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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A quick comparison between the Hakas of 1973 and 2011

A quick comparison between the Hakas of 1973 and 2011

The All Black Haka, love it or hate it, it's been around for a long time and isn't going anywhere. But was it always so confrontational? Looking back, it would appear not, and this is where some find issue with it.

When it comes to watching New Zealand play, the Haka is one of the things I look forward to most. It's a brilliant piece of showmanship that should be embraced. About thirty years back, things were slightly different though, and this is what annoys some rugby fans.

The usual response to criticism is that they're still allowed to do it because they've always been allowed to do it. That's a fair comment, but there is no doubt though that in recent times it's changed drastically, and become a far more intense, physically intimidating challenge.

Buck Shelford was one of the first to pick it up a notch with the confrontational approach, and then in 2005 we saw the introduction of the Kapa O Pango , where Tana Umaga slapped the back of Rico Gear, and they all performed a throat slitting gesture. There was a small outcry, so the throat slitting stopped, but this year it's returned, strangely enough.

Former Wallaby and current commentator Greg Martin recently expressed his desire for the Haka to be scrapped. He was clearly stirring and as with a lot of the things he says, his comments should be taken with a pinch of salt. They caused somewhat of a stir though, and re-ignited the age old debate about why they should be allowed to do it at all.

"They get an unfair physical advantage. The whole game of rugby is about male dominance over another man, and they're there yelling and screaming and threatening and you've got to sit there and go: 'Umm, this'll be finished soon'," said Martin.

"What's so good about it? "If you want to go see entertainment go to the theatre. That's what it is; it's singing and dancing," he added.

So whether you subscribe to Marto's views, or choose to enjoy it for what it is, here's a slightly comical clip that shows how dramatically it's changed over the years.

:: Related Posts ::
Why New Zealand do the Haka

Time: 0:57
Credit: The Rugby Club on Fox Sports

Posted at 1:41 pm | 102 comments

Posted in Traditional wardances

Viewing 102 comments

Savage August 23, 2011 2:35 pm

Perhaps we should get Austin Healey out to do the tango...

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themull August 23, 2011 2:43 pm

I've nothing against the haka..What I do take issue with is when the IRB try to limit or erradicate what opposing teams can do in response....

Opposing teams should be able to walk the Haka down if they feel like they wish to do so(France last years WC), they should be able to stare the AB's down afterwards if they wish(Wales couple years ago)..

Hell, they are doing a war dance about how much they wish to hurt you etc, making throat slitting gestures etc, yet the IRB get annoyed when teams want to stand up to this challenge and show the ABs they are not afraid...

The English could walk down the haka(to the half way line)singing Swing low Sweet Chariot, The irish the fields of Athenry and so on, if they so felt like it...

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 2:44 pm

the haka = comedy gold

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 2:48 pm

I love the Haka, very entertaining, but I agree, do what you want on your half, so let the other teams do what they want on their half. Walk down, stare down, whatever. Let the Kiwis get a little offended, every team should have an equal right to intimidation.

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 2:49 pm

I do think it's a bit arrogant by NZ that they feel they should be granted respect during the Haka. If they want to do a dance my all means do one. the opposition should head down to their 22 and run some last minute drills or final stretching. a bit like Campo used do. If anything do it in the dressing room if it means so much.

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 2:52 pm

The sight of ally williams trying to look fierce never fails to crack me up.

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 2:53 pm

I agree with letting the other side do what they want, but I think it should be kept on their half. As for the assertion that they gain an advantage? Only if you are mentally weak or a coward. If you are a true competitor, it should be a motivation for you, as they are openly challenging you. Rubbish to that "gain a physical advantage"...I would think it massively intense to see one of the other Pacific nations have their Haka equivalent go toe-to-toe at the same time across from the Haka...

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 2:57 pm

the only physical advantage gained is that the opposition may get cold.

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 3:00 pm

It looks frankly embarrassing back then, the haka sure came a long way.

Seriously, the opposition should be allowed to respond to the haka as they see fit. They should keep in mind though, that a badly prepared response will have the same effect as a badly performed haka (cough 1973) - it makes you look like dicks.

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 3:04 pm

I agree with @themull

I love the Haka, it's a fantastic rugby tradition that really gets me pumped up just watching it! But restricting the opposition's ability to respond seems to play favourably (and unfairly) into the AB's hands.

I don't agree however with the suggestion that the English/Irish or whoever should be able to sing over the Haka! That, for me, becomes disrespectful.

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Arlen D. August 23, 2011 3:05 pm

I remember a few years back when Scotland were told that neither they nor their fans could have bagpipes at the stadium for anything other than the national anthem because Bagpipes were too threatening to the other teams. And yet AB were allowed to do their Haka at every match.

I have no issue with them doing so. It's posturing and that's part of Rugby. But I agree that when other teams are restricted. (Such as Scotland were and a few others I won't go into) then they have an unfair advantage. Not in that the Haka is so intensely threatening, but that the other team is already coming out being told they're allowed and you're not so suck it up.

