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How Deep Is The Talent Pool?

How Deep Is The Talent Pool? The 2018 Rugby Championships is done and dusted. Rassie Erasmus’s first seven months in charge of the Springboks produced so much more than many had expected. Starting from a below-zero base, he hauled the...

New Law – More Confusion?

New Law – More Confusion? I have often wondered whether it is a deliberate tactic of the various functionaries that sit on the plethora of committees and councils at World Rugby headquarters to make constant changes to the laws and...

A League of Nations?

A League of Nations? It seems that World Rugby are looking for a complete change to the current international calendar. This despite World Rugby CEO Brett Gosper being quoted as saying: “We’re looking at a number of different, potential models...

Rugby At The Crossroads.

Rugby At The Crossroads. Back in 1986 Columbia Pictures released a movie, Crossroads, that was to become an iconic film of the age, celebrating blues music, while telling the tale of a legendary musician, Robert Johnson, who had sold his...

The Case for Central Contracting Grows.

The Case for Central Contracting Grows. The news that six Springbok squad members have signed contract extensions with the Lions has been widely welcomed by fans of South Africa’s top performing franchise. On Tuesday, the Lions confirmed that No 8 Warren Whiteley,...

Going Down The Drain

Going Down The Drain Sanzaar Slowly Strangling Southern Hemisphere Rugby To Death.   Super Rugby is dying! Anybody watching the Super Rugby Quarterfinals must have noticed the empty seats in all four stadiums hosting the games. A paltry 8500 spectators pitched up to watch...

TMO’s To Be Put Back In Their Boxes!

TMO’s To Be Put Back In Their Boxes! In a move that will be welcomed by every single rugby fan on the planet, Television Match Officials may be stripped of their rights to interject (read: Interfere) during rugby matches. This...

SANZAAR To Review The TMO!!!

  SANZAAR To Review The TMO!!! I very much doubt whether any of SANZAAR’s suits have read any of my frequent complaints about their officials and match officiating faux pas and match-influencing blunders. They are far too busy and important to...

Eating at Sanzaar’s

  Eating at Sanzaar’s There is a story doing the rounds. It is about Chef, who owned and ran a restaurant in a big city. It was a good restaurant, an upper-class fine-dining place, focussed on classic French cooking. A restaurant that...

Make Your Own Biltong!

Make Your Own Biltong!  Rugby without biltong is not much fun, especially if you are a South African ex-pat living somewhere far away where nobody has heard of the stuff of your dreams. In fact: Life without biltong is simply wrong! If...

Seattle Seawolves Major League Rugby Champions

Seattle Seawolves Major League Rugby Champions The US professional competition staged its very first final in San Diego on Saturday, and the Seattle Seawolves won the game, and the title, beating the Glendale Raptors 23 – 19. Seattle, which lost...

What is Wrong in Australia?

What is Wrong in Australia? A series loss to England in 2016, followed by losses to Ireland and England again at the end of that year. Losing to Scotland twice and England once again in 2017. A series loss to...

Conrad does a Ronan. Conrad Smith Starts Coaching Job.

Conrad does a Ronan. Conrad Smith takes a coaching job. I am always interested in retired players that decide to put something back into the game. They stay in the world of rugby by continuing their involvement as coaches, managers, referees and...

England’s South African Woes

England’s South African Woes As we head into the third Test between the Springboks and the visiting England team, we already know that the series has been won by South Africa, which gives the home side an opportunity to relax...

It is still broken!

It is still broken! An Article by Mark Reason in New Zealand’s Stuff makes interesting reading. Those that read my article titled “It’s Broken” posted on the 30th May, in which I commented about the dysfunctionality of the Sanzaar Judicial system,...

Springboks vs England – Series Preview

Springboks vs England Series Preview   The sideshows are over; Super Rugby has hit the pause button; the utter waste of time in Washington DC is consigned to history in a file marked “Why?” and the real work of the month of...

It’s Broken!!

It's Broken!! Sanzaar’s Judicial Review System Is Broken!   Sanzaar’s Judicial Review system comes under the spotlight again. Their most recent forays into dispensing “justice” has again raised the hackles of rugby enthusiasts across the world. Wildly disparate sentences, strange decisions regarding a...

It’s Broken! Fix It!

It’s Broken! Fix It! When you see a storm brewing outside, when those heavy bellied purple clouds are stacking up, and the lightning is flashing continuously as the thunder gets louder and louder, closer and closer, you would be a...

Eddie’s Squad

Eddie’s Squad Eddie Jones has ignored the advices of the likes of Clive Woodward and Martin Johnson and gone ahead with the inclusion of Brad Shields in his 34-man squad to tour South Africa in June. Jones has included seven uncapped...

Eddie’s Conundrum, the World Aghast!

