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Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Alan Quinlan attempts to replicate the Hand of Back

Alan Quinlan attempts to replicate the Hand of Back

Back in 2002, Leicester flanker Neil Back famously tapped the ball into his side of the scrum in the Heineken Cup final against Munster. Last weekend, Alan Quinlan did the same against Ulster, but with less successful results.

When Back did it in 2002 , it caused a huge stir as it happened late in the final, when Munster had one last shot at an attack. It produced the turnover and the match ended with Leicester winning 15-9.

The Munster fans were incensed by Back's actions, labelling him a cheat. Ironically enough, it's a Munster player who's gone and tried the same thing now, albeit at a less high profile match.

Quinlan, who missed the British & Irish Lions tour of South Africa after being suspended for eye-gouging , tapped the ball into the scrum in the Magners League match against Ulster last weekend.

He's known to be quite a mischievous character, but got caught out on this occasion as the touch judge spotted it, resulting in referee Alain Roland penalising the Munster man.

Scrumhalf Kevin Putt famously did the same thing for the Sharks many years ago. Have any of you flankers ever gotten away with this, or seen it done in some other high profile match?

Time: 01:07

Posted by Rugbydump at 1:42 pm | View Comments (43)

Viewing 43 comments

TotalRugby November 10, 2009 1:12 pm


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Ted November 10, 2009 1:12 pm

Ha that's funny!

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Ted November 10, 2009 1:14 pm

Once played with a flanker who used to pat his opposite number on the head at scrumtime, waiting for them to get pissed off and hit him. As soon as they did he'd stand up and shout 'Aw ref!' and his opposite number would get sent off.

Mind you he was a complete tool.

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frikin November 10, 2009 1:20 pm


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No.7 November 10, 2009 2:01 pm

might try that one least most touch judges arent that switched on!

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rodofle November 10, 2009 2:21 pm

Guys who find it "brilliant" are complete idiots. How can you find it brilliant??? It's exactly as pathetic and disgusting as a footballer diving to get a penalty. A faggot thing which shouldn't be seen on a rugby pitch

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Anonymous November 10, 2009 2:26 pm

Quinlan is a cheat. Simple.

Eye-gouging and now this. What a disgrace. Im glad he didnt get to represent the Lions!

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Ted November 10, 2009 2:46 pm

I don't think this sort of thing is the same as diving in football, I would class it with other so-called 'dark arts' that forwards practise in rugby. There are dozens of little tricks that go on in scrums, rucks and mauls to get an advantage over the oppo. Always have been, always will be.

Diving is cowardly - the same thing in rugby would be to exaggerate an injury. Eye-gouging and deliberately harmful stuff like that too.

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Kenny November 10, 2009 2:51 pm

I take it Ted is a Munster fan, because Munster fans seem to take his "antics" with a pinch of glee as if he is being cheeky and not a cheat.

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Ted November 10, 2009 2:56 pm

No Ken, not a Munster fan (Wasps if you must know) I just think this is one of those things that if you are good enough to get away with, good luck to you.

Quinlan wasn't good enough to get away with it and got punished - quite rightly so.

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Kenny November 10, 2009 3:18 pm

Sorry bout calling you a munster fan Ted, should not have assumed it, its a bit cheeky alright but especially since the gouging thing my stock in Quinlan has gone down alot in my view.

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Ted November 10, 2009 3:25 pm

Yeah, absolutely. Most good flankers get accused of being cheats by opposition fans because they have to skate pretty close to the line to do their job(Back, McCaw etc)

Obviously anyone steps over that line the moment they start gouging or committing similarly dangerous acts.

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No.7 November 10, 2009 3:28 pm

I definately agree with ted on this one. Yes for munster in the final it must have been very very disheartening. but really was that the only thing that was illegal in their match? im pretty sure leicester did a a lot more in the bottom of those rucks and mauls which resulted in retaining or gaining the im sure munster did.

just as in this video, i highly doubt this was the only incident.

As a schoolboy i played hooker and if i say so myself i was near unbeatable at hooking the ball for my team and stealing the oppo ball (this is in times where you cant drive a scrum for over a meter...schoolboy hooking is the only way to win the ball really) and i loved it. Then we played one team, i stole a couple off their scrums and then their prop somehow (i dont remember/know how) decided to put his head on my chest in every single caused some pain and i was unable to see the ball....needless to say my hooking for that game went to pot...

This is the kinda stuff that players do when they can. it is not on par with gouging or anything like that but its one of those things...

We got taught at school (by our rugby coach who played Eng U-21's or something like that) that a good way to get someone to let go of a ball in a maul is to just start bending a finger back....obviously its a little ott if you break someones finger but a little bend and they start to let go.....'Dark arts' people...

sorry just to clarify, Quinlan did cheat and it is cheating but i dont believe it due of any great attention, at least the ref picked it up!

