My first experiences of rugby came in school, running around, not knowing the rules, our primary school team losing every game, this was surprising to me as the year above used to win all their matches, granted they did have Ryan Jones, who was to become the most capped captain of Wales.
So being Welsh and not to up to date on the rules of rugby there was only one team for me to support at a young age, the Allblacks, not knowing anything i just picked the team with Lomu, beast of a play, who could run through brick walls..
I have said that i am Welsh but, in fact i am only half Welsh, my dad being English. I feel that if he had been more passionate about sport then i may have found myself being an England supporter.
I am not sure when or why, but it wasnt long before i was passionate about Welsh rugby, granted i was growing up in the late 80s and 90s so wins were few and far between and, as a Welsh fan, i have endured wooden spoons and defeats to Italy.
So there we go, Wales are my International team and i will support them no matter what.
My favourite players, growing up, have been:
Neil Jenkins, he could kick penalties from anywhere.
Richie Collins, my next door neighbour and a reason for also supporting Pontypridd.
Ieuan Evans, i remember him diving for tries.
Scott Gibbs, that step.
The Quinell brothers, who could also run through walls.
I have always had trouble finding passion for supporting a National team. Pontypridd were a great team but i dont really feel a connection there. I grew up in the Caerphilly area. The introduction of regional rugby would have had me supporting the Celtic Warriors, a successful team but let down by the money men.
At the moment my two team would be the Dragons, a team that blankets my area, but there is little to cheer about at the moment, i am looking forward to Lee Byrne coming into the team and the reintroduction of Aled Brew, i love hearing the crowd shout BREEEEEW whenever he gets the ball, i bet he has missed that in Biaritz.
Currently i live just outside Montpellier so this is my second team, they are doing well and i enjoy going to games.
Supporting these teams is good but nothing gets my heart going like watching Wales play and i will watch every game, even if that involves getting up at 5 to watch them get beaten by Japan, second string team, mind.
Playing rugby has helped with my love of the sport, i play second row, i have endured slight concussions playing at school, that was due to me playing like a madman, giving away penalties and showing no regard to my personal safety. Recently i have tried to get back into it but my body isnt made like it used to be. I am in my early 30s and have tried out for my local team, Jacou, they are pretty good, but i was mixing it up with people in their early 20s. My diehard attitude and fire seemed to have deserted me and i was left with a sore achilles tendon but i havent given up and am currently working on my come back, hopefully my bad back will be gone soon.
So here is a bit of an introduction and i hope to bring more posts about the state of the game and in particular the Welsh team, hoping to avoid the mess between the regions and the WRU. I am here for the rugby and less so the politics.