Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Tana Umaga Officially Retires as an Allblack

I commented earlier how Tana umaga retired well now he has officially retired. I first read about Tana as being Mike Umaga’s brother. Mike was a good player for Manu Samoa. We were both living in Wellington and Tana was then the New Zealand Junior League captian.

I started following rugby when I was living in Wellington, New Zealand. The main reason I liked the all blacks was all the pacific islanders playing in NPC and the All Blacks. So Tana Umaga being the first samoan all black captain was special for me.

Graham Henry commented how Tana can now be considered one the greatest All Black captain. In terms of results especially last year he can be considered one of the greatest. From my experience I would put him below Sean Fitzpatrick and Buck Shelford

During the last year Tana’s All Black team has whitewashed the British lions, Grand Slam and won the Bledsloe and the Tri Nations. I don’t think this will happen again for a very long time.

In terms of performance Tana's key was not scoring but solidifying the All Black backline. I still cant get over how John Mitchel in the last world cup left Tana out of the side for the Australian game when it was shown in the Wales game that their was a big hole between mauger and mcdonnel

One of few incidents against Umaga was when his reaction to being abused by local samoan teenagers in Dunedin for not playing for Samoa . After that incident I remember he stopped drinking.

Richie mcaw is slated to be the new All Black Captian. He was the best open side flanker in Rugby but after his continous concussion I would be worried about his future.

I think Tana started the dreadlock craze in top level rugby.

Tana commented on what he will miss most, It is when he leads the Haka.

Tana was also one of the biggest influences in the new Pacific Haka that was introduced against Australia.


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