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July 11 down the years
Chipping away at the code barriers
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Bryan Williams' burgeoning reputation was enhanced by another solid performance in South Africa on this day in 1970 © Getty Images
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1981
The AGM of the RFU relaxed the all-or-nothing - ideally nothing - approach to rugby league by passing a motion allowing amateur rugby league players to switch codes. Up until then anyone who had even played league was considered beyond the pale.

2009
Samoa all but booked their place in the 2011 Rugby World Cup with a 115-7 rout of Papua New Guinea in the Oceania play-off final first leg. They ran in 17 tries but within a minute of the start they actually trailed to a converted try … thereafter it was one-way traffic. The second leg a week later was a much closer affair, Samoa only managing a 73-12 victory.

1908
In what turned out to be the last win of the New Zealand part of their visit, the Anglo-Welsh team defeated Wanganui 9-6 but lost their star wing Reggie Gibbs who burst a blood vessel that put him out for the rest of the tour. Before he left the field, Gibbs was one of three try scorers with Johnnie Williams and James Davey adding the others.

1939
With war looming there came an announcement from the International Board that the home unions had decided "to resume relations" with France who had been slung out of the Five Nations in 1932 amid rumours of professionalism in their ranks. As it was, war meant they did not rejoin the competition until 1947.

1953
Kitwe was the scene of an exciting 8-8 draw in which Rhodesia held a touring Wallabies side for the first time. The sides were level at 5-5 at the break before Jan Louw's second try of the game put Rhodesia 8-5 up. A penalty from Cyril Burke five minutes from time spared Australia's blushes. It was the second of three matches between the sides in eight days. Australia won the other two.

1970
Bryan Williams, fast becoming an All Blacks star, scored his fourth try of their tour in South Africa to help the visitors record a deserved 34-17 win against Transvaal at Ellis Park. Full-back Fergie McCormick chipped in with 22 points, including a try.

1962
Tries by Dewi Bebb and Mike Weston, a dropped goal from Gordon Waddell and eleven points from the boot of John Willcox carried the Lions to a 20-6 win against the South African Combined Services at Olen Park in Potchefstroom.

1959
Ken Scotland, the Lions utility back, dropped two goals and starred at fly-half in an 11-6 win against Southland. Peter Jackson scored the Lions' only try at Rugby Park, a week before the first Test against the All Blacks.

1964
Hooker Ronnie Hill took ten strikes against the head for Rhodesia against France, who won 34-11 in the opening game of a six-match tour of South Africa.

© Scrum.com

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