JAMES McLaren is watching the Rugby World Cup on television these days, but eight years ago he was strapping on his boots and playing for Scotland.
James, who has lived between Australia and Scotland, attended Holy Family school in Bathurst before he learnt to love rugby while at St Stanislaus’ College.
He returned to Scotland after school and went on to play for his home country for four years, but the father of four has since hung up his football boots and settled for family life in Bathurst.
His eldest child, Claudia, attended the same school as her dad, but is now at MacKillop College. Phoebe and Brodie are at Holy Family, while two-year-old Flynn has a while before he will follow his siblings.
“When I was seven I moved to Australia and went to Holy Family and Stannies,” Mr McLaren said yesterday.
“I was playing soccer but switched to rugby with the school and when we moved back to Scotland I was able to play for my country. I just missed the 1999 World Cup and retired after the 2003 Cup.”
McLaren believes New Zealand will be hard to beat in this year’s World Cup ,especially on home soil, but he would prefer Scotland or Australia to win.
“If New Zealand had four sides in I think any of them could win, because they just play so well and have great players,” McLaren said.
“To see Scotland win would be great, but it would also be good if Australia won.”