Lasting Impressions

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Post by red_stag on Mon 05 Dec 2011, 10:29 pm

Here's a question. When were you at your most impressionable in rugby and what did you take from it. It maybe when your team started to win, when professionalism began or when you first picked up a ball. Maybe you saw England win the RWC in 2003 and got caught up in the rush or else just things your dad used say about the game at home etc.

When were you most impressionable with regards to rugby and what last impressions were formed.

For me it was from 2000-2003.

I joined a secondary school in 2000 and Munster made it to the Heineken Cup final the same year. The whole of Limerick was bananas for it and I quickly learnt to value the Heineken Cup over the international game. Something that has stayed with me since.

The All Blacks were the exception that proved the rule. They brought pageantry to the international game with the Haka, the whole all black kit, the whole brand with standouts like Jonah Lomu or Tana Umaga. No other interntional team could offer that. I got to see them live during my "impressionable" period and loved what I saw.

11 years later those are the things that have stuck. The Heineken Cup (and Lions) and better than international rugby except for NZ who put on a show. Simplistic but it has stuck.

Whats your lasting impression. . . . . . . .and dont say its of Munster being boring cheating 10 man rugby basstarrds thumbsup
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Post by Looseheaded on Mon 05 Dec 2011, 10:36 pm

I had played rugby since about 4. Then I quit at about 12/13, only to restart again the same season we won the 08 slam. I'd already got back into it, but watching Wales win away against England (I lived in Twickenham, and attended one of the local schools, so it meant that much more to me) helped to reinstate my love of the sport.

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Post by KiaRose on Mon 05 Dec 2011, 10:47 pm

At boarding school in the 60s. We were very restricted in our tv viewing, but Five Nations rugby was allowed because one of the nuns was passionate about it amd bless her, she would watch on our tv rather than the one the nuns had which meant we could watch too. How grey was the TV! Then some bright spark had the idea that when Ireland was playing Wales (players couldn't be distinguished on a B&W set) one team should wear black shorts - genius. clap

How I looked forward to going to a "live" match.

First live international was Ireland v South Africa, January 1970. Scoreline 8-8 (I think, it was a draw anyway). Never missed another international in my uni career. Went to inter-provincials and Leinster Schools' Cup matches as well and the annual Colours (UCD v TCD) games.

Loved the game ever since.

Went to Twickenham in my first season in England, Ireland thumped England - totally memorable night in London.


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Post by LondonTiger on Mon 05 Dec 2011, 10:54 pm

I went to matches in the 70s when my dad played for the Army, but it had little impact on my consciousness.
i started paying more attention when a neck injury (seems to run in the family) meant he took up reffing. Tavelling to different clubs around the North East and Yorkshire opened my eyes to the camaraderie of rugby. Gosforth, West Harlepool, Hartlepool Boys Brigade, Middlesbrough, Blaydon, Mowden Park are all freezing cold places I remember fondly.

I finally started playing when I started at secondary school and my interest grew exponentially. This coincided with a brief rise in Englands fortunes, the North beating the ABs in 79 and England the slam in 80.

Perhaps my cornerstone memory is the wonderfull Bill Mclaren - "And its Carleton, John Carrrrrrrrleton"



Since then I have been inspired by countless back row forwards too many to name. Retired twice, played in two of Englands great rugby cities and even got paid to play. Yet through it all I keep coming back to the camaraderie of Rugby - and having a pint with your team and the opposition. Fans mingling with opposition fans, and with players. After retiring the first time at just 20 I played hockey to a higher level than I ever managed in rugby, but that feeling of togetherness was absent.

I have just one ambition - to have the time and money to go on a Lions tour.

To all of you a great big Ale

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Post by PerryGee on Tue 06 Dec 2011, 1:28 am

LondonTiger wrote:

I have just one ambition - to have the time and money to go on a Lions tour.


Be careful what you wish for or, like me, you could end up in New Zealand watching the total dross that was Woodward's Lions. Almost completely put me off the concept.

At least in 2013 they'll be visiting these parts, no travel for me, just tickets.

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Post by mankiaow on Tue 06 Dec 2011, 5:49 am

My father started taking me to Internationals at Lansdowne Rd. when I was around 10 years old. The first one was Ireland v NZ. It's a bit of a blurr now but they drew 10-10 - the only time we got a result against them. I have clearer memories of the great Welsh players like Phil Bennett and Gareth Edwards bouncing on to the turf in their pomp. Some of my favourite players of that era were David Duckham, Steve Fenwick, Jean Pierre Rives, Serge Blanco and Fergus Slattery, to name but a few. The Grand slam Ozzies, with the immensly talented Ella brothers were another highlight. Ireland were no great shakes at that time but they had their moments. Ollie Campbell and Tony Ward provided a lot of excitement.

The HC has plugged a huge gap for Irish rugby fans. It has provided a regular thrill that only came around a couple of times a year and contributed to Ireland being much more competitive at International level. Long may it continue.

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Post by mckay1402 on Tue 06 Dec 2011, 10:09 am

I think watching rugby special on a Sunday with my dad. Watching Adel Kardouni and Dusty Hare playing for Leicester and just remembering what a mud bath it looked. Also watching Ieuan Evans scream past underwood for that try in 93. It was my first memory of Wales beating England...it had to last me another 6 years as well. It was also the first year I got a rugby shirt. My Wales shirt with the dragon on the sleeve. I remember sleeping in it and getting the imprint on my arm...awesome!
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Post by Bathman_in_London on Tue 06 Dec 2011, 11:01 am

My early rugby watching impressions were from trips to twickenham with my dad in the 90's. I went to several cup finals, back in the days when bath used to win things! The 1995 win against Wasps and the following year when Neil back pushed over the ref are good memories. My first international was England vs Romania in 1994, back in the days of Deano, Rodber and Clarke... been hooked ever since!

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Post by flankertye on Tue 06 Dec 2011, 6:40 pm

I grew up in a football dominated part of Essex. I remember walking into my parents room when I was 10 and watching the second half of the world cup final and was blown away.
After that, of course everyone got into rugby (for a month or so) remember the first time I played we were mucking around I got given the ball and being a chubbier kid had a great time, handing off people and carrying the ball, finally getting my own back on the skinny agile little football mad whippets.
Went to secondary school where I started to play properly. Played at loosehead, then hooker, then 8 with very little success and was left out of the school team at the time.
This motivated me to get better and improve my game, moved to suffolk and became one of the star players on my school team before I joined the local rugby club. Been hooked ever since and I've been watching rugby properly from around 2005.

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