With the 2019 World Cup in Japan in full swing we have decided to look at a few legends of previous World Cups starting with the inaugural tournament way back in 1987.
Although there were many noteworthy players there is one name that stands out head and shoulders above the rest, New Zealand’s back row talisman Michael Jones. Born in Aukland to a Samoan mother it was in fact his maternal nation that made their move first for the talented flanker, selecting Jones for his first international cap against Wales.
But it would be the country of his birth and the mighty All Blacks where Jones would make his name. Due to injury and religious beliefs that forbade him to play on a Sunday the Aukland flanker only made 55 appearances for New Zealand despite being the first name on the team sheet when available, a tally that a man of his vast talent could have doubled if not for bad luck.
Known for huge physicality and work rate he soon became a fan favourite and it was the 1987 World Cup that would cement his legacy as one of the finest back rowers to grace the game and an All Blacks legend.
Dominating the French pack in the final and scoring in the corner will long go down in history with the knowledgeable New Zealand public. For all, you that are too young to remember here’s some clips of the great man himself. Enjoy.