Friday, March 02, 2007

Rose's article (English)

The Big Interview: Richie McCaw

November 05, 2006


The New Zealand captain has driven his team to new heights with his energy on the field, but is remarkably relaxed off it It is October 1943, and Flight Commander James “Mack” McCaw and Flight Lieutenant William “Dusty” Miller of 486 (New Zealand) Squadron are engaged in a ground attack mission over France when their Hawker Typhoons are hit by anti-aircraft fire near Paris.

Smoke stretching for more than 100 yards billows from the stricken aircraft, but as the pilots climb and prepare to bail out, the flames suddenly extinguish and they manage to nurse the damaged fighters back to their base in West Sussex.

Later that evening when they sit down to compile a report, their near-death experience is described in a mere six words: “Hit by flak, landed at Tangmere.” The 486 motto (written in Maori) is Hiwa Hau Maka, or Beware of the Wild Winds. The adventure is dismissed as just another day at the office.

RICHIE McCAW is studying a portrait of his face taken moments after the 21-20 defeat to South Africa at Rustenburg in September. It was his 10th Test as All Blacks captain and the first in which he had tasted defeat. The losing stare on his sweat-stained face is accentuated by a gash under his left eye that looks as if it has been carved with a Stanley knife.

“There must be an easier way to make a living,” I suggest.

“Well, you would think so, wouldn’t you?” he says, laughing. “But it’s fun.”

“You’ll have to explain that to me.”

“Well, pictures like that wouldn’t suggest it, but it really is fun.”

“It looks bloody sore,” I observe.

“No,” he says with a shrug, “you don’t notice it in the game when the adrenaline is pumping.”

"How did it happen?”

“I just got clipped in a ruck by a stray arm or elbow,” he explains. “They usually take you off and stitch it, but they’re using this new staple gun now, so you’re not off the field for too long. Bang, bang, bang and you’re back out there. Then they whip the staples out at the end of the game and stitch it up.”

“How many stitches?” “Six or seven, but the doc did a good job. The scar is not too bad.”
I show him a photo from a different game of blood pumping from another eye.

“Yeah,” he says, smiling, “I’ve probably split each eyebrow 30 times, and I’ve split both cheekbones at least half-a-dozen times . . . so it’s not unusual, but some days you wake up on a Sunday morning and ask yourself why you do it.”

“And how do you answer?”

“Well,” he replies, “I suppose it’s just one of the hazards of my position. Obviously as an openside flanker you’re into contact a fair bit and if I don’t get among that, somebody else will. That’s the attitude you need to play in that position. Sometimes, when you haven’t played for a while, it can hurt — and I know it’s going to hurt in this first game against England — but the body becomes accustomed to it and you learn to deal with it . . . Don’t ask what I’m going to be like when I’m 30- or 40-odd, but we’ll worry about that then.”

HIGH above the clouds over Kent in July 1944, as he chased another V1 flying bomb bound for London, Jim McCaw wouldn’t have dared to dream of what his life would be when he was 30- or 40-odd — he had seen too many friends perish in the war.

Commitment to the cause was imperative when intercepting the missiles; they were launched at a speed of 350mph and once they had slipped the anti-aircraft guns on the coast, a pilot had two or three minutes to destroy them before they reached London. The level of skill required was extraordinary. So were the risks.

Twenty-nine New Zealanders are credited with destroying five or more of the many V1s launched against Britain. McCaw, whose personal tally was a remarkable 20, was the first squadron pilot to intercept four bombs during a single patrol. It happened one evening, early that July, while he was flying a Hawker Tempest on a sortie near Biggin Hill; when he landed it was almost midnight. He was 25 years old.

A COLD, grey Monday afternoon in Christchurch. It is a week before the All Blacks depart for England. Richie McCaw arrives for the interview wearing a blue adidas track-top, casual denim shorts and a smile that is instantly engaging. Six months have passed since he was appointed the All Blacks’ 60th Test captain, and although widely acclaimed as the world’s best openside flanker, he remains unaffected. “I’m just a typical New Zealand farm boy, really,” he says.

Has he seen the huge billboard on Durham Street of his teammate, the fly-half Daniel Carter, I ask.

“Not yet, but I’ve heard about it.”

“You haven’t seen it?” “No,” he replies. “Do I need to have a look? Apparently there has been some bad driving around there with people gawking at it.”