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Anonymous November 10, 2009 3:28 pm

Dissapointing Quinlan. Being cheeky is one thing, but this is plain cheating.

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Darren November 10, 2009 4:08 pm

Quinlan's a great player, definately plays on the border line, always in the mix, hassling and stalking. But, as his career edges towards his twilight years, he seems to be causing more problems for Munster than anything else. His discipline has bottomed out, always giving away needless penalties at the breakdown, and then has a big, "what did I do ref", stupid look slapped all over his face.

Now he has basically justified what Neil Back did in the Heineken Cup final, as one of the boys put it, the dark arts of forward play. No it's not a dark art, it's cheating if it comes off, and it's fucking you team over by conceeding a penalty due to impatient stupidity if it fails. I could never justify what Neil Back did, as I'm from Munster. If I were to even consider justifying this, then it would be hipocracy. I won't, Quinlan did. He's a numbnuts!

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No.7 November 10, 2009 4:22 pm

Ah ok Darren do you play rugby?

What position do you play?

Have you ever jumped in a lineout and perhaps jumped accross the other player and not got penalised...or maybe taken the ball into a ruck and held on just a little longer therefore allowing your team to retain the ball (without you getting penalised!!!

Because that is cheating!!!

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No.7 November 10, 2009 4:22 pm

(by what you say anyway...)

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jay November 10, 2009 4:24 pm

Wow, the most I got playing number 6 or 7 were punches or eye gouging... but thats a "great one" ! Thankgod Roncero doesn't flank...

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Maik November 10, 2009 4:36 pm

I usually play hooker and I'm usually one of the first players of my team to get in the rucks (yeah, crappy flankers, I know) so I'm really involved in these underground battles.

Cheating is when the refree sees you, dark art is when he doesn't :)

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reno November 10, 2009 6:31 pm

It's something forwards, especially the hard ones, seem to do. Not that backs don't cheat...usually that's in the ruck (if they're even there!) or a defender would elbow or push an attacking player running by in support, but we don't get the same opportunities. Maybe that's why it's easier to take the moral high ground. Plus, rugby is supposed to be played by guys with more class than your football players (or American football - re: TO and Mike Vick are pieces of shit - rugby would never have those asses on the field), where any unsportsman-like conduct will get dealt with by citing committees, even if it's way too harsh at the time.

Anyways, my point is that there's a fine line between being cheeky and being a tool, and Alan Quinlan "cheats" often enough that I think he's a flat out tool. I'm a Munster fan for sure, and I think he's a blight on their reputation (which is not all that great in some peoples' eyes, I know).

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Swissvinch November 10, 2009 6:37 pm

Tried this tactic once a few weeks after the Neil Back incident. Received a few cheap shots, a good ruck from the dummy half and a yellow card...I assume I deserved it! :-)

So, trying things "seen on TV" is not always a good option...

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Swissvinch November 10, 2009 6:37 pm

Tried this tactic once a few weeks after the Neil Back incident. Received a few cheap shots, a good ruck from the dummy half and a yellow card...I assume I deserved it! :-)

So, trying things "seen on TV" is not always a good option...

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Brian November 10, 2009 7:04 pm

Tried doing this once in a high school match...the opposite flanker saw me do it and flipped out but...what the ref didn't see didn't happen :)

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No.7 November 10, 2009 7:09 pm

lol at the above.....should have come with the jackass ddisclaimer note before the video!

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Andrew November 10, 2009 8:09 pm

No.7, as a former hooker myself I can tell that when the prop starts putting his head or chin into uncomfortable places to block your view or distract you from hooking the ball back that is when you start putting your knees up a bit higher than usual as the ball comes into the scrum.
'Oh, I just kneed you in the face? So sorry, I thought your head was the ball. Perhaps if you would move your gargantuan heed I could hook properly.'
Problem solved.

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Richie November 10, 2009 8:44 pm

I remember being at the match when it happened and the first thing that popped into my head was, 'What are you doing?' Quinnie could be an even greater player if he didn't keep giving away silly penalties. It's the same way he cost himself a lions place. Stupid idiotic penalties/acts. I know as a flanker that you're supposed to try and bend the rules but that was ridiculous. I think he's a great player for us but the penalties are annoying.

From a Munster Fan by the way.

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Richie November 10, 2009 8:45 pm

Just to say, if he didn't get caught I would be singing his praises, but you're supposed to do it in a way that you don't. ;)

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goodNumber10 November 10, 2009 10:33 pm

Funny, but a silly penalty.

