Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Zinzan Brooke

Last week I woke up to hear that Zinzan Brooke was in a coma with head injuries in a Spanish hospital. He was coaching the Barbarians in a game against Spain and suffered the injury in Elche later in the night. Zinny is one of life’s originals. His wedding in New Zealand was a wonderful occasion, full of joy, song, laughter and rugby. With wife Ali and his mate Bernie McCahill, he spent the millennium New Year’s Eve in our London apartment overlooking the Thames, and was in irrepressible form. Zinny is one of the most competitive men I’ve ever met. No matter what is involved, he is always sure he can do it faster and better than you. As Jeremy Guscott once said of Lawrence Dallaglio, if you told Lawrence you lived at Sevenoaks in Kent, he would tell you he lived at Eightoaks. Zinny is cut from the same cloth. He was a fantastic No.8, certainly one of New Zealand’s best ever, and the only one who could drop goals from half-way in Test Matches. Zinny is a cavalier; a true renaissance man. The latest news is that he has been discharged from hospital and is now back home in London.