“You haven’t yet been approached to pose in your underwear?”

“Personally it is not something I’d do.”

“Really? What if I offered you four hundred grand? You strike me as a practical man.”

“Yeah, and it would be tough to refuse, but it’s just not something I’d do, to be honest . . . but everyone is different. Dan takes it pretty well, but then very little phases him.”

“You’re uncomfortable in the spotlight?”

"I can be at times,” McCaw says. “I grew up on a farm down south and coming from my background, I never imagined it would be like that, but what can you do about it? New Zealand is a pretty small place and rugby is put up on a pedestal here and it would be nice sometimes to go to the shops or for a beer without anyone coming up to you. But every time I think that, I ask myself, ‘Well, would I rather be doing anything else?’ And the answer is always ‘no’.”

“You’re not married?” I inquire.

“Or attached,” he smiles.

“Where’s home?” “I have my own house here in Shirley (a suburb of Christchurch).”

“I read somewhere that you don’t live alone.”

"Yeah, I’ve always had flatmates. I have one at the moment, and it has always been people I haven’t played rugby with. It’s nice to come home and talk about something else other than rugby. And it’s good to have someone to look after the house when I go away.”

“How do you feel about this tour to Europe? It’s an important trip for the team.”

“Yeah, it is. I am excited about it because I haven’t played for a while and the four Tests we’re going to play are a big challenge. I have always enjoyed the tours to the UK and Europe, and with the World Cup finishing this time next year, it’s a bit of a test run and a chance to look at things we need to work on.

“I still love pulling on my boots and going out to play on Saturday. When you get the chance to travel the world and to play for the All Blacks, you’ve got to make the most of it.”

AFTER the war, many of those who returned to New Zealand preferred to put history behind them and rarely spoke of the horrors they had witnessed. Jim McCaw was not one of them. He married, raised three fine boys on the family farm in Kurow and opened a gliding school where he imparted his love of flying to his sons and regaled them with stories from his former life.

The McCaws had farmed in the Hakataramea valley since 1893, when Jim’s grandfather, Alexander, had uprooted his family from their home in the Scottish Borders and made the long journey south in search of a better life. Otago wasn’t paradise. Summers on the farm were hot and droughty; winters were harsh and bitterly cold.

When Donald McCaw, the second of Jim’s sons, met Margaret, a woman of similar descent from mid-Canterbury, he applied himself to the demands of married life as his father had done before: working the land but dreaming of greener pastures. On New Year’s Eve 1980, Margaret gave birth to a son. They called him Richie.

“WHEN you grow up on a farm, you learn to do a lot of things pretty young,” McCaw explains, as we begin tracing his life. He was driving trucks around the farm with his father when he was five; he was flying gliders around Otago with his grandfather when he was nine; but it was not until he left home for a boarding school in Dunedin that he discovered the passion that would dominate his life. “I played a bit of cricket and loved it,” he recalls, “but the only sport anyone was interested in was rugby and I wanted to play from my first day in school.” It was during his last year at Otago Boys’ High School that McCaw first made his name as a player, after a brilliant display in a drawn secondary school rugby final with Rotorua. A year later, he left home to study agriculture at Lincoln University in Christchurch and won a place on the New Zealand Under-19 squad for the world championship in Wales.

“Mark Shaw, the former All Black, was the coach,” he says, “and I remember him handing out the jerseys one day and saying, ‘Well, now that you’ve tasted what it’s like to wear a black jersey, there is no reason why anyone here can’t one day be an All Black’. It was the first time it actually hit me that the dream we all have as kids wasn’t so far away, and that if I put the work in, it was something I might achieve.”

Two years later, after some fine performances for Canterbury in the National Provincial Championship of 2001, McCaw was named in his first All Blacks squad for the end-of-season tour to Europe and made his debut against Ireland in Dublin. Four moments endure:

(1) The moment he learnt of his selection.

“No matter how many games you play, it’s never the same as that first time you hear your name being read out. I was listening to the radio with my parents at a friend’s house in Christchurch and I just sat there thinking, ‘Phew’. Someone popped a bottle of champagne. I remember saying, ‘What would you have done if I hadn’t made it?’”

