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

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Ireland sneak home against England at Twickenham

Tommy Bowe scored twice as Ireland beat England 20-16 at Twickenham, keeping their hopes alive of retaining the Six Nations title.

England had taken the lead at 16-13 when wing Bowe broke the defensive line before stepping Ugo Monye and going over for the decisive try. It was his second try of the night after he'd chased a neatly placed Jonny Sexton kick ahead earlier.

Keith Earls also scored, as Ireland tallied 3 tries to the 1 of England, scored by Dan Cole. Jonny Wilkinson kicked the conversion, two penalties, and a drop goal, but Ireland three tries and their strong defensive effort meant they won away from home.

"We've come back from deficits before," Irish number eight Jamie Heaslip said. "We showed belief and confidence in each other's ability and closed the game out well.

"England had good time on the ball and played territory well but we took our chances. We looked at the France game afterwards and thought we didn't take our opportunities. Today we did.

"For Ireland, it's not difficult to get motivated for an England game," he added.

France lead the standings with six points as they chase a Grand Slam, while England and Ireland both have two less, sitting on four points each.


Italy end drought with Six Nations win over Scotland

Italian rugby has reason to celebrate tonight after they beat Scotland for their first win in the Six Nations since two years ago, winning 16-12 at the Stadio Flaminio in Rome.

Neither side had won a match going into this match, and both looked determined to change that, but they struggled to crack one another's defence for a large portion of the match. It was 6-6 at halftime, and 9-9 ten minutes into the second.

Mirco Bergamasco and Dan Parks exchanged penalty kicks, before replacement scrumhalf Pablo Canavosio scored the only try of the match, a brilliant effort, that ultimately took victory away from the visiting Scots and lifted the spirits of the loyal Italian fans.

"We've been trying to move the ball wide more and keep it in hand," said Italy's coach Nick Mallett. "It was a great break by Gonzalo and excellent support running from Pablo. But it is on such fine margins that games are won and we are not getting carried away."

"This is the seventh time we've won in this competition and every win is significant," Mallett said. "We've come close in other games and it is pretty frustrating when, like last time against England, you lose by five points.

"Everyone was very nervous about how Scotland would play, especially on a sunny day perfect for running rugby. But now we are proud that we stopped them scoring a try and proud of our defence.

"We've shown for two games we are perfectly capable of keeping the ball in hand. We've improved our defence consistently over the last six months," said Mallett.

"That's not a bad effort for a team that used to be at sea against sides who play quickly."

Despite looking promising in recent times, Scotland now face the possibility of taking the wooden spoon.

"Any losing experience is pretty difficult," Scotland coach Andy Robinson said. "The players put a lot into their performance, but didn't do enough to score a try."


France stay on track for Grand Slam with win over Wales

France remain unbeaten as they held off yet another Welsh comeback last night, winning 26-20 in the Six Nations clash at the Millennium Stadium.

France led 20-0 at halftime following intercept tries by Alexis Palisson and Francois Trinh-Duc, but allowed Wales back in the game in the second half, allowing them to get within seven points and sniffing a win.

Penalties from replacement Frederic Michalak and another by Morgon Parra gave France their third successive win, despite a brilliant solo try scored at the end by Shane Williams.

Welsh coach Warren Gatland was optimistic, insisting his team are on the right track.

"If we can stop being our own worst enemies and get it right we are not far away from being a very good side. At no stage did we feel under pressure because I don't think they played a lot of rugby," he said.

"We could have thrown in the towel at half-time, but we played some fantastic rugby in the second-half and showed some great character and put ourselves in a position to win the game.

"We were the architects of our own demise. Two intercept tries were really costly. It is hugely frustrating. Our fitness was superb, and we had France on the ropes. They were out on their feet. There was only one team playing rugby, and we had 70% territory and possession in that second-half," he added.

Defence coach Shaun Edwards felt that there was a trend towards their side giving away easy intercept tries.

