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Wales vs England 1999

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Friday, January 09, 2009

Friday Funnies - Jim Telfers 'Speak English'

From the third Test match of the 1997 Lions Tour to South Africa, played on July 5th: a little bit of conflict between spectators.

Having already won the series but looking for a series white wash over the world champion Springboks, the Lions found the final Test a bridge too far. The South Africans restored some pride with a 35-16 victory.

This little incident however, gives us a look at the other side of the picture, as it shows how the coaches respond to a piece of questionable play from Springbok forward Andre Venter.

Despite Ian McGeechan's attempts to keep forwards coach Jim Telfer quiet, the hard-as-nails Scotsman banters with a South African fan who points out Venter only stamped the Lion because he was being held onto illegally.

Another fan, in front of Telfer adds her two cents in Afrikaans. Telfer can't resist getting in the last words, "Speak English", before everyone moves on and refocuses their attention on the game.

Time: 01:05



  • Absolute classic, remember watching that the first time round and having a good chuckle.

    And I say, Damn right for speaking up.
    But one question, why did they sit in the stands?

    Oh and the guy next to the women with the glasses, starts cracking up.

    By Anonymous Fridge, at January 09, 2009 12:31 pm  

  • lmao, trust a south african to start arguing with the forwards coach of the British Lions

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at January 09, 2009 12:34 pm  

  • Lmao great clip. Wouldn't want to be messing around with Telfer though lol..
    "speak english!" Lol

    By Anonymous Yousef, at January 09, 2009 12:49 pm  

  • The funniest bit is McGeechan trying to calm him down - "Don't talk to them, don't talk to them , it's not worth it" - and then when Telfer says "Speak English" you can see McGeechan elbowing him in the ribs.

    By Anonymous will66, at January 09, 2009 1:51 pm  

  • Brilliant !!

    By Anonymous Brennie, at January 09, 2009 2:23 pm  

  • hahahahahahahaha,
    that made my day... quite brilliant!

    how comes, they sit in the crowd and how comes, this was on tv? :D

    By Anonymous opfazonk, at January 09, 2009 3:19 pm  

  • Ha ha ha Good clip!, need to see more of these sort of clips as their quite funny and you dont usually get to see them.

    Telfer seems focused to say the least

    By Anonymous Bealy, at January 09, 2009 3:23 pm  

  • i just love mcgeechan reaction
    "come on jimmy"

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at January 09, 2009 4:57 pm  

  • Hahaha!
    love the friday funnies!
    great start to the weekend
    cheers rugbydump!

    By Anonymous Jizzle, at January 09, 2009 5:15 pm  

  • haha thanks RD. It was good to see the woman having a giggle at the end too.

    By Anonymous anonymous no6, at January 09, 2009 5:40 pm  

  • HAHAHAHAH that was hilarious!! well the McGeechan saying "shh" bit was!

    Very good RD!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at January 09, 2009 6:04 pm  


    By Anonymous british lions fan, at January 09, 2009 6:09 pm  


    By Anonymous roddymac, at January 09, 2009 6:24 pm  

  • I could be wrong here, but I always thought the great JT actually says "Ah speak English" as in "I speak English". I'd assumed the woman asks him what language he speaks as she can't quite follow his glorious borders brogue. Still priceless though. And, it wasn't on telly this is from the peerless Living with Lions 1997 DVD. Telfer has sadly retired to his garden and the rugby world's a duller place for that, but we can assume he'll be front and centre in front of the telly come the summer. Probably phoning Geech and telling where he's going wrong. Bring 'em on!!

    By Blogger CM, at January 09, 2009 8:25 pm  

  • ^ CM. "Ah speak English" translates to "Ah, speak English". As in 'ah'... Certainly no 'i'.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at January 09, 2009 8:55 pm  

  • Rarely do I laugh at loud whilst I am on my own but this does it for me.
    Geechs getting PC

    By Anonymous Matthew, at January 09, 2009 9:03 pm  

  • Hilarious lol. U never get to see that stuff anymore

    By Anonymous Blacktruck, at January 09, 2009 11:09 pm  

  • bloody good laugh, thanks RD!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at January 10, 2009 2:17 am  

  • hilarious

    By Anonymous win, at January 10, 2009 11:08 am  

  • Lovely stuff RD .. you've hit your stride early in the new year. But like Fridge I wonder what the coaches are doing in the stand amongst the punters. 1997 ain't that long ago but I can't remember it being normal practice, maybe it was.

