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Have you ever wanted to know what really happens when teams go on tour? Drawing on his extensive experience of touring, former international and acclaimed pundit Brian Moore tells you all you need ever know, with this in-depth but light-hearted expose, covering every level of the sport, from junior club rugby right up to the British Lions. With stories of bikini-clad forwards and Moore's own escapades, many of rugby's best-known names of recent years are featured, and no element of life on tour is left untouched. As they go, readers will learn how to survive the worst room-mates in the world, how to cope with the long hours of travel, and how to get the best room in the hotel. They will learn how the professionals do it - or at least used to - and how their would-be amateur counterparts try to do it; both having a blast along the way. Anyone who has ever gone away with a group of mates - male or female, sporting or not - will recognise similar situations and immediately identify with the book. Reading it will bring back their own memorable moments of touring or, if not, make them want to go on their first trip. To help readers get the best out of any tour, Moore provides top tips on how best to organise one, including tour rules, courts, songs and games. Along with the author's Top XV tourists of all time, this book is a definitive insight into touring in all its fun and glory.
In his almost 20 years in the sport, Will Greenwood has achieved just about everything a professional rugby player could ever aspire to, playing an integral role in the World Cup-winning campaign of 2003, and achieving great things with England beyond that at the Six Nations and on tour with the Lions. Never was a man more well placed to write on the sport. From the grass roots to elite professionalism, Greenwood has made his name as the face of intelligent and entertaining rugby writing and punditry. From hilarious character sketches of players to technical discussion of scrummaging and World Cup reminiscences, Greenwood delivers unrivalled writing on the game of rugby.
Of all the great team sports, Rugby has been the most dependent on tradition, inclusiveness and the notion of the game being more important than the individual. Its history weighs heavily upon it. Unfortunately, the rampant commercialism that has taken hold threatens all of these precious qualities and the emotional attachment to it in countries where it has become a national sport is in peril.After a century-and-a-half of comfortable conservatism rugby suddenly found itself confronted by a professional revolution not of its own making and it has struggled ever since to come to terms with this.The book has an opening chapter setting out the issues and the landscape, then looks at a series of issues that are crucial to Rugby's survival.
The Rugby Almanack is New Zealand rugby's book of record and is widely regarded as the finest publication of its type in the world.Now in its 75th edition, the 2011 Rugby Almanack records another huge year, including the All Blacks' remarkable Tri-Nations and Bledisloe Cup victories, the All Blacks end-of-season tour, the ITM Cup, Super 14 and a full summary of women's rugby.
The Rugby Almanack is the world's longest running rugby book of record. It was first published in 1935 to cover the previous season's first-class rugby in New Zealand. Since then it has been published uninterrupted (apart from two combined issues during World War II).Now in its 78th edition, the 2012 Rugby Almanack records another huge year, including the Rugby World Cup, the All Blacks in the Tri-Nations and the Bledisloe Cup, plus the ITM Cup, Super 15 and a full summary of women s rugby.
Piri Weepu s story is one of the most fascinating New Zealand rugby stories ever told. Born into a strong rugby league family - Piri s brother Billy actually played for the Kiwis - Piri has risen to the very pinnacle of rugby union, while at the same time never losing his great love of the 13-man code. At 28 and in the year of the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand, Weepu was finally given his opportunity and didn t he take it well. For years he had been in the shadows of Jimmy Cowan (not to mention a number of other first-choicers) but on the world stage, Piri stepped up to the mark and won the hearts of a nation. He kicked the goals for the All Blacks, he kicked for position and, in the absence of the incomparable Dan Carter, he ran the backline. His man of the match performance for the All Blacks in the quarter-final against Argentina and then another superb display against arch-rivals Australia in the semi-final cemented his place in New Zealand rugby folklore. This is more than a rugby story, though. This is a story of a little battler who has struggled with serious injury and fitness for a number of years, who has struggled to express himself because of an innate shyness, but who finally won over a nation on the greatest sporting stage.
