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Lwazi Mvovo

Lwazi Mvovo

Cell C Sharks winger Lwazi Mvovo says defeat in their season opening Super Rugby match hardly matters, as it is more important to finish well.

“It’s still the 1st round and there’s a lot of rounds to go. The most important thing is not how you start, but how you finish,” he said in Durban on Tuesday.

The Durban franchise suffered a surprise 35 / 29 home loss to the Toyota Cheetahs last weekend in one of several shock results in the competition.

The defending champions, the Waratahs, and multiple winners the Crusaders also lost their opening games.

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Lodewyk De Jager

Lodewyk de Jager

Cheetahs lock Lood de Jager will be sidelined for at least 3 months after undergoing an operation to repair injured elbow ligaments.

De Jager left the field in the 1st half of the Cheetahs’ 35 / 29 Super Rugby win against the Sharks at Growthpoint Kings Park in Durban last Saturday.

It was feared that he had broken his elbow, but X-rays revealed only ligament damage.

But the Springbok was still forced to go under the knife on Tuesday.

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Israel Dagg

Israel Dagg

Dan Carter

Dan Carter

Crusaders pivot Dan Carter is set to miss the Christchurch-based team’s clash against the Highlanders in Dunedin on Saturday.

Carter hurt his leg in his side’s 20 / 10 loss to the Melbourne Rebels last weekend and although Crusaders assistant coach Aaron Mauger believes the injury isn’t serious, he said it’s unlikely that the All Blacks flyhalf would be considered to play this weekend.

That means that Colin Slade is expected to start in the No 10 jeresey.

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Rory Kockott

Rory Kockott

Castres scrumhalf Rory Kockott has been ruled out of Saturday’s crucial Top 14 game with Oyonnax, after suffering a quadriceps injury in France’s Six Nations defeat against Ireland.

The injury update came via the club’s scrum coach and recently appointed consultant Maurico Reggiardo.

The 28-year-old South Africa-born player – who became eligible to play for the French last year – may not be fit enough either to be named in the Six Nations squad for the game with Wales on Saturday week.

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Varsity CupFNB UP-Tuks beat defending champions FNB UCT to move to the top of the FNB Varsity Cup presented by Steinhoff International standings.

The Pretoria side have not lost to the Ikeys since the 2011 final, and they continued their dominance over the Cape side by scoring 6 tries to hand UCT their first away defeat since 2013.

They are separated from FNB NWU-Pukke on points difference after the Potchefstroom outfit was held to a dramatic 26 / 26 draw by FNB Maties in Stellenbosch.

NWU-Pukke looked set to record their first victory over Maties since the inaugural competition in 2008, but a late try from lock Ian Groenewald saw the 3-time champions fight back for their 2nd bonus point draw in as many weeks.

Both teams scored 4 tries in windy conditions at the Danie Craven Stadium in Stellenbosch, with Maties forced to fight back for the draw after having the same done to them by the Ikeys on the Green Mile last week.

In Johannesburg FNB UFS-Shimlas showed impressive discipline to shut FNB UJ out and record a valuable 24 / 0 win on the road, whilst the top 4 is rounded off by FNB NMMU who secured a comfortable 34 / 13 victory over newcomers FNB CUT despite being shown 5 Yellow cards.

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Jesse Kriel

Jesse Kriel

Regular captain and No 8 Pierre Spies is back at the helm of the Vodacom Bulls when they take on the Hurricanes at Loftus Versfeld on Friday in Round 2 of the Vodacom Super Rugby competition.

Spies takes over the captaincy from Victor Matfield and the No 8 jumper from Arno Botha, who picked up an injury in the Vodacom Bulls tournament opener last weekend against the DHL Stormers.

The regular Bulls leader was eased back into action off the bench, but is now fit to start in a team that shows 4 changes to the starting line-up and 6 all-together from the one that started their campaign with a disappointing loss against the Cape side.

Spies comes in for Botha, with his place on the bench taken by rookie loose forward Hanro Liebenberg, who could earn a first start should he take to the field.

The injury to Werner Kruger also resulted in a front row shuffle. Trevor Nyakane will move from the left side of the front row to the right and Morné Mellett off the bench into the No 1 jersey.

