For just a few minutes, New Zealand’s national rugby union captain Kieran Read was in a Vodafone Warriors rugby league jersey bearing his name and famed jersey number on Thursday night.
The 32-year-old Papakura-born All Black captain spent the evening with the Vodafone Warriors at their Papamoa camp ground after being invited as guest speaker on the last night of their four-day stay at the beach resort.
After his presentation, Read’s Vodafone Warriors counterpart Roger Tuivasa-Sheck presented him with the NRL club’s home jersey, which the All Black skipper quickly whipped on much to the joy of the players.
After being introduced by new recruit Tohu Harris – an ex-rugby union player himself – Read talked to a captivated gathering of Vodafone Warriors players and football staff about his story, offering numerous insights in a presentation focused on performing under pressure. Throughout he fielded an array of questions from many of the players.
Mention of Read’s Papakura roots drew a passionate response from ‘Kura’ Vodafone Warriors James Bell and Jazz Tevaga, who later posed for a special photo opportunity with Read.
After a group shot with all the players, Read said he had always been a Vodafone Warriors fan and had welcomed the chance to speak to the players.