The newly released IRB World Rugby Yearbook clocks in at a hefty 640 pages and, much as you would expect from the title, is stuffed full of facts and opinion on the world of rugby. The eagle-eyed amongst you will have noticed that is pretty much the same as this very blog. But with (way) more facts, and less Scotland. We take a look inside and offer you a chance to win one. Festive cheer indeed!
The IRB World Rugby yearbook (RRP £16.99) offers a complete guide to all the rugby events of the past year – in this case 2010 – and a look forward to 2011 which of course gives us the World Cup. This year there is a particular emphasis on the World Cup and the Yearbook offers an interesting look ahead to the event, with a mixture of articles highlighting just how rugby mad New Zealand is and the preparations under way in the country, as well as the usual list of fixtures and venues. My apologies for using the words mixture and fixture in the same sentence, I hope none of you try to read this out loud.
There is also a foreword from Victor Matfield and articles by other leading/ex players including David Wallace on last year’s Six Nations and Tom Shanklin on the Magners League season. The bulk of the book lies not in opinion though, but in fact. Each major rugby playing country has a chunk of the book devoted to results, players and statistics, past and present. This being the Scottish Rugby Blog, it would be rash of me not to jump straight to the section marked “Scotland” and see what it has to say.
Reading back over the analysis of the past season brings back a few stirring memories – shouting myself hoarse at Croker as Parks sneaked over that penalty being the prime one, and despite finishing second bottom, Scotland punched well above their weight in the team of the tournament too! A delve through the stats is another engrossing way to pass some time. For example, if we were playing “who’s surname appears the most” AD, Gregor and I would be plum out of luck in terms of famous namesakes, whereas Al would romp home comfortably. There are even a couple of pages dedicated to the club game and Currie’s victorious campaign.
Multiply this level of detail for every other country present in the book and you can see how comprehensive a resource this book is for any rugby fan.
For a chance to win a copy (courtesy of Vision Sports Publications), all you have to do is post in the comments section below with your abiding rugby memory of the last year – be it Scottish, local, international, whatever you like. The winner will be drawn at random from among all the competing entries.
Competition closes at midnight on Dec 31st and the winner will be announced when we emerge from the booze-induced haze in the days thereafter…
You can get the IRB Rugby Yearbook from:
Or from Amazon (UK – purchasing through this link helps support the blog):
UPDATE: we are now chucking in a copy of the Dundee HSFP 2011 Calendar as an additional prize, so get typing!