Thinking and talking about rugby every day for 50+ years
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'My God, look at the size of this man! Quick! Tell the other villagers we're going back to the boats!'
'The worst thing you can say about any bloke is that he doesn't drink, smoke or go to the races.'
...well it could apply to sport!;
'Lives of great men all remind us,
we can make our lives sublime,
and departing leave behind us
footprints in the sands of time.'
'Rugby has opened many doors for me and it widened my horizons. I am heavily indebted to the game. I repay that debt in 80 minute installments by playing with all my heart; hoping that I will never betray the game's true spirit.'
When asked to define the physical differences between those who play rugby, simply said; 'In rugby there are those who play the piano - and those who shift them'
In 1934 when the Welsh fullback Vivian Jenkins became the first fullback to score a try in a test match the 'Western Mail' newspaper in Cardiff headlined the next day; 'Is this good for rugby?'
'In sport don't ever look back - someone might be gaining on you!'
'Age is mind over matter; if you don't mind, it don't matter.'
When talking about a big hit, (and it could apply to a big kick); 'When it's in the slot, give it the lot!'
'Without spontaneity in any sport, you cannot succeed.'
'Before every game he played Willie Ofahengaue would pray. But it to us it was never clear whether he prayed for himself or for the safety of the opposition!'
'Ideas are easy to conceive, less easy to execute.'
'Live like you'll die tomorrow; farm like you'll live forever!'
'There are only two excuses you can use for missing rugby training - death and docking!'
'If you take big paces, you leave big spaces.'
Yes it's true! Number eight forward Greg Cornelsen scores 4 tries as the Wallabies thrash NZ 30-16 on Eden Park.
These games have become an anachronism in modern rugby. ‘B’ internationals between second – or ‘B’ teams - of countries were played mostly in the second half of the 20th century. The British, Irish and French were the countries that mostly embraced the idea. For a time, some of the hardest games of each European season came in the international ‘B’ matches. The Wales v France ‘B’ teams, in particular, had some robust encounters between 1970 and 1989 when they met annually.
Internationals involving ‘B’ teams were never as popular in South Africa, Australia or New Zealand, though each dabbled with the concept of fielding a ‘second’ national team at some stage.
South Africa actually used to call its ‘second’ selection the ‘Junior’ Springboks. Australia fielded a ‘B’ team for the first time in 1988 when it met New Zealand. In 1991 New Zealand ‘B’ met Australia ‘B’ in Brisbane. New Zealand won an exciting match 21–15.
In 1992 England B toured New Zealand, playing two ‘tests’ against a New Zealand second team that was called the ‘New Zealand XV’.
Modern marketing phased out the concept of ‘B’ games. In the 1990s they were replaced by ‘A’ internationals. The new concept was a marketers way of enticing the paying public to believe they are not seeing second-rate players in action.
So the short history of ‘B’ teams came to an end. Ironically, this was followed by the decision of many countries, led by Wales, for economic reasons, to not even field an ‘A’ team any more.
From 1987 to 2011 inclusive; How many men have refereed the seven Rugby World Cup finals?