Manu Tuilagi smashes Tom Williams

Top14 player imposter!

JDV smashed by Benoit August

The Northampton Saints 30m scrum!

Bastareaud huge hit on Rory Lamont

All Blacks skills - Pt 2 In the backyard

Trinh-Duc sets up Harinordoquy try

Wales vs England 1999

Greg Holmes great hit on Francois Louw

Friday, November 30, 2007

Great Barbarians try vs the Boks - 2000

ron-cribb-barbariansIn preparation for the highly anticipated Barbarians vs Springboks clash on Saturday, we've dug up a fantastic try from 2000 which saw stars such as former Wallabies Richard Harry, Daniel Herbert, ex All Black number eight Ron Cribb, and enigmatic Argentinian leader Augustin Pichot playing some great rugby and throwing some classic passes.

Harry got it going, showing good pace for a big guy, but Ron Cribb threw a vital slip pass to Pichot who put the foot down and flew away from the hapless Bok defenders. A classic try by the Barbarians, who are tradtionally famous for this type of crowd friendly flair.

For this years clash between the two sides at Twickenham though, the Baa Baa's unfortunately are missing a lot of mainline players from England, Ireland, and France due to club commitments. Therefore, the side is built up of a familiar bunch of Southern Hemisphere names that the South African's will know well.

The Boks on the other hand are also missing a few of their stars, with players like captain John Smit not being available and others being out because of injury.

Both sides are looking strong though, and in all honesty this Barbarians side could and probably will give the World Champions a really tough challenge.

With the likes of Joe Rokocoko, Mat Giteau, and Jason Robinson, you can expect to see some highly attractive rugby and some tremendous skill on show.

Expect the Boks to play it tight at first though. Although Barbarian clashes are meant to be a festival of running rugby, the World Cup Winners still have a reputation to uphold, and they wont be playing loose rugby to start out with. Tight, hard, and physical, they'll pick up the scraps and then hopefully later in the game throw the ball around and show the precision finishing that they displayed against Wales last week.

It's a mouth watering confrontation for the neutral and Bok supporter alike. With such talented players on both sides, lets hope the game lives up to expectations.



Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Famous Simon Shaw run from the Lions Tour 2005

After posting the clip of Andries Bekker manhandling some of the smaller guys, there was a lot of talk about Bekker's height, and in particular, comparing him to big Simon Shaw.

That brought back memories of this great moment from the 2005 British and Irish Lions tour of New Zealand.

In a midweek game against Manawatu in Palmeston North, the touring side ran riot, running in 17 tries on their way to a 109-6 victory against the smaller provincial side.

After a Shane Williams try that took the score over the half century mark, big England second-rower Simon Shaw took the ball beautifully from the restart, taking off for an inspirational 55m rampage that would see him tackled just short of the line. The ball was presented cleanly for always present teamate Neil Back, who was close at hand to finish off this classic try that was started by the skill and pace of the big man Shaw.

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Monday, November 26, 2007

Zinzan Brooke huge hit from the past

Regarded by many as the best number eight ever to play the game, Auckland and All Black legend Zinzan Brooke had it all - huge defence included.

We've managed to dig up this massive hit from a Super 12 game between Auckland and the Waratahs from roughly 1996. The tackle almost looks like it could be from rugby league, but, it is in fact perfectly legal.

A high shot in the tackle a little earlier gave the Waratahs a chance to spark something as the referee played advantage. Zinzan, however, shuts the NSW backline down immediately and effectively tells them, 'You can have 3 points mate, but you'll have to do better than that if you want 7.'

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Friday, November 23, 2007

That Brendan Cannon punch on Kevin Mealamu

Hookers are generally loved or hated characters on the rugby field. There aren't many international number two's that go unnoticed for whatever reason. Perhaps it's the fact that they're squashed between two smelly gorilla's and have five massive guys pushing them from behind.

It's a high pressure position, and in the game between the Wallabies and the All Blacks in the classic 2004 Tri Nations series, the two front rowers exploded.

Brendan Cannon was the main culprit, unleashing a devastating right cross that cracked opposite number Kevin Mealamu square in the nose.

In all honesty from the video it's hard to see exactly what triggered the outlash, except that Mealamu 'pushed' Cannon on the side of the head with his closed fist. Hardly worth retaliating like he did.

What followed was an attack that saw the likes of Carlos Spencer and Justin Marshall throwing wild punches at Cannon, and more than likely hitting their own player most of the time. Both players were lucky to get away with no further punishment.

Big Justin Harrison tried to dish out his own form of justice too, but idiotic touch judge Shaun Veldsman got in the middle of it and stopped it, possibly risking his own safety by trying to hold back the pumped up players - something that in my opinion officials should never try do.

