Campese

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SKU: 9781922310576
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ISBN: 9781922310576

Author: James Curran

Description
Once hailed as the ‘Bradman of Rugby’, David Campese thrilled spectators both in Australia and overseas with his footloose, crazy-brave style of free running. This book tells the story of his rise from humble beginnings to the very top of a global sport.

As a rugby player, David Campese seemed to operate on pure instinct, one that left many a defender clutching for him in vain, stranded in the slipstream of his audacity. He followed no straight path, observed no convention, and in so doing brought a whole swag of new supporters to the game. Hailed as the ‘Bradman of Rugby’ by former Wallaby coach Alan Jones, and the ‘Pele’ of Rugby by others, Campese was a match-winner. True, he could lose the odd game as well, but this was part of his unique allure: Campese took crowds to the edge of their seats … and their patience.

The refrain ‘I saw Campese play’ now speaks to much more than wistful reminiscences about a player widely regarded as the most entertaining ever to play the game of Rugby Union. It has come to represent a state of chronic disbelief that the Wallaby ascendancy of Campese’s era — the style, panache, and winning ways of the Australian team in the 1980s and 1990s — has now been squandered by Rugby’s continuing struggle to adapting to the coming of professionalism.

Campese occupies a unique intersection in the sport’s history: one of its last amateurs, and one of its first professionals. The rigid, robotic game of today appears incapable of accommodating a player of his dash and daring, or of replicating his teams’ successes.

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