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Frozen in time: how photographer Matt Mackey captured iconic try-scoring image of tragic Nevin Spence

Photographer Matt recalls memorable moment from 10 years ago today

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Photo finish: Nevin Spence’s touchdown

Photo finish: Nevin Spence’s touchdown

Photo finish: Nevin Spence’s touchdown

In capturing only a fragment of a second, the best sports photography manages to encapsulate far greater passages of time within its frame. Taken 10 years ago today, what after Nevin Spence's tragic passing became the definitive image of his rugby career is one such instance.

There is something about the sight of the former Ulster centre head over heels, the faintest smile beginning to creep across his face, that encapsulates far more than the act of merely crossing a white line with a ball in hand, reflecting the combination of joy and almost reckless commitment with which Spence played the game.

The confluence of events that must come together for such a result are at odds so long, it constitutes a minor miracle.


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