"To keep France to no offensive tries was a great effort. But there is no doubt people are doing their homework and have seen they can get intercepts, because more than 30% of our tries conceded over the last 18 months have come from intercepts," he said.


Friday, February 26, 2010

Ruck 'n' Roll Years - The 2000's

The third round of this years Six Nations gets under way in Cardiff tonight, so it's probably a good time to conclude the excellent BBC series The Ruck 'n' Roll Years, as today the focus is on the last ten years of the Championship.

Music, news, and rugby combine to document the famous meeting of the great sides of the northern hemisphere. You can watch the previous two postings by clicking the related links below.

England and France contested the first few years closely, before Wales won the Grand Slam in 2005, followed by 2008. Last year, 2009, Ireland came to the party with their historic win that contributed towards a great year for Irish rugby.

Who knows what the next ten years hold, or indeed if France will win the Grand Slam this year? It's hotly contested as always, and will no doubt provide many hours of enjoyable viewing.

If you want to see which matches are coming up in this years tournament, as well as buy tickets for the matches, check out our Fixtures page where you can also find out about getting your exclusive 5% Rugbydump discount code when buying.

Time: 07:27


Super 14 Pick of the Week - Rounds 1 & 2

As we head into Round 3 of the Super 14, we look back at the best tries scored in the last two weekend's of rugby with our regular slot here on Rugbydump, the Super 14 Pick of the Week.

While Round 1 didn't have too many to pick from, hence the delayed posting, Round 2 produced a feast of tries as the new application of the laws kicked into full effect as we saw fifty-pointers in both Johannesburg, and just up the road, in Pretoria.

While there's no new laws to speak of, the way in which the refs are now governing certain areas of the game will mean that the attacking side will be favoured, and plenty of running rugby and tries should be scored.

That's not always going to be the case though. As teams get used to the new intepretations they will adapt their game plan accordingly, and those who do will surely optimize their strengths significantly.

Enough rambling though - here's 18 tries from Round 1 & 2. We figure it's a great way to see some of the best tries, jampacked into a few minutes. We'll do this each week if feedback is good, so let us know. Enjoy.

Time: 05:23
Music: Shoot to Thrill by AC/DC


Thursday, February 25, 2010

Bulls too powerful for the Brumbies at Loftus Versfeld

Wynand Olivier try - Bulls vs BrumbiesDefending champions the Bulls proved too strong at Loftus Versfeld on the weekend as they notched up their second half century in two weeks, beating the Brumbies 50-32 in an entertaining match.

Flyhalf Morne Steyn scored two tries and kicked five conversions and five penalties as the home side picked up their second consecutive win in this year’s competition, with Steyn scoring 35 points in total.

The Brumbies were packed with talent and a handful of top class Wallaby players, including the returning Matt Giteau, and had actually led the match 27-20 and looked in control early in the second half.

It took a powerful forward performance from the Bulls to stop them though, scoring 30 unanswered points to take them to yet another home win in the tournament.

The Brumbies managed a consolation try at the end, scored by wing Pat McCabe after some great passing amongst the backs, but it was too little too late as the Bulls went to the top of the table after two rounds.

Captain Victor Matfield was cited after the match for allegedly striking Rocky Elsom, as well as charging into a ruck without binding onto another player. He has since been cleared though, and will be free to play their next match, against the Waratahs at Loftus on Saturday.

Join the forum to discuss the Super 14, the upcoming Six Nations, and to make clip requests.

Time: 07:17


Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Best tries of the Top 14 - Round 19

While Round 20 of the Top 14 in France has just been, we take a look back at the best tries from Round 19 of one of the best domestic competitions in world rugby.

As always, the standard of tries is high, with this round in particular producing a host of wonderful tries for the spectators. We start with a neatly taken try by Henry Chavancy for Racing Metro as they beat Clermont Auvergne 33-24.

They feature again at number 2 on the list, with Englishman Dan Scarborough finishing off a great try that's started by a good charge off the back of the scrum by Sebastien Chabal. The flick pass by Sireli Bobo made it happen though.

