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A rugby union blog

Blogging from the fringes of the game.

As the name suggests, this site is about rugby union.  As most would know, the average rugby union team is distinctly divided into those who play as Forwards and those who play as Backs (or three-quarters).

Drawing of rugby union player running with ball

Based on who’s telling the story, the rugby union Forwards are the large, powerful individuals who do all the dirty work.

They are the ones who fight for primary possession of the ball through rucks and mauls in open play, or in scrums and line-outs in the set pieces.

To them, Backs are the pretty-boy handbag carriers who run around and get all the glory.

Backs, on the other hand, are the more normal-looking, non-glandular-problem human beings. They tend to be faster and sleeker, and claim (with much justification, it must be said) to have superior ball-handling and kicking skills.

The reality is that the old saying is probably true: Forwards determine who wins the match — the Backs decide by how much.

Looking ahead and into the rear-view mirror

The other sense of this title is that it aims to look at the game of rugby union and to constantly look forward: to the next match, the next big tour, the next major tournament and the Next Big Thing.

It will also look forward to how the game can grow even bigger both within countries that already play the game, and among those who are new to it and are developing. How to make the rugby world a bigger one then that reported by the BBC sport rugby union.

But it also intends to look back — at the best of the past, at how the rugby union game used to be, and how the game has changed.

It will reminisce about the best matches, the best tries, the best players, and even the best writing and the best books on the game.

A look from the fringes

The rugby union world is not as big as the people running the sport would like to think it is. But I believe the people who follow it are as fanatical and passionate about it as those who follow higher-profile sports such as football (soccer), tennis, basketball, and the like.

And many of them exist outside the lands traditionally associated with the game. While more than 100 countries play rugby union, only a handful are usually associated with it.

I originally came from a country that is not a powerhouse of the game, but that didn’t stop my enjoying playing or watching the game, of becoming someone others would call a rugby man.

I am also a journalist, someone who used to cover rugby as a sport on a daily basis, but who now observes it from further afar, so to speak.

So while Forward And Back will look at major rugby union news and events that happen, and have happened, it also aims to offer and share the perspective of fans and followers from the smaller nations; from those on the fringes of the game.

I hope you’ll come along on the journey.  A good place to start is with this look at the Rugby World Cup’s greatest problem.

ShyLock No.5

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6 Comments

  1. Glad I found this site. Looks here are a lot of interesting stuff about my favorite game.

    • Glad you found us. Feel free to share your favourite moments and thoughts about rugby union; we might showcase them in an article.
      Yours in rugby,
      ShyLockNo5

  2. This is a real interesting journey I must say especially to people and countries who have either participated at minor levels or are not participating at all in the rugby 🏉  union.  It’s really a big deal.  Well for me I think while the backs have their full functions and they are alive to them,  the forward also have their responsibilities even though one would think the forwards do the dirty jobs,  that’s what they signed up for anyway 😂.  

    It’s good that u are bringing the rugby union to the online space as a journalist for all to see.  You really are doing a great job. 

    Put more effort. 

  3. I’m from the southern part of US and they never had a rugby team in my high school. Which sucked I always hated football for one reason and that was because of the pads they make us wear and when I heard there was a sport thats the same but without it made me want to move wherever that sport was. Unfortunately I never did but I know I would have been a much better Rugby player than football.  

    • One American who was very good at both was Nate Abner – Super Bowl champion and rugby Olympian.  Check out his videos on youTube.

      Reckon you would have loved being a rugby man, mate.  The game allows more freedom and expression.  And the camaraderie is something special.  It is a pity not more Americans know about rugby.

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