Rumruckers player Brett Phillips and Bob Povey get acquainted before tonight’s game against the New Zealand Eastern Districts Old Devils at Wests Leagues Club.
Rumruckers player Brett Phillips and Bob Povey get acquainted before tonight’s game against the New Zealand Eastern Districts Old Devils at Wests Leagues Club. Max Fleet

Bundaberg's Bledisloe Cup

FIRST there is Forrest, the five-eighth and Rumruckers general who is usually too busy running to a bus stop.

Punter’s eyes spin so fast when he is running it is hard to tell which one is winning. He will start on the wing.

Griffo still uses a comb, but he thinks he is a forward.

Opinion is split on Clancy the Overflow — he thinks he is a forward, but everyone else thinks he is a back.

Apparently the Cyclone needs no introduction, while Pop is 70-plus and has more life about him than the Energizer bunny.

Bronco turned up to the first game in the wrong uniform and Philby will man the canteen – and will probably be the busiest at the ground.

This is just a sample of the talent on offer tonight at Wests Leagues Club, when the Bundaberg Rumruckers — a group of rugby union old boys — wage war with the New Zealand Eastern Districts Old Devils.

Captain, ringleader and president Brett Phillips — known by team-mates as Major Disaster — says nothing is better than playing an “international” on home soil.

“We absolutely love playing here. The only reason we love travelling so much is because we get to tell people how good Bundaberg is,” Phillips said.

And travel they have.

In their 20 years — celebrated last night at a dinner that brought current and former players together from across the country — the Rumruckers have clocked up 22 international caps across the globe.

The New Zealanders’ visit acts as the return leg after a Bundaberg visit last year.

“The game is really all about having a good time first and foremost, but it has been known to get quite competitive,” Phillips said.

The pace won’t be as frenetic as your usual Bledisloe Cup encounter, but the heart and determination will certainly be there.

“It’s Australia v New Zealand in Bundaberg at its finest,” Phillips mused.

Recruited Rumrucker Bob Povey’s first Rumrucker experience was playing against the team at a New Zealand World Rugby Festival.

Since then he has represented the Rumruckers in places like the Solomon Islands, England and West Indies.

“They are all different people with different backgrounds. But they are all piss-heads,” he joked when asked what drew him to the club.

Povey is nursing a back injury and will not take the field tonight, opting to save himself for Sydney’s World Rugby Festival later this year.

“I would hate to injure myself and miss the big one,” Povey said.

Kick off is about 5.30pm.



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