(2) The moment he was handed his first All Blacks jersey.
“The tradition back then was to go and pick it up from the manager’s room a few hours before the game. I remember taking it back to my room, staring at the embroidery and trying it on. It felt surreal.”

(3) The moment he felt his bowel beginning to shift during the warm-up.
“I couldn’t eat before the game; I was excited about playing, but shitting myself that I would make a fool of myself. A few of the guys on the team played for Canterbury and they told me to just do what I do and not to worry about the other stuff. And once the game started it was all remarkably clear.”

(4) The moment he was presented with his official Test tie.
“I remember after the game we were presented with our Test tie and cap and someone made a speech about joining the ‘All Black club’. That’s when I really felt like an All Black. Up until that stage I had been with the team and had been named on the team, but until you get that game under your belt, you’re still not an All Black.

“And then, about a week later, someone said, ‘It’s all very well being an All Black, but lots of people become All Blacks — the goal for you now is to become a great All Black’. And that stuck with me. I thought, ‘Being here is not enough; you’ve got to do something while you’re here’.”

McCaw made steady progress in the season that followed, winning five of the six Test matches he played, but a year later, at the 2003 World Cup in Australia, he got a taste of what his grandfather had experienced over Paris, when he glanced over his shoulder and saw his world going up in flames.

The build-up had started in June with a narrow defeat to England in Wellington. “They played quite well, but there wasn’t much in it, so it was quite a good eye- opener for us leading into the World Cup. We thought, ‘That’s where we’ve got to get to’. But we also had the feeling that England may not be too much better than that and we would improve.”

The All Blacks did improve. Two weeks later they beat France in Christchurch and then laid down a marker with resounding wins over South Africa and Australia. “I remember not really focusing on the World Cup until the Tri-Nations was over and the World Cup squad was announced. We had just thumped the Aussies and the Africans and I remember thinking, ‘Jeez, we could win this’.

“We had six weeks of camp leading into it and all of a sudden we are there and the work is done and everything is sorted until that last game (the semi-final against Australia) when everything is a blur and we’ve lost and it’s the end of our World Cup. That game really hurt. It still really hurts. If we had played our best and got beaten by a better team, it would have been easier to accept, but we went out and didn’t perform. They won because they wanted it more than us.”

“How tough was the dressing room afterwards?” I ask.

“It’s not a good memory, to be honest,” he says. “Obviously you’ve got to deal with the media, and that was quite tough, but the hardest thing was the feeling that you had let your mates down and let the people down because you hadn’t performed. I remember thinking, ‘I hope I get another go at this’.

“There are probably about 14 or 15 players still in the All Blacks who played that semi-final in 2003, but looking back, a lot of us were pretty inexperienced and didn’t really understand what it takes to win a tournament like that. England knew how to win tough games and that’s what got them through in the end. Hopefully we will learn from the experience.”

McCaw was acclaimed as New Zealand’s best player in 2003 and looked set to continue his march on the pantheon in June the next year, when the new world champions travelled to Dunedin for the opening Test of the season. However, he was escorted off the field with concussion after a nasty clash of heads. He sat out the second Test in Auckland and returned for 70 minutes a week later against Argentina, but was still battling dizziness and was substituted again.

Withdrawn from the rest of the All Blacks home campaign, he didn’t play for three months. Rumours began to circulate that he might have a problem. “Up until then I had never missed a game in my whole career,” he explains. “I thought, ‘You’ve got concussion, but it will come right’, and I’d start each week thinking, ‘I’m definitely going to play’, and I’d go training and feel knackered and get headaches .. . although headaches is probably not the right word, it was more a sense that something wasn’t right.”

In November 2004 he returned for the All Blacks end-of-season tour to Europe, captaining the team for the first time against Wales, but he was knocked out again the following April during a Super 12 game in South Africa. “There was a lot of talk about another head injury and, ‘Should you be playing?’ and it started to get me down for a bit. I thought, ‘When is it going to be right?’ I went to visit a young kid who had broken his neck playing rugby at a spinal unit in Christchurch and thought, ‘Why am I playing this game?’

“Then I went down through the ward and there was this middle-aged guy with kids who was totally paralysed from the neck down. I asked what happened and he said, ‘Oh, I took my family to Fiji on holiday and got dumped in a wave’, and that put a new perspective on things. I came away thinking, ‘Well, it could happen anywhere. Life is too short to worry about what might happen; you’ve got to do what you enjoy’.”

