Live updates: All Blacks legend Andy Haden's funeral from Auckland

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Live coverage has concluded

3:20pm - That concludes our live coverage of Andy Haden's funeral.

3:19pm - Wayne 'Buck' Shelford is leading a haka as Haden is being carried out.

3:17pm - A guard of honour by former teammates of Haden's has formed as the pallbearers carry Haden's coffin out of the room. 

3:15pm - Hart says Haden was a legend of rugby, but more importantly a great friend. 

3:14pm - Hart is wrapping up with his own heartfelt tribute to his "great mate" Andy Haden. Says Haden was a hard worker and an innovator in his pursuit of excellence. 

3:13pm - The service is now wrapping up - Hart says the bar will be open for 90 minutes on Haden's tab! Awesome. 

3:12pm - Collins says he can't consider a life without Haden in it .... says he is a richer human for having known Haden. He ends his fantastic eulogy with a poem. 

3:11pm - Collins says Haden was always there for him in his times of need. Says he was a loving father who taught him how to be a better dad. 

3:09pm - Collins is now talking the audience through a few amusing golfing yarns from their times on the course together. 

3:03pm - Collins is now talking about some of his memories of Andy Haden - his "enduring friend" of more than 40 years. 

3:02pm - A poem from Clive Elliot is being read by Collins.

3:00pm - A tribute from Rachel Hunter is being read - she describes Haden as an "anchor" in her life. 

2:59pm - Tributes from David Kirk, Murray Deaker, John Kirwan, Grant Fox, Peter Fitzsimons, and Eric Rush are being read by Collins and John Hart.

2:56pm - Collins is reading a selection of tributes sent by friends and family about what Haden brought to their lives. 

2:54pm - Says the media never saw Haden for the kind, gentle person who is loved by all. Says the media only focused on the controversies. Says Haden was a great human being. 

2:53pm - Collins says he will miss his great friend, but that he is pain free now, in a batter plave and could put the misery of 2020 behind him. 

2:51pm - John Hart is back on stage now, talking about Andy Haden's love of golf and has welcomed to stage one of his golf partners Wayne Pope Collins.

2:43pm - A montage of photos, set to two of Haden's favourite songs is now being shown. 

2:42pm - He says Haden was a buisness "Genuis" who changed the course of rugby forever post career. 

2:33pm - Haden's buisness partner from Sporting Contacts is now on the stage. Says Haden was very "business is buisness". "He was relentless and demanded excellence, just like he did during his rugby career." 

2:31pm - A video of some of Haden's career highlights is now being shown.

2:27pm - Hart thanks Crusaders coach Scott Robertson for his attendance and tells a story of "Razor" visiting Haden a few weeks ago. Haden told Robertson his dying wish was for the Blues to beat the Crusaders in the final game of Super Rugby Aotearoa. Robertson joked to Haden that that was "match fixing", to which Haden replied: I'll take the heat for that mate". 

2:26pm - Hart is remembering the 1985 Ranfurly Shield challenge were Auckland beat Canterbury in the 'Game of the Century'. Says Haden and himself were probably the epitomy of why Cantabrians "hated Aucklanders".

2:24pm - Hart says the controversies surrounding Haden may have prevented him from receiving the playing plaudits he deserved. Hart backs former Wallabies lock Peter Fitzsimons, who said Haden is the second best lock in All Blacks history behind Colin Meads. 

2:23pm - John Hart thanks Williams and remembers fondly some of the stories Williams shared and backs up Williams' notion that Haden and his wife changed the culture of Auckland rugby and helped make women more inclusive. 

2:22pm - Williams says "Thank you mate" to Andy Haden and says New Zealand Rugby has lost a great man.

2:20pm - Williams says Haden and his wife Trish were pioneers for women in Auckland rugby and breaking down barriers. Thanks Haden and his wife for bringing rugby into modern times in relation to women.

2:18pm - Williams describes Haden as a natural "prankster" and is describing a story from an Auckland trip to play Canterbury in the 1970s.

2:16pm - Williams is talking about Haden's influence with Ponsonby during their winning era when they won seven Auckland titles in 10 years and several national club titles.

2:14pm - Williams is talking about the talented Auckland side of 1982 that won the national championship under Hart, with Haden playing a key role in the development of young Auckland stars such as Grant Fox. That was Williams' last season.

