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A Study Of An Epic Chapter in Rugby
on 20 February 2013
Owen Sheers has written a tremendously composed and detailed account of the passage of the Welsh Rugby side through the pinnacle of a 2011 Grand Slam with impact on the highs both to the team and the country. Officially recognised as the biographer of events, Owen then takes us on the cliff-hanger series in Australia. Not a disaster but a belly-blow in terms of results. Ups and downs are part and parcel of the game but the optimism of the next game is ever present.
Sheers encapsulates the feelings and thoughts of the individual players and the team, from coach, players, baggage men and supporters. All vitally important. Taking us through the most intricate and habitual approaches to their game in such a detailed yet diverse manner is revealing in the rituals team players take, almost obsessional. There is no pretence to comparing this side with other generations. This is a diary. I cannot praise his prose more than to say it is poetic in its derivation. Gerald Davies, the legendary Welsh Wizard, runs a column in 'The Times' on Welsh games that evoke similar passions. You have to be there in your heart to believe. It is deep in the culture. That is what 'Calon' is all about. A book of emotional impact, thoroughly enjoyable. Recommended to the comeraderie of sport and rugby, with the Welsh flavour where it matters - in the heart.