Svenska Rugbyförbundet

Mysteriet med den försvunna VM bollen

Pressmeddelande   •   Dec 09, 2003 11:31 CET

En av matchbollarna från VM finalen i rugby är försvunnen. I England har tabloidtidningarna gjort detta till en stor affär med anklagelser mot Australiensarna och uppskattningsvis kan bollen vara värd ca 50 000 brittiska pund (6-700 000 kr). Bollen sparkades ut vid slutsignalen och sen har ingen sett den......... Eller???

Från www.planet-rugby.com

The mystery of the missing World Cup ball

Somebody stole my ball!

The Sun, the English tabloid, stirred up interest in the missing World Cup Rugby ball, the one Mike Catt took delight in hoofing into touch so that referee Andre Watson could blow the final whistle and finally declare England the winners of the Webb Ellis Cup. The ball is missing. It may have been the same ball that Jonny Wilkinson kicked the dropped goal which made the final score 20-17 to England. More than one ball is used at a field, six in this case. The drop-goal fell just short of the dead-ball line. In the World Cup matches five balls were used for each match. They were rotated by the ball boys as play demanded. There were sixth because one was kept by the crowd when Jason Robinson, exulting in his try, punched it to them. Four of the balls were auctioned before the match and went to Jim Huglin, Ray Byrne, Tony Woodward and Mark Lowe. Ther IRB have the fifth.
The sixth? Planet Rugby received an anonymous tip-off that it is in a sittingroom in Auckland, New Zealand!

Then, on 3 News in New Zealand there was an interview with a man, an accountant from Gisborne in New Zealand, who claimed that he had the winning ball. He had photos to prove that it was an official, final ball and that he had it. The ball looks likely to increase and multiply! After the drop Australia kicked off quickly. England gathered the kick-off, Matt Dawson passed back to Catt who kicked the thing out.

The ball, it is said, could fetch as much as GB£50,000 (AU$117,000) at an auction, but there is no certainty which of the five balls in use at the time was the one that won the match.. The Sun started a campaign for the return of the ball, which they claim was stolen by a "thieving Aussie". Launching the 'Give Us Our Ball Back' campaign, The Sun said: "We call on our army of 10 million readers to swamp the Australian High Commission with the form above to get what is rightfully ours." New South Wales's Minister of Sport, Sandra Nori, appealed to rugby fans to return the ball to England. She said: “The ball may have been taken by an Aussie, equally it could have been a Pom. Regardless, on behalf of the people of Sydney and New South Wales, I implore, in the spirit of fair-play, whoever has the ball to do the right thing and find a way of returning it.” It would take an act of canonisable honesty for someone to return that ball.

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