A fit-again Dean Greyling will take Mellett’s place on the bench.

The other unforced change is at fullback where Jesse Kriel will start, with Jurgen Visser moving down to the bench in a straight swop with the Junior Springbok player.

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WhistleSANZAR has announced Match Official appointments for Round 2 of the 2015 Super Rugby season.

On Friday we have 3 matches, with the Chiefs hosting the Brumbies, the Melbourne Rebels hosting the Waratahs and the Vodacom Bulls hosting the Hurricanes.

On Saturday we have 4 matches, with the Highlanders kicking off their season after an early BYE weekend against the Crusaders, the Reds against the Western Force and followed by 2 games in South Africa, the one between the DHL Stormers against the Blues and the Cell C Sharks against the Emirates Lions.

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Michael Cheika

Michael Cheika

Michael Cheika has insisted that he will be able to juggle his jobs as Wallabies and Waratahs coach throughout the 2015 Super Rugby season.

The Waratahs went unbeaten at home last year on their way to winning their first Super Rugby title which led to Cheika being appointed as Wallabies coach after Ewen McKenzie stepped down.

Cheika will step down as Waratahs coach at the end of the 2015 Super Rugby season but as they lost their first match since he took on the dual role questions would inevitably follow about whether he would be able to concentrate fully on both roles.

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Tendai 'Beast' Mtawarira

Tendai ‘Beast’ Mtawarira

The Sharks suffered a major injury scare on Saturday when Tendai Mtawarira left the field in pain, with the early diagnosis indicating a severe injury.

However, after undergoing scans on Monday, a calf tear was downgraded to a calf strain and although he will not be considered for selection for a few weeks, this does not constitute a long term injury.

“Losing an international is a big loss to any team, obviously we aren’t happy about losing Tendai, but there’s nothing we can do, we have to move on,” said assistant coach Sean Everitt.

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Dan Carter

Dan Carter

Details on Dan Carter’s leg injury are still fuzzy heading towards the Crusaders match against the Highlanders on Saturday.

The official line signalled some improvement when he was assessed by the medical staff and then involved in the squad’s light workout on Monday at their Christchurch headquarters.

During the Crusaders’ opening Super Rugby loss to the Rebels, Carter took a knock to his lower right leg which he then aggravated when he made a hasty clearing kick from his in-goal area.

The limping flyhalf stayed on for a further 15 minutes hoping the discomfort from his “dead leg” would ease. He had to be subbed and when he fronted for interviews later, Carter was optimistic there was no significant issue.

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WaratahsThe Waratahs have named an unchanged starting line-up for their match against the Melbourne Rebels in Melbourne on Friday.

Pat McCutcheon and Peter Betham are added to a list of reserves that will travel south, with coach Michael Cheika naming his bench closer to the game.

Flyhalf Bernard Foley will celebrate his 50th Super Rugby cap this week, while teammates Adam Ashley-Cooper and Stephen Hoiles will notch their 50th Waratahs Super Rugby caps in the same match.

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Allister Coetzee

Allister Coetzee

The Stormers have no major injury concerns in their camp this week, as they get set to host the Blues at Newlands on Saturday (17:05 SA Time).

The men from the Cape opened their 2015 Super Rugby campaign with a memorable 29 / 17 win over the Bulls in Pretoria and they could be boosted this week by the return of forwards Frans Malherbe and Siya Kolisi and wing Kobus van Wyk.

The trio missed the trip to Pretoria, but more will be known about their participation in Round 2 when the team is announced on Thursday, just before lunch-time.

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Lodewyk De Jager

Lodewyk de Jager

The Toyota Cheetahs were dealt a big blow when it was learnt that Springbok lock Lood de Jager will be out of action for between 6 and 8 weeks with an elbow injury.

De Jager was forced off the field in the Cheetahs win over the Cell C Sharks early on in Durban on Saturday and while the good news is that there isn’t a bone fracture, the injury will mean he will miss close to 2 months of Vodacom Super Rugby action.

The injury has been tempered by the fact the Cheetahs have a bye this week, with all players being given most of the week off until they reassemble on Thursday to start preparing for next weekend’s game against the Blues in Bloemfontein.

