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New Zealand is mourning the loss of another former All Black

Norm Berryman played in a match to commemorate the late Jerry Collins last week.

Norm Berryman played for the All Blacks in 1998.
Norm Berryman played for the All Blacks in 1998.

FORMER NEW ZEALAND centre Norm Berryman has passed away aged 42, marking a morbid month for the All Blacks.

Berryman died after suffering a heart attack in Perth where had been residing, according to reports, less than three weeks after 48-cap international Jerry Collins was killed in a car crash in France.

Berryman, who also represented French sides Castres and Bourgoin during his career, played in a match to commemorate Collins’ life just last week.

The former Northland, Blues and Crusaders man played one Test for New Zealand — against South Africa in 1998 — before infamously quitting the team, and hitchhiking back to Whangarei.

“He showed you can grow up anywhere and make it into the All Blacks,” Northland Rugby chief executive Jeremy Parkinson told Radio Sport.

“He was a little bit different, he never used to warm up with the team, he’d just stand around and have a chuckle and then roll out with the team.

“He was a shining light in that if you’re talented and you persevere, you can succeed. He was hugely popular up here.”

New Zealand Rugby chief executive Steve Tew also paid tribute: “Norm is someone who will be remembered for his amazing array of skills. He could do things with a rugby ball that set him apart from even his peers at the top of our game.

“His spirit and personality were infectious and he added value to every team lucky enough to have him involved. He will be remembered fondly.”

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