I wonder how people would feel if Scotland were to have some of their players perform a Sword or Lochaber dance?

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Jeremy August 23, 2011 3:10 pm

@Arlen D.

Scotland already has the best response to the haka

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nmy6OaZEAhE

View Video

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 3:15 pm

When exactly has the IRB ever tried to limit the opposition's response to the Haka? Its a myth. As a kiwi the most memorable Hakas are when the opposition have got in the AB's faces, and I know Buck Shelford for a fact loved it when Ireland got in his face in the 80s. The Haka is a challenge, and you can respond to it however you want, but I reckon it's best to respond to it in a way that shows you are ready for the challenge. As for how its changed over the years, the Haka was being performed by the ABs in the early 1900s, but it was Buck's 80s team that started to do it with the proper intensity.

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Savage August 23, 2011 3:19 pm

I recon lewis moody could lead us in a nice morris dance!

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Edward Pye August 23, 2011 3:23 pm

This article misses the point of the Haka - the way it is performed today is much more similar to the way it would have been performed when used by Maori tribes challenging other tribes 500 years ago - the Haka of yesteryear is a bit of a running joke in NZ and the colonizers of the time probably thought it was a great laugh to send up a culture they had just decimated.
The Haka today is indicative of how strong Maori culture is and how much the Maori people battled to keep their ideals alive. The fact that it is performed with such passion shows how much NZers (in general) have learned about their past. I would suggest that the reason Australians don't do some kind of Aboriginal dance themselves is because they are still too ashamed of the ethnic cleansing that went on there.

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Eric B August 23, 2011 3:25 pm

Fiji Samoa and Tonga all DO meet the haka with their own challenge, frequently happening at the same time. A couple of years ago when the ABs played Munster, Howlett and the other two Kiwis came forward and challenged back. The haka itself is a form of respect. You present yourself to your opponent and you expect a reply. When high school teams meet in NZ they both do their own haka, and it stirs the blood on both sides. A team would be foolish to ignore the haka because it would imply they have no response, no honor of their own. Stare it down, reply somehow. This meets the challenge and gives you what is called "mana" - respect.

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 3:29 pm

Maori tradition is irrelevant, and has fuck all to do with rugby.

Neither does aboriginal history. Rugby is a sport, and the haka has no place in this game - we sing national anthems to show national pride, its just another example of AB arrogance.

Plus it looks bloody stupid with white guys.

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 3:36 pm

"When exactly has the IRB ever tried to limit the opposition's response to the Haka?"

Here's one recent example:

http://www.smh.com.au/rugby-union/union-news/wallabies-face-fine-for-any-haka-high-jinks-before-bledisloe-test-20100909-153c9.html

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GeepersChrist August 23, 2011 3:42 pm

Not ANOTHER friggin haka whinge. Jeezus.

Get it straight - the only reason it is still done is because the British public demanded it be done when New Zealand sides toured in the 1970s. The All Blacks themselves were going to give it up but no, the paying British public wanted their theatre from this so-called backwater colonial land of theirs.

Yes Buck Shelford upped the ante on its performance, this is because he felt that if they were going to be encouraged to do it (by the BRITISH public) then by golly, they'll do it properly and with pride.

British naivity has helped to formulate the beast of a tradition that it has become so if you are going to denegrate anyone start with them.

And I say to Greg Martin the daffodil that he is. Again, if its such an advantage, why the f*ck aren't Samoa, Tonga or Fiji world beaters?

Oh wait...Samoa did beat the Wallabies ahahahahaha nevermind.

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Hypocrates August 23, 2011 3:46 pm

All you bitches keep forgetting about the Samoan, Fijian and Tongan hakas.

Is it because you happen to beat them more often than not (except Wales haha) you don't give 2 shits whether they do one or not? Yeah thought so.

Hypocrites the fkn lot of you!!!!

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mpc-33 August 23, 2011 3:50 pm

I'm French, sorry for my poor english

The haka has to stay and keep on going. It's now part of rugby folklore.
Ask to someone who doesn't know anything about rugby, he will surely know about the haka.
It's the the only thing that gives our sport a global recognition (i mean outside of UK,IRL,NZ,Aus,SA,Fra,Pacific Islands).

And about, the "intimidation". Some teams manages to beat the AB's.
The only thing that matters is what is happening on the field.
If you get upset by a tribal dance, stop playing rugby.

And i'm an AB fan by the way.

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 3:50 pm

British naivity - what a load of rubbish, the reason the haka is done today has nothing to do with a request made in the 70's!

If it wasn't for "British Naivity" you would still be throwing spears at each other.

The haka is a total waste of time - if you lot wanted to dump it back then why dont you dump it now?


Will be less embaresing for you when you choke. again. But its ok you can console yourselves because it will be boring rugby that beat you!

We knocked you out last time we do it again

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 3:52 pm

Best answer to a haka would be the whole team turning back on them and starting to chit-chat.. After all, let them do their dance but do whatever you feel like on your own half.

