Scotland mourn great McLeod

2014-05-13 17:00
Rugby ball (File)

London - Scotland great Hugh McLeod has died aged 81, the Scottish Rugby Union announced Tuesday.

The prop forward won 40 Scotland caps, a considerable number for the time, from 1954-1962 and was twice a tourist with the British and Irish Lions, being selected for the 1955 trip to South Africa and playing in all six Tests for the combined side in New Zealand and Australia four years later.

McLeod's achievements were all the more remarkable as he did not start playing rugby union until the age of 16.

Having made his name as a player at the celebrated Hawick club, he later helped guide the Borders side to the first five official Scottish Championship titles in the 1970s and last year he was inducted into Scottish rugby's Hall of Fame.

Recalling his first Test, McLeod recently told the SRU website: "I played in many Scottish trials before I got my first cap. I was in the tank corps at Catterick (northern England) when I was informed I was in the Scotland side to play against the French in '54.

"I'd kind of took the 'flu when I went to Murrayfield for my first international. My mother came -- she followed the rugby a wee bit, but my father didn't follow it a lot. She came round the back of the stand, when we were getting our photos taken, to see us before we went out to play.

"She said afterwards 'You looked like a ghost, I don't know how you played.' But it didn't affect me, I must have got over it. I can't remember an awful lot about the game. It was something new, a step-up, it was bigger and faster."

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