Black Ferns ready for delayed women's rugby world cup in 2022

By Te Ao - Māori News

New Zealand Rugby is setting the scene for the Women's Rugby World Cup as the new dates for the tournament next year are confirmed after being postponed this year.

The revised tournament dates will now see New Zealand host the tournament between October 8 and November 12, 2022, in Auckland and Whangārei. The tournament will feature increased rest periods for all teams and a revamped format with all fixtures to be played on weekends, with triple-header matches scheduled each day.

Black Fern Te Kura Ngata-Arengamate says while there is some disappointment, the team is happy to finally get some certainty.

"For some of our ladies, it's been deflating. especially those who were wanting to retire. But for us as a team, it's a good opportunity to be better for when that World Cup comes in October," Te Kura says. 

Black Ferns haka

The All Blacks Experience at SkyCity launched the Black Ferns' haka today.

Ko Ūhia Mai was launched by NZ Rugby aspiring director Nicola O'Rourke.

“The Black Ferns haka is a long-awaited and vital addition to the Experience," O'Rourke says. "It’s important that young women see themselves reflected in what we offer at the All Blacks Experience. We’re not only showcasing the journey to become an All Black but also to become a Black Fern.

The haka, led by Te Kura Ngata-Aerengamate and Renee Wickliffe, was filmed in one shot and a single take at Auckland’s Eden Park on August 17,  2019, against the Wallaroos Australian women’s national team.

“Filming many takes was absolutely out of the question. Our national teams do not ‘perform’ the haka and we needed to capture the passion, pre-game energy and authenticity," EQMade design principal Ed Burak says.

It was written by respected Māori rugby leader Whetū Tipiwai, who also wrote the Māori All Blacks haka, Timatanga.

The Black Ferns haka will be showcased on the midday and 2pm tours from now until Monday, May 17.