The East Terrace’s Autumn Moment Award 2021

The 2021 Autumn Nation Series had plenty of memorable moments. Ireland’s win over New Zealand was full of them and France’s triumph over the All Blacks was simply dripping in them. We had Chile sneaking a late win over Russia and superb coming of age moments for players like Marcus Smith of England in a dramatic win over the world champions Yet, there can only be one East Terrace Autumn…

(UPDATED) Shades of Red: A brief history of Wales playing only fourteen men

UPDATED: This article builds on an original article from 15/02/2021 In 755 Welsh Test matches since 1881, 16 players have been dismissed when facing Wales. Six of these sending offs happened in 2021. The first six dismissals of a Welsh opponent occurred between 1888 and 2006 (it was not possible to be dismissed between 1881 and 1887), showing how much stricter the officiating of the game has become in recent…

Welsh rugby and changing autumn colours: do Wales always play badly in their change kit?

It’s not really autumn in Wales unless the national rugby team splutters to a narrow win/draw/loss to a supposed ‘Tier Two’ nation in Cardiff. Sunday’s ugly win over a Fiji side that had a red card after 25 minutes (and picked up a further two yellows) was, well, a fairly typical autumn rugby day for Wales. It wasn’t unnoticed by supporters that Wales scraped home not in their famous scarlet,…

Alun Wyn Jones, Wales and the Pie Chart of Durability

Last Saturday Alun Wyn Jones won his 149th Welsh cap. The number took him past New Zealand’s Richie McCaw to make him the most capped player for one team in the history of international rugby. Jones has also won a dozen caps in total for the British and Irish Lions, meaning his total international appearances come to 161. Cruelly, a shoulder injury has ended his autumn campaign. It also most…

Survivors of Wales v Samoa 1991 share memories of grief 30 years on

Thirty years to the day since Western Samoa (now Manu Samoa) conquered Wales in Cardiff, surviving spectators of that fateful day have come together on social media to support each other. Led by East Terrace editor, James Stafford, stories are being shared under the hashtag #WalvSam1991 to mark the 16-13 loss to Samoa that helped knock Wales out of the 1991 World Cup. 30 years ago today childhood sporting innocence…

Teddy Morgan scores against the 1905 All Blacks for Wales

East Terrace editor James Stafford to release book on 1905 Wales v New Zealand game

On October 22nd, 2021, East Terrace editor, James Stafford, releases ‘How Wales Beat the Mighty All Blacks‘. Illustrated by Carys Feehan and published in hardback by Y Lolfa (edited by Carolyn Hodges), the book tells the story of rugby immortal Gwyn Nicholls and his comeback to face the legendary 1905 All Blacks. While aimed at children, the book will appeal to rugby loves of all ages, with Feehan’s gorgeous artwork…

Illustrating Welsh rugby history – A discussion with the Welsh National Library and the People’s Collection Wales

In late February this year, East Terrace editor James Stafford and illustrator Raluca Moldovan released ‘An Illustrated History of Welsh Rugby: Fun, Facts and Stories from 140 Years of International Rugby’. As part of the book’s launch, Stafford featured in a webinar hosted by the National Library of Wales (Llyfrgell Genedlaethol), which you can watch here: Stafford was joined by Lloyd Roderick (Aberystwyth University) and Gruffydd Jones (People’s Collection Wales)…

Groin, foot and shoulder injuries rule out East Terrace editor from British & Irish Lions tour

With the British and Irish Lions ‘silly season’ having essential been underway in the media since the end of the 2019 World Cup, it now seems any injury to any British or Irish rugby players must be reported in context of the upcoming South African tour. An actual player’s realistic chances of making the tour do not seem to be a prime consideration when constructing a newspaper or website headline….

The East Terrace 2021 Six Nations Awards

With the 2021 Six Nations in the bag, there will no doubt be multiple ‘best of’ lists in various newspapers and on countless websites in the coming days. None of these matter. The East Terrace Six Nations Awards are the only ones that do. Read them now and know that they are beyond scrutiny and utterly correct.  Foreshadowing of the Tournament Winner: Jacopo Trulla (Italy) v France Italian full-back Jacopo…

Shades of Red (Part II): A brief history of Wales playing with only fourteen men

Our recent piece looking at each occasion Wales benefited from playing against shorthanded opponents was quite a success. So we’ve decided to follow it with another stroll down a red mist tinged memory lane, this time taking a look at the fateful moments that saw Wales reduced to inferior numbers.  In 745 Welsh Test matches since 1881, eight Welsh players have received their marching orders (compared to 12 opposing players). …

