My last exam for Victoria University was on Saturday. That wasn’t the only exciting news of the day for me. My friends and I had purchased pre-sale tickets back in late March/ early April to the All Blacks vs. Wales rugby game in Wellington for June 18. I was so incredibly excited for it!
When most people think of New Zealand they think of the silver fern, kiwi birds, pavlova and not just rugby, but the All Blacks rugby team. When I saw that they were going to be playing in Wellington, I made sure to sign up for the pre-sale and guarantee my seat at the game. At the time, I didn’t realize just how big the game was though.
My friends and I arrived to the Westpac Stadium pretty early. We were able to walk around, get some free posters, grab some drinks and food, and buy some merchandise. As soon as we found our seats, the lights dimmed. The stadium was completely sold out; you wouldn’t know the seats were yellow if you never saw the color of your own seat. The energy was amazing and everyone was decked out either in All Blacks or Wales gear, though mostly All Blacks of course.
The game started out with the national anthems, some fireworks, and of course, the "haka" done by the All Blacks. It feels great being able to say that I saw this in person!
From the very start, the game was intense. I’ve seen some shirts that say "No Pads No Helmets Just Balls". It sounds funny, but when you watch the players get tackled, dog piled and pushed, you start to think, "They really need those helmets and pads"! It’s a very physically demanding sport and there is a lot going on at time. None the less, everyone was cheering for the teams and sitting at the edge of their seats.
Towards the end of the game, the score was pretty close, but the All Blacks pulled through and won 36 -22. The stadium went crazy and everyone was hugging each other. The intensity of all the players and the excitement of the fans created this amazing feeling that I feel so grateful to say I was a part of. Watching a sport on a T.V. isn’t the same as watching it in person, and this is definitely a game that I am so glad to say I watched. I mean, how can it get more kiwi than watching the All Blacks play in Wellington and win?!
After the game, a few players came along the edge of the field to take pictures and give autographs to fans. My friends and I rushed down and busted out some markers and our posters. I don’t know his name, but player number 2 took a selfie with my friends and I and signed our posters. It was so amazing!
I can’t imagine a better way to celebrate finishing finals for Victoria University and being able to call myself a senior in college. As one of the last things I do here in New Zealand, watching the All Blacks game will definitely be a highlight of my experience here.