Patricio Albacete, pictured above, flopped over for a try after Yannick Jauzion broke the line then unselfishly popped the ball for the supporting forward as Toulouse beat Albi 24-6.

Perpignan has two fantastic tries on show here from their 49-20 thumping of Bourgoin, while Jean-Baptise Peyras showed his speed for Bayonne as they upset Biarritz 15-0 at Stade Jean Dauger.

Number one on this list goes to Mafileo Kefu as Toulon beat Montpellier 31-19. A nice bit of speed and stepping had him coasting through the gap before finishing off Round 19's Best Tries with the big dive.

To see what's coming up in the Top 14, check out the newly updated Top 14 Fixtures page.

Time: 04:35


Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Ruck 'n' Roll Years - The Eighties & Nineties

The 2010 Six Nations gets back under way again this weekend, so to get you back in the mood, here’s the next two parts of the series we featured last week, the Ruck ‘n’ Roll Years from the BBC. Today we’re looking at the Eighties and Nineties.

Jam-packed with great music and classic footage, the series tracks some of the biggest years in the Championship, mixed in with the sounds of the times and archive footage of the biggest news hitting the headlines in that era.

Overall, France were most impressive in the Eighties, winning or sharing the trophy on six occasions, despite England’s powerful Grand Slam at the turn of the decade. The Eighties also began with Robert Mugabe getting in power in Zimbabwe. Thirty years later, he’s still around.

In 1984 singer Michael Jackson burnt his head while filming a television advert, but it was Scotland who powered on to take the Grand Slam, much to commentator Bill McLaren’s delight.

Phillipe Sella and France were sensational in the latter years, scoring some incredible tries, marching on to victory with their mesmeric running game, matched with the strength up front.

England went through a good period in the Nineties, with a backline that boasted the speedster Rory Underwood, and the class of Jeremy Guscott and Captain Will Carling. It was Scotland though who won famously first up in 1990, with England taking the next two years.

In 1991 France scored what is commonly known as one of the greatest tries ever, as Phillipe Saint Andre went over beneath the posts, but it was England who won the match and the Grand Slam.

The clips feature other great moments from the Eighties and Nineties, so hopefully it’s enjoyed and brings back memories of a different age in rugby. The 2000’s clip will be featured soon.

You can now get your rugby tickets with an exclusive Rugbydump discount voucher code, giving you 5% off all available Rugby Union tickets. Check out the Six Nations Fixtures page for more details and to see what's coming up.


Monday, February 22, 2010

Be the Bagman for Ireland against Wales!

We've got a great opportunity for you today as Paddy Power are offering you the chance to be the Bagman for the Irish team when they take on Wales in the Six Nations match at Croke Park on Sat 13th March.

Think you can handle 22 sweaty jockstraps?

You won't be joining the prawn sandwich brigade in the corporate boxes. No, you'll be getting down and dirty with the team and their legendary bagman 'Rala' in the bowels of Croke Park for what should be a classic Championship encounter.

From the dressing room to the pitch, you won't be watching the game - you'll be part of it! Not only that, but you'll get accommodation, spending money, and a signed jersey to make the occasion even more memorable.

This fantastic prize includes:
  • Helping the Bagman for the Day
  • Overnight Stay in a Dublin Hotel
  • €100 Paddy Power bet on the game
  • €100 Beer Money (you'll need a pint after all that hard work!)
  • Signed Irish Jersey by the Team & Rala
To take part in the competition all you need to do is answer an easy question and hold thumbs!
Enter here now

Time: 01:04


Scott Deasy try for Munster against Edinburgh

Munster had two players sent to the sin-bin and three injured but they managed to overcome the challenge and beat Edinburgh 19-12 in a competitive Magners League match at Musgrave Park on the weekend.

Paul Warwick went off injured early on so was replaced by young academy player Scott Deasy, who went on to score the best try of the match, with this great individual effort.

