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  • Writer's pictureKip


This ode to rugby was sent to me by Anita Cashmore;

When the battle scars have faded And the truth becomes a lie And the weekend smell of liniment Could almost make you cry. When the last rucks well behind you And the man that ran now walks It doesn’t matter who you are The mirror sometimes talks Have a good hard look old son! The melons not that great The snoz that takes a sharp turn sideways Used to be dead straight You’re an advert for arthritis You’re a thoroughbred gone lame Then you ask yourself the question Why the hell you played the game? Was there logic in the head knocks? In the corks and in the cuts? Did common sense get pushed aside? By manliness and guts? Do you sometimes sit and wonder Why your time would often pass In a tangled mess of bodies With your head up someone’s......? With a thumb hooked up your nostril Scratching gently on your brain And an overgrown Neanderthal Rejoicing in your pain! Mate – you must recall the jersey That was shredded into rags Then the soothing sting of Dettol On a back engraved with tags! It’s almost worth admitting Though with some degree of shame That your wife was right in asking Why the hell you played the game? Why you’d always rock home legless Like a cow on roller skates After drinking at the clubhouse With your low down drunken mates Then you’d wake up – check your wallet Not a solitary coin Drink Berocca by the bucket Throw an ice pack on your groin Copping Sunday morning sermons About boozers being losers While you limped like Quasimodo With a half a thousand bruises! Yes – an urge to hug the porcelain And curse Sambuca’s name Would always pose the question Why the hell you played the game! And yet with every wound re-opened As you grimly reminisce it Comes the most compelling feeling yet God, you bloody miss it! From the first time that you laced a boot And tightened every stud That virus known as rugby Has been living in your blood When you dreamt it when you played it All the rest took second fiddle Now you’re standing on the sideline But your hearts still in the middle And no matter where you travel You can take it as expected There will always be a breed of people Hopelessly infected If there’s a teammate, then you’ll find him Like a gravitating force With a common understanding And a beer or three, of course And as you stand there telling lies Like it was yesterday old friend You’ll know that if you had the chance You’d do it all again You see – that’s the thing with rugby It will always be the same And that, I guarantee Is why the hell you played the game! By Rupert McCall Credit: Sutton & Epsom Bs

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