All Black legend Sir Fred 'the Needle' Allen has died aged 92.

Allen played 21 games for the All Blacks, including six Tests, all as captain from 1946-49.

Born in Oamaru, but educated in Christchurch Sir Fred played for Canterbury from 1939-41, but it was with Auckland and the All Blacks for which he is best remembered.

After serving as a lieutenant in the 27th and 30th Battalions during World War II, Allen was part of the 2nd NZEF "Kiwis" Army team that made a wonderfully successful tour of Britain in 1945/6.

After his playing career ended Sir Fred shifted into the coaches' box.

Between 1957 and 1963 he coached the Auckland provincial side, during which the province established a then-record of 25 successful Ranfurly Shield victories.

Following this he was appointed All Blacks selector in 1964 before taking over the reins from 1966 to 1968, where the All Blacks won every single one of the 14 test matches under his tutelage.

Sir Fred was made a Knight Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit in the Queen's Birthday Honours List for services to rugby in 2010.

He had been previously made an OBE in 1990.

In 2002 the NZRU awarded Sir Fred the Steinlager Salver for his outstanding contribution to NZ rugby, and in 2005 he was inducted in the IRB Hall of Fame.