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6346 Topic: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
hakwa

Status: Senior player
Posts: 2186
1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 10:44:34

 By Brett Susan Roar Rookie

One of my earliest (and as so often is the case, the best) rugby memories is witnessing the visit of the New Zealand Cavaliers to South Africa in 1986.

The significance of the visit and the debate regarding whether the tour should have taken place or not was of no relevance to the nine-year-old that I was but what I can remember is an extraordinary excitement over the appearance of such strange moustachioed foreigners to our shores.

The memories that I have of learning the names of the Kiwi players and working out who the danger men would be are not new.

Generations past can recall visiting rugby teams to the country who have been swooned over by adoring fans and some of the players reciprocated by falling in love with our country as well.

In the lead up to the final ‘Test’ match the country was in raptures with the teams at one a piece and titanic struggle was promised with much needle expected. The response by the Cavaliers was legendary.

Before kick-off, they made their way to the centre of the field and performed the Haka.

The crowd erupted in delight. This was the New Zealanders way of saying, “we are the All Blacks in spirit albeit not in name and we have come to beat you”.

In the lead up to this weekend’s Test match, a similar feeling of excitement was prevalent but the difference in the reactions of supporters to the respective teams is in stark contrast to what it was in years gone by.

Whereas in the past, we were only exposed to what was said in the foreign media through the word of a travelling family member, today’s fan gets his fix immediately.

Social media allows supporters to live vicariously through the success of their nation’s teams and any vitriol can be lobbed at opponents at the click of a key pad.

What has emerged in the last few days since the Saturday Test is hardly new and hardly surprising.

A Facebook page has been dedicated to the removal of the referee from ever blowing his whistle again and the most puerile and infantile comments are shared among fans with glee.

Rugby has always regarded itself as being somewhat superior to its other footballing codes on account of the stoic and gentlemanly principles that it espouses.

What set us apart in the past is the friendly teasing banter that is exchanged at the worst of times but at the best of times, supporters fell over themselves to talk up how superior the other team was to their own.

Instead of the Haka becoming a moment of proud reflection for all rugby supporters as something unique to our sport, the players are zoomed in on and the fireworks erupt in glitzy extravaganza worthy of an American pro-wrestling event.

Opposing supporters on the other hand often boo the All Blacks, and thats before the game even starts.

The booing of place-kickers has become so common place in the game that its actually expected.

The derisive shouting of Bismarck du Plessis from the field on Saturday was conducted with a venom of people who have forgotten that they are not sitting in a Roman colosseum.

In the lead up to the last round of Test matches, I can only long for the days when rugby jerseys were swopped and winning captains were hoisted on the shoulders of their opponents.

I can only long for the days when players were the ambassadors of their countries and did not treat themselves like preening commodities.

Finally, I long for the days when we, the fans, remembered that while we love our rugby with a passion.

The sport’s traditions demand of us a standard with which we communicate with each other…lest our beloved sport becomes like those other codes.


Rooinek

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1379
RE: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 11:09:34

I remember the 1986 Cavaliers Tour very well. It was a great All Black team (if I'm allowed to call them All Blacks) and it was a fantastic series.

 

 

Many of those Cavaliers were told they'd be banned from ever playing for the All Blacks again but a year later when it came time for the 1st RWC, they were quickly reinstated and became key players of the team that won the first RWC. Among these ex-Cavaliers were All Black legends like John Kirwan, Grant Fox, Murray Mexted and Wayne Shelford.

 

 

It's also interesting to note how many of those Cavaliers went on to coach at the top level . . . Robbie Deans, Kieran Crowley, John Kirwan, Wayne Smith, Steve McDowell while yet another Cavalier - Jock Hobbs - became one of New Zealand's top administrators.

 

 

Great team, great tour.


Boklogic

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1666
RE: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 11:17:29

 So many great names doing great things...and you Rooi...well you just remained a nobody...Sad really!


Wardad

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1082
RE: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 11:32:17

 That tour was shameful and unnecessary ,it shows how politicaly naieve us Kiwis were at the time .


hakwa

Status: Senior player
Posts: 2186
RE: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 11:50:39

copy and paste from someone else's thoughts

This is an exerpt from an article by Alan Perrott

“Putting on the black had always given Warwick Taylor a thrill. But not this time.
It was 1986 and the 15-test All Black midfielder was looking forward to the end of the Cavaliers rebel tour of South Africa.
What began as a defiant statement about amateur sporting values, the pursuit of this country’s rugby holy grail and a desire to see the apartheid system up close, was now proving to be a hopeless cause.
Taylor’s team was 2-1 down in the four-test series and convinced Welsh referee Ken Rowlands was going to make damn sure it ended 3-1 to the home side.
“As an All Black,” says Taylor, “going to South Africa and winning would have been perfect. It was what we’d all dreamed about since we were kids. But I gradually realised it had been a false hope and it became harder and harder to pick myself up for each game. We had always been used to feeling the support of the whole country behind us.
“I remember, just before the last test, I had an All Black tracksuit with me and I put it on because [I thought] that’d get me going. But that’s when I realised we weren’t All Blacks, we were there as individuals and we weren’t representing New Zealand, we were representing ourselves.
And the country wasn’t behind us. We were just young guys who wanted our chance to beat South Africa on their own turf. That was a bit naive because it was never going to happen.”