    By Anonymous robert, at January 10, 2009 12:24 pm  

  • Magnificent! What a scottish class from Telfer! He's, as we say in french, ''un personnage''! Great to see that. Thanks, RD!

    By Anonymous Vinch, at January 10, 2009 12:31 pm  

  • Magnificent! What a scottish class from Telfer! He's, as we say in french, ''un personnage''! Great to see that. Thanks, RD!

    By Anonymous Vinch, at January 10, 2009 12:31 pm  

  • ^ CM. "Ah speak English" translates to "Ah, speak English". As in 'ah'... Certainly no 'i'.

    I should have explained. When you're from the same part of the world as JT and my humble self the spoken 'I' invariable becomes a stretched 'ah'. As in 'ah dinnae think so.' :-)

    By Blogger CM, at January 10, 2009 2:35 pm  

  • Okay. But in the context it's quite clear he didn't mean 'I'.

    And i'm not a total idiot. I'm quite far up North of England. Have been to Scotland on numerous occasions and lived in a town with a decent sized Scottish community.

    He's saying "ah, speak english"

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at January 10, 2009 3:35 pm  

  • I don't recall implying idiocy on anyone's part. One of the many great things about this site is the distinct lack of it in the chat. But I humbly apologise and I stand corrected in mis-hearing JT's words.

    By Blogger CM, at January 10, 2009 5:23 pm  

  • Telfer is a legend, my boss went to his school Portobello where he was head of Chemistry and rugby coach, and said he was an unforgiving hard case but a great coach.

    Think he carried Scotland for a long time, sorry he retired.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at January 11, 2009 12:29 pm  

  • brilliant comment. though my favourite bit from this is abit further on from when the clip finishes as the game is coming to a close and its clear the boks are going to win and geechs and telfers are saying the lions werent quite good enough and then geechs says 'boks played well' and telfer replies 'aye, outstanding actually'

    nice bit of humility after all out support for the lions during the game

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at January 11, 2009 1:49 pm  

  • Jim Telfer what a character, what a guy!
    it would of been awesome if he was involved in the up and coming lions tour of South Africa!!

    best bit is when geechs is trying to shut him up..

    By Anonymous Abs7, at January 11, 2009 5:07 pm  

  • Telfer's speech to the forwards in that Living with the Lions video is a classic. You can find it on youtube....Unfortunately there is no chance that the Lions will win another test series in the professional era. It is not possible to chuck players together and expect them to beat Aus, Nz and SA in their own backyard. I think the Lions will go down 3-0 in SA. It's a shame. The game will be the poorer for it.

    Incidentally, the 97 Lions team hardly played any rugby in this series and should have lost 2-1. They were outscored 3 tries to 0 in the second test. SA only lost because they could not kick a single goal or conversion! I say this as a Brit...I have no idea how we won that series.

    The 2001 Lions was a far better team and probably should have won that series.

    By Blogger Jonathan, at January 11, 2009 6:52 pm  

  • I would have to agree. As class as the 2009 Lions or any Lions team for that matter is it's not possible to put a team together in such a short time and expect them to be able to compete up to their proper standrads against teams like SA that have many players that have been playing together for years.

    By Blogger Tanya, at January 11, 2009 7:33 pm  


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at January 11, 2009 9:24 pm  

  • What about when the Barbarians beat South Africa right after they won the world cup?

