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John Kirwan (rugby)

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Name  John Kirwan
Role  Rugby union player

Height  1.91 m
Spouse  Fiorella Kirwan (m. 1991)
John Kirwan (rugby) John KIRWAN Biography of his International rugby career
Education  De La Salle College, Mangere East
Books  John Kirwin's Rugby World, Outdoors Cookbook
Children  Francesca Kirwan, Luca Kirwan, Niko Kirwan
Similar People  Tana Umaga, Pat Lam, Jonah Lomu, Eddie Jones, Wayne Shelford

Sir john kirwan all black tribute

Sir John James Patrick Kirwan KNZM MBE (born 16 December 1964) is a New Zealand rugby union coach and former player of both rugby union and rugby league.


John Kirwan (rugby) Rugby World Cup 10 of the greatest matches Daily Mail

He scored 35 tries in 63 tests for New Zealand, making him one of the highest try scorers in international rugby union history, and was part of the New Zealand team that won the first Rugby World Cup in 1987. He also played rugby league for the Auckland Warriors in their first two seasons. He is the former head coach of the Blues in Super Rugby, and the Japan and Italy national teams.

John Kirwan (rugby) The Crusaders39 Dan Carter and the Blues39 Sir John Kirwan

In recent years, he has spoken openly about his battles with depression and been honoured for his services to mental health.

John Kirwan (rugby) John Kirwan special guest at the Festival Italiano

John kirwan tries


John Kirwan (rugby) httpsuploadwikimediaorgwikipediacommonsthu

A grandson of Jack Kirwan, who represented New Zealand in rugby league, John Kirwan was educated at De La Salle College, Mangere East in Auckland.

Rugby union

John Kirwan (rugby) Greatest Rugby World Cup XV Rightwing profiles John

Kirwan played for Marist Brothers Old Boys RFC and Auckland domestically, winning 142 caps with the latter during an era when the side dominated the NPC and Ranfurly Shield.

From 1985 to 1989 he played in Italy, at Benetton Treviso. After his spell in rugby league, he finished his rugby union playing career with NEC in Japan from 1997-1999.

Kirwan played 63 test matches for New Zealand from 1984 until 1994. Kirwan played a major role in the All Blacks’ 23 test unbeaten run from 1987 to 1990, including winning the 1987 World Cup. He scored 10 tries in five tests against Wales and Australia during 1988. In all he scored 35 test tries for New Zealand. He also scored 67 tries in all appearances with the All Blacks (including non test matches) which is still the national record. His total of 199 first class tries remains a New Zealand record.

In 1986 Kirwan and David Kirk were the only All Blacks not to join the 'rebel' New Zealand Cavaliers team that traveled to apartheid-era South Africa after a New Zealand court held that the All Blacks' playing in that country would be inconsistent with their mission of promoting rugby. As a result, he and Kirk were the only ones not temporarily barred from playing with the All Blacks upon their return.

Rugby league

At age 30 Kirwan signed for the newly formed rugby league club Auckland Warriors for the 1995 ARL season, with a mutual option for 1996. Playing on the wing, he was a staunch opponent of the ARL during the Super League war. Kirwan was the Warriors' top try scorer in the 1996 sesason.

Coaching career

In 2001, Kirwan was an assistant coach with the Auckland Blues, his first professional coaching role. In 2002, Kirwan moved to Italy to become the coach of the Italian national rugby team, which under his guidance recorded two victories over Wales in 2003 and Scotland in 2004. After a winless 2005 Six Nations campaign, he was relieved of his managerial duties on 8 April 2005.

At the start of 2007 Kirwan was appointed the coach of the Japan national rugby union team. Interviewed by the Daily Yomiuri, Kirwan said: "The level of rugby has improved greatly in Japan in the last ten years and they did well at the last World Cup. But their recent performances at national level have [not been good]. I want to find that 'Samurai Spirit' that all the players can identify with. And then that style of rugby can start to spread downwards throughout the country." On 9 April 2007 the national team was featured at their first training camp since Kirwan's appointment in the NHK national news, a sign of the growing expectation and interest in his team. He said in front of the camera: "We want to be the world's fittest team". He added that he wanted Japan to play to its strengths which he believed were speed and agility, and to play rugby that "big men don't like." At the 2007 Rugby World Cup, Japan drew 12–12 with Canada, breaking a 16-year, 13-match losing streak. Kirwan remained head coach of Japan through the 2011 Rugby World Cup. In July 2012, Kirwan was announced as the new coach of the Blues for the 2013 and 2014 seasons. He stepped down from this role in June 2015.

Personal life

Kirwan is married to Fiorella, Lady Kirwan, with three children Francesca, Niko and Luca. Kirwan speaks fluent Italian and good Japanese, a result of a playing career in Italy and coaching career in Japan. Kirwan has openly spoken of his battle with depression, and is actively involved in mental health and depression awareness campaigns in New Zealand. He has written about his depression in the books All Blacks Don't Cry and Stand by Me.

The family of Kirwan is originally from Ireland.

Awards and honours

In the 1989 New Year Honours, Kirwan was appointed as a Member of the Order of the British Empire, for services to rugby.

In the 2007 Queen's Birthday Honours, Kirwan was appointed as an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to mental health.

In the 2012 Queen's Birthday and Diamond Jubilee Honours, Kirwan was appointed a Knight Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit, for services to mental health and rugby.

Also in 2012, Kirwan was inducted into the New Zealand Sports Hall of Fame.


John Kirwan (rugby) Wikipedia