Unfortunately for Deasy it wasn’t plain sailing, as he missed five kicks at goal, adding to the pressure Munster were already experiencing from the Edinburgh side.

Edinburgh’s David Blair kicked four penalties and slotted a drop goal, but they were unable to come up with a try as they took home only a losing bonus point from the match.

Alan Quinlan was yellow carded for a ruck offence, and later Lifeimi Mafi was also sin-binned, that time for a tackle off the ball. They held on for the win though, with Deasy’s superb line break and chip and chase proving the difference in the end.

Edinburgh coach Rob Moffat rued the missed chances and lack of killer instinct from his side, citing a strange ten minute period where they should have gone ahead.

"The turning point was when Munster got a yellow card and scored eight points while they were down to fourteen men," Moffat said.

"They just upped their game during that period and were pretty clinical in scoring the try.We created a lot of good chances but didn't take them, and I think that was the difference between the sides.

"Like Munster, we hadn't played for three weeks and I thought that showed in the end. You can expect to be sharp in everything you do if your players haven't played for a month.

"We played well overall and it's just a pity that we didn't come out the other side of it because we quite easily could have. Munster are good at winning close games and they did what they needed to in order to win this one," he added.

Time: 01:27


Queensland Reds blitz the Crusaders in Brisbane

One of the games of the weekend in the Super 14 was undoubtedly the match that took place in Brisbane between the Reds and the Crusaders. The Reds upset the perennial favourites 41-20.

Reds flyhalf Quade Cooper had one of his better performances as he scored 31 points on the night, scoring two tries, kicking five penalties, and slotting three conversions.

Flyers Digby Ioane and Rod Davies also scored tries as the Reds picked up their first win over the New Zealand powerhouse since 1999.

"That was real tough. We just weren't there," said Crusaders captain Kieran Read. "We didn't put anything out on the track and it's very disappointing."

Andy Ellis, Brad Thorn, and Dan Carter scored points for the Crusaders, but a high error count and a determined Reds side meant the home side continued their great start to the campaign, despite narrowly going down to the Waratahs last week.

"We stuck at it for 80 minutes and that's a great result for the boys," said Reds captain James Horwill, who unfortunately picked up a season-ending knee injury.

He will undergo a knee reconstruction then face a hefty nine month rehabilitation, perhaps allowing him to make it for the Wallabies end of year tour.

Captaincy will be handed to 22 year old scrumhalf Will Genia, who’s performances have shown maturity beyond his years.

Coach Ewen Mckenzie, who was famously sacked from Stade Francais, said he doesn’t want to get too excited about the win at this stage.

"We're not living the dream. The reality is that we've won one match. We're around about where we'd like to be in terms of being competitive but I don't expect anyone to get too enthusiastic," said the Reds coach.

"It's going to get harder now. The more you get people talking about you, the more you get people looking at you, the more time people put in working out ways to beat you," he added.

They play the Blues in round three.

Time: 05:47


Sunday, February 21, 2010

The Chiefs and Lions try fest at Ellis Park

By now you’ve probably heard about the bizarre game of rugby that took place in the Super 14 on Friday night at Ellis Park. If you haven’t, the Lions lost to the Chiefs 72-65. Yes, it was indeed a record breaking night.

A week ago the Chiefs pipped the Sharks in a tight and wet match in Durban, but on Friday night in Johannesburg, the floodgates opened in a freakish match as they showed their attacking intent from the start, literally.

From a deep kick-off they ran the ball, resulting in them catching the Lions off guard and working their way down field, eventually scoring a try through Callum Bruce after just two minutes. It pretty much set the tempo for the match.

It looked like it would be a long night for the Lions, and in some regards it was, but they rallied well to stay in the match following two yellow cards to the Chiefs, and at half time the visitors led 27-25.

The dangerous runners from Waikato started the second half as they did the first though, scoring within the first minute and going on to score nine tries in total, with flyhalf Stephen Donald kicking an incredible 12 out of 12 kicks at goal. He scored 32 points in total, with nine conversions and three penalties.

