It’s doubtful if any of those in the party from Guy’s Hospital Rugby Club, enjoying a drink before heading off to the 2001 Lions match in Melbourne, realised that they were only a metaphorical stone’s throw from the venue where Alexander (Alec) William Pearson played his last rugby match, at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG). Or, even if they did, that one of his England caps was stored away there, deep down in the vaults of the Melbourne Cricket Club Museum.
Those 21st century representatives of the world’s oldest football club, founded in 1843, were soon to board trams and taxis and be spirited westward to what was then called the Colonial Stadium in docklands, the venue almost exactly one year earlier of the first ever Rugby Test match (Australia v South Africa) to be played under a closed roof.
Meanwhile, back in the darkness of the Melbourne Cricket Club…
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