Knighthood for Tietjens

 Jun 03,2013
Written by: Editor

New Zealand Sevens coach Gordon Tietjens will be knighted for his services to rugby after 19 years at the helm of the national Sevens side.

Tietjens and former All Black Bryan Williams were recognised in the Queen's Birthday Honours list on Monday. Williams receives the Companion of the Order of New Zealand Merit.

New Zealand Rugby Chairman Mike Eagle paid tribute to both men.

"We are immensely proud to welcome another knight to rugby and congratulate Beegee (Williams) on his latest honour," said Eagle.

"Sir Gordon has an extraordinary record as a coach.

"He is undoubtedly one of the most successful coaches New Zealand has produced in any sports code - with 11 Sevens World Series titles, including this season along with four Commonwealth Games gold medals and a World Cup.

"His efforts have inspired many players to take up sevens and go on to further success in fifteens so he has done much to promote the game of rugby."

NZR Chief Executive Steve Tew added his voice in praise of Tietjens.

"We are really pleased Titch's efforts have been recognised in this way," said Tew.

"His record speaks volumes for his uncanny ability to produce consistently winning teams.

"Not only that, he has had a huge impact on the way the game is now played and how appealing it has become to fans around the world.

"We have been extremely fortunate to have a coach of his calibre guiding our men's sevens since 1994 and are also pleased he is sticking with us through to Rio in 2016."

Williams, who played 38 Tests for New Zeland before going on to enjoy a successful coaching career with Auckland, Manu Samoa and the Hurricanes, had previously been honoured with an MBE. The 62-year-old recently stepped down as NZR President and continues in his role as Director of Rugby for the Ponsonby Rugby Football Club.

"Beegee has been a wonderful ambassador for the game - an inspiring player, coach and administrator for his beloved Ponsonby club, always serving the game he loves with great passion, humility and humour," said Eagle.

"He has given tirelessly to rugby over many years and his great mana, vigour and deep rugby knowledge has been hugely valuable in growing our game here and promoting it overseas in his role as president.

"We are very proud his efforts have been recognised in this way."

Tags: Sevens Rugby |  New Zealand | 

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