All Hail The All Blacks

5 hours and over 400 km. Hmmm, sempat kah nihhh?? Okayy, I’ll just sleep now and hope that when I wake up, we’ll reach there in time.

15 minutes later...

Me: Are we there yet?? *pouts*
Ibu: *Chuckles* Kakak dah worry we’re gonna miss world cup finals. Chill, we’ll reach there in time.
Me: *Stares* Nanti ramai orang kat fanzone, tak boleh masuk tengok kat bigscreen. *pouts* I’ll just sleep again then. *sigh*

Our road trip to Rotorua, north part of North Island. That was how far we drove last weekend. We went there coz a very close family friend came to New Zealand and we decided to go to Rotorua on the same day as the World Cup finals. Went around the beautiful sulphur-odoured place, visited an awesome Maori Marae named Whakarewarewa AND got to the fanzone* on time and watch the glorious victory that All Blacks manage to hold on to after 24 years! It was definitely one nervous-wrecking game coz the Abs only won 8-7 against the French. Phew! I bet Piri Weepu felt all the pressure on him but heyy, that’s why they’re called games I guess. =S But then, Stephen Donald saved the day and managed to get a conversion out of it. And they only put Sonny Bill in like 5 minutes before the game ends. *pouts* And I just adore Richie McCaw’s cheeky grin when he looked at the time which was over 80 minutes, indicating that they’ve won the title. =D

You gotta read it in Malay so that it will sound the same:

The view of sulfur blast from my hotel room.

The cool Maori traditional dance performance.

The Marae.

Singing Aotearoa National Anthem: God Defend New Zealand

When The All Blacks won the Championship at Rotorua Fanzone.

*fanzone - a place where they build at almost every town in NZ so that everyone can watch rugby on bigscreen, play all sorts of rugby games and cool events, and if you’re lucky like me, you’ll be able to meet the All Blacks. Depends where and when though. =D

From left: Cory Jane, Ma'a Nonu, some cute kid =p, Piri Weepu, Dan Carter, Sonny Bill Williams, Conrad Smith and Richard Kahui

Fanzone at Waitangi Park, Wellington.

Okay, to tell you the truth, it wasn’t such a good game. I know that they could do a lot better than that but Abs have done their best and owned the World Cup title for the second time. However, here is my Top 5 must-watch RWC matches list:

1)     Ireland vs Wales (Quarters)
2)     Australia vs All Blacks (Semis)
3)     Australia vs South Africa (Quarters)
4)     Tonga vs France (Pool)
5)     Japan vs All Blacks (Pool)

I know, you guys must be thinking JAPAN? You kidding me? LOL, it was definitely an easy game for the Abs (no offence to any Japanese =B) but you gotta agree with me that Japan didn’t give up even till the last minute. You just gotta love their spirit. =)

The All Blacks had a victory parade in Auckland on Monday, Christchurch on Tuesday and in Wellington itself on Wednesday but tragically I couldn’t go coz it was during school. They did the haka at the parliament staircase!! Huaarrgghh!! *Geram* One horrible day but you just gotta do what cha gotta do =S. But, all hail the All Blacks, the world champion. =D

PS: Now I don’t have anything else to look forward to every weekend anymore. =S


Rugby to Life and Islam

“Why do you fast? Why can’t you touch dogs? Why can’t you eat pork? Why do you have to pray five times a day? Why do you have so many rules in Islam? How can you be so committed to them?” Those are a few questions which had been asked at me for the past few months since I moved here. Well, to tell you the truth, I do know the technical reasons but I’m such a horrible person when it comes to explaining stuffs. So, the best way for me to generally explain why Islam has so many rules, is by using an analogy. (Gosh, bio is really getting into my brain. Wait, it is a good thing right? LOL) So, since most of my peeps who asked me these questions are New Zealanders, I’m gonna use a great analogy which can be perfectly linked to their lives, rugby. =B To my Malaysian friends, I’ll explain a little bit about the game throughout the way. Got loadsa pictures you guys can look at. =D Plus, not only you can relate to Islam but also life. =)
PS: It’s just my opinion and it may sound funny because it was a sudden random idea that I came up with. =p Damn you Rugby World Cup, you’re distracting me! =p
2nd PS: Tribute to All Blacks. They rock!

Let’s start off with this:

In rugby games, of course you need solid rules in order for the game to work. They are the ones that keep the game civilised and intact even though rugby is one brutal game. That’s why there are so many rules in Islam that we have to follow in order for our life to work and not diverge from this beautiful religion. If you break the rules, you’re gonna end up killing everyone on the team and not winning the championship =p.

