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Fikile MbalulaDear Minister,

Please allow me to introduce myself.

I am a middle-aged male of European descent living in the Ekhuruleni area, for most of my life.

In that time I’ve seen and experienced MANY changes in the daily lives of both my immediate family and my fellow South African citizens.

For me personally, one of the biggest changes in my life occurred when I discovered that my “local” Rugby Club was just a few kilometres from my house, and was situated in the “previously disadvantaged” area of Edenpark.

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Rugby-Talk LogoHi friends & readers,

We have made a number of significant changes to the website, as you will no doubt notice at the outset, browsing and reading through the website!

We have a totally new “Look & Feel”, with a new design exclusive to Rugby-Talk, and designed by me, your friendly webmaster.

The development process is still ongoing, with a few elements not yet coded and added, the most notable of which is the COMMENT NUMBER. The “missing” comment number will be a priority to add and we ask for some patience on that score and a few other issues, as time constraints keeps me from just adding them nilly willy as I would like and as I am sure you would want.

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Kings ParkThe four men accused of beating former Royal Marine, Brett Williams, to death outside Kings Park rugby stadium have all pleaded not guilty.

Twenty-nine-year-old UK rugby fan Williams died outside the stadium following a Super Rugby match between the Sharks and Melbourne Rebels last year.

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Delmas RugbyklubRugby-Talk LogoRugby-Talk is ‘n trotse mede-borg van die Delas Rugbyklub Rugbydag op 22 Februarie 2014.

Klubrugby in Suid-Afrika gaan gebuk onder druk van alle kante, waar die owerhede, Suid-Afrikaanse Rugby Unie (SARU) en vermoënde borge maar min geld beskikbaar stel vir hierdie uiters belangrike komponent van rugby in Suid-Afrika.

Delmas Rugbyklub hou jaarliks ‘n Rugbydag en hierdie keer is dit al hul fyfde suksesvolle Rugbydag in ‘n ry in 2014.

Daar is 38 spanne, 19 wedstryde en wonderlike pret en plesier by die wonderlike byeenkoms. Ons nooi ieder en elk uit om saam met ons te deel in die genot van rugby op die platteland.

Daar is ‘n vlooimark, tonne vermaak en kunstenaars wat gaan optree… en natuurlik is ons ook daar saam met Radio Oos Rand Stereo (93.9 FM), Big Bang Events & Marketing Solutions, Phoenixian SA en die borge van die dag en die spanne.

Ons skeep ook nie Super Rugby af nie, want die 2 wedstryde van die oggend en die 2 middag en aand Super Rugby wedstryde word lewendig op die “Big Screen” aangebied, van waar Rugby-Talk dan ook lewendig oor die tellings en verloop van Super Rugby sal rapporteer.

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Delmas RugbyklubDelmas Rugbyklub, een van die Valke Platteland rugbyklubs, ‘n ou en gevestigde maar klein rugbyklub, hou weer hierdie jaar ‘n rugbydag, hierdie een die 5de in ‘n ry.

Rugby-Talk tree met trots op as borg en media vennoot van die wonderlinge geleentheid.

Oos Rand Stereo (93.9 FM) en Big Bang Events & Marketing Solutions sal ook by die dag betrokke wees en die nodige kleur aan die geleentheid verskaf.

Die gemeenskap van Delmas het ‘n sterk Afrikaanse inslag en daar is versoek dat Rugby-Talk die geleentheid in Afrikaans sal dek en hanteer, vandaar die feit dat hierdie berig in Afrikaans verskyn. Geen poging word hiermee gemaak om die Engelse en internasionale lesers kwaad te maak of te vervreem nie, tewens, ons nooi julle uit om jou krakerige Afrikaans af te stof vir die dag, en indien jy nie by magte is om dit te doen nie, om in jou beste Engels deel te neem aan die gesprek.

