Saturday, December 13, 2014
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
Tuesday, December 09, 2014
The Dubai Sevens produced another thrilling weekend of rugby 7's, with some sensational tries scored over the course of the two days. Here is a look at seven of the best, which features a strong South African presence, with the likes of speedster Seabelo Senatla crossing for some great tries.
The South Africans won the tournament, beating Australia 33-7 in the Cup final.
The women's world series was also fascinating to watch, with some high quality play. You can view the best seven tries from that after the jump, on page two of this post.
Posted at 12:57 pm | 2 comments
Monday, December 08, 2014
Brad Thorn rolled back the years as he scored a try for Leicester Tigers in their 25-21 victory over defending European champions Toulon at Welford Road. The win keeps their qualification hopes alive and ends the French sides nine-match winning streak.
Owen Williams kicked Leicester to victory as the only try of the game was scored by Thorn, still scoring tries at the now vintage age of 39-years-old. Williams picked up a personal points haul of 20, with his conversion and six penalties.
Bryan Habana and Drew Mitchell both scored well taken tries for Toulon, but it was Williams' Man of the Match performance with the boot that got the 2001 and 2002 champions the win.
Leicester Tigers' Richard Cockerill said that while winning at home is great, taking on the European champions in their own backyard in next weekend's Round 4 clash will be a massive challenge.
"It's a great win. It is the best we have probably played for 18 months," he said.
"It will be twice as hard to go there and win next week. Toulon will be really cheesed off, and it really doesn't get any more difficult than that."
Watch the rugby World Cup to see more of these stars in action next year.
These highlights are in French but you can view short, English highlights on the official site here
credit: total rugby
Posted at 2:15 pm | 12 comments
Sunday, December 07, 2014
Sam Burgess played just 28 minutes in his second outing for Bath, a 30-5 Champions Cup pool stage win over Montpellier. He came off the bench and got stuck in as only he can, throwing his considerable weight around, but almost landing in hot water.
Bath led 23-0 at the break so by the time he came on, the victory was all but secured as Montpellier struggled after having two players sent to the sin bin in the first half. Bath scored three tries in total, one to prop Henry Thomas, a penalty try and then a second half score for Leroy Houston.
Burgess' was eased into the game in a comfortable situation again, although that can't be said for the weather, which was miserable. He did well to impose himself, but was lucky that the referee chose not to taker a more stringent view of the tackle on Charles Geli that got the crowd fired up.
"That's the way he is. We're not going to change hi," said Bath coach Mike Ford of the tackle.
"He's going to be our enforcer a little bit with the way he defends. We're pleased with where he is.
When asked if he was thinking about giving Burgess his first start next weekend, Ford said: "Yes, I am. But we will watch the game, review it and decide early next week.
"It's disappointing that both games he has come on it has been raining, so we've not had much chance to use him, but he has done well so far," the Bath coach, and father of George, added.
Bath lost their opening two European Rugby Champions Cup matches, so this win takes them to five points in total, three behind Toulouse and four away from Glasgow Warriors.
Those two meet this afternoon, so the chances of Bath making the knockout stages are slim. Whatever happens, all eyes will be on Slammin Sam Burgess as his rugby union journey continues.
Posted at 1:59 pm | 28 comments
Saturday, December 06, 2014
South Africa climbed to second spot on the overall HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series table after a powerful display in the knockout stages of the Dubai Sevens, where they beat both New Zealand (28-0) and Australia (33-7) on the way to the title.
Following a fourth place showing at the Gold Coast in October, they are now just two points behind Fiji, who lead the standings on 39 points ahead of the next round in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.
They conceded just seven points on Day Two, while scoring 101 with victories over Argentina (40-0), series champions New Zealand, and finalists Australia.
The Australian side beat Fiji in extra-time of a thrilling semi final, and despite having an early intercept chance in the final, they couldn't keep up with South African's intensity on defence and at the breakdown, and their lethal finishing out wide.
Flyer Seabelo Senatla scored another two tries, following on from his hat-trick against Argentina, while Kwagga Smith showed great heart throughout, and picked up a hat-trick against New Zealand.
"We tried to play with variation and the guys really bought into the plan. The players deserve the credit for an outstanding display," said coach Neil Powell.
"We are not the biggest team on the circuit, but we are very physical and don’t stand back for any team in the tackle. Our form at the breakdown area was very good and we really took our scoring opportunities well," he added.
Pool Draw for next leg
The 16 teams now fly to South Africa for Round 3 in Port Elizabeth. The Pool draw was made earlier, so Dubai champions South Africa will face Wales, USA and Kenya in Pool A, while Argentina, Portugal and the non-core side Zimbabwe await Dubai runners-up Australia in Pool B.
Series leaders Fiji play Scotland, France and Canada in Pool C, with Pool D incredibly tough as Japan join Samoa, England and New Zealand.
Log after two rounds:
1. Fiji 39 points | 2. South Africa 37 | 3. Australia 28 | 4. New Zealand 28 | 5. Samoa 27
Below are highlights from Day Two, featuring the knockout stages. View Day One highlights
Posted at 5:03 pm | 3 comments