A month later, in May 2005, McCaw returned to training with his club, Crusaders. He was soon slamming into tackle bags and pummelling his teammates with abandon. The coach, Robbie Deans, has rarely been more impressed. “It was bloody scary,” he said. “The volume of work he was doing was staggering. He was all over the park, knocking his teammates around.” And in June, when the Lions arrived for their much-trumpeted visit, McCaw was back to his best.

“It was the only thing anyone was thinking about through the whole early part of that year. Graham Henry had been on a Lions tour as a coach and we knew it was really important to him. You couldn’t have asked for better as a Kiwi than to win three-zip. It’s probably some of the best rugby we’ve played as an All Black team.”

McCaw was one of five players nominated for the 2005 International Rugby Board player of the year award. His performances as captain of the All Blacks have been inspirational in his eight games at the helm this year. A national rugby magazine recently published his stats after the Tri-Nations championship (Appearances: 6; Minutes played: 469; Tries: 2; Tackles: 89; Turnovers forced: 19; Lineouts won: 12; Kick-off receptions: 13; Breakdown clear-outs: 74) and acclaimed him as the team’s most valuable player. He dismisses the plaudits with a shrug.

"You dream of being an All Black; you dream of playing a lot of Tests, but you never, ever dream of being a captain of the All Blacks. It’s a huge honour and so far it has gone okay. You’ve got to go out and deliver on the field before pointing the finger at others or asking them to do other things. The guy that stands at the back gassing but who doesn’t deliver — people turn off those guys pretty quick.”

He is 25, the same age his grandfather was when he returned to New Zealand after the war, and though Richie’s battles have not quite finished yet, there is no escaping the sense that they have been cut from the same cloth. Jim died peacefully at the age of 77 in 1996.

“We had a pretty good relationship,” his grandson says, smiling. “I learnt to fly in the same place as he learnt to fly and he used to tell me stories about the war all the time. It would have been awesome if he had lived to see me playing for the All Blacks. I think he would have enjoyed that.”

Picture from February 15th, 2007
VF à


Anonymous said...

“It just didn’t come around the way I wanted it to,
” he said. This treatment works by expanding the disc space
by gently stretching the spine. A muscle spasm is
really a bodily mechanism which indicates an attempt to protect the spine from any further injury.
Feel free to visit my web page ; hernie de disc

Anonymous said...

Most often lumbar region from the back gets affected due
to the over burden and pressure that one puts about the lower region of the spine.
Also, the symptom could be the inability to raise the big toe on upward
direction. Building strong muscles around your bones can
help to support them and decrease your odds of injury.
My webpage :: spondiloza

Anonymous said...

The unconscious mind is already the most effective doctor you can actually find.
Dream therapy is the best depression treatment you'll find because you discover ways to eliminate your anti-conscience through consciousness. Hannah could have simply walked off of the set and experimented with compose herself, instead she met task head on.
My homepage ; acupunctura

Anonymous said...

Candidiasis may be the more common sort of yeast infection mainly
because it results from the natural candida organisms
that thrive within us. died a short while ago, but back 1991 he a five or six storied building that's devoted to what he termed Complementary Medicine. But, deciding the most effective treatment plans on their own isn't counseled in pregnant women and in
ladies who experience recurrent instances of
vaginal candida albicans.
Feel free to visit my weblog : tratament eficient candida

Anonymous said...

Without expecting other symptoms to appear, raised blood pressure
level calls for dieting check and lifestyle change.
Finley researched wide-eyed and stated, "Well, in the event the trial started I thought I was innocent, but that has been before I heard all the evidence against me. s look at the head and neck of your body, You use a muscles on either side of your spine that connects for your pelvis and runs approximately the base of your respective skull.
Here is my homepage dureri de cap

Anonymous said...

All credit inflations end in nasty deep credit deflationary depression, from the way.

At enough time I was checking out the worst a part of
depression, my behavior was unpredictable my girlfriends never knew things to
expect. You can be accepted here, in this life, with this planet.
Take a look at my web blog : anxietate

Anonymous said...

This herb is located to be most reliable pain killer, and anti-inflammatory herb especially in the cases of arthritis and
sciatica. Arthroplasty or combined replacement surgery may be
required in eroding forms of osteoarthritis.
One teaspoonful of triphala needs to be given to the
individual, combined with a cup of warm milk and something spoon of sugar.
My site spondiloza

Anonymous said...