Wallaby Brendan Cannon received a two week suspension for his punch. The All Blacks were penalised for retaliation though and both hookers were yellow carded.

So, were the other players lucky to get away with their actions, or should they have been forgiven for losing their cool, as they were?

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Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Andries Bekker tells the little ones to settle down

From earlier this year in the Super 14 game between the Stormers and the Hurricanes, giant 6ft8 lock Andries Bekker tells the overzealous Hurricanes outside backs David Smith and Corey Jane to calm down in his own delicate way.

This reminds me of those old wrestling matches where Andre the Giant would go up against two or more guys, and normally win.

Bekker is the son of former Springbok Hennie Bekker who was apparently also freakish in size.

An up and coming player, don't be surprised to see more of the significant Andries Bekker presence in the future.


Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Denis Leamy's bunny hopping-madness at the back of the scrum

The Munster fire is alive and well. After a close defeat to the Wasps, they redeemed themselves with a five-try killing spree of Clermont Auvergne.

Veteran full-back Shaun Payne and centre Rua Tipoki both touched down for the second week running, while second half tries from winger Brian Carney, flanker Alan Quinlan and prop Marcus Horan sealed the result.

The focus of this video though is Dennis Leamy's unique way of controlling the ball at the back of the scrum when trying to score a pushover try. Sure, some players often make mistakes when trying to drag it with their feet towards the line, normally kicking it back into the scrum and losing the ball.

But this new method begs the question, is he really contributing the eight man shove? Another thing, is it legal? According to some it's not.

Apparently earlier in the season Anthony Foley did the same thing and was blown up for it. It does have it's merits though, simply because you're in control of the ball at all times, even if you're completely off balance and get pumped as soon as you break away from the scrum.

Luckily for Leamy he had Rua Tipoki to offload to when it happened to him.



Ulster vs Bourgoin - A massive hit & two great tries

The two number tens added spark to this eventful Heineken Cup match played in France between Ulster and Bourgoin.

There's a smashing hit put in by Bourgoin just before Ulster's excellent try.

Ulster recovered from the hit though and Paddy Wallace linked up beautifully with flying Tommy Bowe on the inside who skipped through a few despairing attempted ankle-taps before putting his open-side flanker Kieron Dawson over for the try.

Later in the game Benjamin Boyet made a brilliant break to burst through a gap and then throw a precision long pass to the open man out wide. Excellent vision to see the winger Jean-François Coux awaiting the try-scoring pass. The result - 5 points in the corner for Bourgoin.

Yet another high quality Heineken Cup match. Coming from a devout Super 14 fan, I'm really enjoying the action I've seen so far. European rugby is looking good again.

Final Score: 24 - 17 to Bourgoin



Monday, November 19, 2007

Ugo Monye dump tackle on Ben Blair

In case you missed it, here is a big hit by Ugo Monye on Ben Blair in the game between the Harlequins and the Cardiff Blues from Saturday.

Great tackle by the big winger on a flying Blair. Lifts him up and drives him down. Great technique.

The game was exciting, but ended 13-13 in the end. The silence in the crowd explained it all. Highly disappointing to play 80 mins of rugby and come up with a draw as the result.

Tackles like this are great to see though either way, especially when the attacking player is flying. I bet he regrets that little inside step though.

NOTE: We're aware that this video isn't available and are in the process of trying to get it back up. Please bare with us. Thanks.



Friday, November 16, 2007

Tony Buckley handoff on Simon Shaw

With Wasps pounding away at the line, Munster come back with a brilliant countershove, driving Paul Sackey back and dislodging the ball.

Substitute front rower Tony Buckley picks up and sets off. Big English lock Simon Shaw has a go at him but Buckley says 'Sorry mate, the bus is full' and delivers a massive hand off that sends Shaw to the turf.

Buckley then has the audacity to fling a great pass out which creates a counter-attacking opportunity for Munster.

Great to see front rowers doing more than just the dog work in the scrums.



Know The Game - Smart thinking from the 22 kick off

In the first of our 'Know The Game' videos, we feature this piece of smart thinking by Bobby Joubert of the Griquas which resulted in a try against the Sharks in this years Currie Cup match in Kimberley.

From the 22 kickoff the ball heads out on the full. Joubert who catches it has one foot out when he does so. This means that the ball is ruled as going straight out of bounds.

Since it was a dropout, it's the same as kicking out on the full in normal play outside your 22. Therefore, the lineout is upfield from where it was dropped out.

Wide awake Joubert goes out of bounds to run up to where the lineout is to take place, throws in the quick-lineout and through some quality ball exchanges, it's trytime against the bemused Sharks.

Wonderful knowledge of the laws results in a try. Great to see players rewarded for smart rugby and a lesson to all - know the game and you will have that extra edge over your opponent.


Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Leinster vs Leicester - Big hit and amazing defense

Crowd favourite Alesana Tuilagi absolutely smashes Gordon Darcy as he gets a ball-and-all pass from Argentinian star Felipe Contepomi. The powerhouse Samoan wing times the tackle perfectly, hitting Darcy hard and driving him to the floor.

Even more more sensational than that though was a bit of defensive brilliance from big Leinster winger Shane Horgan. After a loose ball is picked up by Irish international Geordan Murphy, Leicester looked sure to score a spectacular break away try. Shane Horgan chased hard though, and miraculously caught Murphy, who most people would have backed to go all the way. Horgan then made another try saving tackle, this time on Tuilagi. He then got into the ruck and helped to win the ball for his team. Brilliant speed and commitment shown by the big guy. I wonder though, was it more Horgan's sheer speed or Murphy's lack of gas?

Alex Tuilagi's tackle was fun to watch, but it was the only moment in the game where he really stood out. Shane Horgan, and indeed the entire Leinster squad, fired the entire 80 minutes in their defensive work. Big and desperate tackles were in abundance and in the end it paid off with them coming out tops.

Final Score: 22-9 to Leinster



Sunday, November 11, 2007

Mike Tindall finishes off an excellent Gloucester team try

Gloucester started their Heineken Cup campaign with an impressive win over Ulster by coming out tops 32-14.

In a blistering display in the first half, Gloucester got their bonus point try after 22 minutes of play.

The pick of the tries would be this classic, finished off by big Mike Tindall after a sweeping move from deep in their own half. Great hands, superb support play, and excellent speed. Great try.

Final Score: 32-14 to Gloucester



Thursday, November 08, 2007

Rico Gear smashed by Benson Stanley

This recent tackle, by young Benson Stanley on Rico Gear, isn't necessarily the biggest or most spectacular hit you'll ever see. What it is however, is pretty much technically perfect.

Stanley runs in from far and demolishes All Black Gear, hitting him hard in the midriff and effectively knocking the wind out of him.

The tackle was perfectly timed, forcing Gear to take some time out to regain his bearings and suck some oxygen back into his lungs.

Just goes to show the youngsters out there, you don't have to be a big guy to make devastating tackles.

UPDATE: Video is down temporarily - apologies for that. We'll have it up again asap.


Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Classic Clip - the Ref makes his point

As the Northern hemisphere rugby scene welcomes back many players that were away on World Cup duty, we look at a classic moment brought to us by not a star player, but by a referee for a change.

The game was between London Irish & Gloucester recently, and as referee Sean Davey spots a repeated infringement, you can see the opposition players around him clapping their hands expecting the inevitable. He calls across the guilty party to give him what we expect to be his marching orders. What he does is absolutely classic.

Just enjoy, and respect the calm and collected attitude displayed here by him. For pulling it off perfectly and doing something that has probably never been done by a ref anywhere before at this level of sport we say well done mate.

Perhaps these ref fella's do have a sense of humour after all.



Monday, November 05, 2007

Toulon vs Beziers - the gloves are off

Toulon and Beziers have somewhat of a history of mass brawls. In last years encounter there was a huge free-for-all that travelled half way down the pitch.

This year, they kept with tradition, and after a dirty tackle on the air born youngster Marc Andreu it all went pear shaped. After watching the World Cup recently, we're not used to seeing punchups like this, as on the internationl stage players are severely reprimanded and normally cited. But, this is the French Second Division, and from the looks of it, anything goes.

Toulon has been in the limelight frequently lately, mainly for the fact that they're receiving an influx of top players from all over the world, with the goal in mind to make it back up to the French Top 14. I'm sure with the legendary Tana Umaga in charge they'll be in good hands. Doesn't hurt that they also have former All Black fylhalf Andrew Merhtens (note how he almost gets pulled into this fight!), former Wallaby scrumhalf George Gregan, and current Spingbok lock Victor Matfield, just to name a few.

We'll keep an eye on things and see if Toulon produce the kind of rugby that will take them to where their wealthy owner Mourad Boudjellal wants to see them.

Final Score: 41-7 to Toulon



Thursday, November 01, 2007

WC07 Individual Tries of the Tournament

tries of the tournamentAs promised, here are our World Cup 2007 Individual Tries of the Tournament.

A number of great tries were considered when narrowing down our Top 5 contenders. We stuck with this selection though based on skill, great acceleration, determination, and above all, the fact that they're the tries we enjoyed the most during the tournament.

Great individual efforts by each player involved and therefore deserved of the title of the best standout solo efforts of the 2007 World Cup.

Four backline players and one freak of nature. Difficult to say which is the number one try though out of these five. Your call?

Note: Some tries, such as the now famous USA try by Zee Ngwenya, are under the Team Tries. View the Team Tries of the Tournament here.

Hate to Say I Told You So by The Hives



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