Lovely piece of writing, Clash. Am with you all the way......so many good points made.
"Let’s go back to Ballymore or wherever you buggers from Sydney and Canberra play".........Think of the add in places like Hawick, Galashiels, Limerick, Cork, Ballymena, Otley, Stellenbosch, Windhoek, Mossel Bay, Pukekohe, Blenheim, Greymouth........remember the excitement and anticipation in the local area when the big teams came to play, on top of the week in, week, out rugby.
""Let’s go back to playing Otago, Auckland, Wellington " ......and West Coast Buller, Wairarapa Bush, Boland, Griqualand West .... Souths, University… .......Yes indeed...."Let’s go back to watching and playing rugby."
"ref has been allowed to be the most important player on the pitch"....I won't even begin to comment, except to say, IMO, this is one of the biggest problems in the modern game !!
Interested that you learnt, and played your rugby in Scotland. I taught and coached at Bangor in N. Ireland, and we used to take our U 15 and !st XV teams on short tours to Scotland....easy ferry crossing, and good quality opposition always. Big highlight one year was defeating very narrowly a very good George Watson's XV, containing David Johnston...their only defeat that year. was on one of those days when the Murrayfield was used....Scotland V Australia.
Also gather you are now a Queenslander, as am I.
Get rid of the idea of trying to make money out of our game.
Well done, Kings...always good to see an underdog bite someone !!
Good article, Matt. Lot of very perceptive insights there.
Lions captaincy....hard one for their selectors, I think.......no really outstanding captain in the four nations who is a first pick for the tests. Hartley's disciplinary record must have a bearing, IMO....I know some will argue this should be so. But he is not currently a better player than George. The latter seems to me to be a superior scrummager for starters.
Best is now surely near the end a great career, and not at peak form. Having been born in Ulster, I would have a bias towords him....he certainly as the "fire in his soul" that can lift a player to great heights....as does Warburton.
Laidlaw, a great kicker, and good captain, would not be the No 1 scrumhalf. Honestly have not seen enough of Wynn Jones to comment fairly on him, but he might struggle to start in the tests ?
Some pretty way out captains have been suggested over the weeks past...O'Brien, Stander, Itoje even I saw someone suggest.
Farrell was mentioned a lot...but he has not got the background yet, I would think. I wonder about Sexton....I looks to me to be the kind of guy who would do well as a captain...but Ireland have not thought so.
Be interested to hear what others think.
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