The outpouring of emotion in the wake of the tragic passing of Maori All Black and Chiefs winger Sean Wainui has been incredible over the past few days, with New Zealand’s top club rugby competition leaving their own poignant tribute last weekend.
Wainui lost his life after a car crash near Auckland last Thursday, and his death has left a huge hole in New Zealand rugby as well as the wider community further afield.
The All Blacks dedicated their haka ahead of their victory over the USA to Wainui, with further tributes being made at home, most notably between Wainui’s former club Taranaki before their game with Manawatu.
Such has been the collective devastation over Wainui’s passing, that both sides gathered for a moment of silence and a Maori prayer before selected players performed Wainui’s favourite haka.
Wainui, a proud Maori with a passion for culture, language and all aspects of Maori life, would certainly have been equally as proud of this utterly sublime pre-match activity.
The match itself, was of relative irrelevance given the circumstances around it, but Taranaki went on to win a high-scoring game, 47-35.