The Lions fell to pieces somewhat, and the Chiefs ran riot as the hosts fell off tackles and were outstripped for pace and superb handling on many occasions. Richard Kahui got himself a hat trick on return from injury, and the Lions were somewhat embarrassed as the Chiefs coasted through gaps regularly.

They reached a 65-25 lead before the Lions showed great heart, somehow scoring five tries in 20 minutes as the visitors looked laboured in their defence, allowing the team from Joburg to get to a 40-7 lead in the second half.

Incredibly they had the opportunity to gain a losing bonus point from the match, to add to the point they got for scoring four tries. They achieved that in added time, as the game looked more like Sevens in the final minutes, with players strewn all over the place from exhaustion.

In the end it was a record points haul for an away team, and a record for a combined score. Eighteen tries in a match is also a record for Super Rugby.

The tackling was almost non-existent at times, but it was an enjoyable game of rugby that had moments of superb skill and handling, the likes of which the Chiefs are well known for.

It was certainly not a match for the purists, but great to watch as a neutral.

Lets hear you opinion:
As a neutral rugby fan, would you rather watch a 9-6 snorefest, or a 72-65 scorefest?

Time: 09:32
Note: Now updated with better quality, longer highlights.


Aaron Cruden flattened on debut by Benson Stanley

The weekend isn't over yet, but over the past two days there's been some top class rugby played both north and south of the equator. As I figure out what's going to be featured on RD, here's a great hit by Benson Stanley from Round 1 of the Super 14.

The Blues and the Hurricanes actually played the first match of the 2010 tournament, and within the first two minutes there was a great hit made by Conrad Smith, but we'll show that another time.

Later in the match young Aaron Cruden made his Super 14 debut. You will have seen Cruden playing in the Air New Zealand Cup, and featured here on Rugbydump as there's huge raps on the youngster who recovered from testicular cancer and made it back to the top.

He's a tremendous talent, and as you can see in this clip, got talked up a helluva lot by the commentators, who pretty much put the kiss of death on him as his first touch of the ball was greeted by a big tackle from Benson Stanley.

Stanley has a bit of a reputation for making those type of hits, as you will have seen on here before. A member of a famous rugby playing family, Benson punches well above his weight, but has superb timing and technique when it comes to bringing down bigger players.

Unfortunately for Cruden, he's not too big himself, so found out the hard way that he's now playing with the big boys, and Super 14 rugby will be a fair challenge. Knowing what little I do about him though, he'll bounce back strong and will be sure to make an impact with the 'Canes this season.

Be sure to check out the related links below to see some of Stanley's other big hits, as well as the feature on Cruden's remarkable story. Highlights from the weekend's matches will be posted when possible. For individual clips, please drop us a mail or post in the requests section.

Time: 01:52


Friday, February 19, 2010

Friday Funnies - Piggies vs Princesses - Force & Waratahs

In case you hadn’t noticed, it’s Super 14 season again which means we can expect loads of great tries, big hits, fast paced rugby action, and of course, Fox Sports and their Piggies and Princesses show.

While it’s a bit of cheese mixed in with some humour, it’s a nice to see some of the top players doing something other than playing rugby as they have a crack at seeing who are the smarter species - the forwards (Piggies) or the backs (Princesses).

There's two clips for you today, one featuring the Force guys playing beach volleyball with a few obvious distractions, and the other with the Waratahs getting whipped at tennis.

For the Force we've got Tom Hockings and Andre Pretorius battling it out. It’s a bit strange seeing Pretorius playing volleyball. Not only because he's 5ft nothing, but because the 31 year old is actually injured now, out for the season with a bad hamstring. He was signed as the star replacement for Matt Giteau, who moved to the Brumbies.

Pretorius is one of the most talented, yet injury-prone players around. He moved his family to Perth, and only had a one year deal there so will probably never play a game of Super 14 rugby with the guys he’s trained with all pre season. Pretty sad, and hugely disappointing for him.

