Norm Hewitt was a hardworking and dynamic hooker who played 296 representative matches during a memorable first class career spanning 13 seasons.
In addition to earning 23 caps for the All Blacks spread over nine seasons, Hewitt was a stalwart of the Hurricanes, missing just one Hurricanes match in the first five years of Super 12. From the Hawke’s Bay, Hewitt first made the All Blacks as understudy to Sean Fitzpatrick in the 1993 series against the British Lions and later that year toured Scotland and England. He was involved in the All Blacks for a further three years, making his test debut against Ireland at the 1995 World Cup and playing his last against England at Eden Park in 1998, when he suffered a knee injury that sidelined him for the rest of that year.
Hewitt was first selected for Hawke’s Bay as a 20-year old in 1988 and played 94 times for the Magpies until 1994, helping to defeat the 1993 Lions and the 1994 French along the way. He moved to Southland after the Bay was relegated to the NPC Second Division, playing 22 matches for them between 1995-1997. He next played for the Wellington Lions 31 times between 1999 and 2001, his highlight being captaining Wellington to the NPC title against Canterbury in 2000 – playing the majority of that game with a broken wrist.
After retiring from rugby Hewitt remained in the public spotlight, involved in many things, including as a public speaker, mentor to youth, Dancing with the Stars winner and Newstalk ZB rugby commentator. He also became heavily involved in violence prevention programmes and advocacy and worked for the SPCA as a an animal cruelty and anti-violence publicity officer in schools.