Fan thrilled to secure hero's signature

All Black and Highlander Ben Smith, who has played for Green Island as a boy and a senior rugby player, signs rugby balls for Dunedin brothers, Charlie (10, left) and Rhys  (8) Johnston.

Photo: Linda Robertson
Photo: Linda Robertson
Rhys lives in nearby Fairfield and was proud to wear his Green Island club colours yesterday. 

Families from around Otago gathered to watch the arrival of the All Blacks at Dunedin Airport about 5.30pm, some people travelling from as far afield as Balclutha.

The brothers’ mother, Karina Johnston, said the family was thrilled to get the chance to meet the players.

"We’ve been excited about it all day," she said.

The players were officially welcomed by King’s and Queen’s High School kapa haka group He Waka Kotuia, and the All Blacks performed a waiata for the group in return, led by Nehe Milner-Skudder.

The French team arrives on Thursday for the third and final test at the Forsyth Barr Stadium on Saturday.

The All Blacks have won the first two tests.

There were more than 100 people at the airport. 

While most of those  present wore black, one group donned blue, white and red and waved a French flag. 

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