Tantrums & Tutus - 2009 Quotes of the Year
December 28, 2009

Our Quote Unquote feature endeavours to bring you some of the more interesting soundbites from the world of rugby and the last 12 months has produced a few gems.

We have trawled through the archives to bring you our favourites from the past year - some were controversial, others were hilarious but we'll let you choose which category they fall into!

It's that man again...

"What I have learnt in South Africa is that if you take your car to a garage and the owner is a black man and they mess up, you never go back to that garage again. If the owner is a white man you say they made a mistake and you go back again. And that is how we live our lives in this country."
Springboks coach Peter de Villiers risks another race row with his defence of reserve scrum-half Ricky Januarie. June 24, 2009

"I don't think it should have been a card at all."
De Villiers offers his opinion on the Schalk Burger alleged eye-gouging incident following the brutal second Test clash with the Lions in Pretoia. June 27, 2009

"If it's the case that we are, why don't we all go to the nearest ballet shop, get some nice tutus and get some great dancing going on? No eye-gouging, no tackling, no nothing. Then enjoy."
De Villiers claims that people who don't like rugby's physicality should take up ballet. June 29, 2009

"We would like to apologise to the rugby community for the erroneous impression that acts of foul play are in any way condoned by South African rugby."
SA Rugby move to quell the row following De Villiers' comments. June 29, 2009

Six Nations shockers...

"At the moment there aren't any quality alternatives."
Italy coach Nick Mallett sums up his reasons for trialling Mauro Bergamasco at scrum-half. January 28, 2009

"I'm more worried than excited."
Bergamasco contemplates his first start at No.9 against England at Twickenham. February 6, 2009

"I think I've learnt my lesson there and I think Mauro will be considered as a flanker...I thought of replacing him after 25 minutes but out of respect I left him on the field."
Mallett admits his experiment was a complete failure. February 7, 2009

"Knowledge is knowing that tomato is a fruit, while wisdom is knowing not to put it in a fruit salad."
Ireland skipper Brian O'Driscoll gets all philosophical ahead of his side's Six Nations clash with England. February 28, 2009

"He taught me maths poorly but rugby, that was something else."
Ireland fly-half Ronan O'Gara recalls when Ireland coach Declan Kidney was his maths and rugby master at Presentation Brothers College. February 28, 2009

"It was going straight but just didn't have the legs."
Wales fly-half Stephen Jones recalls the agony of watching his last-gasp penalty attempt drop short in his side's 17-15 defeat to Ireland. March 21, 2009

"My head was squeaking when I was walking."
Wales centre Jamie Roberts recalls fracturing his skull - and not realising he had - against Australia in November last year. April 10, 2009

"I can categorically deny that. There was no physical confrontation."
England manager Martin Johnson rubbishes reports that Danny Cipriani had a bust-up with an assistant coach during the pre-Six Nations training camp in Portugal. March 21, 2009

The Lions roar...

"In my opinion, you cannot be a legendary rugby player if you haven't been a Lion."
Lions boss Ian McGeechan nails his colours to the mast as Lions fever hots up. January 3, 2009

"You know you've had a **** game when you get text messages from your mum, your sister and your Mrs saying that they still love you."
Lions prop Phil Vickery offers an insight into the trials of a professional rugby player as he prepares for the third Test against the Springboks. July 3, 2009

"That's not what you said when you were crying on my bed after he didn't pick you for the first Test."
Lee Byrne jokes with team-mate Shane Williams after the winger praised Lions coach Ian McGeechan for restoring his faith in the elite tourists. September 23, 2009

Troubled times...

"It's not Hamlet, it's rugby."
Rugby Football Union chairman Martyn Thomas expresses his concern at the use of such theatrical devices as fake blood capsules were being used on the pitch. August 23, 2009

"Am I angry with him? I think it is unbelievably sad."
Harlequins' chief executive Mark Evans reflects on the actions of his former director of rugby Dean Richards in the wake of the 'Bloodgate' saga. August 19, 2009

"My situation highlights the dangers to elite rugby players of excess drinking and illicit substances. Whether in season or out those dangers should be avoided."
Former Bath lock Justin Harrison admits his shortcomings after being handed an 8-month ban for, "actions which are prejudicial to the interests of the Game". July 20, 2009

