Rugby and league legends games raise $500,000

10:16 am on 11 March 2011

A charity rugby match between the "Classic All Blacks" and their old Australian rivals in Brisbane has raised more than $400,000 for the Christchurch earthquake relief fund.

And a Legends of League charity match at Mt Smart Stadium in Auckland is believed to have raised more than $100,000.

In Brisbane on Thursday night, a crowd of about 20,000 watched All Black veterans, including Cantabrians Justin Marshall, Scott Robertson, Caleb Ralph and Reuben Thorne, roll back the years in a game wisely divided into four 20-minute quarters.

Unlimited substitutions were also allowed. The Classic ABs won 58-20, though the score was always of secondary importance.

Before kick-off a minute's silence was observed for the 166 people so far confirmed killed by the 22 February quake.

The match was organised by former Wallabies fullback Greg Martin.

In Auckland on Thursday night, a crowd of more than 6000 saw the New Zealand Legends beat their Australian counterparts 32-22.

Auctions for playing spots in both teams raised $18,000 and bucket collections on the night are expected to take the total well past six figures.