Brian Moore, or 'Pitbull' as he came to be known during nearly a decade at the heart of the England rugby team's pack, established himself as one of the game's original hard men at a time when rugby was still an amateur sport. Since his retirement, he has earned a reputation as an equally uncompromising commentator, never afraid to tell it as he sees it and lash out at the money men and professionals that have made rugby into such a different beast. Yet, for all his bullishness on and off the pitch, there also appears a more unconventional, complicated side to the man. A solicitor by trade, Moore's love of fine wine, career experience as a manicurist and preference for reading Shakespeare in the dressing room before games, mark him out as anything but the stereotypical rugby player and in Beware of the Dog Moore lays open with astounding frankness the shocking events, both personal and professional, that have gone towards shaping him over the years. Presenting an unparalleled insight into the mind of one of British rugby's greatest players and characters, Beware of the Dog is a uniquely engaging and upfront sporting memoir.
In an era when even the finest rugby coaches have a drastically short shelf-life, Ian McGeechan's longevity and adaptability is staggering. In his 20 years at the highest level of the game he has been at the centre of almost every major story in UK rugby and has worked alongside some of the greatest rugby figures of the era. McGeechan began his career as a player -- winning more than thirty caps for Scotland and twice touring with the Lions. As coach to the Scottish national team, he led his country to a famous Grand Slam victory in the 1990 Five Nations tournament. Most recently, as coach of Wasps, McGeechan has guided the team to complete dominance in the club game. Continued success in management earned him an appointment as head coach to the Lions on five separate occasions, more than any other, including the Lions' latest 2009 tour to South Africa. Now, in this frank and engaging memoir, Ian McGeechan shares his unrivalled insight into the triumphs and tribulations of British rugby and of the progress of the sport over the past two decades. Lion Manoffers a unique glimpse into the past, present and future of British rugby from one of the most influential figures in the history of the sport.
Jack Kyle was the rugby giant of his time, but he is also so much more than a sporting legend. Whilst he was winning a Grand Slam and touring with the Lions, Jack Kyle was also studying to be a doctor. When he retired from playing rugby - as the world's most-capped player - his sense of adventure and medical ambition led him to settle in Chingola, Zambia, where he spent the next thirty-four years of his life. For many years, he was the only medically trained surgeon in the town and so faced many challenges, not least the appearance of and devastation caused by AIDS. Written as a series of conversations with his daughter, Justine, Conversations with My Father reveals Jack Kyle as a supremely gifted rugby player, a dedicated surgeon and a gentle family man.
Jack Kyle was the rugby giant of his time, but he was also so much more than a sporting legend. Whilst he was winning a Grand Slam and touring with the Lions, Jack Kyle was also studying to be a doctor. When he retired from playing rugby - as the world's most-capped player - his sense of adventure and medical ambition led him to settle in Chingola, Zambia, where he spent the next thirty-four years of his life. For many years, he was the only medically trained surgeon in the town and so faced many challenges, not least the appearance of and devastation caused by AIDS. Written as a series of conversations with his daughter, Justine, Conversations with My Father reveals Jack Kyle as a supremely gifted rugby player, a dedicated surgeon and a gentle family man.
Winning! tells the story of the remarkable past six years - an unforgettable journey that began in September 1997 and took the team from the lower ranks of international first-class rugby to the top as World Cup Champions. Sir Clive Woodward and his team mounted a campaign of vast change, great learning, team building and clear vision to achieve their aim. 'We would question everything, change anything and leave no stone unturned he writes. Winning! will talk about the team's journey of innovation and discovery and will reveal exactly how it happened, the fundamentals of their success and how these principles can be applied to any human endeavour. 'We changed the way we coached, the way we played and, of equal importance, how we operated off the field.' Bringing his business management skills to the game, Woodward simplified the entire approach to the structure of the team and created new management systems both on and off the pitch. In an anecdotal style, Clive Woodward entertains and informs while he describes the thrilling build-up to England's World Cup triumph.
John 'The Bull' Hayes is an Irish rugby legend. Keith Wood calls him a 'rugby giant', Donncha O'Callaghan calls him 'the heart and soul of the team', but Hayes is adored as much for his down-to-earth personality and background as his legendary status on the pitch. The phenomenon that is The Bull grew up in GAA farming heartland and was a late recruit to the game, only picking up a rugby ball at the age of 18. His determination on the pitch and passion for the shirt comes through in many a tale of graft and glory in the front row. Hayes relates his story of over 100 caps for his country, including four Triple Crowns and a glorious Grand Slam in 2009. Two Heineken Cup-winning campaigns gild an incredible career of over 200 games for Munster. This is the story of a giant of a man, and a rugby legend who is of the people.