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Savage August 23, 2011 3:54 pm

I think we should just ignore it and keep warming up. The fans tend to drown it out anyway.

Its just annoying that it delays the rugby!

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 4:00 pm

So based on all the comments above the Haka has nothing to do in professionnal rugby...

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TallyHo August 23, 2011 4:04 pm

"If it wasn't for "British Naivity" you would still be throwing spears at each other."

Righto, the world was still flat to you "knowledgeable" British while Polynesian seafarers were conquering the world's greatest ocean minus compasses, sextons and maps.

Look at how civil your "Great" Britain is now what with your national riots, divided classes and weak sense of community.

I'm certain I saw a few spears thrown down Croydon High St on the 6 o'clock news the other week.

Innit.

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Tim August 23, 2011 4:12 pm

The Haka will always be there for commercial reasons so get over it.

Go to a foreign country where rugby isn't big and they won't know anything about rugby but they'll know about the Haka (mostly from the AB's as they the most high profile team that do it).

Plus the ABs have done it in the sheds before (vs. Wales 2006), but then everyone complained when they didn't do it out on the field.

If it's still a problem call the whambulance you big sooks.

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moddeur August 23, 2011 4:15 pm

Ok so we have colonial references, talk of indigenous spears, claims regarding the shape of celestial bodies, how long before the Godwin points start flying around?
This is a rugby blog, it's about men with odd-shaped balls and all matters that pertain to them. It's not about penis-size comparisons.
My opinion: the haka is fine rugby folklore as long as opposing teams can stand where they want in their half.
Players do stand patiently while Ireland plays its two hymns, and the haka is a bit like that ... but should not be to the point where opposing teams should be told where to stand and how to receive the challenge. I was for instance very enthusiastic about France's response in Cardiff in 2007. A fine way to receive the haka (and not only because it made Ali Williams shiver in front of Chabal).

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Savage August 23, 2011 4:22 pm

I think im about done with RD, you logon to fill a bit of the working day in with some good rugby chat, and have to wade through abuse and nonsense.

I'll leave you boys to abuse each other, im off to training with the rest of us fans who actually play.

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 4:25 pm

"why the f*ck aren't Samoa, Tonga or Fiji world beaters?"

are implying NZ are world beaters?
not since 1987 have NZ been world beaters. and besides samoa, tonga and fiji's best players play with NZ....

sorry for the weak troll its been a long day at work.

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Bryn August 23, 2011 4:29 pm

No one would complain if they didn't win all the time, never heard anyone complaining about the Tongan war dance

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 4:34 pm

nuf said.... its all about tradition. oh and of course Iveco Trucks


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9XoAOEA8ER8&playnext=1&list=PL8362F59B9CBC4230

View Video

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TallyHo August 23, 2011 4:40 pm

"yes your right the polynesian culture has contributed far more to the world than the British empire, or indeed GB does to day!

dick"

By British do you mean: Normans, Angles, Saxons, Vikings, Romans, Celts, Picts or Modern Chavs? I can't tell who contributed the raping or the pillaging?

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 4:43 pm

@TallyHo

witty come back, it's all a bit of banter people relax...

should be a great world cup and the biggest..

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Vic August 23, 2011 4:45 pm

Ok, firstly its extremely off topic, but those of you talking about how the polynesians have contributed more than the british empire are talking out of your rear ends...

Whilst ofcourse the Polynesians have contributed hugely to their societies and cultures and perhaps the world, the British empire is effectively the reason why white people are living in NZ, Aus, USA and many different countries...

how did the white man conquer these lands? with greater firepower...thus greater technology. So I'm wondering how advanced those lands would be if British people stayed in Britain. I'm not some bigoted racist and I don't particularly believe you'd be "throwing spears at each other" as someone so eloquently put it... but the fact still remains that tribes in Africa are doing JUST THAT, or at least shooting each other, so I can't say it would be the worst guess ever made....

I'm not after people to get on their knees and face England and thank the english but the fact still remains that the british empire brought a huge amount of stability and trade all over the world (through threatening to kill the opposition!)

Anyway faggots, back on topic!

Personally I always enjoyed the Haka, but the whole professionalism shit is joining in on it now...rules and regulations of what and when and who etc can do it, or what can be done in return... its pathetic... Personally if NZ (or any other nation performing their haka) want to do it, then the opposition should be allowed to do what they want without fear of punishment AND without someone like nonu bitching about how "wales were so disrespectful standing there"

And as for the person talking about bagpipes being banned, I'd imagine this was something to do with the fact bagpipes are considered an instrument of war....

But the french have their horns, so give the scots their pipes!

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 4:52 pm

I think the main reason bagpipes were banned was because played badly can induce bleeding of the brain.

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Spuff August 23, 2011 4:53 pm

I hope the Haka stays, People whinge about it but how many of you would miss it?

I would as it is a sight to behold, i don't hear any whining about the Sipi Tau or the Siva Tau!

