Eric rec­ol­lects pre­vi­ous cup win

Matamata Chronicle - - News - By LAURA MCLEAY

In 1987 Eric Jack­son was given the job of show­cas­ing the Webb El­lis Cup around the Waikato af­ter the All Blacks won against France and 24 years later he still has the pho­tos to prove it.

When the Mata­mata Chron­i­cle spoke to Mr Jack­son last week, he had high hopes that the All Blacks would once again win against France in the fi­nals at Eden Park on Sun­day.

He was a mem­ber of the 1987 Rugby World Cup com­mit­tee and in charge of the Waikato re­gion.

Not only did he have the job of show­cas­ing the tro­phy but he had to or­gan­ise the match be­tween Ar­gentina and Fiji that was played in Hamil­ton.

‘‘My job was to find ac­com­mo­da­tion for the teams and 36 me­dia peo­ple for a week while they were in Hamil­ton,’’ he said.

‘‘The whole thing was just such a bril­liant ex­pe­ri­ence.’’

Mr Jack­son said they had started plan­ning 18 months be­fore the match and with min­i­mal tech­nol­ogy, it wasn’t all that easy.

‘‘We had to set up the whole game with­out the use of faxes or cell phones. All 36 me­dia turned up at mid­night be­fore the game and we had to or­gan­ise them all which was a bit of fun,’’ he said.

Although his work was vol­un­tary, he scored him­self a free ticket to the fi­nal in 87 and fol­low­ing the All Blacks’ out­stand­ing win, Mr Jack­son was in­vited to have din­ner with the two teams. ‘‘We had din­ner with the teams which was a high­light and then part of my job was to take the tro­phy around the Waikato for peo­ple to have a look at. It re­ally was great fun.’’

Af­ter the tour­na­ment he re­ceived a per­sonal let­ter of thanks from John Ken­dal­lCar­pen­ter, chair­man of the Rugby World Cup Com­mit­tee and a former Eng­land for­ward.

Mr Jack­son has been keen on rugby most of his life and was on the Waikato Rugby Union for 24 years.

He said he had thor­oughly en­joyed this year’s world cup which had many sim­i­lar­i­ties to the 1987 cup and he was glad to see the na­tion come to­gether and sup­port the All Blacks once again.

‘‘I think this world cup has been even bet­ter than the 1987 one with New Zealand be­ing be­hind ev­ery mo­ment of it,’’ he said.

Mem­o­ries: Eric Jack­son with a photo of him­self hold­ing the Webb El­lis Cup in 1987 and a per­sonal let­ter from the well-known John Ken­dall-Car­pen­ter.

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