Capital turns on charm for sevens parade

21:05, Feb 05 2014
Wellington sevens parade
Batucada dancers take to Lambton Quay.
Wellington sevens parade
The New Zealand sevens team relaxes ahead of the parade.
Wellington sevens parade
Samoan dancers pose for a photo.
7s heroes
City Fitness superheroes
canada
The Canadian team soaks up the atmosphere in Wellington.
fijin
Dancers bring some Fijian flavour to proceedings ... along with international man of mystery, Austin Powers
Wellington sevens parade
A dancer joins the party.
kenya
Perennial crowd favourites Kenya hit town during the parade.
Wellington sevens parade
Can can dancers add some flourish to proceedings.
Wellington sevens parade
And here comes the brass.
Wellington sevens parade
Samoan dancers celebrate.
Wellington sevens parade
DJ Forbes gives an interview during the parade.
Wellington sevens parade
The Portuguese team looking orderly and ready for action.
Wellington sevens parade
The English team enjoying themselves.
Wellington sevens parade
The Canadian team gets into the party atmosphere.
Wellington sevens parade
Crowds of people line the streets to see the parade.

Thousands of Wellingtonians packed the streets of the coty at lunchtime for the annual Wellington Sevens parade. The procession snaked around from Lambton Quay, down Willis St and to Civic Square for the official welcome from the mayor.

Most cheers, of course, were for the local lads. The New Zealand team is hoping for a tournament win to get them ahead of rivals South Africa in the IRB world standings.

But fans of all teams crowded on the curb or took to balconies and window sills to catch a glimpse. One family had what were possibly Argentina's youngest fans, two-year-old Max and seven-month-old Federico McCallum.

Sevens parade
FANS AND FINERY: Teams and fans take to the streets for last year's Wellington Sevens parade.

Dad Tom McCallum is English and his wife Veronica is Argentinian, so picking a team for their sons was a difficult choice, Mr McCallum said.

The kids will have to wait a few years before they'll get to see the Sevens live, though. "We've been in the past, but not while they're little."

New Zealand team coach Gordon Tietjens said his players were looking forward to heading out on to their home turf at Westpac Stadium on Friday. The parade was always an "amazing" way to kick off the event.

"It seems to get bigger every year."

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The Dominion Post