(The community of Delmas and surrounds has a strong Afrikaans component and it was requested that Rugby-Talk cover the event in Afrikaans, thus the fact that this article is largely in Afrikaans. No attempt is made to anger or alienate English and international readers, in fact you are invited to dust off your Shoddy Afrikaans for the day, and if you are not in a position to do so, to take part in the conversations in your best English).

Soos ons almal bewus is, kry rugbyklubs weinig bystand en finansiële steun van hul moeder-unies, van die Suid-Afrikaanse Rugbyraad en van die owerhede.

Spelers by van die klubs speel gereeld met tweedehandse tokse en klubs is van rugbydae soos hierdie afhanklik vir hul enigste inkomste van die jaar.

Vrywilligers en toegewyde rugbyondersteuners maak die bestuur van hierdie klubs op, teen hoegenaamd geen vergoeding nie, inteendeel betaal hierdie ware rugbygeesdriftiges gereeld gelde uit eie sak, sny gras en herstel wat nodig is om die rugbyklubs aan die lewe te hou.

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Rugby-Talk logoLast year I took a bet with a fellow subscriber on Rugby-Talk and the whole idea of our own Prediction Game was born. We always brag or predict how many games other teams will win or lose. The idea was born to challenge you all to put your great rugby knowledge to test. This competition will eliminate the big mouths first and foremost.

Let me explain more…

This ARTICLE is the only place were you can participate and give your predictions. All Predictions must be in before 15:00 on Saturday 15 February 2014, that is roughly 2 hours before the first South African Super Rugby game of 2014.

This is a ONCE-OFF prediction game, you pick before the cut-off time, after that you just wait and see how far you go over the weeks. Once you have picked, the season will unfold and your wisdom will be tested. Rugby-Talk will  compile a spreadsheet and monitor your progress or lack thereof.

Last man standing will be our winner. The prize for the winner, will be a gift voucher of R 1 000.00 from Garden Pavilion Garden Centre. This prize will be sponsored by Appelblaar Road Stall & Nursery in Hoedspruit, but will apply to any of the Garden Pavilion Garden Centres in South Africa.

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JP PietersenSpringbok wing JP Pietersen’s has lifted his first trophy of the season after Panasonic Wild Knights defeated Suntory Sungoliath 45 / 22 in the Top League final in Japan.

JP Pietersen came off the bench in the 49th minute to help his team to victory over former Springbok team-mate Fourie du Preez.

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FijiThe cash-strapped Fiji Rugby Union on Friday hailed a new US$21.3 million sponsorship deal as a “game changer” for the sport in the Pacific nation.

FRU chairman Filimoni Waqabaca said the five-year agreement gave the organisation certainty after a troubled period when it had to sack the national team’s coach to save money and had financial aid from the International Rugby Board (IRB) suspended.

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Rugby-TalkSuperBruIt is 2 weeks prior to the kick off of 2 brand new Rugby Tournaments and just less than a month away from kick off of the 3rd Tournament – Super Rugby.

We will have SuperBru Widgets up in the Righthand sidebar for these 3 Pools, for easy access to make your PICKS, go to the POOLS and see an abbreviated version of the LOG in each pool (Top 10).

Rugby-Talk SuperBru pools are open to all REGISTERED RUGBY-TALK SUBSCRIBERS, so if you are not yet registered, get clicking man!

As is the custom and the excitement, Rugby-Talk will be taking part in rugby competitions on SuperBru in 2014 again, but at the end of last year we took it a step further, we also formed our own SuperBru Club, the Rugby-Talk.com Club. The Club gives us an added and combined interface, where messages are posted in the “Social Room”, where the current Rugby-Talk Bru Pools are detailed in the “Games Room”, where members are tabled in the “Members Wall” and where medal standings and tables are displayed in the “Trophy Room”.

So, firstly, join up to the 3 NEW POOLS and also join up at the Rugby-Talk.com Club!

The details are as follows:

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Jugomaro Predator ParkIs’nt this just special!

Took these photos yesterday (Sunday 26 January) of our visit to Jugomaro Predator Park a little distance out of Groblersdal, on the way to Marblehall.

