:18 pm

Yes, because the haka has nothing to do with rugby, right?Three of the last 45 videos have had something to do with the haka. Grow up. Maybe some people are tired of seeing tries and tackles and want to see another part of the game. Learn to play well with others.

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dodo December 06, 2008 4:21 pm

what the hell a feud off the field? the kiwis really need to learn not to take life that seriously. it's just a game.i think the haka is a good tradition, but rather overdone - look at ali williams :P and the NZ hooker was a right wanker in this clip.i didnt get the welsh challenge, they just stood there. And the ABs just walked away. 'yeah, that showed them!!!' uuum, no. sorry, no. to all teams: just let em do their dance - it makes them happy, so what - and focus on your game.

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Flooz December 06, 2008 4:43 pm

i really prefer a "team spirit" response rather a "tough guy" response, more respectul and more symbolic.cockerill is a bit pathetic here, no?

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Anonymous December 06, 2008 6:29 pm

i soooooo need sky sports 3

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Will December 06, 2008 6:42 pm

Ok, i can see why some people would say its embarressing....but at the end of the day is it better to stand up to the challenge and go down fighting or to cower and let the AB's do the Haka bring on the great intimidation factor whilst you stand with a "please dont hurt me look" and then get your arse handed to you?!personally the going down fighting thing is how id imagine most people want to be!I think this video summed up the debates and controversy very well...."disrespectful juggling and kicking the balls, disrespectful to stand and stare" i think those were fantastic words, at the end of the day NZ have the privelige to be allowed to do the Haka (which i actually think is fantastic) but then they turn all bitchy when people push back. i mean really Nonu sounded like a whiney bitch (im well aware he does not speak for the AB's) but wtf he sounded like he was crying to his mum.....

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More Haka, Really? December 07, 2008 1:32 am

Dear RugbyDump,Please post more videos of rugby.I am not from New Zealand, and I'm and not as interested in the history of the haka as I am in highlights of rugby hits, skill, and match reviews.If you are having trouble finding videos, put it out there, there's plenty accessible that the rugbydump legion can share

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Matt December 07, 2008 6:44 pm

To More Haka Really.RD posted on the Richard Cockerill Video that people had requested the video, So it is obliging other people in putting it up. And have a look at what video's been posted before it. Wow its the wallabies vs the barbariens.Enough rugby for you?Cheers RD

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andy December 08, 2008 2:06 pm

Pipe down everyone, i've been wanting to see this for years. AB's looked like a right nob, and half cockerills size.

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Andy December 08, 2008 3:24 pm

AB's hooker i meant. Not whole team.

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Anonymous December 09, 2008 4:17 am

any1 else think Jonah looks too happy while doing the haka?

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Anonymous December 10, 2008 4:10 am

i think alot of the rugby world out there are un-eduacated about the haka and respect/disrespect about it. we as kiwis are taught at an early age about wat is respectfull and wat isnt about maori culture..HAKA is a challenge..you can either face the challenge like men like the welsh did..or you can hide..like the english did during the rugby league world cup..neither is disrespectfull..but i would take a long look at my rugby team if they didnt have the guts to face a haka..id like to see more of what the ozzies did in the rugby league world cup final during the haka..now that clip should be on here! MAN UP!

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Andy December 17, 2008 4:45 pm

Er you do sound a bit silly saying the english 'hid'. I haven't seen it but i'm sure they didn't hide. Maybe you're just one of those stupid people who seem to have some irrational dislike for the english. I think that might be it.

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TAI December 23, 2008 5:46 am

Yep i tnink he dont like englishhahaha

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Jimbo the fly jet se December 24, 2008 12:14 pm

Why is it we English are described as the moaning nation? As far as I can tell the only ones who moan about anything are the NZ rugby team! I mean come on...what do you expect people to do? Why don't you give us a little script to follow why you perform this peace of fantastic rugby theatre so we don't upset you? The Haka has every right to be a part of rugby but so do other countries responses to it!

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Soon.......... April 10, 2009 5:32 pm

Stand up tall and give them no respect, if you dont the ABs will put 40 points on you without getting out of first gear.

