The world champion Black Ferns’ victory tour schedule has been released and will see the team spend 13 days exploring the nation and meeting fans in a variety of settings.
The hype around the Kiwi team snowballed throughout the six-week World Cup, fans sold out nearly every match the local side played in as the highlight plays and personalities infected the rugby public and beyond.
The initial celebrations took place the morning following the World Cup final and the Ferns have since had a well-deserved two-week break – where a number of players received their own local parades and celebrations in their respective hometowns.
The players returned home with an extra $25,000 in pocket courtesy of a performance bonus.
In addition to the planned celebrations, Greymouth will be treated to a guest appearance by hometown hero Ruby Tui in their Christmas parade Saturday while Rarotonga and Samoa have each had visits from Maiakawanakaukani Roos and Theresa Fitzpatrick respectively.
A parade had been discussed in Wellington but sports minister Grant Robertson had cited timing as an issue and noted it was more of a local council matter. Evidently, it was decided a reception at Parliament was a more feasible option.
The 12-stops on the tour look to interact with as many of the 1.2 million Kiwis who tuned into the World Cup Final last month as possible.
The “Thank you Aoteara Tour” starts Monday, with players’ attendance to be confirmed.
Bay of Plenty
Date: Monday 5 December
Details: Rip Rugby Finals Night at Omokoroa Sports Ground, Omokoroa
Date: Tuesday 6 December
Details: A public Meet and Greet at Hamilton Old Boys Rugby Club, Hamilton
Date: Wednesday 7 December
Details: Skills and Drills at Yarrow Stadium
Date: Thursday 8 December
Details: A public Meet and Greet at The Square, Palmerston North
Date: Saturday 10 December
Time: from 4.30pm
Details: Players to make an appearance at the Six60 concert at OrangeTheory Stadium
Date: Monday 12 December
Details: A public Meet and Greet at Victoria Squad, Christchurch
Date: Tuesday 13 December
Details: Public reception at New Zealand Parliament Building
Date: Wednesday 14 December
Details: A public Meet and Greet and Fun Day at Tiwi Black Park, Ruatoki
Date: Thursday 15 December
Details: To be confirmed
Date: Friday 16 December
Details: An event to be held at the ?t?whare Marae
Date: Saturday 17 December
Details: A public Meet and Greet at the Grey St Food Festival, Gisborne
Date: Sunday 18 December
Details: Meet and Greet at the World Schools Sevens at Pakuranga Rugby Club