STATS: All Blacks are the most ill-disciplined tier one side

Fri, 22 Dec 2017 20:27
Large all blacks find themselves as the least disciplined tier one nation 800

IN THE SPOTLIGHT: When you think All Blacks, ill-discipline isn’t the first thing to spring to mind.

under Steve Hansen, indiscipline within the side has more than doubled.

According to, under the reign of Graham Henry, the All Blacks were carded every 338.5 minutes, roughly once every four or so games.

In the run-up to the 2015 Rugby World Cup, this figure increased so that now an All Black was receiving his marching orders once every 166 minutes – roughly every two games.

Since then it has shot down further to a binning every 139 minutes.

While it’s always been interesting to compare old New Zealand, to the more recent vintage of All Blacks but comparing them to their modern day counterparts things become even more interesting.

We see their progression from a squeaky clean side, to one of world rugby’s most indisciplined.

They have managed to rack up in the past four years an impressive 31 cards in 54 games, the most of any tier one nation.

Included in their tally of 31 is the infamous Sonny Bill Williams red card, which he received in Wellington during their second test with the Lions.



Australia follow closely behind in second, with 30 cards from 55 matches and Argentina fall one behind that again.

Ireland have proven to be the cleanest side in the top tier of World Rugby since 2013, only being carded 11 times in 47 matches.

Honourable mentions

The All Blacks single biggest offender in terms of cards is Kieran Read, with a grand total of five yellows since 2008, Sam Whitelock follows just behind with four since 2010.

Argentina’s Tomas Lavanini is the outright bad boy of the tier one nations, managing five yellows and a red since 2013, a card for every 493 minutes of play.

These figures pale however in comparison to Georgian flanker Viktor Kolelishvili, who has amassed an impressive haul of seven yellow cards and one red in just 44 matches.


By Peteso Cannon, RugbyPass