I remember when Wales played the All Blacks (Millenium Stadium) and wanted a rendition of Cwm Rhondda after the Haka, the AB's wouldn't agree and done the Haka in their changing room. Alot of fans felt cheated as they missed the chance to see it live.

I think its good for opposing teams aswell, they think or creative ways to counter it and can start a game up nicely, Ireland's closing down of it, Wales's stand-off as long as these things are done respectfully.

Its only a tribal dance after all, its who playes the better rugby and has the most points on the scoreboard that count... Not who looks the most fierce before kick off.

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 5:06 pm

being a french speaker, I just want to say that if you understand the lyrics of the" french anthem you know what an appropriate response is.

I have no idea how a pro player reacts in such situations, but I can tell you as a sunday player that singing in a group the french anthem definitively raises the adrenalin. Even if you don't believe a single word of it.

http://www.marseillaise.org/english/translation.html?standard - by the way, it's also about slicing throats.

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Madflyhalf August 23, 2011 5:14 pm

Home crowd should learn some chant, like Fields of Athenry, or Cwm Rhonda or Mae hen wlad fy nahadau, or even flower of scotland (and for us latin, l'Inno di Mameli or La Marseillaise) when the ABs come into their place, and start singing during the haka, singing loudly, that would be awesome!

In SA crowd uses to shout "ol ol ol", fair enough!

Outvoice them!

And let opposition team do whatever the want, the challenge must be accepted, not suffered in silence!

Thank God we play a sport where 99% of times best team on the field win.

All before it's just details!

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ScrumGuru August 23, 2011 5:30 pm

I don't care, I love it. It is a challenge, but speaking to people that have faced it, they get as bigger kick out of it as the ABs do.

Ultimately, if you are intimidated by a story about a man looking up another man's ceremonial dress and talking about the "big hairy man who puts the sun in the sky and caused it to shine," then you are playing the wrong game.

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 5:35 pm

I have no problem with the haka and I really can't see why anyone would. It seems to me that it riles both teams up and encourages them all to try to play as though their lives depended on it. And isn't that what you want when you're a spectator?

Teams who do not perform a haka should not be fined or penalised in any way for responding to the challenge, so I can understand the anger at that nonsense. As long as they don't leave their own half, they're not likely to physically handicap each other before kick off, so why not?

Saying it gives the All Blacks an advantage is childish. It's like racing your older brother and then complaining to your mum "it's not fair, he only beat me coz he's bigger". If you genuinely believe that the All Blacks can only win because they perform their haka before each match, you really aren't watching them play, are you?

Perhaps everyone else should come up with their own challenge to the opposing team. There's probably a bit of jealousy there from anyone who doesn't think it should be allowed.

Isn't the British version waiving your can in the air and chanting "come an'ave a go if y'think yer'ard enough!" ? Think it could do with a bit of work before it gets used by the Lions though...

(I say Lions because I don't really think that any one of the home nations can lay claim to it entirely)

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 6:17 pm

Nobody is saying the haka is the sole reason the All Blacks win but it is a psychological advantage.

Yes the opposition can psyche themselves up off the back of it but its still more of an advantage to the ABs. The other team have already done their warm/psyching up.

Personally, i dont know why teams still pay it any attention at all and dont take the Campese route of doing a few drills.

In saying that i wouldnt want to see it taken out of the game because it is quite a spectacle.

HOWEVER if Nonu starts crying about a lack of respect again i'll go fucking insane.

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 6:36 pm

As the biggest Bok fan on the planet, I would be devastated to see the Haka go. It is part of the fabric of rugby and always enhances a test match atmosphere.

Us poor Southerners don't have such emotive anthems as you folks up North anyway.

The Haka is deeprooted in tradition and fair play to the Kiwis for keeping it going.

Peace

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poccio August 23, 2011 6:48 pm

i watched this video with a friend of mine who knows nothing about rugby..his comment was:"oohhh i know this, this is probably the most famous thing about rugby". just for this it should keep on going, it's great publicity for our sport. The other thing though i noticed is that the old haka was performed looking at the stands not looking at the opposition, so if they want to look at the opposition they shoud expect some kind of response, not a disrespectful one...for example the usa could have Neal patrick harris (barney from how i met your mother) come out and say: CHALLENGE ACCEPTED! that would be awesome!!

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 6:50 pm

I am the same, I do not mind the Haka, and in fact I would be upset to see it go. The problem is that all teams should be allowed to respond in ANY WAY they want without fears of fines!

I can see how it gives the AB's an advantage. I'm not saying "boohoo we lost because the AB's had a haka" I'm simply saying open your eyes! EVERYONE has a pre-game routine, whether you are the one who sits quietly concentrating and visualising the game ahead, or the one that walks around the changing room stamping his feet and yelling...

The AB's get the advantage of psyching themselves up (NOT getting an advantaging of intimidating the other team!)

