AB Tour Diary; November 22 2014

AB Tour Diary; November 22 2014

What a scene it was when Wales ran out to play New Zealand at the Millennium Stadium.

22 November 2014


What a day to remember today for a very high percentage of the Quinn/Loveridge tour groups who are here in Cardiff. To sit in the stands at Millennium Stadium and watch a New Zealand v Wales rugby match unfold was a once-in-a-lifetime experience for most. And even for those of us who have been before it was a super-charged feeling to be back again.

The 70,000 crowd's singing was the best I personally had ever heard. And I first came here 36 years ago!

I wondered whether it might have been because the sound of all the vocalists was amplified because the roof was closed over, or, was it because microphones dangling in front of the Male Voice Choir and Army band helped to raise the volumn's lever? Or was it the shear size of the 100-strong male voice choir who just made it all SEEM better that ever. I loved it all and found myself singing along to the bits that are so familiar. The only black mark on the local organisation came when the male voice stadium announcer said we were 'about to be entertained by 'several May-Owrry' songs by the choir.

The game itself I will review elsewhere on this page. Suffice to say it was a wonderful day. And the 34-16 result helped too (from a Kiwi point of view at least!!

Our group had walked down together from the Hilton Hotel and there was very little crowding along the short route. The hotel was only about 500 metres from the ticket entrance and our people wanted to go early, so we were in place by 3.30pm for the 5.30 kickoff. Never mind, that gave us plenty of time to take in all of the wonder of a Welsh rugby experience.

{FOOTNOTE} The date for this game; November 22 was a reminder that on the same calendar day 51 years ago, in 1963, the Cardiff rugby crowd had gathered to watch Wilson Whineray's All Blacks team play the Cardiff club team. NZ won 6-5. On that occasion the population had watched quietly.  Everyone was subdued because the night before news had come through that in Dallas, Texas, the popular American President John F. Kennedy had been shot dead in Dallas Texas. The two rugby teams on that far off day had stood in silence at halfway in his honour.

Just because they had wanted to.


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