David Sole Obituary – Death: A Scottish Rugby Legend passed away
In the esteemed history of Scottish rugby, few figures shine as brightly as Edinburgh prop David Sole. Recognized not only for his distinctive headband but also for his outstanding leadership, Sole left an indelible mark as one of Scotland’s finest captains, achieving the remarkable feat of securing the Grand Slam from England in the historic year of 1990.
Despite his smaller stature compared to the average prop, Sole distinguished himself with exceptional handling ability and unwavering tenacity in loose play. A scrummager who never allowed a pushover try throughout his entire career, Sole defied stereotypes and became a stalwart for Scottish rugby.
Sole’s international journey began in the 1986 season with a memorable 18-17 victory over France. While a narrow loss to Wales prevented Scotland from claiming the Championship that year, it marked the commencement of Sole’s impactful presence on the rugby field.
In the 1987 season, Scotland performed admirably in the Championship, winning two out of four games. Despite a mixed bag of results in the World Cup, including a 20-20 draw with Grand Slam champions France, the quarter-final against New Zealand posed a formidable challenge, resulting in a 30-3 defeat. Nevertheless, Scotland’s resilience was evident, facing an All Blacks team that dominated the entire tournament.
Moving to 1988, Scotland’s Championship campaign yielded only one win. However, the 1989 season hinted at future success as Scotland secured a joint-second finish with England. A memorable draw at Twickenham, boosted by John Jeffrey’s first-half try, showcased Scotland’s growing prowess.
In 1989, David Sole reached a pinnacle in his career as a key member of the British Lions, contributing to their 2-1 series win over Australia. The unbroken front row, featuring Sole alongside Brian Moore and Dai Young, played a crucial role in the Lions’ success. Sole’s adept handling skills found ideal expression on the hard, fast grounds of Australia.
David Sole’s legacy goes beyond victories and accolades; it embodies the spirit of resilience, leadership, and skill that defines a rugby legend. As we reflect on his impactful career, Sole remains an enduring symbol of Scottish rugby excellence.