You go to heaven if you want, I would rather stay here

This time the call to go on the trip was from Tim Rodber, our club captain. It was complete fortune that I had been invited to go on this trip. The original invite to play in the Easter Rugby Classic in Bermuda had been extended to Rob Andrew, the England and Wasps fly-half. The match was to be played on Monday 4th April 2004 and Rob was unable to go because Wasps had beaten London Irish 29–14 in the quarter-finals of The Pilkington Cup and were due to play the Semi Finals on Saturday 2nd April 1994, preventing them going to Bermuda. Their loss was my good fortune and Tim Rodber was kind enough to ask me along with Matt Dawson from Northampton. The other players who were invited from England included Damian Hopley (who stopped in on his way back from Hong Kong) and Gareth Reece (the Canadian fly-half) who both played at Wasps. Three other Irish internationals were invited, Jim Staples, Simon Geoghegan and Neil Francis. The only other player that was invited was a Frenchman, Philippe Daubas.

Before I went to Bermuda I thought that it was part of the Caribbean. In fact, the islands are hundreds of miles north of the Bahamas in a staggeringly stunning stretch of the Atlantic east of North Carolina. Tim and I flew direct with British Airways from London to Bermuda and I will never forget the view from the plane as we approached the airport.


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