Rebel Sport wants to inspire Kiwis to make the most of each and every day and to do that, it's chosen to showcase someone that lives and breathes that sentiment for its latest campaign – rugby player and firefighter Rebecca Wood.
Wood plays lock for Rugby World Champions, the Black Ferns, and also has a day job as a firefighter.
Ogilvy & Mather worked with Revolver on the 90-second ad ‘Rugby Fighter’, which starts with Wood training for rugby in cold, wet and foggy conditions.
She catches the ball and charges down the pitch, past a burning chair, and barrels through the door of a burning house while continuing to fend off the opposition. When she emerges from the house she is tackled by an opponent but doesn't give up the chase. Wood then comes across a little girl in a dressing gown beside a burning caravan. She picks the child up and continues to run down the field through a burning rugby goal post, appearing on the other side wearing her firefighter gear. The line then appears ‘How many lives you live is up to you’.
For Wood, she says there is no such thing as spare time.
“As soon as I got home from work it would be training. And then even after training, I would come home and do the extras, because there would be something I wasn’t happy with. I didn’t want to miss any opportunity to improve my chances of getting into the team and to the World Cup. And at the end of the day if I didn’t make it then I knew I hadn’t let an opportunity slip to not try my hardest and get in."
Group managing director at Rebel Sport Rod Duke says the company has always been a brand that seeks to inspire New Zealanders to play sports with passion.
“Rebecca really sums up how far commitment, passion and dogged determination can take you, not just in sports, but in life too. Rebecca’s story felt like the perfect way to inspire Kiwis to get out there and go hard.”
Lisa Fedyszyn, Ogilvy Group creative director, says it loved the chance to bring Wood's story to life for Rebel Sport.
"When you're a kid you dream of being either a firefighter or a sports star. The fact she makes time to excel at both of these should be an inspiration to all New Zealanders. It's definitely left me with no excuses not to fit in a run after work."
Regan Grafton, executive creative director at Ogilvy, says she loves how impactful this commercial is, not only visually but also from the message it sends.
“Rebecca proves there’s always time for sport. You just need to make the commitment.”
The campaign is the evolution of Rebel Sport's 'What's my Why' campaign launched in 2016.
A previous ad told the story of Sophie Pascoe and the tragic accident that, as a small child, left her fighting for her life. Fueled by her ‘why’ Sophie defied the odds, becoming a World Champion Para-Swimmer, a Paralympian gold medalist and Commonwealth Games gold medalist.
This story previously appeared on StopPress.