Thanks on my retiring from Treiziste Diary
Posted 05 September 2010 - 01:27 PM
As John so kindly puts it in the latest Rugby League World, I tried to retire from my stint at Treiziste Diary a couple of editions ago, the feature on the history of RL in Paris was meant to be my last. But I have popped up again in the latest issue of Rugby League World, with a preview of the forthcoming LER season, including the Magique Weekend at Lézignan, and the latest on the comings and goings.
I just want to thank all of you who have said so many kind things about the Diary, which I had done every month since 2003. Some have posted kind words on here; others have sent e-mails or PM’s.
I enjoyed every minute of it and felt proud and privileged to fight the corner of French RL and bring a bit of its’ history, colour and culture to readers of the magazine.
I have been immersed in France and French culture since I first road my bike from Leeds to Paris in 1963, as a keen fan of the Tour de France. Since then I have been involved in numerous junior exchanges, was a founder and very active member of XIII Actif, taking the case of French RL to both Westminster and the European Parliament with Robert Fassolette. I was privileged to take part in the discussions between UTC and the RFL over the Catalans bid for Super League. I have done academic research for Carnegie into aspects of French RL and was involved in taking the Carnegie Challenge Cup to Perpignan and to the Beach RL Tournament at Canet Plage. I have taught RL French to Warrington fans, been interviewed several times on French radio, including once last year, when I was ironically at Barcelona Airport, prior to a Catalans play-off game. I was involved in the Lézignan “9’s” and have made the odd contact between French clubs and UK or Aussie players. I am a big fan of Toulouse and their ambitions for SL, and still pen a weekly piece for the club’s website.
I am pleased that at last the powers that be are very aware of and supportive of French RL, and realise how important it is for the world game that France RL is strong at club and national team level. SL and Championship clubs have discovered that a trip to France is very enjoyable, something that BARLA clubs with their strong French links discovered decades ago.
But I am getting a bit long in the tooth. Not true I haven’t any! I am still involved in Bramley RL, am an active Director of the highly successful Hunslet Club (formerly Hunslet Boys Club), which both involve regular trips to Leeds from the East Coast by public transport.
I am still involved in organising junior exchanges like the Stanningley-St Martin de Crau X111, which enters its 9th year next year. Indeed I am still helping broker exchanges, the latest being for Leeds Akkies, with whom I hope to be going to Bretagne Nantes Vikings XIII in October, and hopefully one for Gloucester University with Bordeaux, which should be crystallised later this month.
But I have these last few months had family illnesses to contend with. Things are starting to improve on this front thankfully, but the year has been very demanding. You may have noticed my lack of posts in recent weeks. Rectified today with a vengeance!
So it seemed an appropriate time to “retire” as the TD columnist. I am delighted that Mike Rylance will take up the Diarist’s pen. Mike one of the most respected authors and writers in the sport needs no introduction. He is the most respected RL author throughout treiziste France.
So I don’t feel quite so bad as I did when I first informed John that I wanted to step down. Having said that I have one or two in depth “one-off” pieces, such as “the Basques and RL” that I hope to write later on in the season, but not necessarily as part of TD.
I will miss it greatly and again I thank all at RLW for inviting me to do it in 2003. It has been a privilege and a pleasure. But nothing lasts forever, not even hopefully the “big 4” hegemony this year.
But I will always remain a champion of France, its culture and RL. Indeed I shall be enjoying today a wonderful bottle of the SOA Avignon XIII special cuvee Cotes du Rhone red, a splendid PR move by the progressive Avignon Bisons.
But finally a big thank to all of those of you who have expressed kind words to me via the forum, PMs, e-mail, or in person, as I step back a little, hopefully to regroup. “Reculer pour mieux sauter” as the French would say!
Posted 05 September 2010 - 02:44 PM
Rethymno Rugby League Appreciation Society
Founder (and, so far, only) member.
Posted 05 September 2010 - 03:34 PM
...even if one always needed to put the kettle on before embarking on reading them
Posted 05 September 2010 - 04:09 PM
Edited by deluded pom?, 05 September 2010 - 04:10 PM.
Posted 05 September 2010 - 04:13 PM
Edited by amh, 05 September 2010 - 04:22 PM.
Whilst I do not suffer fools gladly, I will always gladly make fools suffer
Comment is free, but facts are sacred. - C. P. Scott
A man is getting along on the road of wisdom when he realises that his opinion is just an opinion
Posted 05 September 2010 - 04:55 PM
Posted 05 September 2010 - 05:13 PM
Thanks. But rest assured I have not retired from life or RL.
Posted 05 September 2010 - 07:15 PM
Posted 05 September 2010 - 07:24 PM
Anyway, I've enjoyed reading your Treiziste Diary as much as I did Edgar's vivid essays and am pleased too that you are to be succeeded by Mike Rylance - author of the cruelly under-reviewed The Forbidden Game, a must-read for anyone who has ever cared for the game in France.
Posted 05 September 2010 - 11:01 PM
Posted 06 September 2010 - 01:08 AM
Edited by koala, 06 September 2010 - 01:10 AM.
Posted 06 September 2010 - 06:40 AM
i only learned of this around 5 years ago and at first didnt believe it
many people ive told think im making it up
its a real shame we lost what we had in france it was a fantastic part of the RL world
i can only hope we get it back there one day
Posted 06 September 2010 - 09:08 AM
While you're waiting, I assume you've already got Henri Garcia's excellent book on the same subject?
And Cliff, rest assured that your contributions to the magazine and this website are always valued, appreciated and enjoyed. Don't be a stranger on the TRL forum, now!
"Perhaps it would be better that future criticism of sports be made on the narrow basis of what is being discussed, without reference to other sports, unless those sports offer a solution to the problem in hand." - Brian 'Pigface' Moore
"What happens in rugby union? A player takes the ball, moves forward a little and gets tackled. A whole load of players then roll about on the ground. Pheep! The referee gives a penalty." - Simon Barnes
Posted 06 September 2010 - 09:49 AM
always a pleasure to read what you have to say whether on here or in the magazine. Good luck with the future and hope all the illnesses get better. Hopefully you will keep contribution from time to time to the mag and may well see you around and about the amateur scene from time to time.
Posted 06 September 2010 - 10:18 AM
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