Thinking and talking about rugby every day for 50+ years
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.
Hewson and Loveridge of course were top cricketers as well as All Black heroes in their time. At one point last night they were sharing anecdotes of their time in opposing teams at a Brabin Shield youth rep tournament in Gisborne. Allan went on to play first class cricket for Wellington and Dave was a Hawke Cup rep for his home province of Taranaki. My own 'greatest' moment from the game of cricket was commentating for radio one Plunket Shield match in Whangarei in the early 1970s. I thought I did a fair job but was never invited to do a second game! (However I did make 94 on Whakatiki St No.6 field in Upper Hutt one time. It was in Hutt Valley 3rd Grade D division cricket - and my teammates said I choked!) (I think they were correct!)
At various times over recent years Williment Travel have invited the three of us to lead their All Black Supporter's tours to far flung places in the globe. We have all had wonderful times with them while watching the All Blacks play; all due to the organisational and professional excellence of Williment Travel.
Allan also led a cricket supporter's tour to the last World Cup in the West Indies.
Many thanks Adair and to Jo Boyd and Phil Langridge and the Williment team.
The first test when playing for money fires up Sean Fitzpatrick's team to a 43-6 win over Australia in Wellington!
Wasps, Bristol, Cornwall and England
14 internationals for England 1960–67
2 internationals for British Isles 1962
The pale-complexioned, blond-haired flyhalf who was seen as England’s and the Lions’ ready-made replacement when Bev Risman ‘went north’.
Sharp actually broke into the England team in 1960, before Lions star Risman had followed his father to rugby league, and took full advantage of the established player’s injury. He struck a swift accord with Dicky Jeeps and was considered the key to England’s Triple Crown success, kicking a critical dropped goal against Ireland, and another against Scotland.
The following season, indecisive England selectors couldn’t choose between the two talented men available, so played both, Risman at inside centre until he turned professional.
That gave Sharp an unchallenged position, for all that 1959 Lion Phil Horrocks-Taylor was still playing, but his international career was effectively to end within little more than a year. A smashing tackle early in the 1962 Lions tour of South Africa put Sharp out of action until midway through the tour, though he recovered to lead England to a championship win in 1963.
That was his international career, save for a brief return – also as captain – when England went down heavily to Australia in 1967. Sharp was not called on again.
He later became a journalist, covering rugby for the Sunday Telegraph, and was awarded the OBE in 1986.
Who was the New Zealand test cricketer who played one rugby test for England?