Liam Napier New Zealand Journalist

About Liam Napier

Sports journalist for Fairfax Media based in Auckland, New Zealand. Passionate about rugby for 22 years and counting.
All views welcomed: @liamnapierffx

Liam Napier 's latest articles

Wayne Smith – Steve Hansen’s most visionary selection

Respected New Zealand based journalist Liam Napier gains unique access and explores the value of Wayne Smith’s reappointment to the All Blacks and their 2015 mission to be the first team to claim back to back Rugby World Cup titles. “Strategically I really like the role of plotting the defence and working out how we can get the ball back, whether that’s by forcing poor kicks or turning it over at the ruck,” Smith says. “Whatever it is, that ball creates a lot of tries.” Enjoy this Rugby Site exclusive.

Autumn Internationals, A Southern Hemisphere Perspective

Liam Napier reviews the Autumn internationals and delivers a southern hemisphere perspective on the form contenders a year out from rugby’s biggest show.

All Blacks' Scottish experiment almost backfires

There is a fine line between arrogance and experimentation. The All Blacks almost crossed it in Edinburgh. They deserve credit for their composure and ability to grind out a win when not at their best, but for 75 minutes, the All Blacks were in serious strife.

England’s latest loss to the All Blacks was flattering

Spin it any which way you please, England’s latest loss to the All Blacks was flattering. Their fifth successive loss to the All Blacks told us they can’t yet stick with the world’s best for 80 minutes. Forty minutes yes. Eighty, no.

Taranaki show pride in the shirt

Liam Napier on Taranaki’s ITM Cup Premiership final win, and how pride and passion for the team has contributed to their success against the traditionally strong teams this season.

Ending Canterbury’s six-year reign in this competition Taranaki and other ‘underdog’ team’s success has sparked an increased interest in the provincial competition this season. The buy in from all the team shows what can be done with the right mix of players and collective passion.