In sporting terms, Newport RFC means everything to me, much more so than the national team, and if some say I am unpatriotic for that, then so be it. I am Newport born and bred, and have lived there all my life, although I have worked in various parts of Gwent, so as far as rugby is concerned, I am never going to support anyone else. I am currently based in the Pontypool area, but I am always pleased to talk to anyone about club rugby in Wales.
I have some allegiances to other sporting teams, both in rugby and other sports, as I am sure most of us do, eg Newport County, Man Utd, Glamorgan CCC, certain rugby clubs in Wales in different divisions to Newport, but if they all lose, and Newport RFC win, then it's been an excellent weekend........simple as that.
I have probably supported Newport since I was about 3 or 4 ( I will be 51 in May), apparently my gran used to sit me on her lap in the main grandstand, with a blanket/rug over us, and I do have some vague recollections of it. I probably started supporting "properly" though in the early sixties. I don't recall a "first match", but have fond memories of some great games in the sixties, notably at the Brewery Field on a cold winters evening, when we took Bridgend's ground record, which at that time, if I remember correctly, was about two & a half years old, plus cracking games at home against the likes of Watsonians, Cardiff, Blackheath, Abertillerry etc.
Favourite player has to be David Watkins, if only for sheer excitement, very, very very closely followed by two Souuh Africans - the great Gary Teichmann and the current Percy Montgomery (who as well as being extremely talented, always looks like he is giving 120%.........as did Shane Howarth, mind you)
Most memorable match - I could go for the 3-0 over New Zealand in '63.......yes I was there, and got drenched, but it has to be the Cup Final in 2001 against Neath. A triumph for sheer effort on the day, I felt, and really emotional for two reasons - Gary's last game for us, and, personally, because I'd missed the 1977 final when we beat Cardiff, as I was on my honeymoon (what a stupid thing to do, getting married, or maybe my timing was just bad !!). My mates who were there sometimes delight in reminding me of what a great day it was !!
PS-Forgot to add "nostalgia", if that's the correct word. Ours has been mainly a family group of supporters, with a few very good friends thrown in, and for relatives, we are all remarkably good "butties" as well. My dad and his brother are now too old/ill to attend matches, but we report back. So there is something about....."it's a family thing", and the company always being good even when the rugby wasn't (eg our almost relegation season in the late 90's)
Thanks again for all your efforts on behalf of the Trust, and for giving supporters like me, who sometimes can be critical of the performances, management etc (we can, but "outsiders mustn't !!), and are therefore "flawed" supporters (nobody's perfect!), the opportunity to speak.