'The Bounce of the Century' they called it. A ball kicked across Cardiff Arms Park in the dying minutes of a match between two of international rugby's fiercest rivals. The world's two greatest wingers waited as it bounced towards them, knowing that whoever caught the ball would score and win the match for his country. Dragons and All Blacks tells what happened when Wales played New Zealand in 1953. The story is written from contemporary accounts and the memories of the men who played that day, including Bob Stuart and Bleddyn Williams, for many of whom the match was the highlight of a career. The book retells the story of two teams and the men who played for them, and charts the events of their lives: how they got to that meeting point in Cardiff in December 1953, and what has happened to them in the half-century since. Dragons and All Blacks examines the remarkable relationship between two countries on opposite sides of the world, brought together by a mutual passion for rugby with few parallels elsewhere.
It shows how their rivalry has developed and changed over a century - from perhaps the greatest of all rugby matches in 1905 to the spectacular Wales - All Blacks clash in the 2003 Rugby World Cup.
Huw Richards is the rugby correspondent of the Financial Times and has reported on over 200 internationals, including all five World Cups.