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Southland V Otago - 4th August 1973.
The Southland team looked like they wanted to be anywhere else except on the field playing against Otago in 1973. The date is August 4, the weather is perfect at Carisbrook in Dunedin, and the punters were betting that Southland would be the team to win going on its good form in their previous two matches. On the other hand, it was thought that Otago had not been as convincing.
It was probably a game that Southland would want to forget, but one consolation was that it was not larger than the 1959 score of 40 points, however, was the same year Southland won the Ranfurly Shield.
The teams were:
Southland - Doug Nicol, Russell Hardie, Lin Booth, Murray Mitchell, Les O'Donnell, John Polson, Terry Butson, Jeff Lamb, Leicester Rutledge, Bruce Lamb, Gerald Dermody, Colin Davis, Andy Dickson, Dave Saunders, Ken McRae (captain), Phillip Butt.
Otago - Laurie Mains, Bruce Hunter, Don Colling, Graham Sims, Neil Purvis, Lin Jaffray, Warren Townsend (captain), Gary Seear, Lindsay Clark, Dave Pescini, Paul Sapsford.
Gary Seear, Warren Townsend and Rob Roy were dominant in the set pieces, especially the lineouts where Seear jumped that much higher than the Southlanders.
Southland V Otago - 18th August 1973....
Two weeks later....................
It was the biggest turnaround in Southland rugby, when they had another crack at Otago and turned the tables.
The result of game two showed the character of the Southland team where they won 14-7.
It was interesting to note that Ken McRae was the only player in this team that had won against Otago. It was in his first season of representative rugby in 1967 where Southland won 12-8.
Ken Stewart was the star of the day and it was to Otago's detriment that they only played two loose forwards in their game.
Stewart had the stamina of a beast and was relentless in his play round the field and tackling.
Frank Oliver and Phillip Butt were also exceptional, with the former only just returning to representative rugby after injury.
Butt showed his selectors that he was ready for the No 1, prop and scrummaged and mauled well.
Hay, Davis, Lamb and Dickson all played their part in the win, dominating the forward play.
Half back Dave Shanks, linked well with John Polson, and it looked like he had improved on his passing. He matched his opposite, Lin Colling, the All Black half back.
Polson had a top game and was well supported by the ever solid, Les O'Donnell. Booth, Mitchell and Ross were competitive against an All Black line-up in the three quarters.
Lin Booth, centre for Southland goes down in a tackle, off loads to Doug Nicol.
Nicol then send Ross (unsighted) in for a try.
Lyn Jaffary is seen trying to guess what is going to happen.
Bevan Guthrie can do nothing to stop the movement.
Southland looked determined to redeem themselves with the opening play evenly matched.
N.B. Gerald Dermody did not go on tour in 1973 due to a knee injury he received in the Canterbury game. Leicester Rutledge and Phillip Butt both had injuries but were ruled fit to go on tour.
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