Eddie’s Conundrum, the World Aghast! Or: The Eddie & Brad Show!   Eddie Jones was hired to coach England to World Cup glory. Period. Anything else Eddie achieves is bye-the-bye – collateral success or collateral damage. It really does not matter, as long...

Quo Vadis, Stormers?

Quo Vadis, Stormers? Coaching Blues…. As the middle of the Super Rugby season passes us, and the final stretches of the competition loom, another season kicks off. It is the season of speculation. Speculation about coaches and their coaching futures. When results are poor,...

The Pick-a-Boks Show!

The Pick-a-Boks Show! It is that time of the year again! Winter is upon us, sneaking in through the wide open windows and doors of summer, tickling the base of your spine with tendrils of iciness that we all hoped would...

A Giant Awakening?

A Giant Awakening?   After the Pearl Harbour attack on 7th December 1941, Japanese Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto is frequently quoted as having said: “I fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.” There...

Cheating to Win

  Cheating to Win   The recent furore surrounding the Australian cricket team and their somewhat clumsy, amateurish even, attempts to cheat on the field pf play has occupied my mind during recent days. The rancour that has greeted the downfall of Australian...

Derby Dangers!

Derby Dangers!   The 18-team Super Rugby format of 2016 and 2017 was doomed from the very first. Too many teams, too many fixtures, too much travel, too many mediocre teams, and simply too much rugby. Spectators, fans, and even idle...

Israel’s Follies

  Israel’s Follies I wonder how Israel Folau will respond when Nigel Owens is appointed to referee a Test featuring Izzy in the colours of the Wallabies? I wonder what Michael Cheika will say if Owens is forced by on-field circumstance...
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Judicial Jokers

Judicial Jokers I have previously been strongly critical of Sanzaar’s judicial processes and the leniency of sanctions applied to those who transgress the rules and laws of the game of rugby. I have written about the issue on numerous occasions...

Schadenfreude

Schadenfreude   (Schadenfreude: the experience of pleasure, joy, or self-satisfaction that comes from learning of or witnessing the troubles, failures, or humiliation of another.) The sports loving world is indulging in an orgy of Schadenfreude at the moment. The Australian cricket team have...

Rugby in the Age of Technology.

Rugby in the Tech Age.   Once upon a time, in a land far far away, there was a game. A sport, and they called it rugby. Rugby was a simple game, played on green fields and open spaces, hard baked...

RUGBY LAW CHANGES: SEASON 2017/8

RUGBY LAW CHANGES: SEASON 2017/8 (With thanks to Sam and his fellow bloggers at RugbyStore.co.uk) Here is a link y'all might like to try: Some friends from up north have gone to an enormous amount of trouble to analyse and explain the...

Where Is Average Joe?

  Where is Average Joe? Thoughts About The Game Where have all the flowers gone? Long time passing Where have all the flowers gone Long time ago Where have all the flowers gone Girls have picked them every one When will they every learn? When will they every learn? Pete...

The Sunwolves. An Exercise in Futility?

The Sunwolves. An Exercise in Futility? What exactly are SANZAAR trying to achieve with the Sunwolves? We were told that SANZAAR wanted to promote and support the development of rugby in Japan. We were told that they wanted to gain a foothold...

Err, Just a couple of questions, Rassie…

Err, Just a couple of questions, Rassie… An open letter to Rassie Erasmus. Hi Rassie, Congratulations! There are many of us that are very pleased with your appointment as Director of Rugby at SA Rugby, and as successor to Allister Coetzee as...

The Not-So-Secret Secret is Out!

The Not-So-Secret Secret is Out! Rassie Erasmus is the new Bok coach. Johan (Rassie) Erasmus was born in the town of Despatch, an industrial town neighbouring Port Elizabeth, some 45 years ago. He is one of many sporting greats to...

Uncontested Scrums: The Law Clarified

  Uncontested Scrums: The Law Clarified The 2018 version of the Rugby Law Book might have been edited and simplified but. In truth, those simplifications are merely cosmetic and/or grammatical. The Laws might be easier to read, but that does not...

How Low Can You Go?

How Low Can You Go? Last Saturday I watched rugby ethics sink to a new low. France’s replacement scrumhalf, Antoine Dupont, went down with what appeared to be a knee injury. He, without any assistance from anyone, started pointing at his...

Open Forum 23/1/2018 (UPDATE) – Have your say Here

Hello! Look over to your right under your login options you'll see our newly added forum index (We're calling it 'The Clubhouse') There you find 'The Scrum' where you can open any topics and comment on other's. Subject to...

51-Player All Black Squad, Are They Changing Their Game?

51-Player All Black Squad, Are They Changing Their Game.   Steve Hansen has announced a strong 51-player squad for the All Black’s upcoming end-of-year tour to Japan and Europe. First up, Hansen named a 32-man squad of players who go to Yokohama...

