Warriors… come out and plaaaay – but don’t bring your haka

12 09 2007

University of Hawaii WarriorsThe Western Athletic Conference has basically banned the Haka. They haven’t come out & stated that, but last weekend’s assessing the Warriors as being guilty of ‘unsportsman-like behavior’ – before the game even started against Louisiana Tech – amounts to the same thing.The University of Hawaii Warriors didn’t even do the Haka on the field: it was performed in front of their locker area, facing a group of 200 of their supporters. Head Coach June Jones checked with the officiating crew prior to the start of the game as to what the ruling was on the Haka, and was told that as long as it wasn’t on-field, or facing the Louisiana Tech players then it would be fine. Coin tossed, the Bulldogs elected to receive, and the Warriors were immediately assessed the 15 yard penalty. Read the rest of this entry »

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Understanding Rugby: The Haka

6 08 2007

With the Rugby World Cup just around the corner, With Malice… will explore some of the history of the game. Today, the haka.

Ka mate!  Ka mate! Ka ora! Ka ora!So, the Haka. Why? Why do the All Blacks do the Haka at the beginning of rugby matches? What’s it’s purpose?

The Haka is simply a traditional dance native to New Zealand’s Māori people, and there are many different kinds of haka. But for all intents & purposes, we’ll be looking at the ones performed by the New Zealand national rugby team: The All Blacks.

The All Blacks perform two haka – the ‘Ka Mate’ and the ‘Kapa O Pango’. The Ka Mate is the traditional haka, and it was first performed as part of the pre-match ritual for the All Blacks in 1906, and is basically a celebration of ‘life over death’.

Here are the words to the Ka Mate, with translation…
Ka mate! Ka mate! Ka ora! Ka ora! I die! I die! I live! I live!
Ka mate! Ka mate! Ka ora! Ka ora! I die! I die! I live! I live!
Tenei te tangata puhuru huru This is the hairy man
Nana nei i tiki mai Who fetched the Sun
Whakawhiti te ra And caused it to shine again
A upa … ne! ka upa … ne! One upward step! Another upward step!
A upane kaupane whiti te ra! An upward step, another.. the Sun shines!!
Hii…

And as performed by the All Blacks…

Read the rest of this entry »