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Johan Ackermann

Johan Ackermann

Emirates Lions coach Johan Ackermann has refused to try and reign his players in, continuing to back them despite their frustrating Vodacom Super Rugby loss to the Hurricanes at Emirates Airline Park on Friday night.

Ackermann has defended his team’s inability to score despite dominating every facet of play except the scoreboard, saying the execution and decision-making needs to improve, not the game plan.

The coach staunchly defended his team’s expansive approach and feels they simply need to hone their play better to get the right results.

“Our attack worked for us, the execution let us down,” Ackermann said.

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BullsThe Vodacom Bulls took quite a beating on the weekend against a DHL Stormers side who boasted far fewer Springboks and seasoned players than the Bulls.

Nick Mallett talks about how bad the Bulls really were.

JJ Engelbrecht, cited for a dangerous tackle received an off-field Yellow Card – a stern warning not to repeat the type of incident.

Frans Ludeke, Vodacom Bulls coach portrayed his usual diplomatic self… or is that his usual dim-witted self as some would have us believe, when questioned on the Bulls lacklustre performance on the weekend.

The Bulls also released a fitness report today, which reads like a war-veterans hospital checklist, with 3 more injuries, ahead of the Hurricanes clash on Friday evening. The injuries, specially amongst frontrowers are worrying, very worrying seeing as the Bulls scrums have been degenerating at a rate of knots in 2015… well actually for a number of seasons now… and the Bulls Brains Trust, if one could call it that, seems to have no answers to shore up the Bulls scrumming woes.

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Tendai 'Beast Mtawarira

Tendai ‘Beast Mtawarira

Lodewyk De Jager

Lodewyk de Jager

Bismarck du Plessis

Bismarck du Plessis

We are just 1 week into the Super Rugby season and there is already a lengthy list of Springboks sidelined by injury.

With captain Jean de Villiers a non-starter thanks to a knee injury which has put a question mark over his availability for the World Cup, he has been joined by Eben Etzebeth, Bismarck du Plessis, Tendai Mtawarira, Lodewyk de Jager amd Julian Redelinghuys.

Etzebeth hurt his chest in a warm-up game against the Cheetahs at Newlands, and is only expected back in the 3rd round – the 3rd consecutive year he has missed the start of the competition.

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Scott Higginbotham

Scott Higginbotham

A SANZAR judicial hearing has found Scott Higginbotham of the Rebels not guilty of stamping on Richie Mccaw after he was cited against the Crusaders at the weekend.

No further sanction has been imposed on the player.

The incident occurred in the 50th minute during the match between the Crusaders and Rebels at AMI Stadium in Christchurch last Friday.

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Jamie-Jerry Taulagi

Jamie-Jerry Taulagi

The Reds paid a dear price for their heavy (3 / 47) loss to the Brumbies in a Super Rugby Round 1 match in Canberra at the weekend.

They will be without fullback Jamie-Jerry Taulagi and flyhalf Duncan Paia’aua for this week’s encounter the high-riding Western Force in Brisbane.

Taulagi suffered a Grade 2 MCL strain and will be sidelined for 6 to 8 weeks.

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David Pocock

David Pocock

David Pocock will not be available for selection this Friday after receiving a grade-one syndesmosis to his ankle during Friday’s win over the Reds in Canberra.

Pocock did not train with the main squad on Monday. He said it was now a matter of getting his ankle right for a quick return to the field.

“Obviously it’s a disappointing outcome and not what I wanted, having spent a long time out. But it’s treatable and I know I’m in good hands here with the Brumbies medical team,” Pocock said.

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Pek Cowan

Pek Cowan

Wallabies prop Pek Cowan has been cleared of serious injury after being carried off the pitch in the wake of a scrum collapse in the Super Rugby match between Western Force and the Waratahs on Sunday.

It looked like being a miserable start to the new season for the versatile 10-cap front row forward when he received lengthy treatment on the pitch before being carted off in a neck brace.

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Nic Stirzaker

Nic Stirzaker

The Duty Judicial Officer has accepted an acknowledgement of breach by Nic Stirzaker of the Rebels under Law 10.4 (b) Stamping or trampling. A player must not stamp or trample an opponent.