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Anonymous April 12, 2009 3:35 pm

Ha, that is just endledd whinging from a group of Poms. It's hilarious, they complain about everything.And their focus should be on developing better passing and handling skills, they could be the best team in the world at the ruck and it's not gonna stop Nonu going straight thru their midfield.

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Anonymous April 14, 2009 10:48 am

Ha, yea the English/poms are the moaners in the world........right, not Aus or NZ, just the english.........right, not following to be honest. Nonu moans, the welsh gets on with it. Good men. That's what the sport's about, stand up and be proud, look what a response it's created for us to discuss.
BTW i'm Welsh, so I technically should agree with the southern hemisphere on their 'pom bashing', it just that well, you're wrong!!

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Anonymous February 19, 2011 6:51 pm

I saw the video!I'm French and Im a supporter of English squad!I also liked the old players of the 90's.That was funny !Hewitt had the pressure and hadrenalyn.I was nearly 17 this year!Do you know i cen see the full match?

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Andyboy September 14, 2011 8:25 pm

Let's be honest here: as an Englishman, I love to see the Haka. However, if it is so "culturally important" then the Blacks should have no problem with opposing "warriors" standing up to the challenge.

Perhaps England should invent their own "Haka". We can then add our own air of mystique to the team, hold up the start of every match we play in by asking the opposition to indulge our performance and decry any opposing player that dares to go eye to eye with us.

Then again, not having a Haka hasn't stopped us reaching two world cup finals on the bounce!

Nuff said.

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Betelgeuse September 19, 2011 1:10 pm

I'd love it if every country had their own war dance or challenge. Whenever I see a match between countries who don't have one, it feels like it's missing something. What I like best is when the All Blacks and one of the island nations (e.g. samoa or fiji) perform their challenges at the same time. It feels like a true face/off and better than when it is done one after the other. Anyway it looks like Cockerill invented his own challenge - came off looking a bit like a bloke at a local pub eyeballing another bloke who's hitting on his mrs, which is not very imaginative. Seriously I'm sure the English could find an ancient anglo-saxon war chant and some moves to go with it? The irish could do a celtic one, etc.? Bring it on, id love to see it :-)

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Jock Cousteau October 26, 2011 11:45 am

Seems to me that it's the kiwis who are the whingers. You issue a challenge, which the haka is and someone will and should step up to accept the challenge. As a Scotsman for the Kiwis to ban the warpipes but expect every nation to timidly accept their war footing..well tough titty...you don't wan't folk to challenge you... don't issue the challenge.

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mattius October 26, 2011 12:23 pm

I believe the result was 25 - 8 to the AB's

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stereo_mike November 30, 2012 2:28 pm

a few options regarding the haka in my mind. 1 either have it before the anthems so that both sets of players can come down from it and its a level playing field when the game starts and it becomes more ceremonial. 2 Only let the Maori guys do it, Richie Mc Caw is about as Maori as I am and im from Dublin. 3 let the opposing team react to it anyway the wish as long as its not violent. 4 get rid of the whole thing all together, why should there be a set of rules for a part of the game that only certain teams can do because of geography. The ABs already get away with murder on the pitch, its just another little advantage that they get.

or do this

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fg4FyhZ-Kg

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Munster1923 November 30, 2012 11:09 pm

I've a few NZ friends who see no issue with teams facing up to the challenge of the Haka. It is a challenge and can be responded to in anyway. Some boxers/MMA fighters like to jump about the ring in front of their opponents thinking that will intimidate them, some like to completely ignore the person they are about to fight, going for the whole "you mean less to me than Bieber".

On the video, Cockerill himself is seen hamming it up, smiling in the tunnel and the second he's on camera, he starts screaming.
Each to their own. But to remove the haka is a non argument, people like it, and other countries have their own pre-game rituals. Samoa, Tonga & Fiji have the manu siva tau, kailao and the cibi, no-one complains about the intimidation factor of these, because at the end of the day, these teams aren't as good as NZ. Like them or loathe them, they're damn good, and I don't think players have a little voice at the back of their minds going "damn, it's the haka", more likely "damn, this is the All Blacks".

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Mikka December 04, 2012 4:24 am

Do you have Sam Scott-Young blowing the All Blacks kisses during the Haka at Ballymore - that was gold. He got pummelled in the game but the Wallabies got the result.

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