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Thursday, July 29, 2010

The History of Rugby - Parts 8 & 9

The History of Rugby - Parts 8 & 9

The 1971 British Lions tours of both New Zealand and South Africa are considered two of the greatest Lions successes in their history. Both are featured today as we continue the History of Rugby series. The 1973 classic between the Barbarians and All Blacks is also featured and some of the highlights are absolutely outstanding.

The Lions went to New Zealand in 1971 with a few legends in their midst. It was a hard fought series with the visitors winning the first then conceding the second, a match that produced a couple of fantastic tries. The third Test was won by the Lions before the fourth was drawn, resulting in a historical series win.

In 1973, a great year for rugby, the Five Nations championship was bizarrely tied five ways. We get to see footage of some awesome tries from each side, except France for some reason.

The second part of the series today, Part 9, focuses predominantly on the famous game between the Barbarians and the All Blacks. The game is remembered most for the Gareth Edwards try in the corner, but it also contained other moments of absolute brilliance.

There was a try that unfortunately went begging for John Dawes after a forward pass, but that in itself would have been a classic following some sensational work from England winger David Duckham in the build up. New Zealand wing Grant Batty scored two incredible tries himself, and then there was the outstanding JPR Williams try.

In 1974 the Lions travelled to South Africa for another historical series win that featured as much off field controversy as there was on it. Political tension and physicality on the field pretty much dominated proceedings. We get to see the build up to the first Test.

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