Match Officials For November 2018 Tours

Match Officials For November 2018 Tours Fixture Officials South Africa   England v South Africa Twickenham Stadium, England 3 Nov 2018 3.00pm Referee Angus Gardner (Australia) Assistant Referees Jérôme Garcès (France) Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand) TMO Olly Hodges (Ireland)   France v South Africa Stade de France, Paris, France 10 Nov 2018 9.05pm Referee Nigel Owens (Wales) Assistant Referees Matthew Carley (England) Tom Foley (England) TMO Rowan Kitt (England)   Scotland v South Africa BT Murrayfield, Edinburgh, Scotland 17 Nov 2018 5.20pm Referee Romain Poite (France) Assistant Referees Ben O'Keeffe (New...

Sam Cane Up and About!

Sam Cane Up and About! Sam Cane is “up and about” following a successful operation on his neck. The 26-year-old All Black flanker fractured a bone in his neck during the All Blacks’ comeback 32-30 win over the Springboks in...

Rugby Championships 2018 Stats & Facts & Bill’s Dream Team

Rugby Championships 2018 Stats & Facts & Bill’s Dream Team The dust has settled, the trophy remains in New Zealand, the teams are all back home again, and the migrant workers have returned to their overseas clubs. The 2018 Rugby Championships...

2018 Rugby Championships – Argentina 34 vs Australia 45 – Saturday, October 6

2018 Rugby Championships Argentina 34 vs Australia 45 Saturday, October 6 Venue: Estadio Padre Ernesto Martearena, Salta Referee: Jaco Peyper (South Africa) Assistant referees: Mathieu Raynal (France), Marius van der Westhuizen (South Africa) TMO: David Grashoff (England)   I am not a mechanically minded person at all. In fact, when it...

Sam Cane Breaks Neck!

Sam Cane's Neck Broken In Test. Sam Cane is not one to show any emotion while he is on a rugby field. He is the picture of complete focus and concentration. That is his way. He never flinches or grimaces...

Dust off your Bok Shirt – By Jon Harris

Dust off your Bok Shirt By Jon Harris As the dust and disappointment settles on the Springbok loss to New Zealand in their final Rugby Championship match at Loftus Versfeld, there are so many positive points to consider. After a 2017 season...

2018 Rugby Championships – South Africa 30 vs New Zealand 32 – Saturday, October...

2018 Rugby Championships South Africa 30 vs New Zealand 32 Saturday, October 6 Venue: Loftus Versveld Stadium, Pretoria. Referee: Angus Gardner (Australia) Assistant referees: Jérôme Garcès (France), Matthew Carley (England) Television match official: Graham Hughes (England) If ever there was a game that illustrated the best of what Test Match...

2018 Rugby Championships – Argentina vs Australia – Saturday, October 6

2018 Rugby Championships Argentina vs Australia Saturday, October 6 Venue: Estadio Padre Ernesto Martearena, Salta Kick-off: 19:40 local, 23:40 BST, 22:40 GMT, 00:40 SA Time Referee: Jaco Peyper (South Africa) Assistant referees: Mathieu Raynal (France), Marius van der Westhuizen (South Africa) TMO: David Grashoff (England)   Dane Haylett-Petty has said that the Wallabies...

2018 Rugby Championships – South Africa vs New Zealand – Saturday, October 6

2018 Rugby Championships South Africa vs New Zealand Saturday, October 6 Venue: Loftus Versveld Stadium, Pretoria. Kick-off: 17:05 SA Time, 16:05 BST, 15:05 GMT Referee: Angus Gardner (Australia) Assistant referees: Jérôme Garcès (France), Matthew Carley (England) Television match official: Graham Hughes (England) The past two weeks have been a fascinating time for...

The TMO In The Spotlight, Again.

The TMO In The Spotlight, Again. The Television Match Officials, or TMOs as we have preferred to call them, have been the target of much derision, disdain, and ridicule over the years. They have often been the cause of some...

2018 Rugby Championships – Argentina 17 vs New Zealand 35 – Saturday 29th September...

2018 Rugby Championships Argentina 17 vs New Zealand 35 Saturday 29th September 2018   Venue: Jose Amalfitani Stadium, Buenos Aires Referee: Mathieu Raynal (France) Assistant referees: Jaco Peyper (South Africa), Marius van der Westhuizen (South Africa) TMO: David Grashoff (England) New Zealand have won the Rugby Championships for the third consecutive...

2018 Rugby Championships – South Africa 23 vs Australia 12 – Saturday 29th September...

2018 Rugby Championships South Africa 23 vs Australia 12 Saturday 29th September 2018   Venue: Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth Crowd: 42 000 Referee: Jérôme Garcès (France) Assistant referees: Wayne Barnes (England), Matthew Carley (England) Television match official: Graham Hughes (England) “Two weeks ago the Springboks produced one of the finest...

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