"Naturally opinions differed in several areas of the ELV programme."
IRB chairman Bernard Lapasset plays down what was surely a heated debate surrounding the ELVs in London. March 31, 2009

"Without a shadow of a doubt, I can be better than I've ever been tomorrow. When I am fit and on the field, that is the day I can be the best I've ever been. I can picture that in my head, I can see it happening."
Newcastle and England fly-half Jonny Wilkinson displays his positive mental attitude as he continues his recovery from a knee injury. January 31, 2009

"That one was for Macca."
The Brumbies' Patrick Phibbs dedicates his side's Super 14 victory over the Stormers to his former team mate Shawn Mackay who died days before the game as a result of complications stemming from an accident in South Africa where he was hit by a car. April 10, 2009

"I wasn't looking for another chance, I was looking for a last chance."
Referee Steve Walsh explains how his alcohol-problem led to the end of his New Zealand Rugby Union contract. May 1, 2009

Laught out loud...

"Justin Harrison is not a patient man. I think he struggles to untangle the Christmas lights without losing it."
Sky Sports commentator Mark Robson offers some character-analysis on Bath's spiky Wallaby lock Justin Harrison. January 18, 2009

"They've got all the elements of a quintessential Mills & Boon romance: jet set locations, hunky alpha male heroes and hot sex, but in a rugby context."
Mills and Boon sales and marketing director Clare Somerville outlines the main selling points of their new rugby novels, produced in conjunction with the RFU. January 6, 2009

"Perhaps we'll be able to shop for quality at Waitrose; if not, we'll be looking for some bargains at Morrisons"
Saracens director of rugby Eddie Jones reflects on the impact of the credit crunch. Janaury 1, 2009

"If you drive a big car here you are seen as a bit of a muppet."
Brive and former England hooker Steve Thompson offers an insight in life at the French Top 14 club. February 18, 2009

"My mother is devastated at the news as all three sons will be leaving next season. I'll be moving to Gloucester, Jamie's moving to France and my younger brother is hoping to go away to University. But on a positive note it frees up her weekends."
Cardiff Blues fly-half Nick Robinson believes that increased leisure time may soften the blow for his mother as he leaves for Gloucester. March 13, 2009

"He's not a goalkicker, he's a rocket launcher"
South Africa captain passes judgement on his fullback Frans Steyn after his three efforts from beyond half-way helped the Springboks beat the All Blacks in Hamilton. September 13, 2009

"Minutes later they arrested me, we were walking to the car and I corrected myself - I was Lesley Vainikolo."
Gloucester and England winger Lesley Vainikolo recalls a brush with the law where he originally claimed to be his friend and Bath player Shontayne Hape. September 10, 2009

"'I am looking at your arms and they are huge. Can you tell me how many centimetres they are and also who has the biggest arms of all the Wallabies players?''
Japanese media grill David Pocock with this and other somewhat odd questions ahead of the Tokyo Bledisloe. October 28, 2009

"I had to find out what Twitter was. I thought it was the new guy playing fly-half for England."
New Zealand coach Graham Henry reveals he is not a fan of social-networking after two of his players revealed their non-selection on November 18, 2009

"This is the second best day of my life - the best day was when I lost my virginity."
Supporter Stuart Tinner reflects on winning £250,000 in a kick-to-win competition at half-time in the clash between Saracens and South Africa. November 17, 2009

"Someone text me saying he's a bit like I used to be, but more athletic, funnier and better looking."
Martin Johnson compares himself with new England recruit Courtney Lawes, November 4, 2009

Not only, but also...

"Rugby and Rio together -- great sport, great party. I mean, we're made for each other, really."
International Rugby Board chief executive Mike Miller talks up Rugby Sevens ahead of the Olympics vote in Copenhagen. October 7, 2009

"It's basically all or nothing, following Jesus. I don't believe in pick 'n' mix Christianity."
Scotland prop Euan Murray explains his decision not to play international rugby on Sundays. December 21, 2009

"What I choose to do when I close the door at home has nothing to do with what I have achieved in rugby."
Former Wales and British & Irish Lions captain Gareth Thomas reveals that he is gay. December 19, 2009


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