1 Jun 2012

Name changes for NZ sevens and Maori teams

12:03 pm on 1 June 2012

The New Zealand Rugby Union has announced that the New Zealand men's sevens and New Zealand Maori teams are to be officially referred to as the All Blacks Sevens and Maori All Blacks respectively.

The changes take effect for the next IRB Sevens World Series beginning later this year for the men's Sevens team and for New Zealand Maori on their Northern Hemisphere tour later this year.

NZRU chief executive Steve Tew says the change recognises a commonly held perception the world over, whether it be fans, sports media and at times even other rugby unions and tournament organisers.

The NZRU already has another national team similarly named in the Junior All Blacks.

Tew says the name change will expand the commercial and partnership opportunities available to them so providing much needed funds for all layers of the game in New Zealand.

Steve Tew says the change was carefully considered and it did not alter what it meant to be an All Black.