Passports of Convenience

  • John Harris
Part of the Global Culture and Sport book series (GCS)


My fellow countryman Ian Rush described his time playing football for Juventus as like living in a foreign country. Although he was widely mocked for making this observation, I can attest that Rushie was right as I had myself made the journey to live in Italy as a teenager. The history of sport is replete with cases of successful athletes who move away from home yet struggle to adjust to their life in a new country. Bale’s (1991) work on the migration of athletes to universities in the US is a particularly good example to illustrate this. While professional athletes like Rush, and an ever increasing number of rugby players, had moved to test their skills, and experience greater financial recompense, many others have moved nations to increase their chances of attaining international honours in the game and of performing for a national team other than the country in which they were born.


Pacific Island Rugby Player Rugby League Home Nation Rugby Union 
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Copyright information

© John Harris 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • John Harris
    • 1
  1. 1.Kent State UniversityUSA

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