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How rugby shaped New Zealand from 1870 to 1995
Aspect Ratio: 4:3
Duration: 4 x 46 min episodes
‘The Game of Our Lives’ presents rugby as a mirror of New Zealand’s social history and identity, from the first rugby club in 1870 to the 1995 Rugby World Cup. It also explores the game’s unique connection with M?ori. It includes rare footage documenting the history of rugby in New Zealand and some of the game’s greatest players.
Each episode visits iconic paddocks (from schools to stadiums) and players (from amateurs Nepia, Meads, and Shelford, to professional star Lomu and his meeting with former South African President Nelson Mandela in 1995).
Episode 1: HOME & AWAY – The game of English gentlemen finds a new home in New Zealand. The first recorded game is played in Nelson in 1870.
Episode 2: THE TIES THAT BIND – After the dreadful effects of World War 1, rugby catches the collective imagination and becomes New Zealand’s abiding obsession for the next half century.
Episode 3: TRIES & PENALTIES – New Zealand and South Africa’s shared love of rugby joined two peoples. Yet because of rugby, the struggle for racial equality in South Africa would become a painful part of New Zealand history.
Episode 4: THE NEW BALL GAME – Television stands in the centre of a new rugby money go round as professionalism arrives. Jonah Lomu becomes the game’s first superstar.