This pilot study used a reversal theory framework to examine metamotivational dominance of rugby players on the Māori All Blacks (MABs) squad of New Zealand and the Japanese National Team (JNT). Since the two groups have different cultural team demographics, cultural identity was also examined. Twenty six players from the MABs and 31 from the JNT completed questionnaires on metamotivational dominance and cultural identity. In terms of metamotivational dominance, the findings indicated that the MABs were more playful minded and spontaneous oriented than the JNT. Regarding cultural identity, the JNT showed a greater knowledge of their own culture and higher comfort level in their cultural context, while the MABs felt more positive and willing to sustain their own culture. The motivational personality differences between the teams may reflect the style of play that is valued within each team culture that is, flair, spontaneity and high-risk play within Māori rugby, and structure, team unity and conformity within the JNT. This suggests that metamotivational dominance of teams and players is influenced by the cultural identity of both the individuals and the group, which may have a further impact on team cohesion and performance.