John 'The Bull' Hayes is an Irish rugby legend. Keith Wood calls him a 'rugby giant', Donncha O'Callaghan calls him 'the heart and soul of the team', but Hayes is adored as much for his down-to-earth personality and background as his legendary status on the pitch. The phenomenon that is The Bull grew up in GAA farming heartland and was a late recruit to the game, picking up a rugby ball only at the age of 18. His determination on the pitch and passion for the shirt comes through in many a tale of graft and glory in the front row. Hayes relates his story of over 100 caps for his country, including four Triple Crowns and a glorious Grand Slam in 2009. Two Heineken Cup-winning campaigns gild an incredible career of over 200 games for Munster. This is the story of a giant of a man, and a rugby legend who is of the people.
Tony Ward's story is a tragedy of a sporting career unfulfilled. Hailed by the Irish media as the new George Best of rugby following his pivotal performance in Munster's stunning 12-0 win over the mighty touring All-Blacks - which in itself is one of the all-time greatest Irish sporting successes - Ward became a giant of Irish sport. His surge to fame portrayed him as Ireland's next glamour boy; twelve feet tall and adored by the public. But this dazzling beginning culminating in winning his first international cap for Ireland, would then be subsequently blighted by internal feuds with the powers that be in the IRFU and lasted right up until his retirement. Now, for the first time, Ward reveals in depth (including official correspondence with the IRFU) the shocking events that took place. The nature of the game at the time allowed certain elements within the ruling body to have a negative impact upon his burgeoning career. A career which ended with just nineteen caps but which rugby people across the world admitted should have been far in excess of that. His beautiful articulacy and insights, which have made him one of the foremost journalists writing about rugby today, also come to the fore in this riveting memoir of his career. But it is his revelations which will leave you shaking your head and wondering just how this could have happened. In telling his story fully for the first time, Tony Ward dearly hopes that his experience will serve as a warning to all sporting authorities everywhere that the natural skill, talent and potential of developing young sports stars will never again be mismanaged or confidence submerged in such a callous and uncaring way. This is his story.
Lewis Moody has seen and done it all in a glittering career that has seen him win the 2003 World Cup under Martin Johnson's captaincy, lose in the final of the 2007 World Cup after the most shambolic passage, and now lead England under Johnson's management in the 2011 World Cup. Moody has not only been an ever-present in the England team for the past decade - a team that has featured some of the most iconic and interesting figures in British sport such as Jonny Wilkinson, Lawrence Dallaglio, and Jason Robinson - but also, until his shock move to Bath last summer, he was a key part of the all-conquering Leicester Tigers team that became champions of England six times and of Europe twice. Moody does not just explore the incredible highs, of which there are many, but also the equally incredible lows. There was the bullying at school, the time as a child when he was so near to death that the doctors advised his parents to prepare for the worst, and, later, the many occasions when he wanted to walk away from a sport that has produced so much success, when the injuries were mounting up and becoming so serious that Moody felt he had had enough. The end result is at times a painfully funny and, at other times, painfully sad story of sporting triumph achieved only after leaping major obstacles along the way.
Lewis 'Mad Dog' Moody has been a familiar face in English rugby for fifteen successful and, at times, painful years. The former Leicester and now Bath flanker has seen and done it all in a sport that has changed beyond recognition from his first forays into the sport to the huge spectacle that rugby, and especially test match rugby, has become. Known for his near-suicidal fashion of playing the game, Moody has achieved as much as anyone in the history of the sport, from league, cup and European honours with an iconic Leicester Tigers team alongside the likes of Martin Johnson and Neil Back, to a 2003 World Cup winners medal and an MBE when still a young man. A great deal of heartbreak would follow - pain, illness, self-doubt and dark days in the four years before the next World Cup campaign that saw Moody and England fall in the 2007 final but he re-emerged to finally captain his country to a third World Cup campaign in 2011. Mad Dog - An Englishman is the story, warts and all, of one of the most-loved and respected British sporting figures; a story that allows the reader into the inner sanctum of a top rugby star's life, from the early days of student and rugby dressing room mayhem, to the latter years of dedication to the cause, and utter professionalism against all odds. You may think some of Lewis Moody's adventures are well-known. You would be wrong. In this searingly honest autobiography the original 'Mad Dog' lays himself bare and, along the way, takes you on an incredible journey that will make you laugh, cry and understand what it takes to construct a career as successful as Lewis Moody's.