In the second clip (which is a little funnier if you don’t have much time to watch both), Damien Fitzpatrick and Josh Holmes of the Waratahs have a go at the trivia, then face a young teenage sensation who gives them a thorough run around on the tennis court.

The clips are good to watch, and were enjoyed by some of the regulars last season so I figured I’d stick them up here for you to watch if you’re interested. Don't forget to submit your funny clips or moments and we'll try get them posted too.

Have a good weekend, and enjoy all the rugby.


Samoa's victorious USA Sevens campaign

If you haven't yet seen what happened at the inaugural Las Vegas Sevens tournament in the USA, here's a clip that features the best of the winners, Samoa, in action throughout the weekend.

Beating New Zealand emphatically in the final, the 33-12 win in front of a whole host of fans made up for their loss a week prior, against Fiji in Wellington.

They've now also moved up into second place on the IRB Sevens World Series standings, ahead of Fiji but still behind New Zealand, who are on the top of the table.

Star of the tournament Mikaele Pesamino scored a hat trick in the final, following on from scoring an incredible eight tries on day one, including a hat trick against Scotland and five against Chile, taking him to 11 tries for the two day tournament.

With his 11 tries, Pesamino surpassed countryman Uale Mai as Samoa's all time leading try scorer on the Sevens circuit. He is now fourth on the all time list at 123, behind Fabian Juries who is on 173, Ben Gollings on 193, and Santiago Gomez Cora who tops the list at 227.

You can see Samoa's run to the final in this video, as well as the final itself. Enjoy.

Time: 04:24
Note: Thanks to the IRB.


Schalk Burger welcomes Carlos Spencer back to Super Rugby

A few weeks ago I posted a video and article about Carlos Spencer, and his return to Super Rugby after five years away from the tournament. Schalk Burger, accommodating as ever, took it upon himself to welcome King Carlos back.

Speculation was rife about how Spencer would perform at the age of 34, and after only forty minutes of game time, he’s already been written off by some members of the media and had his lack of spark blamed on his time up north.

Spencer was substituted at half time in his debut match against the Stormers, and while his actual performance wasn’t bad, he was pretty quiet and lacked the fizz that fans will have been used to seeing.

Coach Dick Muir was disappointed with the way he played, questioning if perhaps his time playing in the north was the reason for the lack of attacking play he showed.

"For Carlos, having played in the northern hemisphere as long as he has has restricted his vision a little bit," Muir said.

"But certainly the individual doesn't lack vision. For me, it is just some old habits that are there that he has to shake off. We've had a good chat this week and I'm really confident that he will do the right job for us," he added.

This is just a quick clip showing the welcome that Spencer got last weekend, as Stormers captain Schalk Burger gave him a fat lip as he slipped into the tackle. It doesn't look like anything at first, but you can see how long it takes him to get up, and the impact in the replay.

Hopefully things will go better for Spencer tonight, as he’s been picked to play the Chiefs at Ellis Park in round two of the tournament. We’ll be watching closely.

Make sure you take a look at the Fixtures page to see what's happening this weekend.

Time: 01:28


Thursday, February 18, 2010

Ruck 'n' Roll Years - The Sixties & Seventies

There are no Six Nations matches this weekend, but to stay with the tournament I've got a great video for you today that comes from a BBC series called the Ruck 'n' Roll Years. It features all the best news, music, and rugby action from the Five and Six Nations championships.

Today you can watch the best of the Sixties and Seventies, as the show goes through the years to recap the greatest moments of the tournament, and gives you a little extra as it tells you what was going on in that year.

It’s highly recommended and has some great music to go along with it – some that some of younger rugby fans probably won’t know though unfortunately. The footage has dual meaning, as its informative value in terms of historical moments both on and off the pitch make it a valuable, and thoroughly enjoyable watch.

