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Wednesday, October 04, 2023


Losing to the Springboks at Twickenham recently has generated plenty of chatter about the All Blacks' readiness for the upcoming World Cup. Coach Ian Foster, however, offers a unique perspective on handling the noise: "There will always be noise. Noise is judgment. You will never escape judgment. People form opinions about what you do all the time. You must remind yourself that it is just someone’s opinion. What matters is the opinions of the people you work with and who are in the arena with you."

For the All Blacks, ambiguity and grey areas have no place. They are perennial favourites to win, and that's the standard they hold themselves to. While they may not always emerge victorious, one thing is certain: they despise losing. But what does it take to maintain such a high-performance level consistently?

First and foremost, mental preparation is key. Being physically fit is pointless if you're not mentally ready to compete for victory. Well-being and performance go hand in hand; you can't have one without the other. This demands vulnerability, open communication, and a delicate balance. Most importantly, individuals need to feel valued within the team. Mentally, the All Blacks enter every game expecting to win, a weighty responsibility to bear. But as they say, pressure is a privilege.
In the world of rugby, where opinions abound, the All Blacks remain steadfast in their commitment to excellence. They understand that the noise outside is just that—noise. What truly matters is the unwavering belief within the team and the relentless pursuit of victory, no matter the challenges they face.

[Submitted by Estea Rademeyer]

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Estea Rademeyer

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