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Monday, May 14, 2012

Mamuka Gorgodze and Yoann Maestri sent off in Toulouse vs Montpellier battle

On a day that determined who progresses in the Top 14 play off race, two red cards and a yellow were brandished in a heated game between Toulouse and Montpellier. Both players are likely to face suspensions, ruling them out of the next round.

Toulouse won the match 20-13 and in doing so ended top of the table on 87 points, alongside Clermont, both of whom have securred semi-final places. The next two spots will be contested when Toulon play Racing Metro, and Castres play Montpellier.

Winger Timoci Matanavou scored three tries, but one of the more significant talking points in the game occured in the first half, when referee Frank Marciello sent three players from the field.

A quick tap from Luke McAlister led to a scuffle between a few players, before Mamuka Gorgodze flew in with a punch, to which Yoann Maestri retaliated.

Agustin Creevy was sin-binned, while Gorgodze and Maestri got red cards, a decision that Montpellier's Fulgence Ouedraogo said irritated him in light of the upcoming games. Both players will face a Ligue Nationale de Rugby disciplinary hearing and face a possible 20 day suspension. 

"Maciello told me he had more punches than the opponent. This is not a sufficient reason. We do not count the punches in a brawl," said Ouedraogo, before saying that Gorgodze is viewed as a violent player, but in reality he is not worse than any others. He added that his potential loss, ahead of their game against Castres, is a huge shame. 

Gorgodze, who joined Montpellier very early on in his rugby career, was featured on Total Rugby recently. You can view that interview, which includes highlights of Georgia vs Russia, here.

Posted by Rugbydump at 7:19 am | View Comments (39)

Posted in Big Hits & Dirty Play

Viewing 39 comments

Rugbydump May 14, 2012 11:28 am

Quick chat with McAlister about the fight here (Twitter)

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Ithilsul May 14, 2012 12:20 pm

Well noticed ^^
Whereas poor Burgess seems to have received more than deserved.

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Rugbydump May 14, 2012 3:37 pm

I thought the same at first, but Luke said that he was actually just helping with his contact lens!

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pepou May 14, 2012 11:50 am

as they say in France "Ouhlala" :D

0:12 = Gorgodze is insane

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Thierry May 14, 2012 1:04 pm

Such a shame those red cards... Fight is part of french rugby, there was no bad intentions there, let the game goes on !

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themull May 14, 2012 2:03 pm

Gorgodze started/escalated all of that and as a result he is the only one who should have been card deserved for the cheap shots (clear punches to the face while the player was being held by another)...

IRB will probably and wrongfully ban both players though

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Nick May 14, 2012 2:19 pm

Can we see less fights and more rugby on this blog please? Getting a bit boring now.

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Ian M May 14, 2012 3:12 pm

Nick, there's plenty of places to see highlights videos on the web, but not that many you can see the biff and the big hits. I come here to see big hits, fights, funny incidents, great tekkers and things like plays of the week. I can watch endless highlights reels anywhere, and besides, if you don't like it, don't watch it, no-one's forcing you.

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stroudos May 14, 2012 6:48 pm

I agree with Ian!

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Nick May 14, 2012 11:13 pm

Big Hits - great. Funny incidents - fabby. Great tekkers and plays of the week - even better. Any old numpty can swing a punch and end up getting sent off. Better things to showcase rugby for. That's not rugby, hence why the player is asked to leave the field of play. Interesting to see it every once in a while if there is a decent dual, but it seems to be on here too often. Bad advertisement for the game and I think it says something of your intelligence if it's a main attraction for you. Go watch some boxing where punches are part of the game. IDIOT! :)

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cafnc1 May 15, 2012 12:51 am

By the way... where can you watch good quality top14 highlights? I can only find them in Aeeriel's (rugbydump) channel on youtube

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Pretzel May 14, 2012 11:26 pm

Nick I don't know how long you have frequented RD for, I personally have been here a LONG time, I was under a different nickname before it became compulsory to sign up, I believe Stroudos has also been here a long time... The point I am getting at is that RD has ALWAYS been about "the rugby incidents" whether that be a decent try, or a big hit, or a red card/yellow card/punch up etc.. As much as I agree that punching is "not part of the game" the fact that the law system has catered for punching (striking) is an indication that it is very much an expected outcome of the game...

