He more than justified his nickname of “The Blackpool Tower”. Standing at six ft eight inches tall and a Police Officer in Blackpool, Dooley amassed 55 England caps after making his debut against Romania in 1985.
The powerhouse No.8 has that steely edge that wouldn’t have looked out of place at the local Colosseum a few thousand years ago. Been carrying Italian rugby on his broad shoulders for 15 years now and has walked the disciplinary tightrope at times.
In a match against France in 1986, Buck incurred one of the worst injuries any man could ever imagine: his scrotum was ripped open by a guy’s cleat. What did he do? Kept playing, obviously. Eventually, he had the trainer stitch him up so he could return to the game.
No list would be complete without the greatest New Zealand warrior to don an All Blacks shirt since the late great Collins. Nothing epitomised the former All Black skipper more than playing through the 2011 World Cup campaign with a broken bone in his foot.
He’s the man who once traded punches with Martin Johnson during a tackling drill at Leicester and is famed for his fearless charges into every ruck and every maul. Mad Dog’ certainly lived up to the nickname.