Formative action

November 4, 2005

When the Welsh rugby team take on the All Blacks in Cardiff this weekend, sport historians will cast their minds back 100 years to a pivotal moment in Welsh history. It was then that Wales became the only team to beat the New Zealand tourists.

It was this victory, says Gareth Williams of Glamorgan University's Centre for Modern and Contemporary Wales, that established rugby union as the national sport of Wales. He told the Historians on Sport annual symposium held at De Montfort University this week: 'As a unifying, inclusive cultural force, it outstripped politics and religion, drawing together coal-heavers and coal-owners in a common passion'

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