January 23 down the years
Birth of a legendary Lion
Lions legend Scott Gibbs was born on this day in 1971
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Legendary Wales and British & Irish Lions centre Scott Gibbs was born in Bridgend. Gibbs made his Test debut for Wales in 1991 and won selection for his first Lions tour in 1993. In New Zealand he won two Test caps, in place of England skipper Will Carling, before switching codes to play for St. Helens in 1994. He returned to Union in 1996 as a faster, more powerful modern player. In 1997 he was selected for the Lions' victorious tour to South Africa, where he played three Tests and picked up the Player of the Series award. Arguably his finest moment in a Wales shirt came in 1999, when he carved through the England defence at Wembley to secure a dramatic 32-31 victory and deny England a Grand Slam.
Mick Doyle celebrated his Test debut by scoring Ireland's try in a 3-3 draw against France at Lansdowne Road. Doyle went on to win 20 consecutive Ireland caps and one for the 1968 Lions before moving into coaching with the national side and Leinster. In 1985 he secured Triple Crown and Five Nations Championship success with Ireland but suffered a heart-attack while in New Zealand for the 1987 Rugby World Cup. Doyle was also renowned as a tough journalist with Evening Herald and the Sunday Independent and in his full-time job was a leading vet.
France registered their second victory of the International Championship season, beating Ireland 8-0 in Paris. It was their first win at home against the Irish since 1931, with centre Maurice Prat scoring both of the French tries.
Ireland began their first successful Triple Crown campaign for 34 years a week late, with their match with Wales having been postponed seven days earlier owing to heavy snow. Ollie Campbell fired the Irish to a 20-12 win, kicking three goals in Dublin after wing Moss Finn had raced in for two tries. Scrum-half Terry
Holmes scored Wales' only try.
Leicester Tigers, who finished the season as champions, beat Gloucester 23-16 in an exciting match at Welford Road. Canadian international Dave Lougheed scores two tries for the winners, Joel Stransky one and Tim Stimpson chipped in with two penalties and a conversion.
Cardiff Blues guaranteed their position as number one seeds going into the Heineken Cup quarter-finals and finished with a 100% pool record for the first time after a 62-20 win over Calvisano at the Arms Park. The Blues had powered through their group but their top seeding only secured a tough tie with Toulouse in the quarter-finals after the French side had snuck in as a runner-up behind Bath.
The New Zealand Native side beat Spen Valley District 8-7 at Cleckheaton. The District side was "Yorkshire", the champion English county, in all but name.