Classic Wallabies – Where are they now: Steve Tuynman


Greater than 900 males have pulled on the Wallabies jersey in years passed by.

RUGBY.com.au is taking a stroll down reminiscence lane to seek out out what a few of Australia’s Traditional Wallabies are thus far and asking them to mirror on their Check journeys.

This week, Adam Lucius speaks to Traditional Wallaby Steve Tuynman.

Q: How did your rugby story begin?

A: My father was concerned with Hunters Hill juniors and my older brother was taking part in. I grew up reverse Boronia Park the place Hunters Hill juniors had been based mostly so it was a pure development. I performed soccer, cricket, swam as nicely…you performed and did every part again then however rugby was all the time the sport I used to be most interested in.

Q: Was it apparent to you at that stage that you simply had the mandatory expertise to make a go of it? 

A: You most likely don’t have these desires till you’re into your teenage years. Dad used to takes us to observe the Wallabies and NSW and I suppose that is the place you begin to suppose the sport might take you locations.

Q: The one factor that stands out about your early profession is the alternatives you had been afforded at such a younger age?

A: I used to be taking part in Colts (at Eastwood) at 15 and grade not lengthy after. Then got here the Schoolboys tour (of 1981/82). Australia had a fairly good historical past with reference to Schoolboys rugby. We had an excellent facet and gained each sport and solely had one attempt scored in opposition to us. One of many large recollections from that tour was being caught in Wales for every week after we had been snowed in. We stayed in an air power base on this large room filled with beds. You needed to dig your method out of the door daily. We had been speculated to go to Holland however that was cancelled, so we ended up going south to Cornwall and choosing up a sport there. It was quite a lot of enjoyable.

Q: On the again of that tour, your rep profession actually begins to take off.

A: I obtained chosen for Sydney after which NSW and ended up getting picked for the Wallabies tour (to New Zealand) that yr (1982). I might solely simply turned 19 and was taking part in with and in opposition to guys you’d seemed as much as and admired for therefore lengthy. I used to be the youngest and it was eye opening. These excursions had been arduous. You would be away for 2 months and play 13, 14 video games all through New Zealand. We performed Auckland, Wellington…all these types of groups. I want these excursions had been nonetheless round. They had been an ideal expertise.      

Q: You had been additionally taking part in Australian under-21s on the similar time?

A: I had about three or 4 years within the 21s. Again then our 21s facet, at one stage, had six Check gamers in it – Campo, Michael Lynagh, Tommy Lawton, Cameron Lillicrap, Jeff Miller (and Tuynman). You possibly can do each again then. You’d play 21s one week and the Wallabies the subsequent after which membership rugby on a Sunday.  

Q: Your Check debut got here in France in 1983. It should have been a tricky initiation?

Tuynman made his debut in the 1983 tour of France. Photo: Rugby AU ArchiveA: That was a fairly robust tour. They’d ship you from one finish of the nation to a different and the choose sides you’d play had been filled with internationals. By the point the Assessments come round they’ve just about labored out your complete sport. A whole lot of gamers made themselves unavailable for that tour so we had been a really younger facet and France was coming off profitable the 5 Nations. We did nicely to attract it (15-all).

Q: Australia misplaced the second Check – and also you nearly left behind a physique half?

A: Yeah, I just about misplaced my left ear in that sport. I used to be getting up out of a ruck and two of the French guys came to visit and rucked my head out. It just about ripped the ear off. We patched it up and I completed the sport. A lot to the amusement of everybody else, once they took the tape off the ear got here off with it. They stitched it up and after I obtained dwelling I had cosmetic surgery on it and obtained all of it fastened up. There have been no issues with my listening to or something like that.

Q: Did you resent that assault?

A: No. Nowadays there could be life bans however that is simply the best way the sport was then. Our first sport on tour was just about an all-in brawl the entire time. It was an actual badge of honour in the event you had been on the bottom and on prime of the ball and stayed there and obtained rucked.          

Q: The Grand Slam tour of ’84 continues to be spoken about in reverential tones. What an expertise that should have been?

A: No-one actually anticipated us to do nicely. There was a very large change in how we approached the sport. Alan Jones got here aboard and some younger blokes had been picked and every part simply got here collectively. It was a particular tour. It is a lengthy tour – you are away from household and buddies for just a few months – and you are not getting paid for it. There was lots you would have anxious about however the guys actually caught collectively. That tour actually arrange Australian rugby for a very long time to return.

