Thinking and talking about rugby every day for 50+ years
17 June 2014
I liked this about athletes adapting to any conditions in an attempt to practice to get better in one's chosen sport. This story was told at the funeral of well-known Wellington and New Zealand Sports administrator Ian Wells in early 2014 by Ian's life-long sporting friend Ian Christison.
"Back in the 1960s Ian was a badminton player of some ability. Early in his working life he worked as an accountant at the Wellington offices for the J.C.Williamson Theatre Organisation. His work-place was a room one floor above the main stage of the Wellington Opera House. For the two Ians to get to their local club for practice entailed a journey of some significance. They would attempt this at lunchtime and after work but the sheer distance of travel from their city offices cut down on practice times.
'Wellsy" never had any ambitions to appear in any dramatic productions but when the theatre stage wasn't being used he came up with a cunning sporting plan. He would go downstairs into the empty arena and erect a temporary badminton court. He found he could leave it there for as long as the gap in show bookings permitted. Therefore he could practice with chosen mates (and virtually in private) without having to go more than a few paces. Their performance as players improved noticeably"
As Shakespeare himself might have had one of his character's utter, or was it Richie McCaw (to TV3's John Campbell in 2012); "Games don't care for fairy tales; in any sport you've just got to find a way to go out and do the work."
Yes it's true! Number eight forward Greg Cornelsen scores 4 tries as the Wallabies thrash NZ 30-16 on Eden Park.
Dax and France
30 internationals for France 1954–64
Known universally as ‘Monsieur Le Drop’ because of his penchant for dropped goals, Albaladejo was also a very ﬁne ﬂyhalf.
Tall and stylish in the French style, Albaladejo made his debut as a fullback in 1954 against England. After one game in the Five Nations championship, and another against Italy, he was passed over by the selectors for ﬁve seasons.
Re-appearing in 1960, Albaladejo soon won a reputation as an expert drop-kicker. In his second international of that year, against Ireland, he thumped over three dropped goals, a feat unheard of at the time.
After his retirement, Albaladejo won acclaim in France as a television commentator, providing expert insights on the game all over the world, working ﬁrst with the famous French broadcaster Roger Couderc and later with his replacement, Pierre Salviac.
Which former Springbok test rugby captain won a Rugby World Cup winner's medal for Australia in 1999?