All of the players are forwards, with three being from the front row and one a loose forward. They are Ceri Jones of Harlequins, Michael Reid of North Harbour, Ronnie Uys of the Pumas, and John Muldoon of Connacht. With the exception perhaps of Jones at Harlequins, all of them come from sides that are not renowned powerhouses in their respective leagues.
The countries at hand all have a great love and passion for the game of rugby though, so to be paid to play is the ultimate goal for most aspiring young players. As you will see however, the position brings with it some realities that make the job more than just a stroll in the park.
Salaries, gym, diet, travel, and disappointing crowds are topics that are covered as we get a glimpse into the life of these four players who have made rugby their livelihood. What happens after they’re forced to retire? Time will tell as for some who have been around a while, now is the time to plan ahead for the dreaded life after rugby.
It’s an interesting look at aspects of the job that we perhaps don’t often think about as fans. We often judge players all too quickly based on incidents that happen in the heat of the moment, dehumanising them with little regard for what goes on before or after the match or incident in question. There is the good with the bad though, as with most sports, rugby is a great leveller.
On a sidenote, for those Connacht fans who were anxiously hoping to see a clip of Fionn Carr’s try against Glasgow, it’s included in this piece as they cover a few short match highlights.
If you have twenty minutes to spare, have a watch as it makes for pretty interesting viewing.
Note: With thanks to the IRB's Total Rugby