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The gloves come off during North Island vs South Island match in New Zealand

Seriously? You want to make it about race? White 5 came in and essentially bear hugged the guy to stop the fight continuing. He clearly did not clothesline him, and there was absolutely no way he was going to break the guy's jaw. Are we even watching the same video?

4 Years, 9 Months ago

Motu Matu'u massive hits and great sportsmanship against the Rebels

He is hitting just high enough on the chest to clip their chins with his head and knock people out. This is incredibly dangerous, obviously, but not technically illegal at the moment. If it catches on I can see the laws being adjusted to take this into account. We can't have players getting knocked unconscious by what are essentially flying headbutts.

5 Years, 17 Hours ago

Motu Matu'u massive hits and great sportsmanship against the Rebels

Have to agree with the general sentiment here. The tackles may not technically be illegal, but they're pretty dangerous, for both players involved. He leads with the head like an NFL tackler, only he doesn't have a helmet and neck-brace to protect him... I can see him getting a serious head/neck injury in the future if he keeps tackling like that, and he's going to keep hospitalising other players, which can't be good for the game.

Also as others have pointed out, quickly rolling a guy over like that could have left him paralyzed for life

5 Years, 20 Hours ago

John Afoa suspended for four weeks for dangerous tackle

Age is a mitigating factor when you have reached the point Afoa is at in his career without a single yellow card, red card or ban. It is just an extension of the mitigation for having a clean record: the longer it's been clean for the better it looks.

5 Years, 1 Month ago

Jonny Sexton's great pass sets up Brian O'Driscoll try vs Cardiff Blues

They are confident because there is less fear of losing. Super Rugby is a long campaign with a reasonable amount of leeway for the occasional loss when your attacking play doesn't come off. There's also no relegation so worst comes to worst all that's hurt is your team's pride.

I also never understand the comparison between Super Rugby and most NH competitions. For a start the SR teams are provincial and dilute the talent pool of a country much less (more comparable to the Welsh provinces rather than the English or French clubs), and secondly it is played internationally. It's not a domestic competition and should only really be compared to the Heineken Cup, but even this is not fair. The Heineken is a knock-out system more like the World Cup than Super Rugby, which means teams are playing to avoid losing most of the time. Knockout rugby is not usually conducive to the kind of play Leinster pulled off here, which is why it's a bit special (considering this was a quarter final).

I didn't see the SH international sides pulling shit like this in the RWC knockout stages. Where were their fabled better, flashier skills then? :P

5 Years, 1 Month ago

Jonny Sexton's great pass sets up Brian O'Driscoll try vs Cardiff Blues

It seems like you are blaming the upper classes (who I agree may dominate rugby, at least at schoolboy level) for something that isn't their fault. It's not the fault of boys playing rugby at private schools that the vast majority of state schools only offer football. The simple fact is that football is ludicrously more popular, and especially amongst less well-off demographics.

Rugby is growing and diversifying all the time though. There are plenty of elite players from less well-to-do backgrounds now as the game becomes more professional and widespread. I remember reading once that Ugo Monye was more of a football fan than a rugby one, but he considered rugby his career. This appears to be the case for many of the England squad if you follow them on Twitter. Ben Morgan the new England 8 was a plumber until he joined the Scarlets a couple of years ago, Andrew Sheridan was a bricklayer and there are plenty of other examples. I wouldn't blame anything but the immense popularity of football for the over-representation of wealthier groups in rugby at the moment.

5 Years, 1 Month ago

Front rowers Ben Daley and Dan Palmer square off in Brisbane

So this resulted in off-field yellows, exactly like Du Plessis got for his slap. How did the white card in his case make any difference then? The citing commissioner reviewed both fights regardless...

5 Years, 1 Month ago

Rob Vickers cited following yellow card punch on Joe Marler

Impressed that Marler didn't attack him there... he has improved his discipline and temper it seems. Delon could learn a thing or two

5 Years, 2 Months ago

Wilkinson steers Toulon to victory over Montpellier at Stade Mayol

They were completely wrong to deny Palisson (I think) that try. The laws clearly state that you can ground the ball for a try from in touch, as long as you are not in possession of it. He slid into touch and pressed down on the ball for a try; he didn't pick it up and take it into touch.

22.4 (g) Player in touch or touch-in-goal. If an attacking player is in touch or in touch-in-goal, the player can score a try by grounding the ball in the opponents’ in-goal provided the player is not carrying the ball.

5 Years, 2 Months ago

Matt Giteau steps up as Toulon score late try against Stade Francais

Nice to see Steffon having a resurgence whilst his brother self-destructs... People complain about England lacking out and out sevens, but between S. Armitage, Andy Saull and Tom Johnson it's not like there aren't any good English qualified open-sides

5 Years, 3 Months ago