All Blacks pay tribute to Argentinian legend Diego Maradona as captain Sam Cane puts down a New Zealand rugby jersey with the football icon’s name and No. 10 halfway down the line for Haka … but Pumas can’t repeat the historic win as they are 38- 0 losses.
- The sports world is mourning the death of Diego Maradona on Wednesday
- The Argentina rugby team returned to the field three days after the icon’s death
- Their opponents, the All Blacks, paid their respect by putting a jersey on the field
- The gesture drew applause from the crowd before New Zealand won easily
The New Zealand rugby team has become the latest members of the global sports community to pay their respects to Diego Maradona after the Argentine legend died earlier this week.
The sports world is mourning the Argentinian legend’s sudden death on Wednesday following a heart attack, just two weeks after he was released from hospital for a brain haemorrhage, with three days of national mourning in the country.
And prior to their Tri-Nations clash with Maradona’s homeland, the All Blacks paid tribute to him in their traditional pre-match haka.
Sam Cane put down a jersey with Diego Maradona’s name as the All Blacks paid their respects
The sports world mourns after Maradona died of a heart attack on Wednesday
Captain Sam Cane moved halfway – close to where the Argentina team stood – and put down a rugby jersey with ‘Maradona 10’ printed on the back.
Los Pumas were undoubtedly touched, and the gesture also drew rousing applause from the crowd who had come to watch the game at McDonald Jones Stadium in Newcastle, Australia.
New Zealand then went on to record a 38-0 hammer from Argentina, which played three days after Maradona’s death, while the All Blacks returned to winning ways in the league after two consecutive defeats.
And Cane came up and put down an All Blacks jersey with Maradona’s name and number
The New Zealand captain did it for a visiting Argentine squad lined up for the haka
Attempts by Dane Coles, Ardie Savea and Patrick Tuipulotu, plus two scores from replacement Will Jordan, helped the All Blacks avenge the shock of 25-15 loss to Argentina a fortnight ago.
The bonus point win for Ian Foster’s men in their final match of 2020 puts them on pole position to win the Tri-Nations tournament, preventing them from losing three consecutive matches for the first time since 1998.
Maradona was buried in a private ceremony after thousands of fans lined the streets of Buenos Aires to pay their respects when his coffin was driven to the cemetery on Thursday.
New Zealand then avenged their defeat to Argentina two weeks ago with a 38-0 victory
The 1986 World Cup winner was taken to the Bella Vista Cemetery on the outskirts of the capital – where his parents are buried – for a private ceremony attended by family and close friends.
Maradona was a huge fan of the Argentina rugby union team, and prior to Saturday’s game, coach Mario Ledesma recalled how great Maradona was out of all the country’s different national teams.
“He watched tennis, hockey, rugby, football, if there was an Argentina shirt, he was there and he was an example of how to represent that shirt,” Ledesma said.
Will Jordan scored two tries to get New Zealand back to the top of the Tri Nations table
The victory for Ian Foster’s men in their last race of 2020 puts them on pole position
‘He’s a big figure in our country and he embodied a lot of the way the Argentines are. We will try to remember it as best we can, in the field that represents the colors. ‘
Other sporting events this weekend will also pay tribute to Maradona when teams take to the pitch, with Crystal Palace and Newcastle already doing so with a minute of silence in their Premier League game on Friday.
Serie A teams will show their iconic ‘Live is Life’ warm-up on the stadium’s big screens and players will all wear black armbands and participate in a minute of silence to pay their respects to the Napoli legend.
Argentinian coach Mario Ledesma remembered the support that Maradona gave them before the game