Wednesday, January 16, 2008

One last tournament

For two of the all time great back row forwards, Serge Betsen, who has announced he will retire after the forthcoming Six Nations Tournament, and Martyn Williams, who will return to international rugby for the same.

While watching Betsen demolish Jonny Wilkinson a few years ago was not an unalloyed delight for an England fan, anyone who has played in the back row, as have I, and tried to introduce thenselves memorably to the opposition half backs had to have at least a corner of their brain whooping with admiration. And Williams... there are so many moments. For me, the tap penalty against France in Paris a couple of years back stands out.

Great players, fine men. It has been a privilege to watch them, and I'm very glad that will be possible again this year.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I once played back row against an international at fly-half. For 35 minutes I didn't lay a finger on him. Eventually, in frustration, I late-tackled him. He just laughed. "Good tackle", he said, "but you need to be a couple of yards faster." Too true.