Thinking and talking about rugby every day for 50+ years
15 May 2015
If you are in England and near the town of Rugby in Warwickshire it really behoves you to pay a visit, right? So this year I did and after a night in the nearby village of Dunchurch a visit to Rugby on its Market Day was a must - and fun.
Every shop and stall had a rugby 'sign' outside it. I took a lot of shots which may or may not be used sometime - but in the end all visitors like me are drawn to the impressive Rugby School, right in the centre of town. Here it is said the young scholar William Webb Ellis spoiled a football game by 'picking up the ball and running with it' in 1823. Thus the idea of the game of the Rugby's Games Rules were started.
The statue in the street was put in place for the 1999 Rugby World Cup and these days is a popular tourist attraction. I had to wait while a film crew did a 'piece to camera' but then it was my time... A nice souvenir followed.
The record 70-6 World Cup win over Italy was just five days earlier. Now John Gallagher and Craig Green each scored 4 tries in this new record 74-13 win over Fiji.
Cambridge University, Edinburgh University and Scotland
22 internationals for Scotland 1900–08
1 international for Great Britain 1904
One of the first men in rugby to gain a reputation for being a tough, hard-nosed footballer, D.R. Bedell-Sivright (spelled Bedell-Sievewright by some historians) was a vigorous forward (and a Scottish heavyweight boxing champion), perhaps a forerunner of the tough men of later generations.
There were some who disapproved of Bedell-Sivright’s uncompromising methods, considering them ‘ungentlemanly’. Nevertheless, he built an excellent record in the Scottish forward pack.
He was chosen as captain of the Great Britain team that toured Australia and New Zealand in 1904. Winning that position ahead of an Englishman was perhaps the greatest tribute paid to ‘Darkie’, as the team was chosen by the (English) Rugby Football Union.
Bedell-Sivright, whose brother John also played for Scotland, was for a time a stock-rearer in Australia. He died of blood poisoning at Gallipoli during World War I.
Which prominent All Black back didn't play a test till after his 30th birthday?