The only DISADVANTAGE an opposition team could have is about 30 seconds less "warmed up"...

the Haka is a way that the AB's psyche themselves up before a game...but I believe in order for them to have that privilege then the opposition should get to do a:

Campese - walk around
Wales - Stare them out
Ireland (and others) - Walk up to them

WITHOUT having nonu spit his dummy out!

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RD August 23, 2011 6:56 pm

Some of the abusive comments have been removed. Please keep things constructive and positive. Share your opinions, but do so with respect to one another? Thanks

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Adam Keni August 23, 2011 6:56 pm

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=weUHwCjeD7s

Keep the Haka... The ABs are the world's best, and every team in the world looks up to them.. Keep the mystery and whatnot, even if it is a tad commercial.

View Video

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katman August 23, 2011 7:02 pm

You put your left leg in
You put your left leg out
In out, In out, shake it all about
You do the hokey cokey and you turn around
That's what it's all about

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 7:31 pm

Tonga, Fiji & Samoa don't get the same heat as the all blacks do with their respective haka, hmmmmmmm a little bit jealous i would suggest.
For those uneducated people who think they know about our maori cultute;
1. the haka is a challenge, a mark of respect to the opposition who stand before us & who have gone before, it is a statement that says we are here now to challenge you & to go into battle with you. In the age of professionalism why would you want to scrap something so traditional which has been done for years???? People read too much into it, enjoy it for what it is, a precious piece of our maori culture that we want to share with the world.

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Guy August 23, 2011 7:40 pm

I live in a country with no rugby tradition whatsoever.

Whenever I tell anyone that I play rugby, a common response is: oh right, with those guys doing the haka. Cool, scary, impressive, etc. They all love it.

I think it's save to say that The Haka is part of the global rugby heritage. Not just New Zealands.

If it were ever banned or stopped, part of the identity of the game would die with it. That would be the biggest waste ever.

I love it, any Haka from any country, just like all the people that have never actually watched a game of rugby do.

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dougal August 23, 2011 7:59 pm

One thing that needs to be remembered when looking at old haka's vs new ones is that NZ has embraced it's Maori heritage more in the last 10-15 years so the players and public take more pride in what they are doing as it reflects their own heritage.

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Calon Lan August 23, 2011 8:23 pm

I used to love watching the haka when I was younger but I can't help but feel it's all gone a bit daft over the years.

Having sean true Mori perform the haka it really can be a thing of respect, something to hold in awe.

When the All Blacks perform their version of the haka it just seems to cheapen what it stands for, it's quite embarrassing to see their posturing at times.

I can't help but feel that now they are better suited performing it on the high street with a plate of coins at their feet.

To me at least, other South Pacific island teams seem to perform it with far more dignity, far more stature when they perform it.

Maybe it s just time for the Mori nation to claim this back from the New Zealands Got Talent show floor and give it the respect it deserves?

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German Kiwi August 23, 2011 9:08 pm

"Maori tradition is irrelevant, and has fuck all to do with rugby.

Neither does aboriginal history. Rugby is a sport, and the haka has no place in this game - we sing national anthems to show national pride, its just another example of AB arrogance.

Plus it looks bloody stupid with white guys."

I don't believe it's just a Maori tradition anymore. It has been a Rugby one for so long now. Traditions are important. They are what make us unique.

Found this interesting fact about anthems and the haka. It turns out we may have the Haka to thank for pregame national anthems too.

"The New Zealand 1905 touring team performed a haka before each match, leading Welsh Rugby Union administrator Tom Williams to suggest that Wales player Teddy Morgan lead the crowd in singing the Welsh National Anthem, Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau, as a response. After Morgan began singing, the crowd joined in: the first time a national anthem was sung at the start of a sporting event." - Wikipedia

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rugby_union#cite_note-17

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 9:30 pm

Cast your mind back to the Wales match where the All Blacks did the Haka in the changing sheds. Once the crowd realized they weren't going to be seeing it performed, there was a huge boo - Wales also got a hiding that day.

I think the vast majority enjoy the haka as a spectacle but some people just don't feel like the men representing their country have the kahunas to front it, and that it gives them an unfair advantage. These are men we are talking about.

Where are the internationals that have faced the haka? Don't hear them complaining. Its the living room couch warriors who wouldn't like to face one, and so think their men shouldn't.

*Yawn*

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red August 23, 2011 9:33 pm

I'm still hoping someone can dig up that Campese footage. I guess the ABs didn't have Nonu back in those days, so maybe they weren't so bothered by it, but I'd love to see Campo's "who gives a shit?" attitude.

I can find other footage of the 1991 World Cup, but nothing from that NZ-AUS semifinal...

So, if anyone's got a tip, that'd be great!

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 10:12 pm

I am a bit disappointed that so many people want the haka scrapped...

I would like to firstly say I am NOT targeting the NZ haka because of jealousy, this actually stems from irritation if anything.

Reading about Nonu have a bitch over wales was so so so disappointing. It turned a "war dance" into something worth less than a teeny bop pop dance...

