Tuesday, December 16, 2014
There were some brilliant team and individual tries scored at the SA Sevens this past weekend. Here is a recap of Seven of the Best, as chosen by World Rugby (formerly the IRB). It includes efforts from Portugal, England, New Zealand, Australia and champions South Africa, with three tries.
Posted at 6:17 am | 1 comments
Monday, December 15, 2014
South Africa's sevens team won for the second week in succession, this time beating New Zealand 26-17 in a thrilling final, to successfully defend the Port Elizabeth Sevens title and take the lead in the overall HSBC Sevens World Series.
After three rounds it's the Blitzboks that have stormed into the lead after another high tempo, calculated series that saw them coming up trumbps against the old foe in the Cup final.
Fiji, who were leading the table before Port Elizabeth, finished sixth, so have been overtaken by South Africa as all sides race to be in the top four places so that they quality directly for the 2016 Olympic Games.
Philip Snyman, Cecil Afrika, Seabelo Senatla and Kwagga Smith all scored in the final and continued their impressive form on home soil, with the win meaning the Blitzboks now have 59 points.
Coach Neil Powell was pleased with his side's ability to stay calm under pressure and to play to their strengths. "We had to dig deep. We had three very worthy opponents today and each asked very different questions. We had to come from behind in each match today, but this team has shown they have the determination and belief to succeed."
Australia, who were runners up in Dubai, beat Argentina 34-19 to take third place overall.
The USA were very impressive as they used their speed out wide and new found structure under coach Mike Friday to win the Plate Final, beating Fiji 21-14, while Portugal won the Shield by upsetting Samoa 19-14, and Canada beat Kenya 24-7 for the Bowl.
The top 5 standings after three rounds are:
1. South Africa 59 | 2. Fiji 51 | 3. New Zealand 47 | 4. Australia 46 | 5. Argentina 40
Posted at 6:26 pm | 2 comments
Sunday, December 14, 2014
Last week we shared this heartwarming story on our social media pages, only to then be blown away by the incredible response from the rugby loving public. The story has since gone viral, so today we're archiving it here for those of you who missed it.
The story was captured by a teacher at Ysgol Brynhyfred secondary school in North Wales.
It features a match winning try against Ysgol Y Berwyn, but what isn't clear at first is that fact that the boy who scored it, Ethan Morris, has Down Syndrome.
Scott Pollington Woods, manager of the Down Syndrome Association's DS Active programme, told ITV that he has never seen anything like it.
"It's fantastic to see players from both teams not only including him but allowing him to shine. People with Down's Syndrome, as a result of the condition, often find it difficult to participate in mainstream and even PAN disability sports," he said.
The story goes that players on both teams spoke to their teachers before the match in the hope of giving Ethan an opportunity to play the game he's always wanted to play. Kudos to them.
The support and love shown for this wonderful achievement exemplifies the values of rugby. If you'd like to have an emotional read through the reaction, including comments from his mother and others, you can do so on our Facebook page here.
Posted at 9:48 am | 25 comments
Saturday, December 13, 2014
Seabelo Senatla has done it again, this time lighting up his home tournament as South Africa marched on to the quarter finals of the Sevens World Series in Port Elizabeth. This try against Kenya was one of many, but again it showed his blistering pace.
Last week's Dubai champions picked up comfortable wins against the USA, Kenya and Wales.
young gun Senatla streaked to six tries to maintain his presence at the top of the try-scoring charts, and help the Blitzboks to a Cup quarter final, where they will face England on day two.
Cup Quarter Finals:
Day One Results:
Pool A: South Africa 26 - USA 0; Wales 29 - Kenya 5; South Africa 38 - Kenya 7; USA 38 - Wales 12; USA 33 - Kenya 5; South Africa 36 - Wales 0.
Pool B: Argentina 31 - Zimbabwe 5; Australia 33 - Portugal 21; Argentina 14 - Portugal 7; Australia 50 - Zimbabwe 0; Portugal 19 - Zimbabwe 5; Argentina 31 - Australia 21.
Pool C: Canada 14 - Scotland 12; Fiji 45 - France 5; Scotland 19 - France 12; Fiji 26 - Canada 7; France 24 - Canada 21; Fiji 19 - Scotland 12.
Pool D: England 45 - Japan 0; New Zealand 24 - Samoa 7; England 22 - Samoa 7; New Zealand 29 - Japan 0; Japan 17 - Samoa 14; New Zealand 5 - England 0.
credit: World Rugby
Posted at 5:00 pm | 7 comments
There was an ugly incident at the South African 7's earlier, as an idiot took to the field during the South Africa vs USA game and tackled a player. The madness didn't end there as Perry Baker got up, took a second to think about it, then kicked the guy.
It wasn't clear to see exactly how the tackle took place and the ferocity of it, but Baker will surely find himself in a bit of trouble as you simply cannot lash out like that, especially once the situation was under control and the guy was laying on the floor.
