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Jerry Collins' club perform Haka

Springboks bounce back to beat Argentina

RWC Players to Watch: Anthony Watson

Horrell hit hard by Malakai Fekitoa

All Blacks fined for waterboy Messam

Tuilagi brothers cause chaos vs USA

HUGE hit between giant Polish forwards

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Christian Cullen ripping through Scotland in 1996

Christian Cullen ripping through Scotland in 1996

When twenty year old Christian Cullen made his debut for the All Blacks back in 1996, few could have predicted what was to come from the young flyer.

The boy from Wellington scored a hatrick on debut, followed up by 4 tries against Scotland, the very next week. An amazing start to the career of a man who went on to regularly tear defences to pieces in his prime.

In his first season of top flight rugby, before he made his senior Test debut, he was the standout player at the '96 Hong Kong Sevens, scoring a miraculous 18 tries.

He was a mercurial talent, one that baffled defences with both his phenomenal stepping and blistering speed. He's scored some of the most memorable tries to be seen to this day, and will always be remembered for striking fear into the opposition when he getting the ball in open play.

Cullen's four tries against Scotland, added to his three against Samoa the week before, meant that the young twenty year old had literally exploded onto the scene, launching a career that saw him achieve greatness at his peak, and be remembered for all time as one of the most devastating runners to ever play the game.

Time: 02:14
Note: A request for this clip came through the Requests section here on Rugbydump. If you find something you would like to have featured, please post a request and we'll have a look at it and possibly stick it up.

Posted by Rugbydump at 2:49 pm | View Comments (31)

Viewing 31 comments

TheFullback July 22, 2008 2:54 pm

Ahh, pure class

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Shaft July 22, 2008 3:10 pm

^ what he said. Brilliant.

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el nino July 22, 2008 3:22 pm

sick guy ;P

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grieffle fit mom July 22, 2008 3:23 pm

1 of the greatest player who ever lived !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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redrazors July 22, 2008 3:33 pm

had the mis-fortune of being at that game, 18 and freezing in my kilt....was crying into my Tui by half time..pleasure to watch if you weren't scottish

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Grizz Wyllie July 22, 2008 3:41 pm

Rugby has never seen a purer runner than Christian Cullen.

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Anonymous July 22, 2008 4:06 pm

he his a great runner and some of those side steps were class..but there were some really bad tackles from the Scotland defence.

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David July 22, 2008 4:11 pm

i have to agree just a bit with anon above me, but balance that against how phenomenal he was in attack.

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Zavala July 22, 2008 4:36 pm

Fantastic player who unfortunately "literally exploded" back in 1996, just two games in his international career. Sorry. One of my pet hates is the use of the word 'literally' then something that someone cannot and/or did not literally so.On topic, I only caught the back-end of his career so videos like this are priceless. His try against the Waratahs confirms to me his greatness.

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Anonymous July 22, 2008 5:21 pm

call me an anon again and il slam u david!!

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Sharky July 22, 2008 5:39 pm

Anon, use a name then mate. It's not rocket science. :)

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Don July 22, 2008 6:09 pm

first try=spectacular.

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David July 22, 2008 7:39 pm

Haha sorry mate ^

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martin-offload July 22, 2008 10:47 pm

"il slam u david" lol. One of the greatest runners of all time. 46 test tries in 58 tests. A record 10 tries against the Springboks. Was robbed of the chance to show off on the greatest stage as he was played at 13. Wot is it with the All Blacks and playing a fullback at 13? Cullen in 1999, MacDonald in 2003 and Muliaina in 2007.

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Chazza July 23, 2008 4:55 am

what a frikin steep he looks like a rugby league player with feet like that

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boomshanka July 23, 2008 6:13 am

one of the greatest to wear the 15 fer the All Whites ...real shame about injuries and 'selection choices' later in his career .

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Matt July 23, 2008 8:12 am

Is it possible to show more highlights from that game? As a Scot, in many ways a depressing encounter but then again didn't we get close to putting 30 points past the All Blacks (?) so I think we scored a fair few tries (possible four). Must have been a great game of running rugby.

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Anonymous July 23, 2008 8:46 am

wow the first try was beyond sick. Cullen had a real eye for supporting the player that makes a break

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durrie July 23, 2008 10:43 am

Awesome player...I remeber him slicing many teams from all over the world wide open...definatley one of the best open play runners we've seen...Scored many a fantistic try with fancy footwork and great accelleration...

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Anonymous July 23, 2008 12:13 pm

Yeah more Scotland tries please! We need cheering up. I'm convinced the BBC have destroyed footage of us taking the 1999 Five Nations - since I've never seen it again on DVD, net, TV or anything else.

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David July 23, 2008 3:01 pm

anon anon!

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Anonymous July 23, 2008 7:15 pm

tha was not just!! for every rugby fan out there does any one understand JUSTNESS!? David do u? by the way the names BEN.

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Anonymous July 23, 2008 10:21 pm

best player.i wish to expres some touhgts: 1)fuck the man who puts christian at 13 in the rwc 1999.2)fuck john mitchell.3)fuck me cause i couldnt see cullens first years in rugby.greetings from montevideo lads...

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pyro July 24, 2008 1:17 am

I remember watching his first game for the NZ. Correct me if I am wrong, but the first time he received the ball he got 'smacked' by The Chiropractor (Brian Lima). I felt sorry for him, but then he got up and scored his three tries on debut. Full credit to Cullen, wonderful to watch.I wonder if we could see some highlights from the first game Cullen played in for NZ against Samoa.

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Anonymous July 24, 2008 4:50 pm

Really disappointed, where was the bit where he literally exploded? Too gruesome for viewing?

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Greiffel July 24, 2008 4:56 pm

^ lol

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anonymous no6 July 26, 2008 2:43 pm

Wow he was so well balanced, him and Jason Robinson are probably my favourite players. A few questions, what was the score in the Scotland match, couldn't really see in the vid and also will we be seeing a Jason Robinson tries video?Anyway, thanks RD.

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Anonymous August 11, 2008 1:21 pm

david wher r u from

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Anonymous February 24, 2009 8:58 pm

CullenRobinsonWilliamsNow thats a lethal back 3

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Swampy April 15, 2009 10:49 pm

great tries but absolute rubbish defence by the scots

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Jono October 22, 2010 12:12 pm

On the subject of Cullen's stepping, have a look at the remarkable similarities between Cullen and Juan de Jongh of Stormers/Western Province in SA. Agree?

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