'Rala has a gift for making people feel at ease and special at the same time' Paul O'Connell Patrick 'Rala' O'Reilly has been bagman for the Irish rugby team for nearly twenty years. In that time he's witnessed many highs and lows. But for him rugby has always been about the people, the places and the experiences. Here, with his own inimitable wit and humour, he shares with us his unique memories of his time spent at the very centre of Irish and Lions rugby. From his early days with Terenure RFC to touring with the Lions in 2009 and 2013, to pre-match traditions, pranks, iPod playlists and his love affair with Inishbofin, he tells a behind-the-scenes story of team spirit and friendship. With anecdotes from Keith Wood, Brian O'Driscoll, Donncha O'Callaghan, Jamie Heaslip, Peter Clohessy, Paul O'Connell and others, Rala: A Life in Rugby gives us an insight into the world of rugby - as never seen before. 'He's a gent, a role model ...but, most importantly, he's a great friend' Jamie Heaslip 'Even when I stopped being captain, I'd find my bags in my room when I arrived at the hotel, and my laundry hanging on the back of my door. He didn't have to do that, but then there's so much that he didn't have to do, but he still did' Brian O'Driscoll
Irish rugby as you've never seen it before -- from the man who got the job every rugby lover would love to have. 'Rala has a gift for making people feel at ease and special at the same time' Paul O'Connell Patrick 'Rala' O'Reilly has been bagman for the Irish rugby team for over twenty years. In that time he's witnessed many highs and lows. But for him rugby has always been about the people, the places and the experiences. Here, with his own inimitable wit and humour, he shares with us his unique memories of his time spent at the very centre of Irish and Lions rugby. From his early days with Terenure RFC to touring with the Lions in 2009 and 2013, to pre-match traditions, pranks, iPod playlists and his love affair with Inishbofin, he tells a behind-the-scenes story of team spirit and friendship. With anecdotes from Keith Wood, Brian O'Driscoll, Donncha O'Callaghan, Jamie Heaslip, Peter Clohessy, Paul O'Connell and others, Rala: A Life in Rugby gives us an insight into the world of rugby - as never seen before. 'He's a gent, a role model ... but, most importantly, he's a great friend' Jamie Heaslip 'Even when I stopped being captain, I'd find my bags in my room when I arrived at the hotel, and my laundry hanging on the back of my door. He didn't have to do that, but then there's so much that he didn't have to do, but he still did' Brian O'Driscoll
Rugby Skills, Tactics and Rules does what no other rugby skills book does: it provides an attractive, easy-to-read and straightforward discussion of the key components of rugby union. From player positions and tactics needed to win, to different kinds of set plays, passes and moves, and a user-friendly glossary, this great-looking book cuts through the jargon and tells coaches and players what they really need to know. Featuring stunning photography from the 2011 World Cup to illustrate the very latest skills and tactics used at the highest level, this book will enthral rugby fans of all ages and players at all levels.
Sevens should never be viewed as an abbreviated form of rugby. Rather, it is rugby magnified, and a closer inspection of the overall skills of rugby. This exciting and essential new edition of Coaching Rugby Sevens offers clear direction on how to coach and play the game of rugby sevens. Emphasising the three key principles of space, alignment and movement, all game situations are covered in detail, focusing on both attack and defence. Each chapter looks at a different facet of the game, and is clearly illustrated with drills, plays and set pieces, linking theory with practice. Rugby sevens continues to grow globally through the World Sevens Series and will appear at the Rio 2016 Olympics. This timely new edition covers developments in the laws of the game and changes in play due to tactical advancements. It also covers how the principles and ideas of sevens can transfer to 15-a-side rugby, providing valuable new thinking on how the two games interact.
Written and endorsed by the RFU coach development team based at Twickenham, this book takes every position in the 15-a-side rugby union team and gives a series of specific drills, practice sessions and tips for coaching players to perform their unique duties. From high-ball drills for full-backs to mauling sessions for the front row, this is the first book that isolates and teaches the skills required of each position on the field. The RFU coach development team, comprised of eight positional coaches, is at the forefront of the worldwide development of coaching best practice. Each drill and session is fully supported by line drawings, photographs and guidance on coaching.