NZ come to Wales and they lay down their mark of respect or whatever it is on wales HOME ground and wales stand up to it and say "we aren't moving" (ofcourse we can all look at the score later and say...well you did move didnt you..) but the fact is they took it upon themselves to stand up to the haka and face it...

So when Nonu threw a little shit fit it sort of destroyed some of the charm of the haka for me... Someone like Nonu or Umaga look like the real deal (ok i'm an englishman, I apologise if they are not true maori's) but they honestly look the part, and to see Umaga (especially) perform the haka was amazing, it sort of gave me those flashbacks to how crazy it could have been to face someone like him when everything was tribal. and to some extent the same applied to Nonu, but then he goes all media whore and has a cry about it, and I'm left thinking "what a pussy"

The guy is a world class rugby player, built like a tank and he has a little shit fit about wales...

Teams should be allowed to do what they want when facing NZ, Samoa, Tonga etc!

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Can'twaitforWC August 23, 2011 10:12 pm

If NZ weren't the best team in the world no one would care about the Haka kind of like the Tongans Sipi Tau or Fijis Teivovo. As an Aussie I personally enjoy the spectacle of the haka and the other war dances. I'm sure it does give them a psychological advantage, but I don't think there is anything 'unfair' about it.

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 10:13 pm

"Von said...
THIS is how to respond to the Haka:
http://rugbydump.blogspot.com/2008/12/richard-cockerill-stands-up-to-haka-in.html"

Why does Lomu have speed stripes shaved into his left eyebrow?

0:40 for those of you who want to see..

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 10:21 pm

@Can'twaitforWC

No one with half a brain gives a fuck about a "psychological advantage" unless it comes in the form of a fine for not kissing the all blacks asses after the haka.... or is that not what nonu wants?

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 10:25 pm

I love the Haka as a spectacle, but the way the ABs seem to think it is their right to have the last word smacks of arrogance to me - take the Wales game for example, they were the away team, since when do they get a say in what Wales do after they've performed the Haka?

Also, why do so many of the ABs get their knickers in a twist when the opposition step up and accept their challenge? After all, the Haka is challenging the opposition to step up and take them on, so why get angry when they do?

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 10:52 pm

any opinions on Samoa, Tonga and Fiji doing their haka's? Seems like its only directed at abs. Why is that?

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Anonymous August 23, 2011 11:05 pm

"any opinions on Samoa, Tonga and Fiji doing their haka's? Seems like its only directed at abs. Why is that?"

Because the AB's are the only ones who kick up a stink when the opposition players don't bend over and present their anus' to receive a customary bum poke, as is customary in NZ!

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CryBaby August 24, 2011 12:22 am

'Where are the internationals that have faced the haka? Don't hear them complaining. Its the living room couch warriors who wouldn't like to face one, and so think their men shouldn't.

*Yawn*'

LOL!

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Anonymous August 24, 2011 12:24 am

Wow! Some trolls are working overtime on this blog.

Just dont forget to live your life OK.

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Anonymous August 24, 2011 12:27 am

People are idiots.

The haka is awesome, it's one of the most recognisable aspects of the sport.

The players like it, they respect it. Besides any player who's intimidated by it doesn't belong on a rugby pitch.

And all this garbage about being able to respond, teams CAN and DO respond. It's fine.

Suck it up princesses.

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Anonymous August 24, 2011 12:48 am

"And all this garbage about being able to respond, teams CAN and DO respond. It's fine.

Suck it up princesses."

Tell that to Fa'at Nono...

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Anonymous August 24, 2011 1:03 am

Why? Because he expressed an opinion?
All he said was he thought it was disrespectful. One time. He was contradicted by EVERY SINGLE other All Black, the Nz coaching staff, the NZ media and virtually every NZer with an opinion on the issue.

Like 99.9% of NZers involved, the players, coaches, media and fans thought not only that it was fine to challeneg the haka, but that it actually made a great spectacle and that Wales deserved respect for doing what they did.

But people ignore all that to focus on the opinion of one player, despite the fact he was contradicted by his captain, his teammates, his coaches, everyone.

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Keeping it real! August 24, 2011 2:54 am

Funny how no complains about Samoa or Tonga and their tribal display... Perhaps it's becasue the AB's do the Haka, then for the most part, wipe the floor with their opposition ;-)

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:-) August 24, 2011 2:59 am

Do you think John Smit, Rocky Elsom, Mike Tindall or BOD would bitch about facing the Haka? those boys are warriors, not keyboard pussycats like the people who frequent this site.

Keep the Haka going, its an amazing tradition!

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Anonymous August 24, 2011 8:05 am

They're not speed stripe shaved into Lomu's eyebrow, it's the number 11!

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JG August 24, 2011 9:24 am

Seems to be the non-NZ'ers here that are assuming that Kiwis get their "knickers in a knot" when a team stands up to the haka. You will actually find that 99% of the AB's & fans appreciate when a team responds, take the Wales game a couple of years ago for example. As an AB fan, I take great delight in the fact that an opposition respects the haka enough to respond to in a way that adds to the moment. I wish the IRB would relax it's rules here, but doubt they will.

