Treated with reverence in many countries and ignored in others, rugby is a sport punishing to the mind and body, full of action and great to watch. Very popular in Commonwealth countres and those with recent historical links to Britain and France, the sport has spread out to places like Italy, Georgia, Romania and Namibia, and those are just nations that have qualified for the World Cup. The Rugby World Cup 2015 literally kicks off on 18 September and runs until the final on 31st October. Held every four years, the 2015 tournament, to be hosted in England, is the eighth such event and comprises 20 teams in four groups. Three teams have won the Webb Ellis Cup on two ocassions, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa; while England have won it once.
On the numismatic front we’ve already seen a very popular coin from the Monnaie de Paris struck in gold and silver. This had the distinction of being the world’s first domed oval coin and was very well done, the shape suiting the subject quite perfectly. Second up is the official issuer of New Zealand commemorative coins, the New Zealand Post, this time with a coin celebrating the national squad known worldwide as the All Blacks. Based in a country with a mania for rugby, it was no surprise when this coin appeared. Struck in 1 oz of silver and then coloured, this one is shaped like a folded rugby vest and then offered in packaging that makes it look like a display of an actual shirt. It’s an unusual coin and one that Kiwi coin collectors will lap up as the shirt and its colour are fundamental rugby icons to fans in the country. The official images aren’t great if we’re being brutally honest, and we’d suspect the coin looks more impressive in the flesh than it does here. Struck by numismatic favourite BH Mayer Kunstprageanstalt GmbH in Germany, the strike will be first class we’re certain, it was designed in Auckland by Dave Burke.
Available to pre-order now from the NZ Post webstore for $145 NZD, there’s also a matching stamp set that might be of interest to some of you, that incorporates fabric supplied by Adidas that’s used in the making of the All-Blacks shirts.
This striking and intricately designed coin replicates the All Blacks jersey in more ways than one – not only is it printed black with the All Blacks, adidas and AIG logos shining through in silver, it’s shaped like the All Blacks jersey, complete with subtle contours that reflect the shape it takes when worn.
This 1oz silver proof coin is sure to be popular, with only 2,015 minted worldwide. The premium black and silver packaging is laser-engraved, perfectly complementing the coin. The perspex lid of the case makes the packaging resemble a frame – referencing the time-honoured tradition of framing and mounting sports jerseys – and will keep your coin pristine for years to come. Plus each coin comes with an individually numbered certificate, adding to its value and collectability.