I personally enjoy seeing all incidents, whether they are a good try/average try to a punch up, they are all reflections on what is happening in the game today. Yes we had a punch up last week, but why report on that punch up and not report on this one? or vice versa? What makes one more desirable to post than another. The videos are all showing important parts of the professional game as they highlight characters behaviour so that IF this sort of incident occurs again, you and myself and everyone else will be able to say "ah yes, he has a history of being a bad boy"....

For instance Cudmore gets in more fights than Ali did, but the fact that they have been well documented here lets us ALL increase our knowledge of the rugby world and say "yeup, its Cudmore again"... If you are not interested in watching the video, at least take note of the names involved, at least that way you will be furthering your knowledge and you'll become educated further, is that not a reason in itself to appreciate the videos?

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Nick May 15, 2012 11:22 am

Point taken. I still think it features too much on RD though, and I too have been a regular viewer for a long time. Although I must agree that those players who tend to strike others during a game should be taken note of as it is a pretty pathetic and stupid reaction. Personally I’d like to see RD highlight players who fall to the ground screaming when an off the ball incident happens. One minute and fifty seconds in to this clip is a very good example of a really terrible side of rugby that seems to be taking grip, particularly by French and Italian players. You can also see Morgan Parra jumping to his feet to try and start a ruckous in order to escalate the situation and heighten the ‘offending’ players punishment. WE MUST NAME AND SHAME THESE PLAYERS before we see the kind of pathetic theatrics you get on the soccer pitch.

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Nick May 15, 2012 11:25 am

But not add it on RD every week though. Maybe RD could do a montage of pathetic rugby dives and post it just the once?

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Rugbydump May 15, 2012 1:36 pm

Nick, as Pretzel says, it's about featuring incidents that viewers hear or read about, and then want to see for themselves. Believe me there are plenty of punches/yellow cards that don't get posted on here. When red though or something big, it's worth posting as it's a talking point.

On that note, there was a Cheetahs/Stormers fight this weekend that will probably be posted soon. Hope you're looking forward to it ;)

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Pretzel May 15, 2012 4:09 pm

...Whaddya mean there are plenty of punches that don't get posted?!?!! Slackers! Get back to work and keep posting!..

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stroudos May 15, 2012 6:32 pm

Now you're talking my language!!

"Simulation" is the biggest threat to this awesome game. It is despicable and I agree 100% it needs to be stamped out. Make a stand now, otherwise sadly it seems inevitable that it will creep in as the game becomes more "professional".

And, by the way, I think it's especially heinous when it's a big front rower like Faure that's rolling around on the floor. Past generations of props would turn in their graves at the mere thought of falling over from a little slap.

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stroudos May 15, 2012 6:39 pm

(My post at 6:32 is in reply to Nick at 11:22.)

Also, I second the motion proposed in his next one:
Maybe RD could do a montage of pathetic rugby dives and post it just the once?
But rather than just the once, I'd like to see a new section, titled "Despicable cheats and diving scum".

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Pretzel May 15, 2012 7:27 pm

I third that! I like the title idea Stroudos, has my votes... I totally agree it is embarrassing... I detest football/soccer, however I can in SOME (very slight minuscule) ways, accept their pathetic diving when compared to rugby... I mean you have guys who chase a ball around and are not supposed to make contact, so when contact is made they milk it... (totally unacceptable, but I can see why they can get away with it)...