Ceradyne

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1962
RE: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 11:53:23

What is naive is people who were invloved in the protests and who were opposing the tours in those years who think that it has eventually made life better for the biggest part of the South African population.


Wardad

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1082
RE: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 12:10:21

 All it did was to help pretoria give apartheid some semblance of legitimacy using Kiwis love of Rugby .How do you think supporting those tours made life better ? for who ? you ? The only good thing that came of those tours was that some of the Black population got to see Maoris and PIs dealing to the white boks on an equal footing despite their colour ,ever wonder why their are so many ABS fans there ? Not to many Maori bok fans !

Are you seriously saying that the protests and isolation helped keep apartheid going? Do  you think if the rest of the world just gave apartheid tacit approval that the SA government would just have tossed it anyway ?

I was one of those that fought FOR the tour of NZ and I was utterly wrong to do so ,all this is still a divisive point in NZ and still leaves a foul taste in our mouths to be used so.


Rooinek

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1379
RE: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 12:17:27

Wardad, you're getting a bit distracted by the politics. I know that the Cavaliers tour was very divisive in New Zealand and I can sense you're getting a bit emotional about the whole thing, but the initial post mentioned the Cavaliers tour more from a rugby point of view as well as pride in the haka. This is a rugby site so can I suggest we keep these discussions to the rugby tour rather than all the political stuff?

 

From a purely rugby point of view, the Cavaliers were a great team and it was a very exciting series.


hakwa

Status: Senior player
Posts: 2186
RE: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 12:23:24

 Thumbnail 7:15

and check this out

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b86qksOfXn8

 


Ceradyne

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1962
RE: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 12:39:40

@Wardad. That is not what I said. I said that the eventual outcome of those protests, etc was not as rosy as was expected. There was a warning before hand that it could happen. And before you even think of going there, I am not, and have never been a white racist rightwinger. I actually supported everything that happened on and after that day in Feb 1990. Fact is that it is more than 20 years after things actually officially started to change and a large, if not the largest part of the SA population are worse off than what they were in the days of Apartheid. I am also not condoning Apartheid at all. I am saying that many of the people were better off during those years. For most of them the only change is that they now have the right to vote and there is no segregation any more. As far as their living conditions, education, health, etc is concerned many are far worse off than they were.

 

I would suggest that we, and I include myself, rather stick to the topic and leave the politics off this thread. If there is a need for it, a new thread could be started for that. I am not shying away from it, I just do not think it is approporiate to discuss it in this thread.


Wardad

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1082
RE: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 12:40:00

Fair enough rooie ,hard to seperate one from the other in those days ,just responding to a dumbarse post .


hakwa

Status: Senior player
Posts: 2186
RE: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 12:49:21

I actually thought the Boks backline was outstanding looking at the attached clips on U-Tube! 


Rooinek

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1379
RE: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 13:10:59

Yes, that was a pretty good Bok backline back then . . .

 

9. Christo Ferreira / Garth Wright

10. Naas Botha

11. Carel du Plessis

12. Michael du Plessis

13. Danie Gerber

14 Jaco Reinach

15 Johan Heunis


hakwa

Status: Senior player
Posts: 2186
RE: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 13:13:30

I thought Danie Gerber was fantastic! What happened to him? Naas was his usual self of course back then!


Rooinek

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1379
RE: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 13:28:55

Danie Gerber played in a few test matches in our first year back after isolation but by then he was 34 so his best years were sadly wasted. Best centre I ever saw.

 

I seem to remember he coached Eastern Province a while back but his coaching career was not nearly as successful as his playing career.

 

I never liked Naas Botha and I still think even to this day that his obsession with kicking everything did more harm to SA rugby than good . . . because every year there's some new Naas clone trying to win games the same way he did. Naas was a genius though, I'll never deny that . . . but he's still seen as the blueprint for ahow a flyhalf should play . . . and very few of our subsequent kicking flyhlaves had even a fraction of Naas' talent.


hakwa

Status: Senior player
Posts: 2186
RE: 1986 Cavaliers Tour to SA
September 19, 2013, 14:14:10

I am kind of glad he is no longer playing Rooi because he would have been a great competitor against the ABs!


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