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Legendary former All Black Sir Brian Lochore has died aged 78.

Lochore, who passed away after a battle with bowel cancer, was one of the most respected figures in world rugby, having achieved success as both a player and coach.

He played 25 Tests for New Zealand between 1964 and 1971, with 18 of those as captain. Other appearances brought his figures up to 68 All Black matches, 48 as skipper.

Having retired in 1970, Lochore came out of retirement to face the British and Irish Lions during their tour of New Zealand in 1971.

After finishing playing Lochore took up coaching, being made an All Blacks selector in 1983.

Two years later he was named national coach and led his country to victory in the inaugural World Cup on home soil in 1987 – demolishing Wales 49-6 in the semi-final on the way to their historic achievement.

He was also involved in the 1995 and 2011 campaigns – being a selector in the latter when the All Blacks finally added to their first success, again on home soil.

In 1999, Lochore was inducted into the International Rugby Hall of Fame and knighted for his services to sport and the community.

Eldest son David Lochore said: “We would like to note a special thanks to all the doctors who have tried so hard and the exceptional care the palliative nurses have shown to our Dad.

“To those from around New Zealand and the world who have sent messages, these have been enjoyed by our Dad and appreciated by us all.

“Our heartfelt gratitude to family and friends who have provided support to us during this time, we thank you for your kindness.

“Dad led a life that was full and one which he was very proud of. Our hearts are breaking at a life we feel still had much to give.”

Sir Brian is survived by wife Pam, their children David, Joanne and Sandra, and their eight grandchildren.

It had been revealed in June that Lochore had been informed he had bowel cancer and was to start treatment.

He had previously overcome the disease in 2016, when he had been treated for prostate cancer.

This content was originally published here.