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Ugly Jerseys

“And then people want to know why we take drugs, to forget the fact that we are dressed as turds, that’s why”

In rugby, like most sports, teams and athletes have had a bad playing strip or two. Individual sports that comes to mind is cycling and golf. There have been some truly terrible creations that those athletes have worn, all in the name of sponsorship and moolah.

In rugby, its generally the alternate, or so called away strip, where designers indulge in a bit too much whacky weed before sitting down in front of the drawing boards. For the most part, kits are practical and speak of tradition and history, however, there are times that the Sporting and Designing Gods sincerely fall out and abominations like the ones that appear below.

These choices of ours are by no means exhaustive and is fairly recent in it’s selection, however, if you disagree, let us know and tell us which ones you think should have made the cut.

There’s ccertainly been some strange kit in recent years!

It appears the Kit sponsors want to stamp some sort of mark on their creations, so prepare yourself for some more strange jerseys in future!

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Kevin Skinner

All Black Kevin Skinner in 1953

Kevin Skinner, the All Black prop and heavyweight boxer, has died. He was 86.

Skinner made his name for Otago and was selected for the 1949 All Black tour of South Africa as a 21-year-old.

He was labelled one of the side’s successes, making up a hard-as-nails front row alongside Johnny Simpson and hooker Has Catley.

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Eben Etzebeth

His parents might call him Eben, but I’d like to call him Ysterbeth!

Want to know more about the Etzebeth legend?

Apologies to our foreign readers as the first story was printed in Afrikaans. If you scroll down you would find another in English.

These articles were written quite a while ago and is left just as it was published, so excuse the time frames. The author of the Terminator from Parow is Jaco Kirsten, who writes for the website meneer.tv

For those readers not familiar with the legend of the Etzebeths, enjoy these stories, those of us who grew up in Cape Town, roll back the years and take a trip down memory lane.

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Mt Everest

The Sharks have their own Mt. Everest to climb

If one were to ask people who the first person was to climb Mt. Everest, their answers would invariably be Sir Edmund Hillary.

While technically correct, and the reason I say technically is because Hillary was the first to successfully climb to the summit, there were 8 other expeditions before him. The 1922 British Mount Everest expedition was the first mountaineering expedition with the express aim of making the first ascent of Mount Everest.

Between 1922 and 1953 there were 8 expeditions that tried and failed. The term failed is used lightly I might add, climbers succumbed from illnesses ranging from malaria to altitude sickness, and those were the lucky ones. Death was the common reason for the majority of the failures.

Why am I writing about the ascent of Mt. Everest on a rugby site you might ask, well simply put, Jake White and his Sharks are currently standing at the foot of their own Mt. Everest and tomorrow evening when Steve Walsh blows his whistle to signal the kick off between them and the Highlanders, they will take their first steps on a journey that will hopefully end with them planting the South African flag on the summit in three weeks time.

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New Zealand Women

New Zealand celebrate a fourth consecutive WRWC title following victory over England in the 2010 final

With just over two weeks to go before Women’s Rugby World Cup 2014, we take a look back at how previous tournaments unfolded and at the Springbok squad and preparations.

Women’s rugby has experienced phenomenal growth in recent times and the number of women and girls playing the game currently stands at 1.5 million, a quarter of the overall total.

Much of that growth over the past five years has been driven by Olympic inclusion, the inception of the IRB Women’s Sevens World Series, Rugby World Cup Sevens and ongoing work between national unions and Olympic Committees.

However, many countries have deep roots in the women’s 15-a-side game, which has already seen seven world tournaments, four sanctioned by the IRB and three ‘unofficial World Cups’.

Here we provide a brief history of the Women’s Rugby World Cup movement.

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Steve Walsh

Rugby referee and reformed “bad boy” Steve Walsh

Very seldom, before, during or after a rugby match does the spotlight not fall on the referee. Supporters of the losing team will in all probability at some stage lay the blame on the man with the whistle, it’s human nature, and not even the winning side’s supporters agree with all the decisions made during most matches. It’s the nature of the beast and referees know full well that this is one of the pitfalls of their chosen profession.

Seldom however has controversy followed a referee as it has for Steve Walsh.

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Gerrie Sonnekus

Gerrie Sonnekus

Two men were arrested on Tuesday for the robbery and attack on three fishermen, including former Springbok Gerrie Sonnekus, in Port Alfred, Eastern Cape police said.

“After following leads, Port Alfred detectives in collaboration with crime intelligence officers, arrested two men aged 34 in Nemato Township in the early hours of Tuesday morning,” police spokesperson Luvuyo Mjekula said.

“Police are looking to make more arrests as two more suspects are still at large.”

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Tinus Linee

Tinus Linee

Former Springbok Tinus Linee’s motor neuron condition has stabilised thanks to his recent use of a ventilator, said his wife Diana on Monday.

