Special haka for All Black's debut

The family of Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi performed a special haka for the New Zealand halfback after watching him make his debut for the All Blacks.

Tahuriorangi came off the bench to make his Test debut in the 46-24 win over Argentina last night.

The 23-year-old replaced TJ Perenara with 10 minutes remaining in the match to the delight of his family, who were watching pitchside at Trafalgar Park in Nelson.

"This haka will mean a lot to him and you could see how much it meant in the pre-match haka," said Sky commentator Justin Marshall.

"He was well and truly emotional and I think that emotion was shown post-game and pre-game but when he (Tahuriorangi) came on, he was composed and played well.

"He'll be loving the family haka because he came on and made a difference, and that's what Steve Hansen would have asked for."

Tahuriorangi was named in the All Blacks squad for the series against France in June, but did not feature in a match day squad, having to bide his time behind the likes of Aaron Smith and Perenara.

Tahuriorangi's dad Pae Tahuriorangi said pre-match he was proud of all his son had achieved, but had always strived to keep him grounded.

"It's humbling, we're excited and at the same time we realise he's in a place right now where every kid who plays rugby dreams of being an All Black. We're ecstatic and at the same time very humbled.

"He's definitely worked hard and it comes with sacrifices, like many sportspeople, whether it's just for your local club or at a higher level."

Pae and the immediate family travelled to Nelson to watch the game.

"We'll enjoy the moment with him. I'd be lying if I said it won't be emotional. My phone's been going crazy with messages and calls from family and friends in Australia, England, the United States and these people are crying.

"But like usual, when he runs on the field, he picks up a piece of grass and understands why he's there.

"It's enjoy the moment but remember that back in the day people fought for the land, he's just fighting in a different manner, on the rugby field."

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