Rugby: Jonah Lomu, John Kirwan named in Ian McGeechan’s all-star dream team


All Black legends Jonah Lomu and John Kirwan have been named in former British and Irish Lions coach Ian McGeechan’s rugby dream team.

McGeechan named Kirwan on the right wing and Lomu on the left, as part of his all-star XV in a series of articles for London’s Telegraph.

McGeechan said Lomu’s impact on rugby was “immense”.

“He was built like a train and could run like one. But he could also really play rugby,” he said. “Lomu’s skills were honed on the sevens circuit with New Zealand.

“I remember watching him at the Hong Kong Sevens and being absolutely blown away, not only by his size and pace but his footballing ability.

“The game needed a superstar, and it got one in Lomu. He was brilliant for rugby.”

John Kirwan (right). Photo / Photosport
John Kirwan (right). Photo / Photosport

Meanwhile, Kirwan was described as a “prototype for what came after him”.

McGeechan said Kirwan paved the way for players like Lomu.

“He was big and strong as well as being incredibly fast. He was a lethal finisher, too. That 80m try against Italy in the first World Cup in 1987 has gone down in history,” McGeechan said.

“But he had an all-round game; he could carry the ball through heavy traffic, he could offload, he was like an extra back-rower at times. Plus, he had natural effortless pace.”

McGeechan was a former midfielder for Scotland and the Lions in the 1970s.

He named Wales and Lions great JPR Williams at fullback.



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