Stirzaker was cited after a Super Rugby match between the Crusaders and the Rebels at AMI Stadium, Christchurch on Friday 13 February 2015.

The player has been suspended from all forms of the game for one week up to and including Sunday 22 February 2015.

The Duty Judicial Officer, Nicholas Davidson QC, assessed the case and recorded:

“I took into account that the player admitted stamping which was accepted as reckless to the point of contact.

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James Horwill

James Horwill

The Duty Judicial Officer has determined that no further sanction will be imposed upon James Horwill of the Reds after he was issued a red card during a Super Rugby match at the weekend.

Horwill was issued a yellow card on two separate occasions for infringements at the breakdown, and at the maul. These occurred in the 48th and 75th minutes in the match between the Brumbies and the Reds at GIO Stadium in Canberra on 13 February 2015, and he was shown a red card on the second occasion.

SANZAR Duty Judicial Officer Nicholas Davidson QC assessed the case and recorded the following:

“While no further sanction has been imposed, this is a warning to players and teams that the judiciary regards team warnings as a responsibility for all players to heed.

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Jamie Heaslip

Jamie Heaslip

Irish No 8 Jamie Heaslip has 3 fractured vertebrae and will miss at least 4 weeks including the potential Grand Slam decider between Six Nations champions Ireland and England in a fortnight it was announced by the IRFU on Monday.

The 31-year-old British and Irish Lions star suffered the injury after being kneed in the back by France lock Pascal Pape in Ireland’s 18 / 11 victory over the French on Saturday.

“Scans have revealed fractures of the transverse process of 3 vertebrae in Jamie’s back,” read a statement from the Irish Rugby Football Union.

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Rory Kockott

Rory Kockott

Rory Kockott may be dropped after France coach Philippe Saint-Andre promised changes for their next Six Nations game against Wales.

Saint-Andre, speaking on Sunday, the day after his side lost 18 / 11 to defending Six Nations champions Ireland at Lansdowne Road, said several players had not performed at the level required for Test rugby.

While the 47-year-old, who has just 3 away wins (2 against Scotland and 1 against Argentina) to his credit since taking over at the helm after the 2011 World Cup Final, initially refused to name names he gave a curt response when asked about Kockott’s performance.

“He can do better,” said Saint-Andre.

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MatiesPukkeMaties (18) 26 / 26 (16) Pukke (Final Score)

FNB Maties (Stellenbosch University) and FNB NWU-Pukke (North West University)

did battle in the Varsity Cup at Danie Craven Stadium, Stellenbosch at 19:00 SA Time (17:00 GMT).

This was the live match discussion Article.

The match was broadcast LIVE on SuperSport 1 & CSN on TV in SA.

*******************

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NMMUCUTNMMU (18) 34 / 13 (0) CUT (Final Score)

The Nelson Mandela Bay Metropolitan University (FNB NMMU) and Central University of Technology

(CUT) did battle in the Varsity Cup at Madibaz Stadium, Port Elizabeth at 16:45 SA Time (12:45 GMT).

This was the live match discussion Article.

The match was broadcast LIVE on SuperSport 1 & CSN on TV in SA.

*******************

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Coventry LogoThe ongoing poaching of South Africa’s Rugby players goes ahead unabated with the announcement by English club Coventry that they have signed South African born centre Mark Hodgkiss from Maties.

Coventry already have a number of SA born players on their books and even though they only play in the 3rd tier of English Rugby, this latest signing serves to illustrate the depth of the problem facing South African Rugby.

 

This media release from Coventry Rugby’s website:

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Varsity CupThe travel tables will be turned in Round 2 of the FNB Varsity Cup presented by Steinhoff International on Monday.

All 4 of the teams that played at home in the opening Round of action will be on the road, as FNB NMMU, FNB UP-Tuks, FNB UJ and FNB Maties get an opportunity to play in front of their home crowds.

The first game to be televised live on Supersport 1 will see the only 2 teams to lose last week square off when the NMMU Madibaz take aim at newcomers FNB CUT in Port Elizabeth, whilst the late match is shaping up to be a classic as 3-time champions Maties welcome FNB NWU-Pukke to the Danie Craven Stadium in Stellenbosch.

