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My Favourite Rugby World Cup Moment (in an attempt to get over England’s defeat this year!)

Jonny Wilkinson drop-goal

Today’s blog post is an attempt to get over England’s depressing and humiliating defeat in this year’s Rugby World Cup after two shocking matches against Wales and then Australia last weekend. Many of my friends have the luxury of having two nationalities, or even just the tenuous link of having spent a year in Scotland or Wales, so these lucky so-and-so’s are defaulting to support their back-up team. (Where’s the loyalty to England?!) I however am sadly 100% English through and through, and have no international claims to suddenly start supporting a more successful nation! Despite this lack of a team to support in the tournament from now on, and even though England have inevitably been kicked out of the world cup by now, I would still love to see a match while the tournament is hosted in England!

          Luckily news reached me of a fantastic competition to win a pair of tickets to the Quarter-Finals at Twickenham on Sunday 18th October. I’ve only had the pleasure of watching rugby at Twickenham once, at the Rugby 7s this year (which to be honest, did involve a bit of rubgy, but was mainly all about the fancy dress and drunken revelry in the sun!)

         So I would LOVE to see a real international rugby match at Twickenham! It’s a competition run by Currys and Toshiba, which you too can also enter up until midnight tonight (Friday 9th October)! You’ll need to have a blog and you merely need to write about your favourite Rugby World Cup moment from any year of the tournament, and then tweet your blog post to @Currys PCWorld, including the hashtag #toprugbymoments to confirm your entry. Full details and T&Cs can be found here.

        When I begin to ponder who I would treat to my second ticket if I were to win this competition, my thoughts turned to one man alone: my dear father! I’m a big fan of the England rugby team (and I far prefer rugby to football) but my knowledge of the RWC pales in comparison to that of my father, so for this particular competition I thought I would ask him to do the honours and tell me about his favourite Rugby World Cup moment. Which would yours be? Quite understandably, my father opted for Jonny Wilkinson’s legendary drop-goal in 2003 to win against Australia in the World Cup Final. Yes we may have lost to Australia last weekend, but we can still hold onto our glorious victory over the Aussies back in 2003! Let me know if you agree and wish me luck!

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I well remember England’s excellent World Cup run through to the final in 1991 with Will Carling and Jeremy Guscott as exciting centre backs, but my favourite World Cup moment must be Jonny Wilkinson’s kick in the 2003 World Cup Final to win the match!

England were level with Australia with only moments of the match remaining, urgently needing a score to win. England’s forwards had possession in Australia’s half to the left of the posts and several times took the ball forward, being brought down then passing it back so keeping possession; one feared they had repeated this once too often in their urgency to get nearer Australia’s line, but the ball duly came out again clearly back to Jonny Wilkinson, waiting within his kicking range.

Jonny kicked the drop-goal attempt they had been working towards, and it flew with a wonderful certainty between the posts to put England in the lead 20-17. The final whistle blew, so the kick was not a minute too soon and England had snatched victory from the jaws of defeat!

The cameras then caught a memorable moment of celebration as Jonny Wilkinson leapt into an embrace with Will Greenwood, who of course dwarfed him!

Jonny Wilkinson’s reputation was then such that it was exciting for us to have a “best in the world” English sportsman, a rare occurrence in the big team games.

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