New Zealand Rugby has issued an open apology to former Black Ferns hooker Te Kura Ngata-Aerengamate, whose post on social media has led to an independent investigation into the team environment and culture. An independent inquiry into team environment and culture. Former Black Ferns hooker Te Kura Ngata-Aerengamate has accepted an apology from New Zealand Rugby over his treatment last year during a Northern tour. Last year, the Northern time moved past a damning review of the team’s culture.
The review was spurred on after team seams hooker Te Kura Ngata-Aerengamate revealed through social media she had suffered a mental breakdown following perceived criticism of head coach Glenn Moore over the final years tour, which included four consecutive losses to England and France. Former head coach Glenn Moore said they disagreed with the posts and said his comments were misleading. New Zealand Rugby has accepted an independent review in full, including a conclusion that Te Kura Ngata-Aerengamate was under-supported, and head coach Glenn Moore resigned soon after.
New Zealand Rugby had an independent review of the team environment and culture conducted on the back of this publication. Shortly after, the New Zealand Rugby Federation ordered an independent review of the women’s team’s culture and climate, determining the number of abuses in April, such as favouritism, isolation, body criticism, and culturally insensitive comments to Maori and Pacific players. The harsher review supported Te Kura Ngata-Aerengamate and found its coaching staff made culturally insensitive comments about the nation’s best players and engaged in favouritism and body-shaming.
On Tuesday, New Zealand rugby publicly apologised to Te Kura Ngata-Aerengamate, whose critiques of conditions at the women’s national team led to a damning review and overhaul of its coaching staff. The women’s national team has been subjected to a damning assessment of its coaching staff. New Zealand Rugby would like to reiterate its public apology now and repeat its commitment to ensuring Te Kura Ngata-Aerengamate is provided with the appropriate support, both mentally and on training, needed to assist with ongoing recovery. NZ Rugby’s official apology is directed directly at Te Kura and her whanau.
The official apology comes one day after the Black Ferns, led by new Rugby Director Wayne Smith, opened up the Black Ferns 2022 campaign to victory over Wallaroos in a Pacific Four series match in Tauranga. On two years of Covid-mandated layoff from Test rugby, the Black Ferns claimed their first victory for Black Ferns since 2019 Monday with a 23-10 win in the Pacific Four series against Australia. Being involved in high-performance sports, as either coach, player or member of a leadership group, can bring with it unique challenges, and findings of a cultural and environment review into the teams released today highlighted several such challenges.