Thinking and talking about rugby every day for 50+ years
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9 November 2015
I travelled to the eighth Rugby World Cup in Great Britain as an Ambassador for Williment Sport Travel of Wellington, New Zealand; I made it to into Cardiff at the quarter-final stage. Before that I posted a regular Rugby World Cup blog. Read more »
23 October 2014
17 October 2014
The small New Zealand town of Te Kuiti, in the aptly-named King Country turned out in June 2017 for what was to be the last public outing for the districts legendary rugby star, the great Sir Colin Meads. I was honoured to be MC for the day and later wrote this story for 'NZTODAY.' Read more »
I watched a lot of Colin Meads playing on the rugby field. I am of the age that can say that. Shamelessly I can say I loved the way Colin Meads changed the game for previously lumbering second row forwards, which I was myself, albeit at a club level only. Meads showed us all another way to play. Read more »
This story first appeared in the excellent *NZToday* Magazine's June-July edition. The author knows it is true as he remembers it. Some family members doubt his recall. Read more »
One of the first things people say to any rugby commentator is - 'Just how DO you pronounce all those names from all the different countries?' Read more »
All of the team lists, playing and scoring records of the 14 tests played by the 2016 All Blacks are summarised here; All your questions answered (in three parts). Read more »
*552nd All Black test* Read more »
The All Blacks beat USA by 51-3 at Berkeley, California. The result plus big defeats by Australia in 1914 helped USA concentrate on their own football!
Several international rugby matches (of sorts) have been played on the ice of Antarctica, so they should be recognized in an A-Z such as this.
In 1989 a group of scientists and staff started a match between USA and New Zealand. It is a fixture on the ice which has been played intermittently over the years since.
There are several unique features about rugby in Antarctica. Firstly the game is played on a snow-covered ice field and sometimes there have been no goal posts. Implanting posts into the rock-hard ice is nigh impossible. Sometimes the game has been delayed several days until the weather clears. The clothing the players wear is interesting; often it has been full kit needed for living in extremely cold temperatures. Sometimes too, the teams have been of mixed gender. And often it is not certain whether teams will be at full strength. One year a New Zealand squad gathered prospective players at 3pm, picked their best line up, and the game kicked off at 3.30!
In an international between the New Zealand Scott Base team and the USA McMurdo Base team in 2001, the New Zealanders scored three tries to one, but the score was posted in the weekly Antarctic Sun newspaper as being 9-3. Obviously the message had not made it through to the people on the ice of the increase in points values for a try! That had first happened over 30 years earlier!
Why did the Wallaby rugby team only practice in the afternoons at the 1987 Rugby World Cup?