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People who have done the most for rugby down the years?

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pete (buachaill on eirne)
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Post by king_carlos Mon Dec 31, 2012 12:58 pm

With plenty of popular end of year topics floating around such as George Carlins 'greatest' thread, I thought it might be a decent chance to discuss guys who have had the biggest impact on rugby (nationally and internationally) from off the field as well as on it in 2012 and down the years. Use whatever selection criteria you wish as this thread should be hugely subjective to personal opinion and national bias (finally a thread that suits our usual instincts Wink ). To that point lets please try to respect other posters choices/points and keep debate friendly as usual! OK

As always excuse my lack of suggestions from eras gone by due to not having seen/heard of many greats when I'd love to had the privilege of doing so.

From a world rugby perspective Jonah Lomu springs to mind, as the first 'global superstar' rugby had his play did a huge amount to put rugby on the map for a much wider audience. Also to achieve all he did whilst suffering from a kidney disorder that would floor most men deserve many a plaudit.

From an England perspective Jonny of course comes to mind alongside several guys such as Johno from the 2003 side. Wilkinson's professional approach to the game over a long career and through injury problems that would've driven many a player to give up will have done a huge amount to inspire many of the young players we've seen coming into the game in England over the last few years.

Off the pitch I'd have to go for the voice of rugby, Bill McLaren. Sadly no longer with us but his always enthusiastic, intelligent and very well informed commentary made listening to rugby a joy for many over the years. RIP

From 2012, one name I'd throw in as an outside bet from an England fan would be Bill Beaumont as head of the RFU. He may not have been making the sort of noise his esteemed Welsh counterpart has made but the great man took over the reins at the RFU when it was in crisis mode - which took courage to do in itself. The management structure really was in disarray at the point when Beaumont took over and he seems to have steadied the ship somewhat since, though there's still plenty to do with the club vs country and HC problems still around. Ale

From an all time perspective I guess top of tree must go to the alleged creator of the game, William Webb Ellis however. clap

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Post by Biltong Mon Dec 31, 2012 1:05 pm


definitely agree on Bill McLaren, was by far my favourite commentator, I ised to love Scottish tests just to listen to him.

Dr Danie Craven was very influencial in SA rugby.
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Post by RuggerBoy Mon Dec 31, 2012 1:33 pm

William Percy Carpmael and WJ Carey

For me, their idea of that "Rugby Football is a game for gentlemen in all classes, but for no bad sportsman in any class", along with their belief that "Rugby should be an attacking game that must always exhibit a style which demonstrated a commitment to hard, clean, attacking Rugby", became the benchmark by which the global game is judged.

The club, conceived in 1890, has become famous all over the world and is held in high esteem by all - The Barbarians.

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Post by Casartelli Mon Dec 31, 2012 1:47 pm

Struggling to think of anyone. I think rugby has bumbled along and found it's own way to date, based on 'down to earth' values, a brutal physicality (which puts off field trivialities into perspective) and that it's probably the only professional sport that finds a place for all; tall, short, fat, skinny, ginger etc.

Rugby is still waiting for someone to bring it all together. Global season, fair distribution of wealth to the Pacific island countries and other nations, investment in youth etc etc etc

I had hopes for Graham Henry or Francois Pienaar - but to no avail.

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Post by pete (buachaill on eirne) Mon Dec 31, 2012 1:55 pm

I think Augustin Pichot deserves a huge mention for his work on and off the pitch in putting Argentinian rugby on the map and helping others realise the potential that few knew the country had as a rugby nation.

The best thing about this? They are still developing and improving.

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Post by king_carlos Mon Dec 31, 2012 2:00 pm

Casartelli

Which players have done the most to instil those basic values down the years though? Plaudits there I guess must go to many of the coaches at grass-roots from down the years. I'll name good old Ben Parker to get things started there then - did a fair bit to teach my older brother it was alright to kick the c*** out of me when I deserved and then in teaching me how to throw my weight around in return.

In seriousness though Dean Richards springs to mind as a player who was renowned for keeping that brutal physicality from the amateur era going into the professional one in the Jeff.

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Post by RuggerBoy Mon Dec 31, 2012 2:00 pm

Casartelli wrote:Struggling to think of anyone. I think rugby has bumbled along and found it's own way to date, based on 'down to earth' values, a brutal physicality (which puts off field trivialities into perspective) and that it's probably the only professional sport that finds a place for all; tall, short, fat, skinny, ginger etc.

There are limits Casartelli, I draw the line at gingers...

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Post by king_carlos Mon Dec 31, 2012 2:01 pm

pete (buachaill on eirne) wrote:I think Augustin Pichot deserves a huge mention for his work on and off the pitch in putting Argentinian rugby on the map and helping others realise the potential that few knew the country had as a rugby nation.

The best thing about this? They are still developing and improving.

+1 very good shout I'm now annoyed at myself for not thinking of.

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Post by pete (buachaill on eirne) Mon Dec 31, 2012 2:22 pm

king_carlos wrote:
pete (buachaill on eirne) wrote:I think Augustin Pichot deserves a huge mention for his work on and off the pitch in putting Argentinian rugby on the map and helping others realise the potential that few knew the country had as a rugby nation.

The best thing about this? They are still developing and improving.

+1 very good shout I'm now annoyed at myself for not thinking of.

Haha being annoyed about a good thing is pretty ok feeling I think Hug
He's pretty awesome I have to say. My all time favourite scrumhalf without a doubt. I can very clearly remember him hugging Hernandez as they cried after they lost the semi final of the RWC 07, made my heart physically bleed to see it.

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Post by dallym Mon Dec 31, 2012 2:40 pm

The Needle and any other coach that promoted 15 man total rugby

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Post by Taylorman Mon Dec 31, 2012 10:52 pm

Agree with Jonah for other reasons as well. He has also taken time to promote the game to the Pacific Islands. Jock Hobbs certainly did a lot for NZ rugby and battled hard to secure the 2011 World cup for NZ in 2005 after getting sideswiped by Mr Oneill of the ARU for duel host rights in 2003.

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Post by emack2 Tue Jan 01, 2013 6:13 am

William Webb Ellis for creating the game,Ourbaas
Mark Markotter mentor Bok Coach Legend.Dr Danie Craven,as a player,captain,coach,and administrator of SA Rugby,and his generosity in helping fix the AllBlacks 3-4-1 Scrum.Sir Wavell Wakefield for creating the Open,Blind,Number 8 back row formation.Carwyn James,Ian McGeechan,Jim Telfer,Dick Best,Jack Rowell,Clive Woodward,Ashton,Geoff Cooke as UK Coaches.Freddie Allen and Charlie Saxton and the 1945-6 Kiwi side who showed how Rugby should be played.Victor Cavanagh Sr.and JR.THE Greatest Coaches of all time laying the foundations of generations of NZ forward packs.
Finally ALL at any level who play,coach,train,administer,attend to the medical needs or whatever.Many mostly unpaid doingit for the love of the game.

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Post by Pal Joey Tue Jan 01, 2013 9:24 am

Thomas Arnold - who founded the Rugby School.

Pierre de Courbertin -who realised the value of sport in schooling.

Sir Nicholas Shehadie (ARU), Dick Littlejohn (NZRU) and John Kendall-Carpenter (IRU) - who were the most instrumental in setting up the Webb Ellis Trophy.
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