After watching the 2011 Rugby World Cup, there is something apparent going on, beard love. Instead of hand shakes, I vote that the teams offer beard rubs out of respect for one another’s game. Or back rub in the steam room, or…. you get where I am going.
These are full on beards, none of this designer stubble nonsense that the likes of Ben Foden and Tom Croft tend to sport, or the little bit of “fluff” that lives under Alun Wyn Jones’s lip. In a contest that is exclusively fought over by the forwards, I would have included Frans Steyn if he hadn’t got rid of his Bjorn Borg look. (www.rugbyspectator.com)
Here are Rugby Spectator’s top ten Rugby World Cup beards (in no particular order):
1. Dan Cole (England)
The England tight head prop may only be 24, yes 24!, but he has already shown his impressive beard growing skills, displaying one to be proud of against Argentina on Saturday. It’s just missing the horns and he would be a dead ringer for Hagar the Horrible.
2. Jim Hamilton (Scotland)
Scotland’s entry comes from the Gloucester lock, whose beard marks a smooth transition from head hair to facial hair, though it looks bushy in texture. Combined with a full moustache, it is a set that wannabes should aspire to.
3. Jebb Sinclair (Canada)
The first of THREE Canadian entries, the Canucks have made the art of beard growing a speciality. With a slight rouge tint to it, Jebb Sinclair’s facial fuzz is like a toned down version of Mr Twit’s; slightly unruly with a bit of curl to it.
4. Adam Kleeburger (Canada)
Canada’s blindside flanker has a stunning beard. It has great depth to it: not just sculpting his face, but also adding a couple more inches to it. For once, we find somebody whose facial hair is tidier than his head hair. Congratulations Adam Kleeburger.
5. Martin Castrogiovanni (Italy)
As Sebastien Chabal has not been considered for the list, due to him not making France’s final 30, it is down to Castro to wave the flag for the caveman look. His long flowing locks and trademark beard made him one of the first choices for the list.
6. Tatafu Polota-Nau (Australia)
The Australia hooker has grown the complete set. The beard and moustache to go alongside his mini afro. I’d like to see Wallabies teammate, Radike Samo’s hair on Taf, see how that would work with the beard!
7. Hubert Buydens (Canada)
Our final Canadian tends to split the head and facial when on the pitch with plenty of tape. It’s not as showy as Kleeburger’s, but is still impressive and well groomed. The stand out feature of this is the fact that the moustache is a lighter shade than the beard, but it still works well.
8. Victor Matfield (South Africa)
This is a World Cup winning beard. The South African stalwart’s facial hair ranges from the designer stubble look to the full-on beard, currently he’s sporting the latter. Age is showing through it, as a hint of silver fox has started to appear, maybe it’ll make him look more attractive like George Clooney?
9. Adam Jones (Wales)
As half of the “Hair Bear Bunch”, with fellow Welshman Duncan Jones, the attention does go to his head at times. The beard looks good too. It’s full and complements his mane well, while the moustache just finishes the look perfectly.
10. PJ Van Lill (Namibia)
In what was close competition for the final spot on the list, PJ Van Lill gets it because it just works. The handlebar moustache blends well with the main body of the beard, but would still suit him on its own. A great effort.