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14 November 2014
As the 2014 All Black rugby team get ready for their clash with Scotland my mind goes back to 1978 when the 'Scottish Daily' record 'got the drop' on the rest of the newsmedia with this great wee yarn.
Somebody on the paper's staff must have looked at the names of the All Black team and with players in it with names like Ash McGregor, Brian McKechnie, Stuart Wilsoin, Richard Wilson and 'Duggie' Bruce and then and there it was suggested that it'd be worthwhile to further study if there were any others with strong Scottish lineage.
Indeed there was and soon no fewer than 15 players were proudly announcing they were 'part Scottish' and that their family heritage was there for all the world to see. See if you can identify the above team; and i will publish it down the bottom of the page here; The 'Scottish Daily Record' produced appropriate kilts and the great photo was taken. My copy only exists as a kept clipping from their newspaper.
Meantime there is another All Black team from Scottish history which has been pulled together on this trip from the supporters who are following the 2014 All Blacks around UK.
We're calling it a 'FULL' 'All Mac' team chosen from All Blacks with Scottish heritage.
Seeing as last week keithquinnrugby.com published the 'All Black-England XV' which was made up of players with English-sounding name backgrounds here nowis the main "All Black-All Mac" team from AB history. And what fun it was us to come up with these names for you
It will be interesting to see how many 2014 All Blacks have surnames which suggest Scottish forebears.. Many less in 2014 I suppose.
The only rule was the players had to be in their correct playing positions and players were listed not necessarily by talent, only in the order they were called out. This selection took about four minutes for my bus to complete!
The Quinn bus team of 2014; Leon MacDonald, Bruce McPhail, Scott McLeod, Duncan McGregor, Luke McAlister, Brian McKechnie, Paul McGahan, Hugh McLaren, Richie McCaw, Hamish Macdonald, Mike McCool, Angus Macdonald, Jamie Macintosh, Bruce McLeod and Steve McDowell.
All good names - and many more for you to toss around yourselves - in those moment before kickoff!!
[And how was your recognition of the team from 1978? here is a list of those players from the first 'All Mac's' team (left to right) ; Billy Bush, Andy Dalton, Doug Bruce, Eddie Dunn, John Black, John Fleming, Dave Loveridge, Graham Mourie, Brad Johnstone, Robert Kururangi, Richard Wilson, Stuart Wilson, Brian McKechnie, Barry Ashworth and Ash McGregor.]
What a game it was; watched by 109,878 fans in Sydney. Jonah Lomu scored the winner. 39-35 to NZ but the Aussies loved their role in this classic and named it well!.
You cannot have a rugby match without a ball. According to legend, the ball that William Webb Ellis picked up and ran with at Rugby School in 1823 was similar in shape to the oval ball of today. Why Rugby School played with an oval football before running with it in one’s hands was allowed is a mystery, but the evidence is that balls of that shape were used for many years before Webb Ellis attended the school.
It could be that different forms of football were traditionally played with a pig’s bladder as the ball. Any good pig-hunter will tell you that a pig’s bladder, when inflated, is basically oval in shape. When, by 1840, leather covers were made for the bladders, they were fitted to that shape. Thus today’s rugby ball is a direct throwback to the pig’s bladder balls that were kicked around the playing fields of Rugby School early in the nineteenth century. The ‘feet only’ game of association football adopted the round ball on its own.
For years South African rugby favoured using an eight-paneled leather ball, as distinct from the standard four panels used elsewhere. In 1961 it joined the rest of the world in adopting the four-panel ball.
The first rubber bladders were made in 1870. Another significant change to the rugby ball came in 1931 when the rather squat shape of the early ball, which made for easier place-kicking and drop-kicking, was replaced by a narrower, more torpedo-like shape that is able to be passed more easily. The length was shortened by one and a half inches (35mm). A lace to hold the inner bladder together used to be found on every ball, but is now missing from the modern ball.
The main other differences that exist in the modern ball are that they are made out of synthetic rubber and have thousands of raised lumps on their surface. All are designed to give greater grip for the players’ handling. Whether they do aid catching and dispatching in a pass is the subject of endless debate among rugby watchers.
Also used on every ball are various brand names, as companies vie to have their ball used in major televised fixtures and therefore expand brand exposure and sales.
Which prominent All Black back didn't play a test till after his 30th birthday?