Thinking and talking about rugby every day for 50+ years
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'The greatest thing that can happen to the state of Queensland and the nation of Australia would be if and when we get rid of the media. Then we would live in peace and tranquility - but no one would know anything!.'
From the Scottish rugby star of the 1920s; 'It doesn't matter in any game of rugby how many points the opposition scores, as long as we score more!'
'Young men have visions, old men have dreams.'
'Scientists now say there are two things you can see from outer space; the Great Wall of China and the holes in the Scottish rugby team's backline defence.'
When rugby teams still gather in a huddle at halfway after they have run onto the field usually someone in the team can be seen talking away. But really, once you're on the field there's actually nothing left to say. You just have to get on with it!"
When the new young golf star Jordan Spieth, in the 2014 Masters Golf tournament, had played fearlessly throughout, showing no nerves, Weekley said; "That kid ain't got no bills to pay, he ain't got no kids; When you're that young to him it's only all about the sport he's playing. You don't have to worry about nuthin' else!"
Seen regularly on Japanese supporters shirts in Australia during the 1987 Rugby World Cup; 'If you ain't got no guts, you don't get no glory!'
From the renowned American gonzo journalist Hunter S.Thompson: "Sportswriters are a rude and brainless subculture of fascist drunks,'
'The (bronze) medal I won is fine, but it is only a souvenir. It's what you learn from the Olympics that is most important.'
"It's 45 minutes after the game right now and I still don't want to take this jersey off. That's because I know that when I do it'll be for the last time..."
Brian O'Driscoll, the Irish and British Lions centre three-quarter - reacting philosophically for the media after his 140th, and last, game of international rugby, in Paris 16th March 2014.
(Before his 1984 Wallaby team played their last international heading towards winning a Grand Slam in Great Britain): 'In life there are four things which don't come back; a speeding arrow, the spoken word, time, and a neglected opportunity.'
'Of the five most useless things there are in the world; three of them would be the cheers we do for the ref at the end of any game!'
Spoken with his strong north of England accent; 'On the field you gives it, you takes it, and yer doon't fookin' groomble!'
When speaking about his time as an international rugby player: 'In my country (Belgium), if you sit beside the phone long enough, it will ring and you will be invited to play rugby for Belgium!'
'Time is of the essence,
The crowd and players
Are the same age always,
But the man in the stand,
Is older every season.'
The local Illawarra team played the All Blacks and a young New Zealander called Colin Meads, aged 20, made his AB debut. 15 seasons later he retired as one of the greats!
Leicester, Harlequins and England
31 internationals for England 1920–27
William Wavell Wakefield was a highly successful player, thinker, innovator and captain. He became one of the world game’s best administrators, becoming an England committeeman before rising to be president of the Rugby Football Union in 1950. He served as a delegate on the International Rugby Board for the seven years up until 1961 and wrote extensively about the game, in his later years becoming a symbol of wise counsel for amateur rugby and its future.
The young Wavell Wakefield was a supremely fit rugby player, winning his 31 international caps as a flanker, lock or No. 8. He first played for England in 1920, when a strong Welsh side thrashed him and 10 other new caps. The selectors persevered with many of the new players, and out of their rising confidence came one of England’s best eras.
The England team, with Wakefield, the brilliant halfbacks ‘Dave’ Davies and Cyril Kershaw, Cyril Lowe the wing, and forwards Tom Voyce and Ronald Cove-Smith, combined to win the Five Nations crown three times in the first four years of the 1920s.
Wakefield played his first 21 internationals consecutively, winning 17 times with one draw. By 1927, when he was hampered by injuries, the highly popular and respected ‘Wakers’ had reached 31 caps – an England record for any position and one that stood until 1969, when it was passed by D.P. ‘Budge’ Rogers.
Wakefield is often remembered as one of England’s best captains and tactical planners. As captain of Cambridge University and England, he insisted on each member of the forward pack undertaking set roles, rather than plodding together from set piece to set piece, as had been the style.
Under his leadership, England’s back row combinations became the first in the world to work together as a ‘team’, which is commonplace in modern times. Certainly he was highly successful. In his seven seasons in the England team he took part in three championship wins, three Triple Crowns and three Grand Slams. It is a tribute to him that those years came to be known in English rugby as the ‘Wakefield Era’.
After his active rugby days he was a Member of Parliament and then became the first Baron Wakefield of Kendal. He died in 1983.
After the finish of the 2011 Rugby World Cup who were the youngest and oldest players from all countries to win a World Cup medal 1987-2011?