#2. Willie John McBride
McBride has savaged modern-day rugby, claiming it has become an unedifying mixture of union, league and American football that is being wrecked by an injury crisis and the dominance of money.
McBride wrote: “Rugby today is nothing like the game I played. It is a mixture of rugby union and rugby league – which is a huge influence on rugby union, with players lined up across the field against each other – and American football, with the obstruction and blocking.Embed from Getty Images
“In the modern game, you can theoretically keep the ball for 40 minutes with endless phases. In the amateur era, once you went to ground you had to release the ball and get away. Players could then drive over the ball rucking the ball.
“Any game is all about space. The modern game is all about closing down space with players lining across the pitch because of phase rugby. The one thing that strikes me is why did they change our game?”