PUBLISHED : Friday, 31 March, 2006, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 31 March, 2006, 12:00am

Stripped for action

'We have a streaker ... not very shapely ... and it's masculine.'

These were the words of the BBC's renowned cricket commentator John Arlott when describing the art of streaking. Like it or not, the streaking phenomenon has a great tradition here.

Whatever it is about mixing rugby fans and large amounts of alcohol, it usually ends with someone dispensing with their apparel and galloping across the field. For a change we might even get some female streakers this time around, although if you are like New York Yankees baseball great Yogi Berra it may not make much difference.

'I couldn't tell if the streaker was a man or a woman because it had a bag on its head,' he once said.

But why is the act so prevalent at the Sevens? Martin Turner, 43, from London who stripped for the crowd 10 years ago gave his insight.

'To be honest I thought it was a normal thing to do at the time, so I stripped off and made a dash for it,' he said. However, local police are at their most vigilant when it comes to spotting expats with no clothes at this time of year, and before Turner could open his legs and show his class, he had been surrounded.

Yet the Englishman did clear a security barrier without doing himself a mischief and made it as far as the far touchline before the long arm of the law halted him.

'I was pinned to the ground by a mixture of policemen and security staff and handcuffed,' Martin said. 'I was then taken down past the East Stand to rousing cheers from the crowd. It's just part of the brilliant Sevens spirit.'

Turner was held overnight in a police cell and then brought before a magistrate the next day where he was fined for his efforts. He remained unrepentant, however. 'It was a once in a lifetime thing to do. I'd highly recommend it,' he said.