In today's Irish Independent, Alan Quinlan's column saw him pay a visit to a fellow Munster legend and a long-time former teammate in John 'The Bull' Hayes.
The big Bruff man was one of Irish rugby's more enigmatic figures, lauded across the four provinces while remaining somewhat of a mystery due to his media-shy persona. Hayes, for example, asked to be pardoned from Ireland's 2009 Grand Slam celebrations, instead driving home. Quinlan explores this side of the great man and more in a terrific piece, which you can read in full here.
Perhaps our favourite segment from the feature interview, however, is the typically comical exchange the pair had regarding Hayes' iconic try in Toulouse almost 17 years ago.
On May 6th 2000, 'The Bull' did a number on European rugby's aristocrats on a sweltering day in Bordeaux, helping Munster to their first ever Heineken Cup final.
Quinlan, however, maintains it was the prop forward's laziness which saw him rewarded at Stade Lescure, writing that the magic of the try disguised the fact that 'John stayed on the ground for about 20 seconds after being tackled in an early phase of that attack, before inadvertently finding himself at the right place at the right time, to cross the line'. Naturally, The Bull was having none of it.
Alan Quinlan: Let's remember this clearly. Dominic Crotty made a line break, gets tackled and pops the pass to you. You fall over the line and the only reason you were there was because you were too f*****g lazy to get your big arse off the floor.
John Hayes: Go away you. If an openside had got that score, they'd say he showed great anticipation. I wasn't lying there resting, I was watching how the play would unfold.
Alan Quinlan: Watching? It was just a coincidence you got back up and found yourself in the right place at the right time.
John Hayes: Hold on a minute, you weren't even playing. You were on the bench… where you spent most of your shaggin' career. The only time I ever saw you move fast was just before the 1999 World Cup when we were down on some team-building weekend in Mayo. We were climbing over these wooden frames, each of us doing our bit, and you, being the eejit you are, complained about a sore calf. Next thing, the phone rings. Donal Lenihan (then the Ireland team manager) is onto Deccie (Kidney) saying that David Corkery has gone down injured and they wanted you to come in as a replacement. And what did you do? You sprinted - literally sprinted - to the car. Not a goodbye, a good luck, nor nothing. Off you went, like Usain Bolt. Injured on a Tuesday, you played that Friday, the most miraculous medical recovery I am ever likely to witness.
There was no coming back from that for Quinlan. As you can imagine, his piece is filled with similar anecdotes and insights, and it's well worth the two bob if you're passing the shop at some stage this evening. You can also read it in full on the Irish Independent website.