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Tuesday, September 27, 2011

24th Sept – Sunny


Matchday. I wandered over to Pirates Club to watch W and P play rugby league for Pirates. It was just like watching them from when they were 7, it was cold and raining, and several degrees below the surrounding area – Ox Hay sub-climate. It also made the day feel like a real rugby tour, different rugby club, hangovers all round (myself excepted of course). One lad told me that his friend had done the classic, ‘no sleep for days, loads of beer, deep sleep, wet the bed.’ To make it worse, he flipped the mattress to a bigger wet patch, nicked a dry sheet off another bed which straight away, soaked up the wet. The lad was worried about his own bed, as his mate had jumped into his to sleep.

Inside the club, the girls from the women’s team were serving food. Their line to the lads was: take the order, write it down, then ask for their name, followed by their
phone number. This really unnerved the lads as they were the ones who normally had the cheesy chat up lines.

They invited me to sit with them, and told me that they’d only had one day off the beer in two weeks (Monday didn’t have a World Cup game). Top girls – I remember being that young once. I have several Welsh mates who I’ve teased mercilessly about Welsh ‘Orange’ backs. One of the rugby girls saw Jonny coming out a tanning studio on Friday. So it isn’t the south of France lifestyle then. Luckily I am avoiding them for a while.

The club was very well run, with volunteers serving food, and they had organised the bus company to pick up and drop off at the stadium, and back, ensuring easy drinking before the game, and afterwards for the French – All Blacks game.

The game itself was better, England still too lateral, but the Otago students were out in force again with their ‘stand stamping’. I think that this will be the identifying factor of games played there, just as mud and foul weather made Carisbrook the ‘House of Pain’. (The stamping went on regardless of which team was kicking).

Please can someone explain Tindall’s role in the team. At least 3 bombed chances, knock ons and a knee in his captain’s crown jewels does not endear you with fans let alone Zara, who may be a little annoyed about other matters. I don’t think a couple of good games in two years is enough to keep your place, at the expense of Barritt, Geraghty, Turner Hall, Flutey, Hipkiss, Trinder, Tait et al. There’s still room for improvement at the breakdown, who don’t like us there, and we have the masters of breakdowns next – Scotland.

Back to Pirates to watch our potential quarter final opposition. Simon Shaw put in appearance, as he had played there as a Colt and was meeting up with old friends. He smiled for phots and signed programmes until everyone who wanted it had been done, and then he was left to enjoy the night. Message for professional players who haven’t bridged the amateur era – this matters to you old clubs, and players – let’s not lose it.

Sunny – The Muppets Boney M et al – because whilst it rained all day, Jonny still looked tanned.

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