The New Zealand 7's rugby team has won its tenth IRB World Sevens title. A third-place finish at the London torunament was enough to give the New Zealand team yet another championship.
Much of the credit for New Zealand's continued dominance of the IRB World Sevens must go to coach Gordon Tietjens. And he has received a further accolade today as Stuff reports:
New Zealand sevens coaching supremo Gordon Tietjens is the 49th inductee into the International Rugby Board's Hall of Fame.IRB and Hall of Fame chairman Bernard Lapasset presented the commemorative cap and gold pin to Tietjens at an awards ceremony at Twickenham this morning (NZT), shortly after New Zealand clinched their 10th world series title from 13 attempts.Tietjens' roll of honour is without peer in sevens. As well as 10 world series titles, he has also won a Rugby World Cup Sevens in 2001 and all four Commonwealth Games gold medals contested to date.''For many years his New Zealand side has been the standard bearer for the game and, through his knowledge, passion and expertise, he has driven the standards towards what we now celebrate as a truly global game of sevens,'' Lapasset said.Since he began coaching the New Zealand team in 1994, 37 All Blacks have passed through his tough regime, and he recently signed a contract extension that will see him lead his country to the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.Generally, inductees are required to have stepped down from active duty in playing or coaching for at least three years before being considered for induction. However, the selection panel viewed Tietjens' achievements to date as so outstanding that, in his case, they were willing to overlook that criteria for induction.
This is a tremendous recognition of Tietjens' place as one of the greats. He has given fantastic service to the abbreviated form of the game. He has an eye for talent and potential, and a knack for getting the best out of his charges. His training runs are the stuff of legend, but there is no denying that the preparatory work he does with his teams pays off in the long run.
There little left for Gordon Tietjens to achieve in rugby. There's only the inconsequential tournament at the Rio de Janiero Olympics in 2016 left. We jest of course; the introduction of Sevens to the Olympics, whilst controversial, could be a wonderful way got Tietjens to sign off a remarkable career. And you wouldn't bet against it happening.