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All Whites Notice of Motion: Dr Pita Sharples

All Whites Notice of Motion: Dr Pita Sharples
Tuesday 17 November 2009

The Maori Party stands, to join all other parties, to recognise the outstanding success of the All Whites on Saturday night.

As the 35,000 crowd poured through the main entrance of the Westpac Stadium on Saturday night, they may not have noticed the traditional Taranaki designs incorporated at the front of the venue.

But if they looked closer, it might well have given them hope, knowing that victory would be within our reach.

Central to the design is Rua Taranaki, the mountain – representing the challenge of reaching the pinnacle of achievement. It symbolises to us all the hurdles to be overcome by people as they strive to achieve their goals.

At no time has this been more apparent than in this clincher match, qualifying the All Whites for the 2010 World Cup finals in South Africa.

This will be just the second time that the All Whites will appear at a finals tournament, the first since Spain in 1982.

And in a wonderful reminder of whakawhaungatanga, it should be noted that the champion of champions, Ngati Porou striker, Rory Fallon was born in the very year of 1982.

1982 was the same year that Rory’s father Kevin, helped to coach the All-whites through to the finals.

We celebrate the role that families play in nurturing our champions – the legacy of their talents being taken on; the vital support that whanau play in assisting our young in their training; the early morning games, the sports gears; the dedication that helps to make a champion.

Mr Speaker, at moments of great jubilation to our nation; our unity is enhanced by the various connections we can make to the moment that binds us together.

For tangata whenua we have an over-brimming pride that it was a Maori boy who kicked the ball to another Maori boy who scored the winning goal.

And so we are so full of aroha for Rory from Rangitukia and Tikitiki – our Yorkshire Maori - and for Leo Bertos – our Maori Greek.

This is a time when we all bask in the glory of our team who indeed reached the pinnacle of achievement for us all.

We hope that with this stunning success of the Allwhites, our boys will be honoured for the way in which they add to our international reputation as a nation of sporting prowess.


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