In rugby however you have guys who generally weigh a fair amount, rucking, mauling, tackling, and generally smashing each other around, and seeing ANY player let alone a forward, and for that matter a front row player falling like a fairy at the slightest hint at a love tap is incredibly embarrassing. "Yes I can be a tough as nails nasty front rower, I can smash anyone out the way, I RIGHT in the thick of it, but I can't take a slap"..

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07015678 May 15, 2012 9:05 pm

Let's see it happen RugbyDump! Down with the big sissies in Rigby. Let's set up this section of the site and rinse these disgraceful individuals. Or even a montage at the very least!?!?!?!

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Pretzel May 15, 2012 10:50 pm

You could always set up a "upcoming" post and ask people to post clips if you are struggling to find a good amount.. I can think of numerous incidents, a couple involved Lee Byrne, one involving a "headbutt" (pfft rubbish) by a guy called Tom James I believe.. it can all come together!

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Rugbydump May 15, 2012 1:37 pm

@ cafnc1, I think ESPN has an online pay service for those in the US, and Rugby+ in France might have the same. Otherwise, it's just TV, like the old days.

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kadova May 14, 2012 4:23 pm

In the Top14, referees usually give the same colour to both players. And it's why some French fans complain sometimes when a non-french referee in an international/european game gives different colours to both players in a similar situation and the french player gets more.

(hope that makes sense to you).

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Pretzel May 14, 2012 11:32 pm

Firstly, your comment makes perfect sense.
Secondly, I actually had not considered Top14 referees process' before, that is a very nice insight, so thank you very much. I had often wondered in the past how French fans can sometimes get seriously upset when one (french) player is a lot more at fault and gets punished harsher than another (non french) player.

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moddeur May 14, 2012 5:03 pm

My point of view: good job by the referee. I never mind a scuffle, or a punch going here or there, but this was not just one punch or two, this was a full-blown exchange that lasted a while.
And so, as it turned out that these two grown men (whom I both appreciate btw) didn't actually want to play rugby, well it was fine to have them leave the field. When will players start to understand that they have plenty of time off the field to fight with whoever they see fit? Sonny Bill Williams has figured this out, why can't everyone else?

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BuzzKillington May 14, 2012 5:05 pm

Great to see all these big hits and fights on RD lately, reminds me of the old days when there wasn't much but the madness.

Gorgodze is a lunatic. And to cap it off he has flailing girl punches. Surprised someone hasn't chinned him yet. Shame, because he's a fantastic player, and tough as they come otherwise.

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Pretzel May 14, 2012 5:33 pm


I appreciate you bringing this video to us RD but quite frankly I yawn at referee decisions...

Last week I felt Jim Hamilton and David Paice shouldn't have been yellow carded in the first place (but didn't have a problem with the red cards seeing as the referees hands were tied after he had already yellow'd them)... this week I'd have said give them a yellow card, and instead there is a red...

So it looks like I am a step behind the governing bodies...

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Joony May 14, 2012 10:24 pm

I have a lot of respect for Gorgodze, he is a great player...very powerful and has an awesome work rate. Its a pity the Georgian guys have such bad tempers (i.e. Look up Kolelishvili). Still think a yellow would have sufficed.

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Oceansnz May 15, 2012 1:37 am

Hey Ma! Dad and I went to a fight today and a game broke out!

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Jon May 15, 2012 8:44 am

Personally, as a neutral from the SH, I find that amount of cards for what amounts to nothing more than a little scuffle ridiculous.
It's crazy.
Two reds and a yellow for that?
In the S15 that would be at most two yellows, half the time it'd be nothing more than a penalty.

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Pretzel May 15, 2012 8:52 am

Whilst I somewhat agree with you, sadly the SH governing body disagrees with the outcomes hence why we have seen; on a few occasions, players being banned after just receiving a yellow card, or no card at all...

I totally agree this was overboard, and I agree that in the S15 the REFEREE'S have the right idea, however I think that something needs to be done about the amount of bans players are getting..

