Terminally ill father's last rugby game features All Blacks in Southland

With the help of a few All Blacks, a terminally ill father's wish to play one last game of rugby was granted on Saturday.

From a helicopter, Blair Vining and his teenage daughters emerged to deliver the match ball for a simple game of grassroots rugby which turned into the star-studded event of the year in the small Southland community of Winton.

Much of the community packed into the small Southland rugby park playing host to a memorable game.

Among the high-profile guests were current All Black Sam Kane and former player Mils Muliaina.

"I played rugby with Blair back in the under 14s and under 16s days… Once I heard what was going I thought I better get out there and lace the boots back up," said Muliaina.

"It's very scary to think that everyone is here for me. I want to think that they're here for the boys," said Mr Vining.

It's a bittersweet match for the rugby fan and father of two who has a heart-breaking prognosis - terminal bowel cancer.

"I just love playing rugby, and it's just so much fun and enjoyable. Just getting out there for one last time with my mates," he said.


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