You are here
For readers of a certain age, the player in the photograph is the unmistakable David Campese, the brilliant Wallaby wing who was instrumental in the team's victory in that 1991 RWC. The event was hosted by five European nations with the final played at Twickenham.
Four pools of four teams apiece sent eight nations into the quarterfinals, in this, the second iteration of the RWC first contested in 1987, which crowned the All Blacks champions of the world.
"Campo," as he was nicknamed, was a force of nature on the pitch, and a try scorer of prodigious accomplishment. Speed, yes. Determination, plenty. An uncanny ability to create open space for daring, long, down the field runs. Add to these traits, a deceptive stutter step that propelled the winger as if he were a projectile fired from a gun, and that explains why he tied for the RWC 1991 try lead with six. He was named player of the tournament as Australia won the event, keeping the rugby crown Down Under for another four years.
The Wallabies went undefeated in pool play, defeating Western Samoa, 9-3, Wales 38-3, and Argentina 35-12. Then, in the match of the RWC, Australia nipped Ireland 19-18 in the quarter finals from a late game try from fly-half Michael Lynagh off of a near try by Campese. Campo had scored two tries in the match.
Australia beat New Zealand 16-6 in the semis, followed by a 12-6 Cup win against England. Away at Murrayfield, the Red Roses had advanced 9-6 against Scotland in a no try, downpour match in the other semis. (Tries in 1991 tallied four points.)
It was a more open style of rugby back then without binding in the lineouts. Words will not do Campo's tries justice, but video will. Link to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0rfTcww49zM