The Rugby Football Union (England) have failed in their bid to have England’s opening Test match against New Zealand pushed back a week.
England have a three match tour of New Zealand this June but they will be without many of their best players in the opening Test due to their domestic fixtures.
Die Skotse rugbyklub Edinburgh se Suid-Afrikaanse spens raak al hoe voller. ’n Amptelike aankondiging word eers later verwag, maar Alan Solomons (afrigter) het glo ’n sewende Suid-Afrikaner na Edinburgh gelok.
Die slot van die Haaie, Anton Bresler, sal hom glo ná die Super Rugby-reeks by Edinburgh aansluit. Bresler kan hom as plaasvervanger vir die oud-Cheetahs slot, Izak van der Westhuizen, wat op pad terug na Suid-Afrika is, daar aanmeld.
Edinburgh and Scotland centre Nick De Luca will join French Top 14 side Biarritz at the end of the season.
The 30-year-old has made 125 appearances for Edinburgh and won 41 international caps.
The tug of war regarding the premier club competition in European rugby has been conducted very publicly for a long time and a week ago it was reported that an announcement on the structure of future competitions was imminent. However, it all seems to have gone quiet and no final announcement has been forthcoming.
There are rumours that the Italian clubs and their representative bodies were needing to discuss a few details of what should otherwise be a done deal. Furthermore there is the question of the broadcasting battle between Sky and BT Sport which is apparently in the process of being sorted out with a joint broadcast agreement likely for next season. The final rumour is that the parties involved may not have wanted to make any announcements this week in the lead up to the quarter finals of the current Heineken Cup competition.
Clermont’s entire rugby union squad were drug tested on Thursday morning before the French Top 14 side meet English club Leicester in the Heineken Cup quarter-finals on Saturday.
The mass testing was carried out before the morning training session with the club claiming that the tests were commissioned by the International Rugby Board (IRB).
Former Springbok scrumhalf Neil de Kock is set to play his 200th match for Saracens, the English club’s official website reports.
De Kock, 35, is on the bench for their Heineken Cup quarter-final away to Irish club Ulster on Saturday and will reach the milestone if he makes an appearance.
Geoff Cross will make his Glasgow Warriors debut in the rescheduled Pro12 visit by Benetton Treviso.
The Scotland prop, who recently joined on loan from Edinburgh until the end of the season as injury cover, replaces Jon Welsh at tight head.
Springbok and Bath flank Francois Louw’s ankle injury does not require surgery, which means he will be able to play again this season.
No, this is no April Fools joke, it is true… the IRB has released the names of the Match Official Appointments for the June International Test window!
Romain Poite (FFR), hated by most South Africans, will referee the match between South Africa and Wales on 14 June 2014 at Growthpoint Kings Park and will be assisted by Steve Walsh (ARU), Francisco Pastrana (UAR) and Vinnie Munro (NZR).
One could be forgiven to believe, despite our assurances, that this MUST SURELY be an April Fools joke, because apart from the run-in with Romain Poite, South Africans have had run-in’s by Steve Walsh too and just recently Francisco Pastrana was taken off the Super Rugby officiating lists till further notice for his abhorrent and totally inept refereeing performance against yet another South African side.
Let’s cut to the chase and just place the Official Appointments list here for you…
Rebels lock Hugh Pyle will leave the club at the end of the season to continue his rugby career in Europe, following an announcement to his teammates at training on Tuesday.
Despite consistent strong Super Rugby performances, the foundation Rebel lock has executed a clause in his contract to pursue his playing career abroad.
Inspirational hooker Matthew Rees admitted he had been ‘overwhelmed’ with the support from the rugby world as he made his comeback in the stunning victory over Ulster Rugby.
The front row ace came on as a second half replacement to a thundering standing ovation from the Arms Park faithful as Blues shocked high-flying Ulster in the RaboDirect PRO12.
Caretaker coach Dale McIntosh says the return to the Cardiff Blues side of hooker Matthew Rees helped inspire their 28-23 Pro12 win over Ulster.
Wales and British and Irish Lions hooker Rees, 33, was diagnosed with testicular cancer in October 2013. But he has undergone successful treatment and was named on the bench.
Sharks tighthead prop Wiehahn Herbst will join Ulster this summer on a three-year deal, it has been confirmed.
The Cheetahs are fighting tooth and nail to retain the services of Springbok flyhalf Johan Goosen, but know they are in a tough tug-o’-war.
Cheetahs backline coach Hawies Fourie, speaking to this website during the team’s bye week, admitted they are aware of reports that Goosen has dashed off to France for talks about his future.
Springbok and Cheetahs flyhalf Johan Goosen has secretly flown to France to explore possible future career opportunities, the Volksblad website reports.
The Cheetahs have a bye weekend in Super Rugby which enabled the 21-year-old to head abroad.
Connacht Loosehead prop Brett Wilkinson has been forced into retirement due to a serious neck injury sustained in the last game he played for the club.
The 30-year-old South African has been with Connacht since 2006 and has played 183 times for the province.
The long-running debate over the future of the European Cup could be resolved by Thursday.
A new competition will involve teams from all of the Six Nations’ countries and will run alongside a challenge cup and a developmental tournament.
