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Voted Ireland’s greatest player, fly-half Jack Kyle was a key figure in the Grand Slam-winning team of 1948.
Swift of thought and deed, Kyle seemed to play the game on pure instinct and was almost untouchable when he decided to let his genius be known.
The Ulsterman made his Ireland debut against France in 1947 and went on to win 46 caps – a record for a fly-half that stood for 34 years. Kyle was also a key player in an Irish side that won the Five Nations in 1949 and 1951, and captained them six times.
In between, Kyle played in all six tests and appeared in 19 games on the 1950 Lions tour to New Zealand and Australia, scoring seven tries. After scoring a scintillating try in Auckland, New Zealanders acknowledged that he was the best fly-half ever to visit their shores.
Kyle devoted his life after rugby to helping others as a surgeon in Africa.
It is great to have maintained so many friendships after so long, sometimes I wonder what our lives had been without our sport. It enriched our lives, we were born with the ability to do certain things on a rugby field that you dream you could never do.