Thursday, July 17, 2014
And just like that, Nick Cummins' time in the spotlight appears to be over, for now anyway. The Wallaby and Western Force winger is setting sail for Japan, where he will take up a lucrative contract with the Coca Cola West Red Sparks in the Top League.
Cummins' decision to leave was based primarily on the desire to take care of his family. He has seven siblings, two of which suffer from cystic fibrosis, and his father is battling prostate cancer. A season in Japan will go some way towards relieving some of the financial strains they're under.
"He told me that in his heart he couldn't enjoy himself when he could be doing more for the kids," said father Mark, who as a single dad, was named the Queensland Father of the Year in 2012.
"Nick said he could kick in more by signing in Japan where he will get more time off to return to the family and also research alternative medicines," he added.
Under Australian Rugby Union rules, Cummins won't be available to play for the Wallabies while he's abroad, but the Force have said that they'll do everything in their power to get him back as soon as possible. Coach Michael Foley says the ARU have been 'caught with their pants down' by allowing the 26-year-old, 15-test winger to go.
"He makes big tackles for us, he makes big runs for us, he's wholehearted. He rips in. He's fearless in the way he plays. He's the only winger that's ever come back from Test duty with a sore neck, I don't know how that happened but the reality is he runs hard at the contact.
"Off the field he's a character, he's very different. He fishes on his day off. He adds a lot of colour to the team and we'll miss him," Foley said.
Cummins has been released on compasionate grounds from the Force, and the deal in Japan is reportedly worth more than what the ARU could afford to match, so he was granted a release.
The Honey Badger scored in his final match for the Force, and provided another classic post match interview, which you can see on page two of this post, along with the statement he made regarding his departure. Below are the Top 5 Honey Badger moments from Rugby HQ.
Posted at 6:36 pm | 12 comments
Wednesday, July 16, 2014
There's no doubt that Jonah Lomu will always be remembered as the man that changed Rugby. A prolific tryscorer and a giant amongst men, at his fittest the All Black scored tries with ease. Today we look at the chaos he caused in one Bledisloe Cup game.
With this year's Super Rugby heading into the knockout stages, the next big thing on the international rugby calendar will be the Rugby Championship, and the trans-Tasman rivalry of the Bledisloe Cup. New Zealand have dominated for years, and it was the same back in 1995.
For those of you who weren't lucky enough to watch his career closely, another huge part of the legend's game was his ability to offload in the tackle and set up tries for those around him.
When we see offload these days one tends to think of the likes of Sonny Bill Williams and fancy passing, but with Lomu it wasn't that at all. It was his ability to beat multiple players, and just as the third or fourth came in to attempt to take him down, he'd get the pass away.
Sly flankers like Josh Kronfeld often benefitted from the ground Lomu made, and so even when the wing was brought down short of the tryline, it often resulted in a try for the All Blacks anyway.
This short video takes a look at this element of his game in just one match, against rivals the Wallabies in 1995, just a few months after he helped New Zealand reach the final at the Rugby World Cup in South Africa. Here he scores one try and sets up three more, as one does.
New Zealand won the game 34-23 to set up a run of seven straight wins over the Wallabies.
We'll feature more from the great man and others in the lead up to the 2014 Rugby Championship.
Posted at 10:58 am | 64 comments
Friday, July 11, 2014
As we approach the knockout stages of this year's tournament, Sean Maloney and Rugby HQ take a hilarious look back at the 2001 Super Rugby season, one that produced some classic moments that included great tries, incredible celebrations and bizarre off-field antics.
George Gregan - in studio as this is presented - features with some onfield ballett that we posted ourselves way back in 2007, and Stephen Larkham delivers an outstanding try-scoring pass. The Blues' try was incredible, as was the puddle, and the rest is pretty much just good fun.
As Sean said on twitter, it's the most fun he's EVER had on-air, and it shows. View more Top 5's
Posted at 2:29 pm | 25 comments
We recently brought out a new batch of Rugbydump shirts, including one that says no to diving, a little dig at a certain player. His team mate, Toulon's Steffon Armitage, tweeted a pic of himself in one recently, so today we've got a quick look at all our new shirts. Remember, this is rugby.
VIEW THE NEW SHIRTS (on page two or below)
Posted at 6:21 am | 6 comments
Tuesday, July 08, 2014
It's not rugby, but this clip from women's gridiron features an impressive run that the likes of Ma'a Nonu would be proud of. The behaviour afterwards is questionable, but in terms of a spectacle, the Legends Football League seems to deliver.
It's hard to imagine that a scantily-clad-female rugby form of this would ever be acceptable, seeing as it's 2014 and all, but the Legends Football League is a hit in the USA. It used to be called the Lingerie Football League, for obvious reasons, before the name change.
In fact there is something similar that takes place in Europe each year, so we'll do our best to report on that soon (someone's got to do it).
From the same country that brought us Hooters, the LFL is 7 on 7 women's American Gridiron, where the players wear as little as possible. Until recently, they only wore garters, bras and panties.
It's been touted as the fastest growing sports league in the USA, and has record TV ratings.
In this clip Markie 'Lil Train' Henderson of the Las Vegas Sin (really) bulldozes Chicago Bliss' Dominique Collins, scores the touchdown then lets everyone know about it.
The coaches take it quite seriously too apparently, as can be seen in this clip.
Posted at 1:45 pm | 11 comments
Monday, July 07, 2014
Crusaders back Colin Slade, who has broken has jaw on multiple occasions, was on the receiving end of a huge Ma'a Nonu charge during the Crusaders and Blues' Super Rugby game at the weekend. Nonu's superior size and body position meant Slade was sent flying, gumguard and all.
*As pointed out in the comments below, an almost identical thing actually happened to Slade last weekend too, against the Hurricanes' Hadleigh Parkes. View that here
More big hits and huge charges can be found in our Big Hits and Dirty Play section
Posted at 3:40 pm | 33 comments
Clearly not deterred by what happened to a streaker in Dunedin recently, three streakers took to the pitch during the Super Rugby game between the Chiefs and the Hurricanes at the weekend, causing all sorts of chaos as the security struggled to get to grips with them.
They had a three-prong approach which obviously worked, as they evaded security guards for a good few minutes, taunting them before finally getting caught, one by one.
The stadium security obviously didn't have any off-duty professional rugby players on hand, unlike in Dunedin recently when a streaker was absolutely demolished with a huge tackle from behind.
One of the three streakers has since issued an apology online, saying:
"I apologise to all the viewers that didn't appreciate me streaking It was a stupid and inappropriate thing to do! I was just drunk and wasn't thinking..."
Chiefs flyhalf Aaron Cruden found it highly amusing, as did all the fans in attendance in Hamilton.
The Chiefs broke their three-match losing streak and kept their playoff hopes alive with a 24-16 win.
Posted at 12:44 pm | 10 comments