Do you remember where you were when England won the Rugby World Cup in 2003? Paul K does…

England2003I was working at a local hotel in their kitchen whilst studying for my A Levels. Luckily we were able to sneak upstairs to one of the rooms, don our England rugby jerseys and watch extra time. Time stands still for nobody but it made an exception for Jonny Wilkinson that day. Seeing his kick at goal, the ball rising up and not knowing if it was going over was completely gut wrenching as a spectator… I waited with bated breath, wondering what must
be going through the players’ heads!

Well, after recently getting the chance to watch the new behind-the-scenes sports documentary Building Jerusalem I understand just that little bit more!

Building JerusalemWhen I found out there would be a chance to go to the premiere of Building Jerusalem in London, I jumped at it. Thanks to Kaleidoscope we attended the premiere on the 1st September with our Marketing Agency, Zero Degrees West. I had seen the trailer and was ready to lift the lid on what it took to propel a team of professional sportsmen into the history books.

Building Jerusalem covers the years prior to the Rugby World Cup and the controversy surrounding the RFU, player and manager selection; as well as the former era of rugby when it was purely amateur. I didn’t know that back in the day England players were actually left out of pocket, playing for their country on an amateur basis. Giving up their time and skipping days of paid work just to wear that coveted jersey.

The amount of pressure the players and coaches were under is made clear; they undertook a strenuous training regime to prepare physically and applied a team mentality to everything they did. None of the players were on that journey alone, although during some periods on and off the pitch it may have felt like they were battling with their inner demons. Each game in that tournament was approached as a step in a journey to the ultimate goal, the discipline and grace held by the players and coaching staff is admirable.

Building Jerusalem is a great watch for anyone who loves rugby and likes sport. The witty banter of the players is also present; no such film about rugby would be right without Martin Johnson offering his opinion on certain topics.

The opportunity afterwards to ask Jonny Wilkinson, Martin Johnson, Matt Dawson and Sir Clive Woodward questions was a huge delight too, a perfect end to a great evening – no longer did I have to just wonder what they were thinking when I was stood in that hotel room back in 2003!

And now it’s time to don that jersey again… The Rugby World Cup kicks off this week on Friday 18th September with England vs. Fiji on ITV.

Check out our complete guide to the RWC 2015 here!

Building Jerusalem – Available to buy on DVD & Blu-ray from 14th September


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