    By Anonymous Duffman, at January 12, 2009 4:00 pm  

  • hahaha wat a cheeky old bastard :p
    probs a bit rude but a definate classic
    why where they in the stands tho?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at January 13, 2009 8:32 am  

  • Ok my predictions! bare with me!
    Im a limerick man and a diehard munster supporter. While obviously Paulie was the man to captin the team, he IS the best second row in europe, handsdown. what makes him this? his determination to be the best he can be. anyone who knows about forward play in the game must surely admire him.
    The key to beating the springboks is in the front 5. they have the best secondrow partnership in the world and surely paulie must be on top of his game along with jones(i reckon) to get the better of them. to do this, they need a) a good lineout thrower, and b) good lifters. this is where the lions are lacking. the injury to fla is a disaster, no point beating around the bush he was going to start at hooker. his lineouts were like BULLETS. the pace, the precision gave o connel and donnacha for munster and indeed ireland that extra protection. if you look at props, murray and jenkins are the two form props and are odds on to start, while i agree with this, i cannot believe that john hayes hasn been picked to tour. like all props the mature with old age. im not sayin hayes is a good scrummager-far from it- but they are playin a south africa team that reportedly want to recall both van der lind and botha from leinster and ulster. this means their scrum is worrying for them. i do not think hayes would have hindered the scrum. the reason i suggest hayes and he is widely regarded as the BEST one man lifter in europe. at 6"4 and 20 odd stone, being able to FLING o connell into the air would make it easier to disrupt lineout ball.
    now onto the backs, the injury to tomas was a disaster, no more for o gara. the feeling around some parts of limerick for last 7/8 months or so, is that o gara hasnt been putting in the same type of performances he has done and i cannot see him being partnered by philips. also is tackling is more than suspect and surely will be targeted.
    I am sure people do not agree with the above but its my opinion, but this is where it gets more creative. Hands up who knows keith Earls? people in munster and ireland surely do. but who else? this BOY has been ripping up the heineken cup and magners league all season. now people point out the leinster game in the semi which was terribly disappointing for a munster supporter. what back do you know at 20 years of age can perform well when he doesnt have the ball? he touched the ball less than 5 times such was the measure of performance of the leinster players and he made a few good breaks. you can be rest assured the people of south africa dont know the man from young munster. I would put him up against habana, it wont faze him one bit and i think he could do more damage than bowe or halfpenney.
    As you know the second and third tests are being played at altitude and the legend that is rocky elsom says that the altitude does NOT affect your rugby. he says people who are not used to it, will come down with flu like syndroms. it does affext your fitness an hour into the game. this is something the lions should be wary of.
    here is my team:
    1.Euan murray
    2.lee mears
    3.gethin jenkins
    4.alun-wyn jones
    5.paul o Connell
    6.Tom Croft
    7.David Wallace
    8.Jamie Heaslip
    9.Mike Philips
    10.Stephen Jones
    11.Shane Williams
    12.Jamie Roberts
    13.Brian o Driscoll
    14.Keith Earls
    15.Lee Byrne

    What do you think, i know the majority are irish and welsh but what can i say scotland and england havent done anything in years?

    By Blogger Paul Gormley, at May 28, 2009 2:49 pm  

  • Haha... Geech and Telfer, what a double act!

    By Anonymous Stewart, at June 08, 2009 2:53 pm  

  • Paul Gormley,
    Change Williams for Monye
    Change Earls for Bowe
    and yours is the same as mine but if habana makes a break, monye could cover and make a try saving tackle and could certainly keep up with him.

    By Blogger Back Line Boy!, at June 11, 2009 5:54 pm  

  • Jim telfers still coachin!! He coaches an unner 18's side in Melrose in the scottish boarders!!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at June 16, 2009 2:31 pm  

  • For the comment about i ment under 18's!!!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at June 16, 2009 2:32 pm  

  • Keith Earls is garbage, every appearence for the lions he's been abismal. I admit he has played very well for club but the pressure is getting to him. Change Earls for Monye and croft to M. Williams in my eyes.

    By Anonymous AllBlackJack, at June 19, 2009 8:18 pm  

  • this clip is so hypocritical of Jim Telfers. In his big, well-publicised and all 'hardman' 'classic' speech to the forwards before one of the tests, he made a point of saying how brits complain abroad about things not being english and good enough, and that whilst they were in south africa they wouldn't complain and have to accept certain things.

    So how can he go to another country, be a guest there, and tell them not to speak their own language, dismissing them?

    The clip was funny because of geechs, not jim. Every1 just sees that forwards speech and thinks 'tough guy' but don't need to be rude

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at June 23, 2009 5:00 pm  

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