This week the rugby world has been abuzz after Richie McCaw released his autobiography Openside.
Excerpts have been widely published outlining Richie’s opinion on all things rugby, from Quade to Deans to Twitter. However each of these passages have been taken from the international version of the book. G&GR has received a copy of the New Zealand version of the book, and much to our surprise it reads quite differently. It seems it has been substantially tailored for the local audience.
The following is the first chapter of the Kiwi version. As you can see it has been split up into verses for easy reference, presumably in NZ parliament:
1In the beginning Richie created the heavens and the earth. 2 Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of Richie was hovering over the waters. 3 And Richie said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. 4 Richie then created the darkness, and He saw that this was superior to the light. He blessed the darkness, and decreed that it shall reign. 5 Richie called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “the Blackness.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day. 6
And Richie said, “Let there be an activity which I can physically and mentally dominate people of other nations.” 7 So Richie created a game, and called this game “Rugby”. And it was so. And Richie looked at his creation and was pleased. 8 And Richie said “Let there be Laws and Interpretations to govern this game, so that it may be played fairly.” So Richie created the Laws and the Interpretations. And Richie said “Let there be ways of bending these Laws and Interpretations to the advantage of the Darkness, which will go unnoticed by thy officials”. So Richie created ruck pillars, lying on the wrong side of the ruck, and holding back defenders. He created clearing out past the ball, obstructing opposition forwards, and lurking offside at the breakdown. He created sealing off ruck ball. And Richie saw these and was pleased with His creation. And there was evening, and there was morning—the second day.
9 And Richie said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered to one place, and let dry ground appear.” And it was so. 10 Richie called the dry ground “New Zealand,” and the gathered waters he called “seas.” And then Richie said “Let there be a nearby island against which we can play Rugby, multiple times a year in Home and Away series as well as at provincial and schoolboy level”. 11And it was so. And Richie called this land “Australia”. 12And Richie saw that it was good, and that its sporting landscape was thus that Rugby did not receive adequate interest or investment and thus would struggle for depth and player retention. And there was evening, and there was morning—the third day.
13 And Richie said, “Let there be a Rugby Beelzebub, a Devil to rival all that is good about the Darkness. A flashy traitor who will rile up the people of the Dark Nation, and cause them to take up arms in our fight against the Goldness” And it was so. 14 Richie made Quade Cooper. And he saw that it was good. And he also saw it was liable to make silly statements on mass media and chip kick in thy defensive half in thy heat of battle. 15 And there was evening, and there was morning— the fourth day.
16 And Richie said, “For I am a New Zealander I shall only work four days in a row.” 17 So Richie called in sick and went to thy beach. And He was pleased with His decision for thy surf was cranking.
Controversial stuff. I don’t want to ruin the ending for you, but it gets quite dark. And for some reason he includes a bunch of letters he wrote to a rugby club called the Corinthians (I think they play on the South Island somewhere).
We may have more chapters for you in coming weeks.