LYNN Evans’ extraordinary career is perhaps best summed up by the international demand for his new book.

‘From Valley Boy to Table Mountain: a life in Rugby’ has attracted readers from as far afield as Australia and the USA, along with several European countries.

It tells you everything about the legendary Oxfordshire coach’s impact during his 60-year career before you even open the book.

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“Sales have been quite encouraging in the areas I’ve coached, like Chinnor, Littlemore and the university (of Oxford),” the 83-year-old said.

“Last week, I went to a dinner celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Varsity match and I sold 15 copies, but should have taken three times that number.

“People from all over the world have been buying the book, sometimes through word of mouth and sometimes through a friend.

“It’s the people you meet who enrich your rugby career.”

Much of this international demand comes from Evans’ 15 years as Oxford University coach, winning five Varsity matches between 1981 and 1996.

In that time, the Littlemore resident mentored players from a range of backgrounds and abilities.

Among them was ex-England international Stuart Barnes, now rugby correspondent for the Times and Sunday Times, who wrote the foreword.

Evans said: “He was already a schoolboy international and joined the year I started, so I coached him for the three years he was here.

“Coaching at Oxford was special.

“I didn’t get on with one or two captains, though, and I mention that in the book – you’ve got to be honest.”

Evans attended the first RFU coaching week in 1964 and was schooled in a traditional, structured method of learning the game.

That changed when he attended a session in Marlow, Buckinghamshire, run by the great French rugby coach Pierre Villepreux in the late 1970s.

Players were challenged to overcome problems themselves through playing, rather than by instruction.

Evans said: “It was all game-play, but it had purpose.

“I got in contact to ask if I could come over and see him coach some more. I learnt so much.

“The more games you play, the more experience you have and the better you learn.

“I think the key is that it should be enjoyable.”

The book centres on that philosophy, termed ‘le plaisir de mouvement’ – the pleasure of movement – and how Evans’ experiences led him to coach that way.

He has taught countless players using that method, whether in spells at Chinnor, Littlemore or now Kingham Hill School, where he still coaches today.

Evans has held rugby courses in more than 20 countries, which also explains his wide-ranging influence.

He also uses the book to address a topical and concerning issue.

“Concussion is a massive problem in the game,” Evans added.

“If you’re using terms like ‘collisions’ and ‘power’ I don’t think many mothers are going to be happy with their children playing.”

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CHINNOR visit Bishops Stortford in their penultimate National League 1 away trip of the season on Saturday.

Henley Hawks will aim to leapfrog Leicester Lions in National 2 South, while Gosford All Blacks host Marlow in their last Southern Counties North game.