Me, not so much. I think this would be a fantastic book for a young player. There seemed to be a lot of detail about goal setting, having a plan and getting the right head-space. I also liked the way the story was structured, with the narrative being based around the journey between the 2 world cups. It gave the book a really strong shape, and I guess this is the difference between having a sports journalist and a successful novelist as the ghost writer. Having said that, I also felt the voice sounded authentic.
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This is a shame as McCaw is a rare, unique, once in a lifetime player. The structure does the book no justice. Greg McGee established a reputation as a playwright, not a biographic ghost writer. Yes, the book skips almost a decade.
After an over detailed account of the infamous quarter final match, mainly a failure to think clearly under pressure and blaming Wayne Barnes inexperience , its back to his younger days.
Throw in a few gliding stories and you can begin to see how it was difficult to stay engaged. McCaw could have taken us through the events in a smarter, more crafted manner. One thing which was particularly unsettling was the profanity riddled throughout the book.
Not many people apart from his teammates evidently hear McCaw swear so often. Do not let any young eyes read this book. The rugby side of the book is honest to an extent. When it comes to his interests off the field, Richie does not give a whole lot of anything away, apart from the fact he enjoys gliding. Who can blame them? The passions and motivations off the field which the front cover promised to talk about are almost non-existent.
Christchurch went through two horrendous earthquakes. McCaw gives details of what he went through but never elaborated on how it personally made him feel. Plenty of details are given about the destruction and statistics of the earthquake. Did his attitude towards life change? Did it change his attitude that he largely played rugby for himself to playing for a broken city? Were there times where leaving Christchurch crossed his mind? McCaw is too blunt, while McGee is too theatrical.
So many questions were left unanswered, especially the full extent of life as a professional rugby player. He never discusses the impact being on the road so often has. The media attention is briefly mentioned but never elaborated on. There are never really any heart-warming and funny stories tour stories which players often talk about twenty years after retiring. Whether intentional or not, readers are strapped on a leash.
To his credit, we do see how motivated McCaw is to succeed on the field. His Warwick entries reveal the ambitions of a man who is very driven and very motivated. When he sets his goals, watch out. One day Richie may release another memoir.
Following his graduation in , he joined the Christchurch Football Club. He enrolled at Lincoln University , Christchurch, to study agricultural science, but he broke off his studies when he was selected to play for the New Zealand Under team for the World Under Rugby Tournament, which was won by New Zealand. In he made his debut for the Crusaders formerly the Canterbury Crusaders in Super Rugby, the principal professional rugby competition in the Southern Hemisphere. He played times for the Crusaders through and helped the team to four Super Rugby titles, three times as captain. McCaw was named captain of the All Blacks against Wales in and was given the post on a permanent basis in , eventually leading the team in a record Tests.
The Open Side
Richie McCaw boarded at the school from to During that series, McCaw realised his All Blacks dream could be attainable. This led Josh Kronfeld , a former All Black openside flanker , to criticise the selection: "You might as well just give All Black jerseys to everybody. The fact they picked guys off one NPC season is bloody incredible". His first touch of the game resulted in a knock-on when he was hit in a tackle and New Zealand were trailing the Irish 16—7 at half-time.