Q: Lots of people say your pushover attempt in opposition to Wales at Cardiff Arms Park was the defining second of that Grand Slam tour?

A: We might talked about it within the lead-up to the sport. Our scrum was going nicely and we thought this might be a possibility to go for it. The decision was “Sampson”. The ball was there and I simply piled in on it. I suppose as No.eight I am the one who will get my title on the board. It positively silenced the group.  We gained quite a lot of respect from followers on that tour for the best way we performed.

Q: One other time you silenced the group was in 1986 whenever you scored what seemed a authentic attempt in opposition to the All Blacks within the second Check, just for referee Derek Bevan to disallow it. NZ gained the Check 13-12. Did you rating?

A: Sure, I felt it was a good try to so did everybody on the floor. Everybody count on for the ref, that’s. We ended up profitable that sequence (2-1) nevertheless it might have been Three-Zero.    

Q: You had been additionally a part of two different memorable moments in Australian Rugby historical past – the 1987 World Cup and the 1989 British Lions tour to Australia. What do you keep in mind of these instances?

Tuynman was part of the 1987 Rugby World Cup side. Photo Getty ImagesA: It might have been higher if we had been abroad for that World Cup. Guys had been working and had commitments. We most likely did not put together for the house surroundings as such. Australia learnt lots from that first World Cup as to learn how to put together for the subsequent one. We might go to heat up at Harmony Oval and also you needed to stroll by way of the carpark and await automobiles to drive by way of. We simply needed to get on with it. It was disappointing to not go all the best way. The Lions tour was superb. It is among the finest gamers on the earth popping out to play you. It wasn’t the perfect outcome (2-1 sequence loss) however nonetheless a  nice expertise.

Q: You had a chook’s eye view of that fateful go from David Campese to Greg Martin within the third and deciding Check. What was going by way of your thoughts?

A:  Poor previous Campo…he copped the blame however he additionally gained us heaps of video games. You simply can’t pin it on him. He was the most effective gamers on the earth.

Q: Speaking of birds, how did you earn the nickname “Chook”?

A: I’ve had that for so long as I can keep in mind. It is from Huge Chook from Sesame Avenue. I used to be tall with blond hair again then and had a giant nostril. It was applicable (laughs).

Q: What are the opposite stand-out moments of your worldwide profession?

A: A number of of us obtained picked within the World XV facet and performed video games within the UK with New Zealand and South African gamers. To share a room with Mark “Cowboy” Shaw and to coach and play with gamers of that calibre was fairly particular. However any time you play to your nation was a particular time. I do not see a lot of the blokes as of late however after I do it is identical to we might seen one another yesterday.      

Q: You performed 34 Assessments over nearly a decade however completed fairly early at simply 28. Why did you chop brief your worldwide profession?

A: My physique had had sufficient. I had again issues for ages. I didn’t actually know what was flawed so I saved going and hoped you’d get up on the day of the sport and really feel good. I obtained married and began a household and I wasn’t making any cash from rugby. I finished at worldwide degree and went again to membership at Eastwood for about three years. My physique was completed however that was quite a lot of enjoyable.

Q: I imagine a job you picked up with Bundy Rum quickly after retiring was additionally quite a lot of enjoyable?

Steve Tuynman was involved in the Bundaberg rum community initiatives with Mark Ella. Photo: Getty ImagesA: God, yeah (laughs). I did some contract work for the ARU once they obtained the Bundy sponsorship. Mark Ella and myself used to journey round Australia giving out rugby kits for golf equipment. We might go everywhere handing out goalpost pads, hit shields, balls…after which we might placed on a training clinic and a perform at evening. It was really actually good enjoyable. And we might have the odd quiet rum!        

Q: What have you ever been you to since these days?

A: I went again into rugby. Golf equipment had been using basic managers and I ended up at Norths Rugby. I wished to do administration and administration earlier than I went into teaching, which I have been at ever since. That is the profession now. I had six years on the Waratahs (as an assistant coach). We had been moderately profitable again then after which I came to visit right here to Japan (in 2009) and coached varied groups. I’ve been again and forwards between right here and Australia in that point. You’ve got simply obtained to go the place the roles are. In the mean time I’m concerned within the beginning up of a sports activities membership (Yokogawa Musashino Sport Membership). We have rugby, we have began up a junior academy, a youth academy for ladies and a ladies’ facet. We have additionally obtained college packages, academy packages. It is fairly full on. I coach the rugby. I might love to return again and coach at Tremendous Rugby degree nevertheless it’s all about timing with teaching jobs on this business.



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