This year at the Rugby World Cup final in Auckland New Zealand, THG Sports were able to organize an appearance by Zinzan Brooke at the hospitality venue. Rugby fans will know Zinzan as one of the most talented No.8’s to ever play the game who retired from international rugby in 2001.The kiwi has the strong and powerful build of an intimidating back-row player, however, what made him special however was the addition of skill, agility and speed of a front row player. The most shining example of this skill was displayed in 1995 when Zinzan scored a 40ft drop kick against England in the semi-final. In 2007 Will Carlin, former England captain, wrote a article in Telegraph newspaper where he voted Zinzan as No.8 on the top 50 Rugby players of all time.
Few may know him another reason as well, since retirement the New Zealand rugby sensation has relocated to the town of Windsor in the United Kingdom. Here, along with his wife Alison, Zinzan has acquired an old Bed and Breakfast and has aimed to renovate it with a personal touch. The Frances Lodge is a quaint and refurbished old Victorian property that occupies Zinzan’s time when he is not playing for the amateur rugby team in his village.
Here are a few snippets from Zinzan’s interview and his opinions on a few matters:
On children and playing sports:
“I followed a long ambition of every kiwi boy.”
“I’m a firm believer of what my mom and dad did, which was to sewn the seeds of giving your kids all the opportunities you can and at the end of the teenage level here the sport will find you.”
On the world cup being hosted in New Zealand:
“It’s the fact that the all blacks have a proud tradition, and the success on the field accounts for that. It’s the players that have worn the jersey before that have raised the crossbar for the guys that are there now.”
“Alot of commercial people are involved here- its something that all the players, people the fans appreciate.”
Zinzan was welcome addition to the venue and was excited for the big match in Eden Park only a few hours later when the All Blacks would be in the final against France. Brooke believed that he though New Zealand could win it, but that France had been “banana peels” in past tournaments who could miraculously gain victories when they needed to. Ultimately, the host nation would proudly go on to win the tournament in front of ecstatic home fans at Eden Park.