Both NMMU and Maties had an away victory snatched from their grasp last week, so they will be looking to make amends on home turf and notch their 1st wins of the season.

The odds certainly seemed stacked against the travelling teams as the Ixias will be playing just their 2nd Varsity Cup game whilst NWU-Pukke have lost 8 consecutive Varsity Cup games against Maties.

The other 2 games on Monday will be up on the Highveld as UJ look to extend their lead at the top of the standings against FNB UFS-Shimlas in Johannesburg and defending champions FNB UCT go in search of their first win against UP-Tuks since 2011 in Pretoria.

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Scotland (10) 23 / 26 (16) WalesScotland

Where do we begin in analysing a game full of movement, liberally spiced with controversy, which ended with Wales the victors at BT Murrayfield, thus extending their unbeaten record against Scotland to 8 games?

Scotland, who contributed so much to the contest, remain pointless in the RBS 6 Nations Championship as Wales bounced back from their opening round defeat by England.

Scotland will now welcome Italy to BT Murrayfield at the end of this month, which captain Greig Laidlaw cites as a “massive” game.

“We’re getting better as a team, becoming stronger but we need to get a result,” he said.

“Small margins,” has been the mantra in international rugby for many a year but we saw it so painfully from a Scottish perspective this afternoon.

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HSBC Sevens World SeriesIt has become a familiar refrain, a cliché. However, it will never be boring, as the Olympic dream is as much a driving force as overall victory in the Sevens World Series.

New Zealand, who recorded their first Cup win of the season by beating England in the Final in Wellington last week, gave notice yet again of their class and determination to be among the top four (automatic qualifiers) when the Olympic dream is realised in May.

Fiji However won the Las Vegas Sevens, with New Zealand ending 2nd, South Africa;s Blitzbokke 3rd and USA 4th.

Many had put a question mark on whether the All Blacks would be able to defend their title in Wellington, especially after the late withdrawal of former Sevens player of the year Tim Mikkelson, and the result even exceeded coach Gordon Tietjens’ expectations.

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Cricket BallSouth Africa and Zimbabwe battled each other in their opening game of the Cricket World Cup, at Seddon Park, Hamilton, New Zealand.

Zimbabwe won the toss and elected to field and bowl first.

South Africa was initially in early trouble, losing 4 rather quick wickets, till David Miller and JP Duminy pulled them out of the fire with good tons each, Miller not out for 138 and Duminy not out for 115… when the 50 overs concluded.

Zimbabwe seemed to be going steadily towards the target, only 2 wickets down at the 25 over mark.

Wickets kept falling at regular intervals though and at 44 overs Zimbabwe were reeling at 8 wickets down.

Zimbabwe were all out after 48.2 overs, South Africa winning by 62 runs.

 

South Africa: 339 / 4 (50 Overs)

Zimbabwe: 277 All Out (48.2 Overs)

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Users: Scrumdown, MacroBull, Pietman, robzim, grootblousmile, Angostura, nortie, Blue Bird, 4man, 24 Guests, 10 Bots

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Recent Comments

  • MacroBull 28 Feb 2015, 17:53 SAST - Daar is fokol stream vir die game so ek braai maar. Maar dit lyk mooi!
  • Pietman 28 Feb 2015, 17:53 SAST - @ grootblousmile: So wat se jy, kan man ge-cite word vir fuck you oppie tv?
  • Scrumdown 28 Feb 2015, 17:52 SAST - Flip it is p1ssing down at Ellis Park. Just got absolutely soaked walking from the car park to the media...
  • Pietman 28 Feb 2015, 17:52 SAST - 4de lynstaan wat Vic steel...lag hy vir Bizzy, hehehe!
  • Blue Bird 28 Feb 2015, 17:52 SAST - I wonder who the Saffa is doing the commentary on the BBC on the Scotland / Italy game?
  • grootblousmile 28 Feb 2015, 17:52 SAST - Hooter goes for halftime... Lemoenetyd it is... and the Bulls lead... wow! Kameeltjietyd

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