Who holds the record for most appearances for the British & Irish Lions?

Who holds the record for most appearances for the British & Irish Lions? The player who holds the record for the most appearances for the British & Irish Lions, formerly the British Lions, is Irish lock Willie John McBride. All told, Mcbride toured with the Lions five times, to South Africa in 1962, to Australia and New Zealand in 1966, to South Africa again in 1968, to New Zealand again in 1971 and, finally, to South Africa yet again in 1974. His Lions’ career yielded 17 Test caps, four more than his nearest pursuer, legendary scrum-half Richard ‘Dickie’ Jeeps and culminated in the captaincy of the most successful Lions side in history.

Subsequently dubbed ‘The Invincibles’, the Lions squad that toured South Africa in 1974 included such luminaries as Gareth Edwards, Phil Bennett and John Peter Rhys ‘JPR’ Williams. Under the leadership of McBride, the Lions won 21 of 22 matches and drew the other, but only after the referee controversially disallowed a ‘winning’ try by Irish flanker Fergus Slattery in the final minutes of the fourth and final Test at Ellis Park, Johannesburg. Nevertheless, the British Lions had won a Test series in South Africa for the first time.

In the face of deliberate, often violent, foul play on the part of the home players, McBride instigated a policy of simultaneous, collaborative retaliation, summoned by the call of ’99’ or, originally, ‘999’. The idea was that the referee could not single out any one Lions’ player for disciplinary action, so essentially had the option of sending off the whole team or no-one at all.

What is a Garryowen?

What is a Garryowen? Not to be confused with American stand-up comedian Gary Owen, ‘Garryowen’ is a rugby union term used to describe a high, tactical kick, otherwise known as an ‘up-and-under’. Garryowen is Gaelic for ‘Eóin’s Garden’, but its use to describe a rugby manoeuvre derives from the name of Garryowen Football Club, or Garryowen, for short, in Limerick, Ireland. Historically, one of the most successful clubs in Irish rugby union, Garryowen FC won the Munster Senior Cup three years running between 1924 and 1926, executing the tactic on each occasion.

Although there are risks involved, the Garryowen is an attacking tactic. The aim is to kick underneath the ball, so that it travels as high in the air as possible, rotating end over end, without covering any great distance. Correctly executed, the Garryowen allows attacking players enough time to chase down the kick, arrive in numbers and compete for the ball as it descends from the heavens.

Of course, it is entirely possible that a defending player can safely win back possession, but catching a high ball is often touch-and-go, especially in the face of opposing players, in potentially wet and/or windy conditions. Consequently, the risk of losing possession is mitigated by putting the defending team under pressure, which can lead to handling errors, infringements and scoring opportunities for the attacking team.

What’s the record winning margin in an international rugby match?

What’s the record winning margin in an international rugby match? The record for the widest winning margin in an international rugby match is held jointly by Argentina and Japan; interesting the record was set by Argentina on May 1, 2002 and equalled by Japan just over two months later.

In their match, against Paraguay, at the Mendoza Rugby Club in western Argentina, Los Pumas ran up a score of 152 points, including 24 tries, without reply; left wing Facundo Soler, right wing Jose Nunez Piossek and lock Pedro Sporleder all scored four tries apiece. Not to be outdone, in their match, against Chinese Taipai, at the Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium in Tokyo, the Cherry Blossoms scored 155 points, including 23 tries, with just a solitary penalty in reply; left wing Daisuke Ohata, who later became the leading tryscorer in international rugby, scored eight tries.

Coincidentally, Japan were on the receiving end when New Zealand recorded the widest winning margin in the history of the Rugby World Cup, in South Africa in 1995; the All Blacks ran in a record 21 tries en route to a 145-17 victory.

For the record, in club rugby, the widest winning margin was achieved, under peculiar circumstances, in a match between Royal Kituro and Soignies in the top division of the Belgian league in 2015. After the referee was delayed, by over an hour, the most of the Soignies players departed, along with their coach, assuming the match had been cancelled. However, the match did go ahead and, in protest, the remaining Soignies players allowed the opposition to score, unhindered, throughout the match. Royal Kituro eventually scored 356 points, including 56 tries, against a lone drop goal, to win by a margin of 353 points.

What is the wooden spoon?

What is the wooden spoon? The wooden spoon is figurative booby prize awarded, in good-natured ridicule, to the team that finishes bottom of the table in the annual Six Nations rugby tournament. Historically, a real, physical wooden spoon was presented to the student who achieved the lowest mark in the final honours degree examinations, known as tripos, in mathematics at Cambridge University, but still earned a third-class degree. The last such spoon was awarded at Cambridge University in 1909, but 15 years earlier, the ‘South Wales Daily Post’ had already used the term, in the correct sense, in connection with rugby union.

The Six Nations began life as the Home Nations Championship – as the name suggests, featuring just England, Ireland, Scotland, and Wales – in 1883. Since then, Ireland has won the wooden spoon 29 times, followed by Scotland on 21, England on 19 and Wales on 16. The Home Nations Championship became the Five Nations Championship between 1910-1931 and 1947-1999, with the addition of France, and the Six Nations Championship from 2000 onwards, with the addition of Italy. France has won the wooden spoon 12 times, but Italy has already finished bottom of the table in 13 of its 19 appearances.

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