Starting in 1963, the year in which Britain experienced similar weather to the start of 2010, we head all the way through the Sixties as we see the Beatles fans hysteria when Paul McCartney gets married to Linda Eastman.

Tom Jones plays out as Wales take the title in 1969, before we head into the Seventies and 1972, where the British Embassy in Dublin has to be evacuated after Bloody Sunday. The tournament isn’t completed though, amidst security fears.

In 1973 we see bizarrely see a five way tie as it comes down to a mixed conversion by France against Ireland at Landsdowne Road.

The late Seventies so famously belonged to the Welsh, as a string of legendary players dominated the championship to the point that only Ireland and France won another Championship tournament in that decade.

Once again, if you have ten minutes to sit aside and watch this today, it’s highly recommended and will no doubt bring back some great memories for the older guys, and reveal some classic moments for those who’ve never seen such footage. Enjoy.

We'll feature the best of the Eighties, Nineties, and 2000's on here soon. Please leave a comment or drop us an email if you enjoyed and have a favourite moment on here.

Time: 10:41
Note: Thanks to the BBC for a brilliant series.


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Todd Clever joins forces with Rugbydump

I'm happy to announce today that Lions Super 14 loose forward and USA Captain Todd Clever will be joining Rugbydump as a regular contributor. As the season kicks into gear, Todd will be bringing us some great insights and rare video footage of what goes on behind when the scenes when it comes to training, half time team talks, touring, and a whole lot more.

He will be playing against the Chiefs this weekend, which I'm sure we'll hear about soon, but to get things started we have a short blog from him about pre-season training, speeding up the game, and why flankers won't be able to cheat this season.

The 2010 Super 14 campaign started in November for the majority of the squad. I was away on National team duty with the USA Eagles so I arrived a few weeks late.

When I arrived for training the team looked big, fit, and strong. I knew I had to put some extra work in to be able to compete with the guys. There's also been quite a few changes with a new head coach, strength coach, and a few new players coming into the squad.

It seemed like many of the players had a lot to prove, with myself being no different. All the changes are good, it keeps you on your toes, and as a player it can and should bring out the best in you.

We'vehad a couple of preseason games versus the Bulls and Puma's/Leopards as a run up to Super 14 kick off. It was a great chance to showcase the efforts we'd been putting in at training. We attacked from everywhere and tried some new things.

We didn't go for post's once but instead called a scrum or line out, while throwing in some quick taps here and there. You can take what you want from these games and it is a good way to iron out all the kinks and try different options and variations to implement during the season.

The attitude within the squad has been very positive and the guys are eager to get into the action. The final cuts were made within the week before the tournament began, which is late compared to other teams, but a lot of guys were proving their worth and I am sure making decisions difficult for management.

As much as it was nerve racking, I think it was a good strategy by management. We are still a new team, and with new talent mixed with seasoned players, it didn't allow anyone to get in their comfort zone. Everybody was pushing each other all the way to the season opener.

It seems like almost every year they change a law or two in our sport. Some changes are very minor and others change the game dramatically. For example last year with the ELV's, which made almost every infraction turn into a half arm (free kick). The purpose of this was to speed up the game and have it more exciting with more tries.

The rest of the world did'nt follow the Southern Hemisphere ELV's though. It must have been pretty confusing as a spectator that follows rugby world wide to follow the different laws in different leagues. I know as a player is was no different - one month playing Super 14 with the ELV's, then the next with the USA Eagles back to original laws.

And this year is no different as changes have been made to the laws at the Breakdown. This allows the attacking team to have a big advantage and the ref's are going to penalize the defence for slowing the ball down or any hands in on the ruck. It's going to be much harder to poach and turn ball over at the point of tackle this year.

This should result in a lot more penalties and less kicking (box, grubbers). These new laws are not ideal for most open side flankers, so it will be interesting to see the new ways they are going to cheat to get their hands on the ball.

I'm happy to be able to share my experience with everyone through Rugbydump. I'm planning on writing a few blurbs throughout the season, so all feedback is appreciated. I don't want to bore the readers, but rather tell stories and experiences that you may be interested in. If however there is anything in particular you want me to write about, feel free to express that.



