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Rugby

I know that nearly all of my friends and family will be watching or listening to the rugby and getting very focused during the Six Nations Championship. I know this from the comments on Facebook, chats and texts. But I really know this because it is part of our heritage.

I do not profess to understand the rules of rugby but I know a try when I see one and I understand about the need to convert that try. I can get very excited and find myself shouting at the TV. I have never yet been to an International match, however, and will definitely add this on to my list of things to do.

There is a genuine sense of camaraderie on the rugby pitch, even through the disappointment of loss, although there are some opponents who create a deeper sense of that loss than others. Rivalry abounds, as does confidence and determination.

T played rugby for a while when she was in primary school and we would dutifully turn up for training sessions at Hillfoots in Stirling, and the occasional game. The coach had the right idea when picking members for the team: he chose those who put in the effort, even if they made mistakes. He chose those players who made time for practice and coaching sessions. He did not automatically pick the ‘best’ players, those who just got it but didn’t turn up for practice and didn’t have a genuine team ethos.

J’s mum who is in her early 70s plays touch rugby as a form of exercise with a mixed age group of men and women. She has been doing this for several years and gets a real sense of joy and achievement after training sessions. I think she is inspirational and I have no doubt that those with whom she trains feel exactly the same.

I have to finish now – there are 22 strong thighed, muscle bound men in tight shorts and shirts to watch as Scotland and Wales battle it out. Rugby – great game 😉

Rugby – a poem

Mud and grunting, boot studs on skin,

running, and teamwork to get the kick in.

Passion and fury the ball gets so close

a roar from the crowd, then silent morose.

The lead has been snatched from under our grasp,

Rise to the challenge – too much to ask?

Heart beats are rising, breathing too fast

Celtic connections through centuries passed.

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