Boos And Booze

I find myself in the curious position of leaping to the defence of an England player ,who has been part of a winning team that recently defeated Wales.

Have I become a proper journalist as  a result of this damascan type conversion ? Well we can but hope.

The Ford family have not had the greatest few weeks, coach and  Dad Mike being dumped by Bath, and son George getting the boos from his own countrymen for his kicking display against Wales last Sunday, I guess neither of them will be buying lottery tickets this week.

Firstly Mike is a great coach, and in my opinion Bath have made a big mistake in dispensing with his services, he will be snapped up very quickly.

As for George, well he won’t be dwelling on the moronic booing.

As a hugely dedicated and talented rugby player, he will be churning up inside , and having sleepless nights reliving  the missed kicks, whilst attempting to discover the probably inexplicable reasons for such a poor display.

Well I would rather my player miss six kicks in a warm up international, than one in a grand slam decider, and  if there is ever a good time to have a shocker with the boot, then this was the match in which to do it.

But this type of behaviour is not exclusive to those who inhabit the lofty towers of Twickenham.

Plenty of  so called Wales fans  booed Neil Jenkins at the start of his career , because he had the temerity not to be born in the same mould as Barry John or Phil Bennett.

The same people were In floods of tears when he played his last game for Wales , against the Barbarians many years later at the Millenium stadium.

In another comparison to last weeks match ,  I once witnessed “Jenks” have an awful day against Ireland in Cardiff, where he missed six kicks at goal, he left the field utterly dejected, and after that game I don’t think he missed another kick for seven years.

Rhys Priestland has also suffered a torrid time from the Welsh boo boys

When you see how much effort these boys are putting in, it might just be worth sparing a thought for how bad they are feeling , without having to cope with the boos and jeers on top of everything else.

Many people I have spoken to, are fed up of having to leap up from their seat every few minutes, as people head back and forth to the bars,during play at international matches.

To many match goers the rugby is now a secondary cabaret,  a mere back drop to a night out on the ale.

At Wales v France in Cardiff, during this years RBS 6 Nations, I was sat behind a lady with an £ 80 ticket, who spent the entire match either fetching Beer ,or constantly looking down at the floor to count the number of empty bottles she had collected

I knew this to be the case because I saw her fingers move individually, as each bottle was noted during the complex mathematical calculation that was taking place.

The trouble is that alcohol sales are a huge income for host unions, so they are not going to give a stuff about suffering spectators, no more than they care about Friday night 6 nations games in Cardiff, and Aviva trains, the most lethal combination of disruptive factors known to mankind.

I would suggest bars close 10 minutes before kick off, and open again at half time ,before closing for  the second half.


As my colleagues and friends head to Australia New Zealand and South Africa, or prepare for Rio, the Sportsdragon will be here,adjusting the central heating thermostat on a daily basis ,whilst bringing you all the rugby news, and updates from Euro 2016 and Wimbledon.

Please join me for my Friday podcasts and the Monday roar


Keep warm till next week !


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