Sunday, July 12, 2015
The Maori All Blacks had a strong second half to come from behind and beat Fiji 27-26 in a hard fought contest in Suva on Saturday. Fiji had led 26-10 at the break but failed to score a point in the second half, as the Maori side scored 17 points in an impressive effort.
The win extends the Maori All Blacks' 12-year unbeaten run against international sides to 19 victories, thanks to a concerted effort in the second half.
"They trapped us in that first half, stuck us in our own half and we couldn't get out," said Maori skipper Charlie Ngatai, who recently made his full All Blacks Test debut against Samoa in Apia.
"We had to get the ball down their end, and build pressure and phases and hold onto the ball."
Nemani Nadolo, the Crusaders and Fijian superstar, was in charge of the kicking duties for the hosts, and while he missed a chance to convert Fiji's Kini Murimurivalu try, he did kick them to an 8-0 lead with a penalty.
Impressive 18-year-old Rieko Ioane scored a try after another penalty exchange, before Nadolo scored his 15th Test try just five minutes out from the halftime break. Akapusi Ngera then extended their lead as he barrelled over from close range.
Damian Mckenzie was rewarded with a try in the second period before Super Rugby Final star Elliot Dixon, scored the winning try late in the game. Otere Black converted and it was heartbreak for the home side, but a great come from behind win for the visitors.
The Maori All Blacks will play the New Zealand Barbarians at Eden Park next weekend.
Note: You can view extended highlights on page two if the below video doesn't work for you
Friday, July 10, 2015
You might not have seen this a few days ago if you only caught up on the highlights of Samoa vs New Zealand, but it was a pretty funny moment in the first half. More so because referee Jaco Peyper found it absolutely hilarious to see his touch judge get hit on the head by the ball.
Peyper has been a busy man of late, refereeing the Super Rugby Final, and then this historic clash in Apia. He will also take charge of the opening match of the Rugby World Cup on 18 September, between England and Fiji at Twickenham.
Unfortunately there wasn't a good shot of Peyper laughing, but it's quite funny nevertheless.
Thursday, July 09, 2015
Ruck Clean Out Drill
RUGBY DRILL: Ruck Clean Out - training your players to make snap decisions on how to eliminate threats at the breakdown reduces balls lost to turnovers, ensures quick ball, AND increases likelihood of penalties against the jackal for going off his feet.For more drills like this, check out our Coaches Pre-Season 2015 Sale here: http://coaching.rugbydump.com/coaches_preseason_july2015-v2Coaches - what do you think? Would you/do you use this drill at your sessions?Posted by Rugbydump.com on Thursday, July 9, 2015
We're working with a new partner to supply the rugby community with the best possible resources available when it comes to both coaching, and training. Today we're pushing out the latest offer for coaches, giving you access to over 2500 drills and plays featuring elite coaches.
As the above video on the Ruck Clean Out shows, training your players to make snap decisions on how to eliminate threats at the breakdown reduces balls lost to turnovers, ensures quick ball, AND increases the likelihood of penalties, against the jackal, for going off his feet.
For more drills like this, check out our Coaches Pre-Season 2015 Sale
Coaches - what do you think? Would you/do you use this drill at your sessions?
There must be something in the water down in New Zealand. First "Tongan Thor" came out of the woodwork (but now plays his rugby in Australia), then another diamond prospect appeared, first emerging aged 17, and looks set to be fast tracked into international rugby.
Aucklander Rieko Ioane burst onto the stage in February during the Wellington leg of the World Sevens series. Only out of school for 3 months, Rieko Ioane was one of the most important players for New Zealand.
One of four debutants on the weekend, Ioane scored a try in the semi-final and 2 in the final against England to secure the win. The media have described him as 'big as Sonny Bill, faster than Folau', and judging by the video, they aren’t far wrong.
Whether stepping 2 round the outside, flattening a defender or putting in the hit himself, it is hard to believe that Ioane was just 17 years old at the time, having needed his parents' permission earlier in the week to play in an open tournament. He turned 18 in March.
He actually comes from solid rugby stock. His father Eddie played lock for Samoa, while mother Sandra represented the Black Ferns. Older brother Akira, just 20, made a name for himself with the Blues in Super Rugby, as well as with the Under 20 All Blacks.