Open up a dialogue so they really each walk into each other.
If you believe you are suffering from Shingles, see your doctor.
of our systems we seem to forget that it needs to have
an effective foundation as well.
Look into my web site : tratament naturist dureri de spate

Anonymous said...

The most widely used and initial method is the questioning and observing the patient.

These derailments usually occur due to trauma,
parental neglect or abuse. In an expression, these are all,
'behavioral', but that term, usually refers to a particular form of
treatment, loosely linked to learning theory, that is a subtype in the psychological approaches.
my website :: psihoterapie

Anonymous said...

“It just didn’t come to see things the way I wanted it to,” he said.
As somebody starts to age group, the elasticity and amount of water present inside nucleus
decreases, leading to herniated disc. Even though someone has experienced pain for a long time, he or she may find relief
from such pain right after visits to the doctor of chiropractic.
Feel free to surf my web site ; hernie de disc

Anonymous said...

Should herniation occurs inside upper body, it automatically sends pain towards the neck, shoulders
and arms. Their is an investment of your energy and effort required.

Because chiropractic can be a non-drug sort of care, the practitioner will not likely prescribe analgesics
to handle the experienced pain.
Feel free to visit my page - hernie de disc cervicala

Anonymous said...

Someday, on some reality show someone will meet with something horrible
fate and I only hope I’m around to write down about it. Another
strategy which is used while in care is an evidence-based trial-and-error technique.
Alternative therapies including rebirthing, primal scream, stress debriefing, recovered memories,
and others too numerous to detail here be doing actual trouble for patients.
My blog ... psihoterapie

Anonymous said...

The body is just a manifestation of consciousness around the physical level.
If you imagine you are being affected by Shingles, call at your doctor.

These therapies involve the application of pressure, that could be moving, stationary, unstructured or structured.
Also visit my web site ... dureri de spate

Anonymous said...

A compression fracture could potentially cause permanent
changes towards the shape and structure with the spine.
A Dallas cold laser chiropractor offers the latest techniques and equipment for pain relief.
The patient represses socially unacceptable emotions, for example anxiety, anger, and resentment in an attempt
to protect them from dealing with the emotional pain they would otherwise
My webpage - hernie de disc

Anonymous said...

Certain cases may require surgery like lumbar fusion
or microdiscectomy, that is a surgery with minimal invasion.
Some individuals have degenerative disc disease and also have no
symptoms, and some have severe pain. Looking at the spine since
it functions and holds weight comes into play more than the disc.
Also visit my page ... hernie de disc

Anonymous said...

Tannate plant extract is a powerful anti fungal agent by destroying candida selectively without harming the good flora in the body.

After a couple of days I had still continued to get worse so I went back after waking up that morning and was choking
and having trouble breathing because my throat was so swollen it was closing
up. On December 20, my regular menstrual cycle
started, but the bleeding would not let up, week after week.
Review my website : tratament pentru candida genitala

Anonymous said...

Below will be the roles that this discipline of psychotherapy takes:.
You just translate dream images into words that will make sense for a conscience.
While also this may appear incredibly obvious, when we contrast it using the enlightenment of Hegel,
we percieve something very different.
Here is my weblog - psihoterapie individuala

Anonymous said...

Everything is very open with a very clear clarification of
the issues. It was really informative. Your site is extremely helpful.
Thanks for sharing!

Look at my blog post:

Anonymous said...

I have read so many posts on the topic of the blogger lovers but this piece of writing is genuinely a fastidious article,
keep it up.

Visit my site host-monster Ratings

Anonymous said...

Hi to every one, it's really a nice for me to pay a quick visit this web page, it contains important Information.

Feel free to visit my webpage :: Evaluations

Anonymous said...

It's very simple to find out any matter on web as compared to textbooks, as I found this article at this web page.

Feel free to surf to my web page:

Anonymous said...

Good article. I'm facing many of these issues as well..

Look into my homepage - candidoza

Anonymous said...

Good dаy! Do уоu know if they maκe any plugins to help with Ѕearсh Engine
Optimization? I'm trying to get my blog to rank for some targeted keywords but I'm not seeing veгy gоοd gains.
If yοu knoω of anу pleasе ѕhагe.

