The Sacred Venue Bears No Crown But Just The Mantle Of Nobility

And so the dream was taken away by the better side on the day, Scotland (20-23). It was interesting, when I asked Scottish fans before the game to forecast the result, all but one said ‘A Win!’. The other singular Scottish voice said he forecasted ‘a good weekend!’

Whilst most of our Welsh friends the week before forecasted Ireland to win by 10 points. You have to admire the fire that burns deep in  the Scottish bellies.

Scotland Montage Mar 2010

The wonderful Scottish character in the middle of the montage, when asked for his feelings about the game, before the game, during a video interview, proudly announced his mobile number on camera and asked ‘Dublin Girls to call him without delay.’

As the last game of international rugby in Croke Park (The Hidden Jewel In Ireland’s Crown) drew to a close a couple of kilted Scottish fans told me what a privilege it was to visit Croke Park as it was a ‘sacred venue’  – a rare and never to happen again event , unless they came back to watch some Gaelic Games – Ireland’s national sport.

A touching moment of sportsmanship was shared with me by one of Ireland’s great out-halves, Ollie Campbell.  He told me that after the game, the Irish,  fly-half who struggled with his kicking and who was subsequently  substituted, Johnny Sexton, went into the Scottish dressing room  and gave his precious Irish shirt (he has only a handful of caps) to his opposite number, Dan Parks. When Parks offered his Scottish shirt in return, Sexton thanked him but refused as he felt that since Parks had won the  ‘Man Of The Match’ award  it was therefore a special game for him and he should keep his shirt in memory of  his outstanding performance.  This was from a young man who had just lost the chance of achieving one of his dreams – winning  his first Triple Crown.  Our dream was over but, like Johnny Sexton, we’ll rise again.

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4 Responses to The Sacred Venue Bears No Crown But Just The Mantle Of Nobility

  1. bren April 13, 2010 at 11:41 pm #

    Jeeeeezz…. the length today’s young rugby stars will go to just to get into the next edition of Great Moments of Sportmanship!!
    Did Ollie Campbell ever swap shirts? I heard the irfu use to charge for replacements back then!

  2. Joe April 14, 2010 at 10:29 am #

    Wonderful to see that despite the vast amounts of money that have gone into the game most Rugby Heroes retain a modesty and a sense of sportsmanship lacking in many other sports.

  3. prsmith April 14, 2010 at 1:16 pm #

    Yes Bren they did charge for the shirts a long time ago. I heard that the Grand Slam team of 1948 had to return their jerseys after each game (or pay for them) -we need to check this. Anyone else know?

    I believe the great Cliff Morgan was accused of being a ‘cheat’ by some Welsh RFU official when claiming his rightful travel expenses of one shilling and three pence or some such nonsense. Can anyone confirm?

  4. Sebastian April 14, 2010 at 1:39 pm #

    Nice piece of sportsmanship.Its a pity that some other sports seem to lack the honour that is part of Rugby.Many of those who play with the funny roundy balls could learn from Johnnie Sexton.Thierry Henry,Tiger Woods and maybe some other “Nike Stars”
    could then eliminate the cheating side of their personalities.

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