The Colour of Money

Topics: New Zealand, New Zealand national rugby union team, Rugby union Pages: 6 (2017 words) Published: August 27, 2013
eyThe Colour of Money
By Demi Matheson

Achievement Standard Physical Education 91502: Examine a current physical activity event, trend, or issue and its impact on New Zealand society. 

"Show me the money, Sonny (Bill Williams)"

New Zealand is well known for having a strong sporting culture with many of the most popular national sports deriving from our British colonial heritage. Without a doubt it is rugby union that has dominated the national sporting culture physic.  After the All Blacks took the 1987 title of the best rugby team in the world, New Zealand has been defined as a nation that is “rugby religious”. Through our rugby sporting culture we are internationally recognized for our loyalty, passion, teamwork, dedication and perseverance towards the sport. Rugby not only has become a culture in New Zealand but also a major money contributor. These are considerations are positive for our country. Things are changing and one of the main arguments today in New Zealand is why rugby players are committed to sport.  Externally they portray possible reasons why they play, through the passion and drive played on the field, the painful slaps in performing the traditional haka performance and proud honour ship of legacy as players sing the National Anthem with tears in their eyes. This however does not define the reasons why they internally perform. Twenty seven year old Sonny Bill Williams has made New Zealanders question our rugby players reasoning for playing the game. He is perceived as selfish and a "money chaser" His motives are continually up for review in the media and through the public perception. I have personal assumptions regarding Sonny Bill Williams and place him outside the norm that is found in All Black circles. When I think of our genuine All Blacks such as "Richie McCaw" I have faith that he is a man who I can look up to because of his leadership qualities and the fact that he is true and loyal. When I think of "Sonny Bill Williams” I can't help but think of what he will do next, how long he will stay, who he is currently dating and how much money he is earning. Both are sporting heroes but they have two completely different attitudes towards the reasons why they play sport. In this article I have decided to explore the motivation 

Sonny Bill Williams began his professional sporting career in 2004 when he was spotted by a Canterbury Bulldogs scout who was visiting Auckland. Williams was a talented athlete at school excelling at athletics. He was only 18 years old, the youngest ever to be signed on with the Bulldogs club. In the same year he was selected to play in New Zealand’s Kiwi squad in the ANZAC test against Australia. He remained loyal to the bull dogs when his initial contract expired and stayed on for another 2 years. He turned down a lucrative offer to play for St Helens in the United Kingdom. In 2008 he left the Bulldogs mid season to play rugby union with French club Toulon. They came came runner up in the 2009 Europe Challenge cup and, Toulon offered him a three year contract for $6 million. He did not accept the offer and returned to New Zealand to sign with NZRU who only offered him $550,000. His motivation then was not money – but the opportunity of playing for the All Blacks.

He proved himself good enough to play for the men in black and was named in the 2010 Squad.  His decision to return to New Zealand ensured recognition in his home country as a dedicated man - loyal to his country first and foremost. He played in the 2011 Rugby World Cup. While in New Zealand he played with Canterbury Crusaders and the Chiefs.

He also played a short stint of rugby in Japan with Panasonic. He was rumoured to have had promotional opportunities for the 2019 Rugby World Cup that is being held in Japan.

But his loyalty proved to be short lived. He had been pursuing a professional boxing career as a sideline and at the end of...
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