BUT what a kick by the 10 straight afterward.

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No.7 November 10, 2009 11:26 pm

lol, Andrew, i tried that and a few uppercuts....unfortunately i was a rather small and timid school boy that loved the game but lacked the backup.......

My how things have changed......i've got older, bigger, stronger, and i still get my ass kicked! ....(obviously not harder than....something hard...diamond, yes thats it, harder than diamonds, and just as beautiful....)


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Anonymous November 11, 2009 5:29 am

goodNumber10, Ian Humphreys does have a great boot, and a beard crafted by God himself.

I'm not much of an Ulster fan, but I wish Declan Kidney would be considering Humphreys for the international scene...I know sensation has swept up Sexton, so he's probably where I'd put my money if I were a betting man, but Humphreys has a lot of good qualities and, a lot of times, goes tit for tat with ROG. I just don't buy it that Sexton is ready to be an international number he all that great at setting up offensive plays? I dunno...we'll see, I guess.

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goodNumber10 November 11, 2009 7:52 am

Humphreys, thats it. couldn't for the life of me think what his name is.

Have to agree with you, every time I've seen him he's been class and sexton imo is a bit hot and cold - but has the benefit of playing for a more glamorous province i suppose.

Also he's quite physical in the hit as well.

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Anonymous November 11, 2009 11:24 am

To the comments above,get off your high horses and get over yourselves,the best flankers over the past couple of years have been "cheats". McCaw,Back,Smith,munster fans arent one bit bitter over what neil back done to us,as long as hes not intentionally gouging I think Quinlan is hilarious

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vinniechan November 11, 2009 1:39 pm

"Something funny happened at the far side"
Such an understatement.
Numerous attempts have been made at professional level to replicate BAcky, don't think any has worked.
"Worked his magic" lol...

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Anonymous November 11, 2009 3:59 pm

Someone did this against my team once. As he did it I kicked him in the face. He didn't try it again.

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Anonymous November 11, 2009 4:49 pm

"Someone did this against my team once. As he did it I kicked him in the face. He didn't try it again."

WOW you're a hard one eh!

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Huh!! the 3rd November 11, 2009 8:51 pm

To one of the first anons who said

'Quinlan is a cheat. Simple.

Eye-gouging and now this. What a disgrace. Im glad he didnt get to represent the Lions!'

Yeah so am I, seen as Smit walked right through his replacement for the easiest try in test rugby. I don't defend Quinny lightly, he has done idiotic things in his 15 year career, but this isn't something you can label someone a disgrace for. I had no problem with what Neil Back did (neither did the Munster players), he was just trying (and suceeding) to win. I did, however, lose some respect for him when he apologised to the Munster players after.

If Quinny is a disgrace, then so is every other forward to play the game. How many times do you see interferring hands in rucks when the SH is trying to get it out? The exact same thing, annoying but happens all the time. And so on, ad nauseum.

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number7 November 12, 2009 12:20 am

as an openside il be the first to admit im a cheating prick at either ruck or scrum time its my job and i enjoy it...however i never stamp gouge or punch as i find all of them quite cowardly ...if you want to get someone get them standing toe to toe with you anything less is for girls and scalke burger

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number7 November 12, 2009 12:25 am

Someone did this against my team once. As he did it I kicked him in the face. He didn't try it again

your a total coward if you were to ever try that against my team you would most likely not have walked off the field but at least we would be decent enought to get you when your on your feet....

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Phil November 12, 2009 12:24 pm

Just an observation based on many of these comments.

I bet a lot of you bemoan footballers (soccer players) for diving, and mouth off about how attrocious and pathetic it is that they should cheat in this way. But then you advocate cheating in various forms in rugby, so long as it works.

Surely hypocrisy?

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No.7 November 12, 2009 1:37 pm

Phil, i dont blame footballers (soccer players) for diving and crying etc to get a penalty, (i hate it, but i can see why they do it) that is why i think if its done in rugby, i can see why they do it, i just think there is more finesse to the way in which it is carried out in rugby....

...and you dont have to act like a homo to do it!

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Sam November 14, 2009 12:06 am

Tried this twice in a game shortly after back did it; first time missed the ball (it's harder than it looks especially if the 9 dosen't stand that close to the scrum and is switched on).

Didn't think i was going to get another chance untill a sub was brought on who held the ball right in front of me and I just scooped it back (explains why he was the sub).

Ref looking the other way linesman should have gone to specksavers. 9 went properly mental.

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Anonymous November 14, 2009 10:11 pm

The main thing that makes a good seven is cheating, and getting away with it, i mean, would you like to be in the same ruck as neil back or richie mccaw?

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