Thinking and talking about rugby every day for 50+ years
You are here: Home » News Comment
MY TAKE ON SOME OF THE RUGBY NEWS STORIES WHICH COME INTO MY WORLD.
31 January 2015
Don't get me wrong here. I congratulate Uini Atonio for being selected in the French rugby team this northern season. Uini (pronounced 'Weeny') Atonio made his test debut before Christmas coming off the bench v Fiji in Paris and with all the attention then on the exploits of the All Blacks, Springboks and Wallabies in their tests in UK, Atonio's arrival and unique story kind of slipped under the main news. Read more »
30 January 2015
In the photo left to right are ex-All Black captain Dave Loveridge, the ex-All Black fullback Allan Hewson, yours truly (who will be back at the same ground commentating rugby sevens in sevens days time). Completing the pic is Adair Cameron, the General Manager of Williment Travel Group, in Wellington. Adair's friendly team hosted we three, and others, watching Sri Lanka playing New Zealand. It was a great night of fun and sporting chat. And watching the game unfold. Read more »
21 January 2015
On hearing the news that Gareth Anscombe, the former New Zealand Under-20 international, had been included in the first Welsh training squad in the 2015 Rugby World Cup year, got me thinking. While it's sad that New Zealand has lost yet another player to a country off shore it is something we have all had to live with. Read more »
13 January 2015
This story is part of folklore at the Barbarians Club in Auckland, New Zealand. It is one which shows that even in the middle of a feisty rugby test match a mother's pride will still come shining through! Read more »
9 January 2015
Browsing through rugby things in the New Zealand summer (as you do!) I found this amazing shot of Tommy Gentles a Springbok test halfback from 1955-58. (see attached photo) Get a look at how teeny this man was! The records show that he stood 1.60metres tall (that's about five feet 3 inches. His weight was a little over 57kgs = 9 stone. The photo was taken before a rugby test match in 1955 when Tommy made his debut against the touring British Isles team. Dare I suggest rather than in the dressing room as the caption for the photograph suggested it was taken perhaps in a studio before the official team photograph. But I met this man... Read more »
2 January 2015
People often ask me ‘what was the greatest game you ever saw?’ As a young reporter I used to say it was the magical King Country v Hawkes Bay game for the Ranfurly Shield in Napier in 1968 (Colin Meads’ King Country team just got pipped by Kel Tremain’s Magpies by 19-16; 8 tries in the game! – a real thriller!) (To put that into perspective for you, you ought to know I had been born in Te Kuiti and King Country was then ‘my’ team!) But nowadays for my ‘bestest’ game I always go back to the glorious memory of the All Blacks v South Africa game in Pretoria in 1996. There was so much at stake that day and the game more than matched its expectations. Read more »
the 1906-07 All Black fullback), Ernest Edward 'General' Booth was born. He was nicknamed after William Booth, the founder and first General of the Salvation Army. After touring Great Britain with the 1905-06 New Zealand team E.E.Booth later became a rugby writer and was one of the first touring rugby correspondents. He travelled with the 1908-9 Australian team to Great Britain. Later still he gained notoriety (in the strictly amateur game of the time) when he was hired as a professional rugby coach by the Southland Rugby Union.
Kelso and Scotland
27 internationals for Scotland 1981–88
4 internationals for British Isles 1983
A winger who might be best remembered by statisticians as the man who played for Scotland in 27 tests but never managed to score a try.
The baby-faced Baird, a former schools scrumhalf and an expert in the sevens game, was blessed with many talents. He was fast and elusive, and although slightly built, he had courage beyond his size. His speed was real: he once cleaned up three Scottish Borders track and field titles in one afternoon.
As a try-scorer, Baird had impressive credentials at every level other than for Scotland in test matches. His total of tries for the South of Scotland was a record, and he scored many in sevens rugby, including at the Melrose Sevens and on trips to the Hong Kong tournament.
Baird did have one test try-scoring moment but it was for the British Isles in New Zealand in 1983 in the third test in Dunedin.
Two of Ireland's most famous players were known as Jackie Kyle and Willie-John McBride; what were the two 'proper' Christian names each man had?