An Illustrated History of Welsh Rugby by James Stafford

An Illustrated History of Welsh Rugby – OUT NOW

An Illustrated History of Welsh Rugby: Fun, Facts and Stories from 140 years of International Rugby from East Terrace editor James Stafford and illustrator Raluca Moldovan is out now from Polaris Publishing. Full of tales of fighting clergymen, poisoned arrows and deathbed confessionals, James Stafford’s An Illustrated History of Welsh Rugby takes a unique look at the games, the players, the legends and the myths behind Wales’s national game. Blending fun and facts with trivia and…

Shades of Red: A brief history of Wales playing only fourteen men

Wales’s 2021 Six Nations has begun in a somewhat bizarre fashion, with both their opening opponents getting reduced to fourteen men after red cards. This is the first time in Wales’s history they’ve benefited in consecutive matches from playing against a team permanently reduced to 14 men. In 745 Welsh Test matches since 1881, 12 players have been dismissed when facing Wales. Wales, in contrast, have seen eight players ordered…

Louis Rees-Zammit wins the Mike Pyke Nonchalant Try Scoring Award

Wales’s Louis Rees-Zammit is the latest player to win the Mike Pyke Nonchalant Try Scoring Award from The East Terrace. The youngster responded to a critical try for his country, his first ever in the Six Nations, by simply getting up and jogging back for the kick off. Have we mentioned this guy is 20? 🤯 A 𝗴𝗹𝗼𝗿𝗶𝗼𝘂𝘀 finish in the corner from @LouisReesZammit 😎 👏 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿#GuinnessSixNations #WALvIRE pic.twitter.com/zoMwXdTBnQ —…

Shades of Gray – a look at the winning record of all international Welsh rugby coaches

Who are the most successful head coaches in Welsh international history, and why is Tony Gray’s record consistently misreported? There are few things so addictive to the sports fans as statistics. And there are few things so consistently misleading or open to flawed interpretation as statistics. But sports people love lists. A list detailing the success rate of head Welsh coaches is about as open to misuse as any set of…

East Terrace launches ‘The 1988 Range’ of rugby tshirts and other goodies

To celebrate the launch of ‘An Illustrated History of Welsh Rugby: Fun, Facts and Stories from 140 Years of International Rugby‘, The East Terrace is proud to launch ‘The 1988 Range‘. Inspired by the artwork of Raluca Moldovan, our Redbubble shop will sell a range of t-shirts and other items. Working on very special range of tshirts for @theeastterrace to coincide with launch of my Welsh #rugbyhistory book from @Polaris_Books….

Release date confirmed for ‘An Illustrated History of Welsh Rugby’ by James Stafford

‘An Illustrated History of Welsh Rugby: Fun, Facts and Stories from 140 years of International Rugby‘ from East Terrace editor James Stafford and illustrator Raluca Moldovan will be published on 11th February by Polaris Publishing. The book was extensively featured on the Welsh Rugby Union website recently and has already attracted a lot of interest on social media. Officially released on the 11th February, 2021, it is already available for…

The East Terrace rugby logo

A fresh viewpoint on rugby from a neglected East Terrace

The East Terrace is back. But for those that have come to revisit an old haunt, the view is going to be a bit different. When the original website was launched back in 2004, there was very little irreverent rugby writing on the interweb. What sprinkle of rugby humour that did litter the net tended to be of the tired ‘hookers’ and ‘odd shaped balls’ type.  The East Terrace was a…

East Terrace editor to publish history of Welsh national rugby team

The founder and editor of The East Terrace, James Stafford, is set to publish his first rugby book. In February 2021, Polaris Publishers will release “An Illustrated History of Welsh Rugby: Fun Facts and Stories from 140 Years of International Rugby“. It will be the first in a series and followed by the history of the English national side. The book is packed with original illustrations by Raluca Moldovan. The…

FROM THE ARCHIVES: Chris Ashton wins disciplinary ‘Triple Crown’ award after biting ban

OIRGINALLY PUBLISHED SEPTEMBER 2016. Saracens and England winger Chris Ashton has completed a spectacular career treble in an English premiership game against Northampton last weekend. Ashton’s citing and subsequent 13 week ban for biting now means the loveable show-boater has been banned for biting, gouging and hair pulling during his union career! In light of this stunning accomplishment – which is possibly unique in the annuals of not just rugby…

FROM THE ARCHIVES: Pro12 taken out the back and ‘put out of its misery’

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN AUGUST 2016. Officials from the Irish, Scottish, Welsh and Italian rugby unions have dramatically announced there will be no Pro12 league for the 2016/17 season. After a full twenty minutes of “passionate debate” and “soul searching”, tournament organisers agreed on Monday it was time to put the league to rest. At a hastily assembled press conference, league spokesperson Patrick Connor revealed the the much maligned league was…

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