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PB August 24, 2011 9:59 am

The Haka is awesome and only takes a few minutes, get over it.

Most people don't care what the response is, Nonu is the only one I've heard complain about the respone (1 guy) and even the great Buck came on the news and called him weak minded for not accepting the challenge. So I can understand your pont there, as I don't think he should have said that either.

But it's tradition and it's our culture, so deal with and it and if you want to do a response - fine.

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Andy M August 24, 2011 11:09 am

Totally agree with a lot of posts here! I love the haka and think that it is an amazing part of this wonderful sport, but I also agree that other teams should be able to respond - just think of when it all started (for it's inclusion in rugby that is!) back in Wales many many many years ago and the Welsh sang Men Of Harlech in response!

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Anonymous August 24, 2011 11:23 am

Im a kiwi and i love the haka/pacific island war dances. This is why rugby is so unique. If teams want to respond to it they should be allowed, who cares what one person (nonu) thinks. I wish more teams would do what wales did. That was awesome!!

RUGBY. GREATEST GAME IN THE UNIVERSE.

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Anonymous August 24, 2011 6:24 pm

si algo como una danza y unos gritos los saca de concentracion para un juego, mejor dediquense a otra cosa

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Anonymous August 24, 2011 8:07 pm

I agree with the gent who said the other team should do some last minute drills and stretching... ignore their dance, and treat them like flies and see it they stay in their game. The IRB clamping down on responses to the Haka only shows rugby as a joke in itself. That hypocrisy and bias is annoying and bad business, frankly.

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old news August 24, 2011 8:09 pm

But it's tradition and it's our culture, so deal with and it and if you want to do a response - fine.

I also think teams ought to be able to just completely ignore it altogether.

I get that it's a cultural thing, and yeah, I respect it and do enjoy seeing it performed, but if a team chooses not to pay it any mind, then that should be their prerogative.

You could argue it'd be "culture" for the English side to sit down and have tea and cookies for a couple of minutes, but I think a team would be stupid to sit there and watch them do it.

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Anonymous August 25, 2011 12:35 am

^^ Every team that has ignored the haka in rugby/league has been completely smashed straight after lol...

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Anonymous August 25, 2011 12:37 am

Its kinda only intimidating when a whole bunch of polynesians do it. White guys just look funny lol. Just saying.

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Anonymous August 25, 2011 3:30 am

Lots of teams have ignored it.
It's the other teams perogative. Itlay did it recently in 2007, but it didn't help them.
Campese did it, and won the game.

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Anonymous August 25, 2011 6:49 am

"how did the white man conquer these lands? with greater firepower...thus greater technology."

let's not forget waving the bible and calling other religions, cultures and art heresy! nice going with the missionaries defacing marae carvings. the crusades is another example of the white man exercising bigotry. but the genghis khan had his own share of invasion and massacre, i.e the devastation on baghdad.

back on to the topic, people who complain about the haka need to sit down. if people challenge it, go right ahead. it doesn't mean disrespect and whining or ignoring. it just shows that you're a little bit of a dick.

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Anonymous August 25, 2011 1:15 pm

"I think its good for opposing teams aswell, they think or creative ways to counter it and can start a game up nicely, Ireland's closing down of it, Wales's stand-off as long as these things are done respectfully."

Do you people read the news? The problem is the IRB have banned any fucking haka confrontations. The Irish, French or English famous walk-ups to the Haka are now illegal and worthy of a fine because the NZRU are a group of sooks.

That's the issue here. Most people have no problem with the Haka. The problem is teams are now being forced by the NZRU and IRB to just stand there like morons and cop it.

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Anonymous August 25, 2011 1:32 pm

The All Black haka is a joke anyway, doesn't intimidate anyone. Looks like a bunch of girls compared to the Kiwi haka in Rugby League.

The RL NZ haka makes the current All Black Haka look like the all blacks haka of 1950 in comparison.

And teams in League can still react however they want to the haka because the RFL doesn't bow to NZ like the IRB does.

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Anonymous August 25, 2011 1:49 pm

^^ You have no idea what you're on about. Moron.

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moddeur August 25, 2011 2:30 pm

How do you people know who's talking to who here? Everyone's called "Anonymous", it's very confusing.

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Anonymous August 25, 2011 4:05 pm

"let's not forget waving the bible and calling other religions, cultures and art heresy!"

I agree that often did help.... however if polynesians fought back they would probably be wiped out.. It's sad and defacing of the art is wrong in my eyes... However as I was saying I don't think anywhere else would be as advanced nowadays if not for the British Empire... (I'm not saying the british empire built everything you see nowadays and made NASA etc etc, I'm just saying it laid the foundations)

As the for the Haka, as people have said NZ love it, so do most of the world.... what everyone hates to see is it being policed and challenges not being allowed! (BY THE GOVERNING BODIES!)