I may have a selective memory on this one, however I am sure there were not nearly the same amount of bans in the past as there are these days. (By past I am talking year 2000 at the earliest...) Are players getting dirtier or dare I say, is the game getting "softer"

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Jon May 15, 2012 1:52 pm

I agree. Citing commisions are a joke universally in rugby union.
And you're right, ten years ago cards and bans were rare and used sparingly.
I understand bans and cards for dangerous reckless play, but to give cards for something as inocuous as a couple forwards exchanging some rabbit punches, it just seems way too excessive.

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Pretzel May 15, 2012 4:12 pm

Totally agree... As I said above somewhere, the punches last week I'd have not given anything for, they were initially given a yellow... This week I'd have given these punches a yellow, but the referee decides on a red..

Sigh.. perhaps there will be a shake up in the future.

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themull May 15, 2012 9:40 pm

Look at it this way men...

By today's standards and from what I've seen over last two years Johnny Wilkonson's tackle, probably his most famous tackle of all time and one featured on pretty much every tackle compilation anybody makes would have been yellow/red card and ban worthy...

I used to support the bans being brought in for actual spear tackles say Umaga on BOD, or any other incicdent where a player is actually driven head first into the ground..But the penalty given against Ferris against Wales in this year six nations is just one example of how it is ruining the game..Another is Warburton getting a red card for a tackle that was no more dangerous than any standard tackle...

I'm all for yellows and reds and bans for guys who legitimately go out to drive a guy head first vertically (or almost so) into the ground, or eye gougers or men like Goorgodze here throwing cheap shots, but a guy coming down just marginally past the horizontal is no more dangerous than a standard hit and I have yet to have seen anybody seriously injured by a hit like Warburtons on Clerc...

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Pretzel May 15, 2012 10:57 pm

Well, Ntamack landed on his upper body/shoulder area, his feet were past the horizontal, and Wilkinson did drive him into the ground... I think if we were to referee games perfectly to the letter of the law then the only dispute would be whether he was lifted and tipped, or turned or whatever the latest word is.

I totally agree that in theory this tackle would be very close to the border, I am not 100% convinced that it would be card worthy today, however referees are prone to make mistakes in tackle situations and it could well be misinterpreted.

However the way the game is going, and if it continues at it's current rate then another 5 years or so and that Wilkinson tackle will be a few months ban at the least!

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cheyanqui May 15, 2012 4:35 pm

Gorgodze: great player, but a dog hit.

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GEORGE December 15, 2012 1:13 pm

you don't know what real tackle is .... tackle must be perfect for position and the way you make it is not important.... he is in barbarians as well and everyone knows that he is one of the greatest players of all time ... you should watch a video for example Mamuka gorgodze hits watch it and then answer on my question : Is it better tu tackle like chabal does and stop yor opposite player there or is it better to tackle like gorgodze does , to tackle and run with your opposite player about 3-4 meters ???

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Frenchie May 17, 2012 6:38 am

@ Thierry : to say that fights are part of French rugby is silly. There are fights in rugby, in every countries and i don't think there are more fights in France than anywhere else.

There i think yellow cards would have been enough.
I do think though that Gorgodze went for it, Maestri only coming to help his team mate.

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Pretzel May 17, 2012 12:09 pm

There appears to be a lot more documented French fights than any other country. Victor Matfield said that when he moved to play in France he had to improve his boxing skills as there is a lot of boxing in French rugby... It isn't so much a negative comment, it is just an opinion based on the evidence we have. I wouldn't say it is "part of French rugby" in the sense that it is totally acceptable and should be allowed, like in ice hockey, however it is something that does not appear to be disgraceful to many French fans (and most other rugby fans enjoy seeing a scrap), and in the past it was not punished as severely as it is these days, so in a way it was just "accepted" as a potential outcome.

As I said this does not; in my opinion, make French rugby any less serious or credible.

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