Saracens beat the world record attendance of a club match in their 39-17 Aviva Premiership clash at Wembley Stadium on Saturday.
A clinical first-half display from Saracens saw them go in at half time 27-10 up, through tries from Chris Ashton, George Kruis and Owen Farrell, with Karl Dickson’s try and Nick Evans’s penalty keeping Quins within touching distance.
The second half was a more low-key affair, with Sam Smith’s converted try putting Harlequins within 10, but Jacques Burger and Marcelo Bosch sealed the victory for Saracens.
The game had a staggered start as David Strettle was on the receiving end of a swinging arm from Maurie Fa’asavalu, leaving the winger unconscious for a lengthy period of time, forcing him to be carried off on a stretcher.
Soon after, Nick Easter tried to make the most of a poor pass, but could only palm it into the path of Ashton who, after fending off Ugo Monye, dived over to score a 70-metre try, with Farrell converting.
England full-back Mike Brown has been named Six Nations Player of the Championship after securing over 34% of the 68,000 votes cast by fans.
Brown, 28, scored four tries, including two in a man of the match performance against Italy, and was also man of the match against Scotland and Ireland.
With the Six Nations over the club tournament of Wales, Scotland, Ireland and Italy takes centre stage once again as round 17 kicks off this Friday.
Having led Leinster to the Pro12 title last season, Ireland coach Joe Schmidt took the 6 Nations crown at the first time of asking in a tense finish to the Championship last weekend. Following on Ireland’s success it is perhaps appropriate that as the Pro12 returns to centre stage three of the top four teams are Irish Provinces.
Adam Jones has spoken about reaching some personal landmarks, the motivation of having two young Wales tight-heads after the number three jersey, and looking forward to another tour to South Africa.
One of the advantages of having the national rugby union in control of its clubs was highlighted by today’s announcement by the Scottish Rugby Union of the loan of Edinburgh tight head prop Geoff Cross to Glasgow Warriors for the rest of the season due to injuries to two of Glasgow’s props.
Glasgow Warriors are currently in fifth position on the RaboDirect PRO12 log, 3 points behind the forth placed Ospreys, with two games in hand over the teams above them. This loan arrangement indicates that Glasgow reaching the knockout stages of the PRO12 must be considered priority by the Scottish Rugby Union, and as such they and Edinburgh Rugby need to be applauded for this decision.
Scotland full-back Stuart Hogg has been given a three-week ban following his red card in the Six Nations against Wales on Saturday.
It means the 21-year-old will miss Glasgow Warriors’ Pro12 encounters with Scarlets, Ospreys and Treviso.
Wales captain Sam Warburton must undergo immediate surgery after dislocating his right shoulder.
Wales have never faced South Africa in the north-eastern city of Nelspruit, but judging by the blank they have drawn everywhere else in the land of the Springboks, they must already be fearing the worst – especially as Sam Warburton, their captain, has been ruled out of this summer’s two-Test tour.
Edinburgh Rugby yesterday announced the signing of Scotland 7s and under-20 starlet centre Chris Dean on a two-year deal.
A former pupil of Law Primary School and Edinburgh Academy, Dean lifted the Brewin Dolphin Scottish Schools’ Cup in three consecutive seasons: in 2009 (under-15) and as under-18 captain in 2010 and 2011.
He has represented Scotland at every age-grade, and skippered Scotland under-17 through the Wellington Festival in 2011, before his development was fast-tracked on a Scotland 7s elite development player (EDP) contract in May 2012.
South African rugby fans need not worry about securing match tickets for Springbok matches at Rugby World Cup 2015 in England following the establishment of SA Rugby Travel, it was announced on Tuesday.
The new company – a joint venture between the South African Rugby Union and Tourvest Destination Management – has secured thousands of tickets for likely Springbok matches and tailored packages to suit a wide range of fans’ pockets and experience choices.
A new European Cup accord will be signed this week after nearly two years of fraught negotiations and stand-offs. The six unions involved in the tournament, together with officials from competing sides in England, France and Wales, met in Paris on Monday to finalise the details.
It was hoped the stakeholders would be able to sign the heads of agreement at the meeting but the translation of the document into Italian was completed only over the weekend and their rugby federation said it had not had time to fully scrutinise it.
A major sports sponsor says it would like to back the creation of a third Pro12 rugby team for Scotland – based in its home town of Aberdeen.
Aberdeen Asset Management already sponsors major events like sailing’s Cowes Week and the Scottish Open golf.
Stuart Hogg will face a disciplinary hearing in London on Wednesday after being sent off during Scotland’s 51-3 Six Nations defeat against Wales.
Full-back Hogg was shown a red card for a late challenge on fly-half Dan Biggar in the 22nd minute on Saturday.
It has been a fantastic Six Nations and one that had a fairytale ending as Ireland handed Brian O’Driscoll the perfect retirement present by beating France to win the title.
The nail-biting victory in Paris meant Ireland took the championship ahead of England on points difference.
The two teams have been the form sides in the competition and although a few French and Welsh players showed well, it is the top two who naturally provide the bulk of my Team of the Tournament for 2014.