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Ronan August 25, 2011 4:19 pm

opposing teams should have the option to watch these clowns jump around or warm up at the other end of the pitch, why show respect to a team who have no respect for any team or ref.....

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Anonymous August 25, 2011 11:03 pm

":I agree that often did help.... however if polynesians fought back they would probably be wiped out.. "

Study history, or STFU. The Polynesians did fight back. They fought well too. The Maoris fought so well, the British Empire (after about five wars and thousands of dead redcoats) eventually sued for pecae with them, dividing up NZ between the Empire and the Maori.

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Anonymous August 26, 2011 1:32 am

continuously fought back moron!!

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Anonymous August 26, 2011 4:04 am

Continuously fought back? What a protracted 30 year war isn't enough?

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Anonymous August 26, 2011 9:18 am

obviously not....

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Anonymous August 26, 2011 1:19 pm

Would you guys save the history lessons?? we already know that shit, isnt this a rugby blog

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Anonymous August 26, 2011 6:01 pm

The haka nowadays sucks balls...

The best haka I have ever seen was Kapa O Pango when Umaga was leading!

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Spuff August 27, 2011 7:18 pm

100th comment :)

In all seriousness, the haka is here and should stay. It should be given a certain level of respect... Like when the anthems are played and not descend into what football fans do when the opposing teams anthem is played.

Then again it shouldn't be given too much respect so teams get fined for standing up to it (Aus vs NZ Ladies).

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Anonymous August 29, 2011 11:37 pm

One thing I've noticed, the IRB says the team not doing the haka cant go past their halves 10m line, why can NZ (in the case of them against wales in the 08 stand off) start it inside their 10m and move to within the 5m line?

The IRB should either drop the rule or apply it to NZ (or any other nakion with a "haka") Teams should be able to do what they want in response, in 05 the WRU asked NZ if the welsh national anthem could be sang after the Haka for the 125th yeah of the WRU, NZ said no and complained so did it behind closed doors cause they couldnt do it after the anthems etc.. :/

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Frenchy August 31, 2011 12:06 am

The IRB should not expect the opposite team not to react to the haka, after all the AB are shouting at them in words that are quiet "violent". I like when the opposite team reacts to it.
I like the way the French reacted in 2007.

When they do react are the players still sanctioned for it? I think it was the case for an Irish player years back, no? That would be ridiculous!

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Calon Lan September 07, 2011 10:25 pm

Following on from my previous post, this article in The Telegraph (UK) pretty much sums up why over the years I've come to dislike everything that I loved about the haka.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/rugbyunion/international/newzealand/8747674/Rugby-World-Cup-2011-magic-of-the-haka-is-still-intact-despite-the-squabbles.html

I really don't want it to go but if it does stay then the All Blacks must learn to offer the same respect as other nation that offer the challenge.

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Peter Roberts October 24, 2011 1:22 pm

Since the IRB show no signs of outlawing this most unsportsmanlike activity, other nations will just have to develop their own pre-kick-off rituals:
England: it has to be Morris dancing. That should put the fear of God into them. Er, their opponents, I mean.
Ireland: a collective jig and reel incorporating stylised weeping motifs, unless the opponents are England, in which case they just shoot them.
Scotland: as Ireland, but keeping their arms in the air while dancing.
Wales: as Ireland and Scotland, but without the dancing, and if their opponents are England they offer them their guns.
France: a kind of collective strut, akin to the funky chicken but sautéed, while farting in their opponents’ general direction.
Italy: running away from their opponents as fast as they can in a disorganised rabble, with a few staying behind to ask if they’d mind swapping shirts now instead of later.
Japan: a mass hara-kiri, being preferable to yet another 100-point deficit by half-time.
South Africa: I won’t go there.

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OrcLander July 11, 2012 2:47 am

The IRB has the wrong end of the stick, in 'limiting what opposing teams can do'. Walking down or responding to a haka is the ideal response - it shows that you have "mana" (respect) and are not intimidated by the display. It also means more mana to the performers, as they are performing something that is worthy of their opponant, ans is worth challenging. Ignoring it or standing there watching is the one thing that will mean you have no mana or pride, and are actually intimidated by it.

Watch any of the pacific islander teams when they play the all blacks, they often simultaneously do their own cultures response to these types of challenges. Tonga does the Sipu Tau, Fiji does the Cibi, and Samoa does the Siva Tau. These are all equivilent to the maori haka.

Additionally the Kapa O Pango, which is commonly interpreted as a throat slitting gesture, actually indicates the drawing of "hauora", the breath of life into the heart and lungs. Its a very appropriate way to end such an intense challenge. If you look at the words and their meaning - none of it is threatening. As it is, they modified the Kapa O Pango, to accomadate that OTHER cultures interpret the throat gesture as aggressive and threatening. THEY are accomodating YOUR culture, so YOU need to accomdate THEIRS too.

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