Speaking at a Youth Day benefit in her husband’s honour at the Daljosaphat Stadium between Wellington and Paarl, Diana Linee said Tinus’s mind was “still positive” about the illness. But for the use of his hands, however, Linee, the 44-year-old former Stormers and Springbok centre, remained completely paralysed.

“He can only scratch his cheek,” she said.

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HughMcLeodScottish Rugby is immensely saddened to learn of the death on Monday night of the former Hawick, Scotland and Lions internationalist Hughie McLeod. He was 81.

Hugh Ferns McLeod was a pioneer, ahead of his time. His achievements as a player were the stuff of legend but, arguably, it was the manner in which he moulded future success in Hawick that marked him as a truly special character.

Hugh drove himself very hard as a player. He set high standards and expected the same of others. Into retirement he still followed a fitness regime which might have proved – no, would have proved too onerous for younger folk. Whether it was cycling, swimming up in Edinburgh or walking, Hughie loved to be active.

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David Malan & Ben Robinson - Abie Malan Jersey - smallBenn Robinson could finally relax.

The Waratahs and Wallabies prop had been on edge for weeks, carrying around a precious piece of Australian and South African rugby history believed lost for decades.

It had brought him to a hotel lobby in Cape Town, where David Malan was waiting to receive the missing Springboks jersey his father, Abie Malan, had worn to captain South Africa against the Wallabies 51 years earlier.

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Frank OliverFormer All Blacks captain Frank Oliver has died at the age of 65, his old provincial club Manawatu said on Tuesday, describing him as “a truly great rugby man”.

Oliver played for the All Blacks 43 times from 1976-81, including 17 Tests, captaining the New Zealanders to a series win over Australia in 1978. His son Anton Oliver was also an All Blacks captain.

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Tinus LineeFormer Springbok Tinus Linee, who suffers from Motor Neuron Disease, is in a better condition in hospital after suffering a setback last week.

The 44-year-old former Western Province centre is communicating via hand signals and a chalkboard to nurses at his assistance.

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Super RugbyWith the Super Rugby season less than 6 days away, here is a bit of history on the Competition.

Super Rugby is run by SANZAR and consists of franchise teams from South Africa, New Zealand and Australia, 5 teams each, devided into 3 Conferences.

Super Rugby is the Southern Hemisphere’s prime Franchise tournament and part of the reason why the Southern Hemisphere currently dominate world rugby, with the New Zealand All Blacks 1st on the IRB World Rankings, the Springboks from South Africa comfortably in 2nd spot and the Wallabies from Australia in 3rd spot.

Super Rugby gets underway in South Africa first in 2014, on 15 February 2014 and a week later the Antipodion sides join in.

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FranceMention of the fact France have won the Five or Six Nations every year after a British and Irish Lions tour in the professional era can elicit deep consideration, confusion or shrugs, depending on who you mention it to.

That’s the thing about history, it can be interpreted in different ways. Or ignored. Or forgotten. Or remembered and its significance disregarded.

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New ZealandSouth AfricaThe 1994 Springbok team is regarded as the worst Springbok side visiting New Zealand. They were unable to win a single test –losing the first two and drawing the 3rd test- and losing one provincial match out of 11 against Otago (12-19).

In total they lost 3 matches and drew one out of 14 matches. Compared to the 1965 Springboks probably a better overall result; excluding the fact that they couldn’t win a test match. It was nonetheless a disappointing result considering the fact that this team also completed tours -with the same coach, Ian McIntosh- through Australia and Argentina in 1993. They won one test in Australia and both test matches in Argentina with reasonable good margins. In addition they played two test matches against England at the start of the 1994 season losing the first one 15-32 at Loftus Versfeld and winning the second one 27-9 at Newlands in Cape Town. From that backdrop there was understandingly an expectation that SA rugby and particular the Springboks will shed the impact of the isolation years and begin to adjust to the requirements of the international rugby if not win test matches.

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New ZealandSouth AfricaAll Blacks 11 / 5 Springboks (Eden Park, Auckland 1 September 1956)


Ron Hemi:
“The fourth test was the hardest game I ever played in, and this was at a time when I considered myself to be at peak physical fitness. South Africa made a big mistake in the selection of their first five-eighth and fullback. Bill Clark and Ross Brown were able to box in Howe and kill play close in, preventing the South African outside backs from operating. And a more determined fullback than Viviers would have prevented Jones’s try. The New Zealand tactics of bursting around the rucks, the ball being kept at close range in front of the forwards, was the winning formula.”

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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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  • gunther 23 Jul 2014, 07:33 SAST - @ MacroBull: If we are talking cerebral measurements too hondkak's are too small for meaningful comment.
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