Throughout the history of rugby union, a select few players have stood out above the rest. Bringing together 50 of the finest, this book reveals the fearless scrum-halves, tricky wingers, explosive centres and powerful props that have lit up the game, celebrating their achievements and controversially ranking them in order of greatness. Is the might of Jonah Lomu preferred to the vision of David Campese? Who was more influential, Jonny or Johnno? Which hemisphere has produced the most superstars? And most importantly, who will be named the greatest player of all time? Passionately argued, provocative, and sure to trigger lively debate, this book is a must-read for rugby fans everywhere. Published in time for the Six Nations 2016 and fully updated following the 2015 Rugby World Cup, hosted in England.
'Extraordinary... great fun' - Barry Egan, Irish Sunday Independent ''Throughout it all though there is a feeling of warmth for the sport and for others. Above all there is a sense of achievement... Best was never one of the glamour boys, but he deserves star billing.' - Daily Telegraph Rory Best is widely-regarded as one of Ireland's greatest ever captains. Entrusted by Joe Schmidt to lead the side that looked on the wane following the 2015 World Cup, Best's inspirational leadership skills and abrasive qualities proved to be the foundation stones for the most successful period in Ireland's history. His first year in charge saw Ireland complete a hat-trick of victories against the southern hemisphere 'Big Three', including leading his side to a first ever victory over world champions New Zealand in Chicago, a feat that etched Best's place in Irish sporting folklore and ended the All Blacks' record-winning streak of 18 Test victories. Ireland's annus mirabilis under Best's captaincy would come in 2018 however, when he led the side to only their third Grand Slam title, culminating with a famous victory over England at Twickenham, and a record-breaking run of 12 successive Test victories. When he steps down as Ireland captain at the age of 37 following the World Cup in Japan, his fourth tournament, history will no doubt also judge Best to be one of their greatest forwards. A hugely-popular figure across the game, Best will finish his career as Ireland's most capped forward, behind only Brian O'Driscoll and Ronan O'Gara in the all-time records, and also made over 200 appearances for his province Ulster.
SHORTLISTED FOR THE WILLIAM HILL SPORTS BOOK OF THE YEAR 2018 The uplifting, feel-good autobiography of Ben Ryan, the coach of the Olympic gold-medal winning Fijian rugby team It is late summer 2013. Ben Ryan, a red-haired, 40-something, spectacle-wearing Englishman, is given 20 minutes to decide whether he wants to coach Fiji's rugby sevens team, with the aim of taking them to the nation's first-ever Olympic medal. He has never been to Fiji. There has been no discussion of contracts or salary. But he knows that no one plays rugby like the men from these isolated Pacific islands, just as no one plays football like the kids from the Brazilian favelas, or no one runs as fast as the boys and girls from Jamaica's boondocks. He knows too that no other rugby nation has so little - no money and no resources, only basic equipment and a long, sad history of losing its most gifted players to richer, greedier nations. Ryan says yes. And with that simple word he sets in motion an extraordinary journey that will encompass witchdoctors and rugby-obsessed prime ministers, sun-smeared dawns and devastating cyclones, intense friendships and bitter rows, phone taps and wild nationwide parties. It will end in Rio with a performance that not only wins Olympic gold but reaches fresh heights for rugby union and makes Ben and his 12 players living legends back home.
'When my legs went from underneath me and my breath stopped coming, just minutes before we were due to go live on The Voice, I knew this was panic at its worst. Yet in the midst of the madness, something became clear. If I got through this, the secret I had guarded for years with all my life could not remain secret for much longer ...' In his book, Niall Breslin speaks openly about living with depression and anxiety, and his crippling journey to finally acknowledging 'Jeffrey' - the name he chose for it - years after he took the decision to conceal his growing mental health issues from the world, at age 15. Told with raw honesty, it is a story of the demons that lay beneath outward success, and how they impacted on his career in sports and later music, as he coped with a condition that at times seemed hell bent on wrecking everything in its wake. It is also the story of a road to reconciliation with brokenness - beginning after a massive panic attack before a live TV appearance in 2012 - leading to brighter horizons. Me and My Mate Jeffrey is an essential book for anyone who knows what it is to feel alone, and who doesn't know how to ask for help - or anyone who wants to better understand that journey.
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