Rugby: Ranfurly Shield gets makeover

The Ranfurly Shield
The Ranfurly Shield
New Zealand's most coveted provincial rugby prize, the Ranfurly Shield, has had a makeover.

At the conclusion of this year's ITM Cup, the New Zealand Rugby Union sent the famous 'Log o' Wood' away for repairs and to have the engraved badges replaced to make room for future holders of the Shield.

The Ranfurly Shield is held by Waikato who beat previous defenders Taranaki in Round 12 of this year's ITM Cup.

But the Shield had run out of room for winners' badges and was in general need of some restoration work.

New Zealand Rugby Union general manager of community and provincial rugby Brent Anderson said work on the shield had always been scheduled for the end of the season.

"The badges denoting previous winners were all full and we needed to make some room to acknowledge future winners. It's a much loved and a well-travelled piece of New Zealand history, and it was showing all the signs of its rich past, including a previously repaired crack through the wood," Anderson said.

"We're delighted that the shield has been returned today with most of its wear and tear dents repaired. It's had a bit of varnish and some polish making the shield look a million dollars. The work has thoroughly respected the history of the Ranfurly Shield."

The shield will return to Waikato, its home for the summer, tonight.