Sevens rugby is a great channel for showing young talent. It is a much faster version of the game, needing all core skills to be at the highest standard. The skills it teaches about space, handling and individual ability are vital in the 15-a-side game.
Many of rugby's greatest started their careers in the cut down game, Dallaglio and Dawson both won the World Cup with England before the 2003 trophy, in 1994 a certain Jonah Lomu took Hong Kong by storm, and then Julian Savea emerged in 2009.
Ioane was given a chance, and made the most of it. He looks set to make waves, and if his selection for the Maori All Blacks to play Fiji is anything to go by, he's on the way to being a senior Test player in the not too distant future. Brother Akira is a pretty handy player himself.
Wednesday, July 08, 2015
The All Blacks launched their new World Cup jersey recently, which pays homage to the 1905 originals with some neat touches from adidas. You now have a chance to win one, so enter above by quickly logging in with your social account, then selecting your method. Good luck!
The All Blacks were made to work hard for a 25-16 victory over Samoa in the first ever Test between the two sides in Apia earlier today. A late comeback gave the hosts a chance, but Dan Carter kept the world champions ahead with the boot.
Carter scored 20 points from the tee as New Zealand scored their only try through George Moala, while Samoa's try came from powerful former Sevens star, Alafoti Fa'osiliva.
The first half was tight, and at times scrappy, but Carter kept kicking the opportunities afforded to him. They took a 12-3 halftime lead, before a crosskick allowed debutant Moala to score, and later stretch the lead to 19-3 in the second half.
Samoan flyhalf Tusi Pisi kicked nine points as their try brought the score to within reach at 22-16, before a late Carter penalty made the victory fairly comfortable in the end. It was their narrowest ever victory over Samoa though, in six matches.
They had previously beaten them by over 50 points on four occasions, including a mammoth 101-14 win in their most recent match in New Plymouth in 2008.
Alesana Tuilagi said post match that he hopes the All Blacks will return to Samoa again.
"Thank you, Richie McCaw the Captain, and the number one team in the world. Hopefully you'll come back, and we'll try again, and again and again," the now 34-year-old said.
McCaw wished them well at the Rugby World Cup, where they are in Pool B with South Africa, Scotland, Japan and the USA.
"With form like that you will get better and I know you will be a force to be reckoned with in what's ahead. You have a pretty special team and I'm sure you will do well."
A capacity crowd of 8,104 was on hand to witness the match in Apia, but the sense of occasion around the country - who have a population of less than 200 000 - was palpable. Hopefully a meeting between the two sides, in Samoa, will become a regular fixture.
Updated: Match build up and wrap-up below, with the extended match highlights on page two
Monday, July 06, 2015
Throughout the history of the Rugby World Cup, we have seen plenty examples of top tier nations being dutifully undone by their supposed minnow opponents. As ardent supporters of underdogs, we thought it apt to relive some of the best 'giant slaying' tries of tournaments past, with this great top five put together by World Rugby.
Despite failing to secure a victory in 2007, Japan lit up the tournament with their incredible and at times, ridiculous counter attacking. They scored perhaps the try of the tournament, when Kosuke Endo finished a superb coast-to-coast effort in the 72-18 defeat to Wales in Cardiff.
Try number two harks back to 2003 and the introduction of Rupeni Caucaunibuca. The then 23 year-old Fijian monster steamrolled through countless Scottish defenders to score the first of two stunning tries. Fiji would agonisingly lose the match, and a potential place in the quarter finals, thanks to a late David Hilton try for the Scots.
Sukanaivalu Hufanga's fantastic try for Tonga caused one of the upsets of the tournament four years ago when they beat France 19-14 in Wellington, while Richard Tsimba scored an excellent solo try in Zimbabwe's narrow 21-20 defeat to Romania in 1987.
Competing for try of the tournament with Endo's Japanese effort at Rugby World Cup 2007 was a similar length of the field score, this time for the USA.
Todd Clever's well timed interception and ferocious hand-off on Springbok flyhalf Butch James, combined with Takudzwa Ngwenya's searing pace to round Bryan Habana, proved one of the moments of Rugby World Cup history, and epitomised the spirit of perserverence.