All Black Captain Richie McCaw with the Kelvin R Tremain
Memorial Player of the Year award. (Photo by Sandra
All Blacks' skipper Richie McCaw was named the Kelvin R
Tremain Memorial Player of the Year in last night's national
rugby awards, which also saw accolades for All Blacks' coach
Steve Hansen, and the world champion All Blacks.
McCaw's consistently outstanding performance, relentless
workrate and inspiring leadership on and off the field, saw
him take the title for the fourth time in the 18-year history
of the award.
McCaw, 31, was also named the player of the year in 2003,
2006 and 2009.
The All Blacks' continued dominance through the international
season, which saw them take a clean sweep of the June test
series, retain the Bledisloe Cup and win the Rugby
Championship and a three-from-four record on the end-of-year
tour resulted in them winning the Team of the Year award.
They edged out Super Rugby champions the Chiefs, and
five-in-a-row ITM Cup winners Canterbury.
In a year in which he anointed several new All Blacks and led
a convincing international campaign, head coach Steve Hansen
picked up his first NZRU Coach of the Year Award, seeing off
challenges from Chiefs' coach Dave Rennie and sevens' maestro
Meanwhile, McCaw's biography could be the best-selling rugby
book of all time.
Since going on sale in October The Open Side, which has sold
120,000 copies worldwide, has surpassed the previous record
set by Colin Meads All Black, the 1974 title which sold
Twenty thousand copies of McCaw's book have been sold in the
UK - a phenomenal result for that market because
traditionally rugby books don't sell well there, publisher
Hachette's managing director Kevin Chapman said.
The involvement of author Greg McGee - an All Blacks
trialist, playwright and award-winning novelist - elevated it
above the ordinary run-of-the-mill sports offering, Mr
"We're just pleased for Richie that his book's so successful.
"Everybody's interested in Richie.
It's very hard to find a bad word said about him and all of
us that know Richie, know he's a good guy who's an incredibly
good sportsman. You put that together with a writer of
particular skill and you just end up with a great book about
a great person."
Mr Chapman said he had contacted international publishers for
confirmation of a record. He believed the previous
best-selling rugby book belonged to the autobiography of
former England captain Martin Johnson, which sold 70,000
copies, also by Hachette.
Jonah Lomu's, Jonah, sold 45,000 in New Zealand and 20,000 in
"Unless there's something that's completely bamboozled us, we
think we've got a pretty good idea [about the record]."
Mr Chapman expected McCaw's book to follow the pattern Colin
Meads' second book Meads, published in 2002, had by being in
demand for two years after it was launched.
- Yvonne Tahana of the NZ Herald