Referees are the individuals who are responsible for presiding over the game from a neutral point of view and making decisions that enforce the rules of the sport. So, referees are like our family members, teachers and friends who keep reminding us of the rules. Let’s face it, we’re homo sapiens. Duhh. We have flaws and we do need a lot of people to remind us of what is right and wrong. The game won’t work without them coz we’ll be too arrogant and realise that we’re doing the wrong thing. And ending up bashing one another. Wow, that sounds harsh but yeah. =P

RWC 11' Referee: George Clancy

You know how in every games (and even exams!), you gotta train and practice before the day reaches. I know it’s not easy and all those hard work and those hardcore blood, sweat and tears (and probably some broken bones. Yeep!) would definitely come around in one way or another. So, in order to win a game, you have to train. Without the training, you’re going to fail miserably and not winning the cup. Training can be symbolised as the 5 pillars of Islam which are acknowledging Allah as the only God and that Prophet Muhammad is His messenger, pray 5 times a day, fast during the Ramadhan month, goes for Hajj in Mekah, and almsgiving which is also known as zakat. In my belief, without them, you’re not going to al-Jannah (heaven). Period. That is why you have to fast, pray and etc in order to get into al-Jannah. They are all preparatory stuffs which will make you a better person and confirm a place in the heaven. In a way, if you slack in doing your training, you can kiss goodbye to the cup. *winks*

Sonny Bill Williams during All Blacks training session

Injuries and Opponent
Owh, hell yes rugby is one brutal game. Not in a single game that no one gets injured. Injuries are like our downs in life. We just gotta get right back up and continue fighting even though it hurts like hell. Let’s just say that the aggressiveness in the game is like life in general. Life is one bumpy brutal ride! They’re not gonna be sweet all the time. And opponents symbolise your obstacles for you to face in order to get to your goals. In rugby, obstacles for you to get a try =D. You get knocked and pushed and jabbed at but at the end of the day, you know that you have to win and that life is worth fighting for because life is a gift from Allah to us. So, treasure it. =) Life can be rough to you but heyy, if you don’t have any broken bones, where is the fun of it? =p

 All Blacks against Wallabies

Try and Conversion
So, you non-rugby watchers out there, try means grounding the ball in the opposition's in-goal area which behind the goal line. It’s something like what we call touch-down in American Football. 

Conrad Smith making a try

After every single try, you’ll get a conversion which is when the ball is kicked and must pass over the crossbar and between the uprights.

Rugby post

So, tries and conversions are like goals in our life. We’ve got to put our head in it and really aim for it. And it’s definitely hard to reach but once you get to the line, I bet it feels amazing. A goal can be as simple as saving up money to buy your favourite team jersey and it can go up to as hardcore as getting your 5th PhD or whatever you want it life. Just remember this, nothing is impossible, just do it. Keep in mind that your goals have to be good things though =p.

Scrums and Penalties
Scrum is a way of restarting the game, either after an accidental infringement. Players will bind together in three rows and the scrum then 'engages' with the opposition team so that the player's heads are interlocked with those of the other side's front row.

While penalty score works the same way as conversions do.

Dan Carter making the penalty kick

So, scrum and penalties are like second chances in life.  If we take it for granted, you’re gonna lose the ball, the scoring points and cause the opposition team to win. If you’re not focused and slack off, you’re not gonna  win the match. What I’m trying to say is that we should really be grateful and work harder in life. There must be a reason why Allah gives us second chances. Think about it. And never take granted of anything in our life. It’s just too precious to be lagged off and you might not get it anymore. Even one point in scoring can separate you between winning and losing.

The team IS your family. They have to support you no matter what happens. Friends and family are the ones that help us to reach our goals and are expected to be there when we need them and vice versa of course. We have to take care of them and love them in order for them to have your back. ‘Nuff said.

Winning the Cup
Winning the Cup is like getting a place in al-Jannah. And yes, it feels like heaven. *winks* You have to do so many things and follow many rules and fight and face your obstacles in order to win. And at the end of the day, it is definitely worth it. Nothing is better than pleasing Allah as we all have to remember that He is our creator and that we are His best creation in the whole wide world. And that is why I am committed to my religion. Coz I wanna win the cup. =D

So, guys, put your rugby boots on and side-step your way to al-Jannah. =B