The All Blacks are up for the International Laureus award for best sports team of the year. They are competing with Miami Heat, Bayern Munich, Brazil’s Soccer Team, Men’s Table Tennis Doubles Mike and Bob Bryan, and Formula One constructors champions, Red Bull.
Part of me doesn’t want the All Blacks to win the award and for it to go to one of the others.
I am afraid that Steve Hansen and Richie will be at the ceremony in their tuxedos, and they win and go up and give their acceptance speech, and then they lose their edge competitively because they’ve reached the pinnacle at last.
They lose the sense of having to improve any further and they feel they don’t have towork as hard any longer. All their work for so many years prior to the 2011 World Cup and since has been to seek perfection. With the possibility they may win the Laureus World Team of the Year award they will at last be recognized internationally as the greatest sports team of 2013 in any sport.
The last thing we need this year (just a year out from the next world cup) is to feel like we’ve become the best. We have to keep looking inside ourselves and trying to improve
I think this award will make it really hard to do that.
Freelance artist Leanne Hannah, a rugby observer from the United States said the All Blacks could respond to such an award by saying “we were the best team in 2013, but we have to strive to continue to be the best for 2014.” That is certainly the way they would try to deal with the success as constant improvement is part of the team mantra.