Go into the article to view the pictures!

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Rugby-Talk logoHi,

After an Off-season which certainly drove me slightly more batty than I already was, the new Rugby Season is now close at hand.

The coming weekend sees some of Super Rugby’s warm-up matches, with the Lions playing the Leopards on Friday evening 24 January, the Cheetahs playing against NMMU and again against the Kings on Saturday and of course the Sharks playing Saracens on Saturday 25 January in London. In addition there is the HSBC Sevens World Series Las Vegas tournament on the weekend, Saturday and Sunday and slightly into Monday very early morning.

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FijiIRBThe IRB made the following statement:

The International Rugby Board has confirmed that it is to suspend all direct financial support to the Fiji Rugby Union (FRU) with immediate effect until the Union adopts key financial reporting, administration and governance reforms.

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IRBThe International Rugby Board (IRB) is considering stricter protocols to prevent players with possible concussion from returning to the field during matches.

According to a current protocol being tested in some tournaments, a player can return to the playing field if he passes a cognitive test within five minutes. It is called the Pitch Side Concussion Assessment (PSCA) trial – or ‘five-minute test’.

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IRBThe International Rugby Board (IRB) is set to ditch the ‘YES NINE’ scrum call in favour of a non-verbal, pre-agreed instruction.

The change will take place with immediate effect, and will be introduced at all levels of the game.

Referees will no longer give a verbal instruction of ‘YES NINE’, and instead will issue a non-verbal instruction to the scrumhalf when he considers the scrum to be square and stable.

The non-verbal instruction must be agreed by the referee and both scrumhalves prior to the start of the game and could be in the form of a tap on the back while the referee is on the side of the put-in, or an agreed signal (nod of the head or hand signal) by the referee while he is on the other side of the scrum.

Rugby-TalkThis is Published Article 8 002 on Rugby-Talk as we silently went over the magical 8 000 mark with the Stormers Locks Article earlier today!

On top of it, it is 1 January 2014, the start of a brand new year, which promises so much.

Here’s to a HAPPY and PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR to all the readers, subscribers, contributors, authors and webmasters of Rugby-Talk!


Happy New Year 2014

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Rugby-TalkThe year has flown by, the rugby has come and gone, it is time for family and friends to bond and share in the holidays.

From Rugby-Talk to all it’s readers, subscribers, contributors & Authors… and to all their family members, a very Merry & bledded Christmas is wished.

May your family time be a welcome time of rest, recuperation and may Christmas spirit fill your souls.

No video message this year, I am simply too lazy and need my own time of rest and recuperation.

Merry Christmas

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2013The year was full of spectacular moments and performances as well as disappointing lows and infamous incidents; we name and shame the best and worst in our 2013 Awards.

New Zealand and Wales ruled their respective hemispheres for the second successive year, the All Blacks enjoying a flawless 2013 campaign.

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Rugby-TalkIt is mid December 2013, 14 days till we welcome the new year.

Tell us about your holiday plans and / or your plans for the Festive season, coming up!

Rugby-Talk’s holiday plans and Festive season plans include keeping you up to date on the doings and screwings in the rugby world, but we acknowledge that Southern Hemisphere rugby news is in short supply.

In light of the above we’ll also focus on a bit of cricket in the lean times and most importantly we’ll start this week with detailed discussions on the SQUAD MEMBERS of the different South African Super Rugby sides for 2014. For each player position we’ll have a seperate article for each franchise, for instance there will be 5 seperate articles discussing the props, same with hookers, locks, looseforwards, scrumhalves, flyhalves, midfield & back 3. That equates to 10 new Super Rugby articles a week for 4 weeks, thus 40 new Super Rugby articles in total to feast on.

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Eddie-JonesJapan head coach Eddie Jones has been released from hospital nearly 40 days after suffering a stroke while preparing his squad for their clash with the All Blacks. The 53-year-old Australian, a former Brumbies and Wallabies coach, left the Tokyo hospital on Saturday, the Japan Rugby Football Union said in a statement.

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