The referee, probably as shocked as everyone else, told everyone to calm down and the incident was quickly swept under the rug. The cameras panned out and no replays were shown. It was all a bit bizarre, and certainly not a good advert for the tournament or indeed, the sport.
Fans on social media had varying reactions, as some backed Baker's response, while others were more outraged at the fact that security let it happen. Former referee Jonathan Kaplan tweeted:
In Baker's defence, we can't really judge his actions based on what we think we saw, as the initial unprovoked attack, which is what it was, happened slightly off camera. When the referee stopped play and went over to Baker, it did sound like he said something about being hit.
We'll no doubt find out more soon, but below you can just about see what happened, as Baker dished out some street justice before the culprit was ushered off the field, and security finally caught up with him.
Baker took to twitter himself after the match apologising for his actions.
If you were there and managed to catch the whole thing on camera, please let us know.
Posted at 11:10 am | 37 comments
Thursday, December 11, 2014
On Sunday Toulon prop and former Leicester Tigers player, Martin Castrogiovanni had a full go at former boss Richard Cockerill, calling him all sorts of names. He showed that despite English not being his first language, he has a pretty extensive vocabulary.
Now, thanks to a bit of demand and some quickfire work, we've put together a T-shirt for it.
There were probably a number of quotes that could have been used, but we picked this one and included an image of a similarlarly hairy f*cking guy [read the original rant and quotes here].
With Xmas just around the corner, grab it quick and celebrate the profoundness of the sentiment. www.onrugbydu.mp/peaceandloveshirt
It's available in different colours, as a hoodie, crewneck sweathshirt, baseball shirt and of course, as a mug. All great gifts so take a look and while you're there, please check out our other designs as we're confident that you'll find something that will make a great gift this holiday season.
Castrogiovanni's words, and the T-Shirt design, haven't gone unnoticed by teammates, so it looks like we'll see the man himself - and half of the Toulon side - in one of these shirts soon.
Posted at 11:50 am | 11 comments
Wednesday, December 10, 2014
European rugby was back at the weekend with some fascinating results in Round 3 of the European Rugby Champions Cup. Here is a look at some of the best tries that were scored, as well as some interesting facts ahead of the return fixtures of Round 4.
There weren't any mindblowing tries scored, but the standard was high and the finishing good in all of these, particularly in some poor conditions. There are seven tries in total, so if you missed the action at the weekend or just want another look, this should be enjoyable to watch.
In most cases the player on the end of the try didn't have much to do with setting it up, but that's what rugby is all about so well done to Leroy Houston, Owen Farrell, Luther Burrell, Josh Matavesi, Ruan Pienaar, Nathan Hughes and Asaeli Tikoirotuma.
In Round 4 the teams switch venues but play the same opposition again. Here are some quick facts and stats ahead of the round, that kicks off on Friday with Bath hosting Montpellier.
|Quick stats and facts:|
|-||Bath's 25 point win over Montpellier was their largest ever on French soil|
|-||Toulouse are the first club to register 100 wins in Europe's top tier with their win over Glasgow|
|-||Saturday will mark Benetton Treviso's 100th game in Europe's top tier|
|-||Leicester's win over Toulon came exactly a year to the day that the reigning champions' nine-match winning run in the tournament started|
|-||Saracens' hooker Jamie George achieved a perfect 14 from 14 lineout throws, as well as being joint top tackler of the round, with 18 tackles and none missed|
|-||Ospreys have lost their last seven games in France, and have won just one of their 13 away games against French opposition|
|-||Rob Kearney beat six defenders lat weekend, more than any other player in Round 3|
|-||Asaeli Tikoirotuma was the only player to hit three figures for metres gained (106m), and he did so from just five carries, which of course included the intercept try seen below|
|-||Clermont Auvergne ended Munster's 100% record against French clubs at Thomond Park - a run that had last 23 games|
|-||Rory Pitman made 18 carries against Ulster, the highest total in Round 3|
|Player records after three rounds:|
|-||Ian Madigan is top points scorer after 3 rounds, with 49 points. Dan Biggar is second on 37|
|-||CJ Stander has the most carries overall in the tournament, with 51 in total after three matches
|-||Nick Abendanon has gained the most metres though, with 265m
|-||Glasgow Warriors' Leone Nakarawa is out in front with the most offloads, with 12 in total.
|-||Sale Sharks' Magnus Lund has made the most tackles all tournament, with 50 in total, and just 2 missed. Saracen's Jamie George is second with 44 in total, and not a single tackle missed
|-||Steffon Armitage is the turnover king with 9 in total, while Ashley Johnson is on 8|
|-||George Robson and Graham Kitchener lead the lineouts, with 21 wins each
Posted at 1:47 pm | 25 comments