Thinking and talking about rugby every day for 50+ years
4 January 2015
I know this is technically not a 'favourite photo' - but I love it all the same. I can't resist putting this programme cover up on site from my home collection. I do it under the heading of 'will we ever see games like this EVER again in modern rugby?" (ie; a real 'minnow' rugby union against a rugby 'powerhouse.') This classic was from the 1968 All Blacks tour of Australia. It was the second game of a 12 match tour and New Zealand won 74-0.
It was the first time 'Tazzy' had played a major touring team.
The first rugby in Tasmania was played as an exhibition by two teams of New Zealand sailors off a visiting naval vessel in 1926. The Tasmanian Rugby Union was formed in 1933. In its first 80 years no Tasmanian had ever made Wallaby status.
In Port Elizabeth the Springboks complete a 4-test rout of Fred Allen's touring team. Ouch! This series really hurt!
Canterbury, Marlborough, Waikato, Auckland and New Zealand
6 internationals for New Zealand 1946–49
Fred Allen was one of the truly giant personalities of New Zealand rugby in the 30 years after the end of World War II. After being ﬁrst recognised as a star of the famous New Zealand Army team (the Kiwis) which toured Britain in 1945–46, he gained selection and the captaincy of his country in 1946. He was also made captain for two All Black tours, to Australia in 1947 and to South Africa in 1949, though he was dropped – at his own behest – for the ﬁnal two tests in 1949.
After his playing days were over, Allen continued to make a remarkable contribution to New Zealand rugby.
He became coach of the Auckland team and took it through one of the province’s greatest eras. Under Allen’s guidance, Auckland defended the Ranfurly Shield 25 times, then a record, between 1960–63.
From 1964 Allen progressed to selecting and coaching All Black teams. He and Charlie Saxton, his captain from the Kiwis 20 years before, formed a formidable managerial team behind the 1967 All Blacks in Great Britain. That side was unbeaten and is remembered as one of the best international teams to have visited Britain.
He retired as All Black coach in 1968 having had team which played in 37 games for 36 wins.
In his later years Allen continued to be a highly respected and recognisable personality in the game in New Zealand. He was knighted in 2010 and died in 2012, aged 92.
Which Irish rugby player of modern vintage has the nickname of '36?'