No sex for the All Blacks?

2011-08-17 07:09

Ellington – New Zealand rugby fans have been urged to abstain from sex to help the All Blacks win the World Cup, which kicks off on September 9 in Auckland.

It is all part of what a newspaper said today was a “supposedly humorous and edgy” advertising campaign to start next week on the official All Blacks’ website, sponsored by Telecom New Zealand.

Fans who sign up for the Abstain for the All Blacks campaign will receive black rubber finger-rings to show their support for the national side during the six-week cup series, the New Zealand Herald reported.

It said posters with the slogan “Touch, pause and don’t engage” will be erected in bus shelters, but plans were ditched to place signs above urinals in bars and restaurants urging men to “Think of your mum in a bikini – Abstain for the All Blacks”.

The paper quoted an unnamed marketing person familiar with the campaign as saying: “I think this thing is a bloody embarrassment. The rest of the world will take the piss out of us. This will be much better sport than the rugby. It’s inexplicable.”

The New Zealand Rugby Union (NZRU) has endorsed Telecom’s BackingBlack campaign as the All Blacks’ official fan club.

The NZRU’s commercial manager, Paul Dalton, told the Herald: “We expect this to be entertaining and get people talking.”

Asked if the All Blacks themselves would abstain from sex during the cup, Dalton said: “Last time we checked, the All Blacks’ match preparations aren’t built around sponsors’ advertising campaigns, so let’s not confuse the two.”

Telecom director of marketing Kieren Cooney said the campaign was “fun and is absolutely tongue-in-cheek and is absolutely based on what, we think, is Kiwi humour”.

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