International Rugby’s most decorated player

World Rugby Museum: from the vaults

by Cat McNaney

The Black Ferns fly half, Anna Richards, is the most New Zealand v South Africa - IRB Women's Rugby World Cup Matchday Onedecorated player in the history of international rugby. With a total of 49 caps under her belt, Richards is the most capped Black Fern to date, and has lead her nation to four back-to-back World Cup victories out of the five she has competed in – no other player, male nor female, can compare.

Born in 1964, Anna was raised in a family of four girls. Her parents encouraged all of their daughters to pursue their sporting ambitions and all four of them become successful athletes, with her younger sister following her into the Black Ferns. However Anna didn’t pick up a rugby ball until the age of 21 when she started playing for the university side in Christchurch. Previously, she had been a talented tennis player and netballer, playing at national level for Canterbury, before being dropped…

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