2:13pm - Williams says Haden was the best lock in the world in 1978, Williams' last All Blacks tour.

2:11pm - Williams says Haden's presence on the rugby park was "imposing" and he was a great All Black lock forward. 

2:10pm - Williams is speakng on Haden's contribution to the Ponsonby Rugby side of the 1970s and the part that he played in the 1972 Auckland Ranfurly Shield victory over Northland.

2:09pm - Sir Bryan Williams is now on the stage. He thanks the family for allowing him to speak about his "great mate" Andy. 

2:07pm - Hart says he didn't initially believe Haden was the right man to lead the side forward, but a frank conversation between the two paved the way for a friendship that has lasted 40 years. Hart says his family is linked to Haden's through love and respect. 

2:05pm - MC John Hart is back on the stage - telling a story about how Andy Haden didn't believe Hart was the right man to take the reigns of Auckland in 1982.

2:03pm - A poem is now being read by a family representative.

1:58pm - The family have asked that the euolgy given by Christopher and Laura not be broadcast or reported, and we will respect that wish. 

1:34pm - Haden's son Christopher and daughter Laura are now going to speak. 

1:31pm - Hart reveals the Blues were hopeful of attending the funeral, but they are stuck in Dunedin with flights postponed due to fog. Although there's some of Haden's former teammates in attendance. 

1:30pm - Hart says some close friends and family of Haden's are unable to attend the funeral due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

1:28pm  - Hart says there were clear instructions from Haden in regards to the service and he didn't want to be cremated or buried.

1:26pm - Former All Blacks John Hart, who coached Haden at the backend of his career, has begun his eulogy.

Hart says today is a celebration of Haden's life.


Kia ora, good afternoon and welcome to Newshub's live online coverage of Any Haden's funeral from Eden Park in Auckland.

The former loock forward lost his long battle with cancer last Wednesday, at age 69.

Haden, a 1.99m lock forward, played 117 games for New Zealand, including 41 tests, between 1972-85.

Off the field, he became a manager and agent for Kiwi celebrities like Rachel Hunter and Charlotte Dawson.

But Haden is probably best known for some of NZ sport's most controversial moments, including a lineout 'flop' that many credit for winning a test against Wales at Cardiff Arms Park in 1978.

With six minutes left on the clock and the Welsh leading by two points, Haden threw himself from a lineout in an outrageous bid to draw a game-winning penalty.

The ploy seemed to work perfectly, with referee Roger Quittenton duly blowing his whistle and signalling for the penalty, which fullback Brian McKechnie stepped up to kick for victory.

Many of Haden's former teammates and colleagues are expected to be there, including John Hart, who coached Haden to the famous Auckland Ranfurly Shield victory in 1985.

Tributes flow for pioneering All Black Andy Haden

One of Andy Haden's biggest rivals has paid him the ultimate compliment, describing him as a genuine rival to Sir Colin Meads as the greatest All Blacks lock of all time.

On Wednesday, Haden died at the age of 69, prompting an outpouring of tributes. 

Former Wallaby Peter FitzSimons, who played against the Aucklander, insists Haden was among the best we've ever produced.

"New Zealand thought they'd never seen another Colin Meads," FitzSimons tells Newshub.

"To this point, they're more or less right. But for me, no man ran him closer than Andy Haden."

Haden was a giant in every sense of the word. At nearly two metres tall, he was hard to miss. 

But on the field it was his brain, rather than his brawn, that set him apart.

"The real thing was his ability to think on the field and have conversations that allowed us to do what we were doing better at the time," says NZ Rugby president and former teammate Bill Osbourne.

In 1978, Haden's tactical thinking was as prominent as ever when, down by two points, he took a dive at the lineout that's since been etched into rugby folklore.

"He was a very fine representative of the black jersey and the silver fern," says former commentator Keith Quinn.

Haden was also a stalwart of Auckland Rugby, leading them to victory in what's still regarded as one of the greatest provincial games in history, a five point victory over bitter rivals Canterbury to lift the Ranfurly Shield in 1985.

But Haden's influence on the game went beyond his contribution as a player.

He's widely credited with driving rugby out of its conservative, amateur years, and into the professional era.

"When they sit in their big houses, if you like, someone had to start that drive and it was Andy Haden," Quinn adds.