Checκ out my wеbpаgе :: Group Share

Anonymous said...

What's Taking place i am new to this, I stumbled upon this I've
found It absolutely useful and it has helped me out loads.
I'm hoping to give a contribution & assist different users like its aided me. Great job.

Look at my blog web hosting pad review

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the good writeup. It in fact was a amusement account it.
Look advanced to far added agreeable from you! By the way, how
can we communicate?

My website vexxhost ratings

Anonymous said...

Known culprits are repetitive motions, poor posture, physical trauma,
and abnormal curvature of the neck [scoliosis for example].
The syndrome occurs in one or two weeks before menstruation after which declining if the period starts.
Suffering from muscle-tension headache is really a serious matter.

Feel free to visit my web blog dureri de cap

Anonymous said...

With technology like HTML5 and CSS3 these web applications can flawlessly integrate while using
desktop nevertheless keep your data on the cloud. The top challenging form
of delight in this most modern era is playing computer or PC games.

You can make an effort to explain the math concept
to your child using some fun cooking games.

My blog :: magazin de jocuri

Anonymous said...

Someday, on some reality show someone is going to
meet with something horrible fate and I only hope I’m around to write
about it. You simply have to translate dream images into words that produce sense in your conscience.
There are extremely some individuals who prefer to not
possess a dog in the room, whatever their reasons may be.

my blog - psihoterapie

Anonymous said...

My family always say that I am killing my time here at net, however I know I am getting knowledge daily by reading thes good articles or reviews.

My website :: cat costa un test de sarcina

Anonymous said...

This may be the positive side of my shocking discoveries.

Behavioral therapy works in a very somewhat similar way, by proclaiming that
almost every mental concern is a consequence of repetitive incorporation in to a person.
The role of psychotherapy (the Danes utilize the term l.

Here is my web-site ... psihoterapie

Anonymous said...

Howdy just wanted to give you a quick heads up and let
you know a few of the images aren't loading properly. I'm not sure why but I think its a linking issue.
I've tried it in two different web browsers and both show the same results.

Also visit my blog post ... magazin jocuri de societate bucuresti

Anonymous said...

The most popular and initial method is the questioning and observing the
patient. For the Christian counselor, the aim in counseling should be the spiritual maturity
with the individual (Crabb, 1977; Hawkins, n.
Many experts fear that they could cause patients to modify from depression to mania.

Feel free to surf to my webpage psihoterapie

Anonymous said...

That is really attention-grabbing, You are a very skilled
blogger. I have joined your rss feed and stay
up for in search of extra of your excellent post. Additionally,
I've shared your website in my social networks

Here is my website :: cat costa un test De sarcina

Anonymous said...

Or you are able to fry ten garlic cloves in oil (60 grams).
You should maintain a healthy lifestyle by having a healthy
diet and a healthy weight while wearing regular exercises.
The exercises will fight cervical spondylosis:.

My web site spondiloza

Anonymous said...

100% of my patients pay cash for his or her care for this very reason. Spinal decompression is often a form of traction that requires alternate phases of distraction and relaxation, constantly maintaining proper positioning. Even though a patient has experienced pain for years, he / she may find reduced such pain after a few visits on the doctor of chiropractic.

Here is my weblog ... hernie de disc

Anonymous said...

It strengthens and tones the muscles and ligaments. This mainly occurs when the first sacral nerve is either compressed or injured.
Hence massaging this oil can be useful for low
libido, impotence problems and premature ejaculation.

My blog post :: spondiloza

Anonymous said...

It's an amazing article designed for all the web users; they will obtain benefit from it I am sure.

Feel free to visit my web-site: impotence in men

Anonymous said...

Therefore, all the above mentioned changes are taking place in
the most natural way. And if is is, indeed, worth all the attention, then you may be wondering why it is worthy of such attention.
You simply enjoy sex to the full when you use the pills.

Look at my web page :: buy vigrx plus

Anonymous said...

What's up, all the time i used to check web site posts here early in the break of day, for the reason that i like to learn more and more.

Feel free to visit my page capsiples

Anonymous said...

Hello there! I just wish to give you a huge thumbs up for the great info you have
here on this post. I'll be coming back to your site for more soon.

my blog vigrx plus