All Blacks legend recalls Rodney Parade defeat
ALL Blacks legend Sir Colin Meads is looking forward to meeting his old foes from the day Newport stunned New Zealand at Rodney Parade nearly 50 years ago.
On October 30, 1963, the Black & Ambers memorably downed the world’s greatest rugby side 3-0 thanks to John ‘Dick’ Uzzell’s drop goal.
Rugby icon Sir Colin – regarded as one of the game’s finest ever players – returns to the city this Friday night where an Argus-sponsored event is being held in his honour.
The ferocious second row, who won 55 caps for New Zealand between 1957 and 1971, is in Wales on an after-dinner speaking tour.
Last week he was a guest of Nantyglo Rugby Football Club and tomorrow he will visit Abercarn RFC.
Sir Colin, the New Zealand Rugby Union’s player of the last century, is enjoying his trip to Wales where he is catching up with old friends.
On being asked about Newport’s famous triumph in front of 29,000 ecstatic fans, he recalled: “It was a day when it just poured down, there were thunderstorms and lightning.
“We had a new player at first five-eighth playing his first game. If he got 20 balls he dropped 18 of them, and Pat Walsh was hurt early in the piece and we were struggling in the backs and struggling with the conditions.
“And good on Newport, John Uzzell dropped the goal and it was all over.”
Sir Colin added: “It was the best thing that happened to us in a way because we didn’t lose another game after that. We got rid of that unbeaten tag.”
Wilson Whinneray’s All Blacks, containing other great forwards like Kel Tremain, Ken Gray, Brian Lochore and Waka Natha, went on to beat Wales 6-0, England 14-0 and Ireland 6-5 before Scotland denied them a Grand Slam tour after holding them to a 0-0 draw at Murrayfield.
- For more details on the Argus-sponsored event at Newport’s Rodney Parade on Friday night and Abercarn RFC tomorrow, go to www.theeventsroom.co.uk.
You can book tickets by phoning 0845 108 5690.