10 years ago | SoccerDome, Wigan | 23rd February 2013
Ten years ago, when I was a ‘Rugby Dad’, I was playing for the team’s off-shoot ‘Dads’ touch rugby team one night, when Sky Sports cameras rocked up and took some footage. A day later, it popped up on my screen…
As any parent of a sporting child knows well, one minute they’ve joined a club, the next, your weeks became quickly punctuated by training sessions in midweek and a match on Sundays. With tournaments, club outings and end-of-season presentation nights to attend, being involved in junior rugby very quickly became less of a parental commitment and more of a lifestyle choice.
So as surely as a kick follows a fifth tackle, the idea of a ‘Dads’ team was floated. It was touch rugby, to maximise participation and to take part in the healthy network of mini-leagues in and around Wigan. It was a great way to boost the fitness levels and a bit of fun on a Friday night.
One night, we arrived to find a Sky Sports camera crew there, to take footage for a piece on the inclusivity of rugby league. When it was time for our fixture against the Orrell St. James’ Ladies’ team, suddenly the cameras were trained on our pitch.
I didn’t think much more about it, expecting to end up ‘on the cutting room floor’. A day later, I happened to have Sky Sports News on and heard the introduction to a piece about touch rugby. Surely, it couldn’t be last night’s footage, could it?
And then there we were – and, if you look really carefully, there I was. The few seconds’ footage of our game against OSJ Ladies came from a time when I was on interchange, which is why I’m at the top of the screen, off the pitch.
Despite the fact I appeared on a minor channel, at the back of the shot, for all of three seconds, fame is still yet to beckon…