It was a tremendous bonus as it not only gave me the opportunity to indulge myself in the game itself, but also the beautiful Georgian city of Edinburgh - a great favourite of mine.
Promising my wife a belated Valentine's Day break in the Scottish capital I set about trying to find a hotel. No cheap Bed & Breakfast would suffice anymore and with only three weeks to the match there were very few spare beds in town. What else could I do? I swallowed hard, broke out my flexible friend, and booked into the grand and imposing Hilton Caledonian, just off Princes St.
"Would you like a room with a view of the castle?" asked the receptionist, before quoting a price of rock-star proportions. I politely declined,
"No, the car park will do just fine!"
We flew up late on the Friday night, checked in at the hotel, and went out in search of sustenance. Edinburgh was a blaze of red shirted revelry and doorman after doorman turned us away, presumably for being too sober. At least we had the hotel mini-bar to fall back on.
Match day arrived amidst glorious sunshine coach loads of Welsh reinforcements were pouring into town, headed for the bars at the front line, ready for the "big push" when they opened. "Never pass a bar with your name on the door", I had once been told. So at "Dirty Dick's" in Rose St. I duly stopped and very nearly stayed - it was so full I couldn't get out!
The game itself is probably best remembered for Wales snatching a draw from the jaws of victory. The kilted Scot next to me in the South stand was clearly regretting getting out of bed that day, until something clicked in the second half and the blue-shirted ones began to run amok. He was a friendly chap, but to this day I still haven't a clue what he was talking to me about throughout the game. Maybe someone else will have better luck if he turns up in Cardiff this year!
At full time we made our way directly to the Grassmarket, determined to get into the pubs this time. Fed and watered we retired to enjoy our luxury accomodation,
"Let's finish off the mini-bar", I suggested without thinking first.
My crikey, how I paid for my mis-placed enthusiasm when I saw the bill the next morning!
At least my Wife was laughing!
Wales 7s captain Luke Treharne may have only played once on the World Series, but he has full confidence in his side as they prepare for the opening two rounds of this year's series in Dubai and South Africa, as WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie discovers.
Wales 7s Manager Steff Thomas believes Luke Treharne has all the attriubutes to be a top class captain. WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie hears his reasons why as the squad prepare for the opening two legs of the new World Series in Dubai and South Africa.
The British & Irish Cup kicks off this weekend with the four Regional Premiership Select XVs flying the flag for Wales. Welsh
Sat 14 Nov: Blues Premiership Select v Nottingham (2.30) & Connacht Eagles v Dragons (2.30)
Sun 15 Nov: Yorkshire Carnegie v Ospreys Premiership Select (1.30) & Scarlets v Bedford Blues (3.00)
The Welsh Rugby Union is forming a new Youth Board with a brief to help keep more young people involved in the game during their late teenage years and beyond. The first task of the fifteen strong Board will be to analyse and consider the issues which lead to a number of youngsters drifting away from the sport between the ages of 16 and 21. To apply visit www.wru.wales/youthboard
The Foster's Challenge Cup will involve the 12 Principality Premiership sides and will run during European and British & Irish Cup weeks, providing vital fixtures for the participating clubs and an opportunity for upcoming players to step up to semi-professional rugby and make a claim for starting places within the Premiership squads.
Eighty schools and colleges in Wales now have a full time rugby officer as part of the WRU's school club hub scheme. All of the school club hub officers recently gathered at the National Centre of Excellence for various workshops.
With Liam Williams forced out of the World Cup through injury, lock Luke Charteris and Skills Coach Neil Jenkins say they have to put yesterday's defeat behind them as Wales now look ahead to another physical encounter against South Africa in the quarter-finals of the Rugby World Cup.
WRU Consultant Head of Physical Performance Paul Stridgeon praises the Physical Performance department for their work and dedication as he addresses the media ahead of Wales' Pool A clash against Australia
Twelve young people have been selected to follow a one year WRU Coach Core apprenticeship programme. Coach Core was set up by the Royal Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry as part of the Olympics legacy in 2012 and the Duke of Cambridge was on hand to meet the apprentices on their first day in the job. The programme has been funded by the Hunter Foundation.