Until November 2010, Sean Fitzpatrick was the most capped All-Black. He remains one of the most famous, best loved and most successful All Black players and Captains in modern day rugby.
One of the most successful All Black Captains, credited by most with the leadership abilities that made the All Blacks the great team they were when they won the World Cup.
The epitome of a sports hero and role model, Sean Fitzpatrick was both an outstanding player and an outstanding leader on and off the field during his rugby career. Sean (“Fitzy”) was the All Black hooker from 1986 to when he announced his retirement in May 1998. He played in 99% of all tests since the start of the 1987 Rugby World Cup. Sean was described by former All Black coach, Laurie Mains, as an inspirational leader and set to become the best captain of an All Black team ever.
He was appointed captain of the All Blacks in 1992 and played in 121 international matches, including 92 Test matches, a New Zealand record. Sean also holds the record for most Test matches as an All Black captain (51) and has played in more Test match victories (74) than any other player.
In 1996 he was part of the Auckland Blues team which won the inaugural Super 12 competition and in August 1996 he led the All Blacks to win the inaugural Tri-Series competition against Australia and South Africa, and the greatest crown of all a 2-1 test series win against the Springboks in South Africa, the first ever by an All Black Team in South Africa.
In 1997 Sean led the mighty All Blacks in 12 test matches without a loss, retained the Bledisloe Cup and was part of the Auckland Blues team that won the Tri-Series competition for the second consecutive year. In April 1998 after a series of injuries to his knee Sean Fitzpatrick, among an avalanche of tributes, the All Black Captain announced his retirement from Rugby.
His second book, “Turning Point, the making of a Captain”, released in October 1998 has been a runaway best seller. In March 1999 Sean was appointed as “Rugby Consultant” to the NZRFU responsible for player development and liaison.
He is also committed to a number of charity causes: as a founder member of the Laureus Sport For Good Foundation, an international organisation committed to sport as a way to bring about social change; as ambassador for the Variety Club of NZ; and in charity work for Ronald McDonald House and Starship Children's Hospital.
He is the most capped All Black of all time, and holds the world record for the most caps by a forward at 51. Sean was inducted into the International Rugby Hall of Fame in 2001 and the NZ Sports Hall of Fame in 2002. He is an invited member of the World Sports Academy. Recognised by his peers internationally as a legend for his ability and sporting prowess, Sean is also sought after as a keynote speaker. From factory floor to boardroom, from infant to elder, people respect Sean for all he has stood for and achieved over his long and successful sporting career
• After Dinner, Keynote