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Friday Dec 5, 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.

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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.

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Time: 01:40

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