All Blacks take heart from warm welcome home after Rugby World Cup heartbreak
The All Blacks touched down at Auckland International Airport three days after losing the Rugby World Cup final in Paris.
South Africa edged the 14-man All Blacks, 12-11, in the Rugby World Cup final, claiming the Webb Ellis Trophy for the fourth time in eight attempts.
The team arrived home from France this evening, and were greeted by a small but loud crowd at Auckland Airport.
Captain Sam Cane was very popular with fans at the airport eager to get selfies with him.
He said he was pleasantly surprised by the support he received after the game when he was shown a red card after a high ticket.
He said he was trying not to be too hard on himself but reiterated that he felt he had let the side down and it was something he would have to live with for the rest of his life his familiarity.
The final was the last game in charge of head coach Ian Foster who will succeed Crusaders coach Scott Robertson.
Although the All Blacks were unsuccessful in their cup match, the competition boosted the reputation of young players such as halfback Cam Roigard and prop Tamaiti Williams. However, it was not as good as the squad had hoped for with top players leaving, including Aaron Smith, Sam Whitelock and Dane Coles.
One consolation was the naming of loose forward Ardie Savea as the best player in the world, at an awards ceremony in Paris the day after the final.
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