Todd has his own personal website where you can not only learn more about him, but also see his latest news, fitness tips, photo gallery's, and a whole lot more.
Check it out at www.toddclever.com

He's also heavily involved in the newly launched Eagles XV website, which is a great resource for fans to learn more about the USA players as they march towards the 2011 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand. We'll hear from Todd again soon.


Saia Faingaa's rough night - Dean Mumm suspended

As mentioned in the Reds vs Waratahs highlights earlier in the week, 'Tahs lock Dean Mumm was yellow carded for an off the ball shoulder on Saia Faingaa. Mumm has since been suspended for two weeks.

The Waratahs pulled off a dramatic final play of the match win as they came from behind to crush the Reds' hopes of starting the season on a high. They finished with 14 men, as Mumm was sitting on the sidelines after being sent to the sin-bin by ref Craig Joubert.

Joubert had originally ruled that a penalty and a talking to was sufficient punishment for the charge on replacement hooker Faingaa, but upon chatting to his assistant, ruled that it would be yellow for the big Wallaby, who played on the flank on the night.

Mumm ended up facing a hearing to answer a charge of barging into a ruck and maul under Law 10.4 (h). "There was a directive issued by the IRB in 2007 in relation to cleaning out and the intent of the IRB was to rid the game of this sort of activity," said judicial officer Paul Tully said.

He was subsequently suspended until the 28 February, ruling him out of the Waratahs' tour of South Africa where they will face the Stormers and the Bulls.

Faingaa took a big knock earlier in the match too, that time from Will Caldwell, who himself was in hot water as he was accused of eye-gouging at another point in the match. He was found to be innocent of that though.

A rough night all in all for Mr Faingaa, and the first suspension of this season's Super 14. I'm sure there will be more to come, and if you spot something you'd like to be featured, please post it in the Requests section and we'll have a look.

Time: 01:25


Midweek Madness - Vegas marriage proposal after win

As the USA Sevens neared completion this past weekend at the Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas, Samoa achieved a great win over New Zealand in the Cup final. The host team, the USA, did some celebrating of their own though.

It was Valentines Day, and it was in Vegas, so USA Sevens captain Kevin Swiryn felt it was the perfect moment to propose to his girlfriend, backed by his teamates after they'd just beaten France in the Bowl Final.

It was a pretty good win, beating the French 28-17 in front of 18 000 passionate fans, many of which were experiencing Sevens for the first time live, and certainly for the first time in the entertainment capital of the world.

''If you compare this to the first year it took place in L.A. and the first year it was in San Diego, I think Las Vegas blows it away,'' USA coach Al Caravelli said.

Samoa beat New Zealand 33-12 in the main comp, the Cup Final. We haven't yet featured highlights of that here on RD, but if you're interested, please post a comment below to let us know and we'll make a plan.

Mention should be made of another player, Marco Barnard, whose father sadly passed away earlier in the week. Barnard stuck with the side though, and he can be seen involved in the try at the beginning of this clip.

So after the USA beat France, emotions flowed as Swiryn interrupted the team talk to let the side know that he wants them with him for the big moment, along with a camera crew and the attention of the world. Needless to say, she said yes, and another first for rugby took place.

Only in Vegas.

Time: 02:25
Note: Thanks to the IRB.


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

David Barnes nice prop try against London Irish

Following on from a great prop try scored by an Under 20 player a few days back, today we have a clip of an older campaigner showing that it's not just the young, speedy, new age props of the new generation that can finish off a try in style.

Bath prop David Barnes scored this great try against London Irish on the weekend as his side romped to a 35-22 win over the Exiles in the Guinness Premiership, leaving them without a win in their last six matches in all competitions.

Tries were scored in the first half by Barnes, discarded England winger Matt Banahan, and Joe Maddock, who scored a second, bonus-point clinching try twelve minutes from full time.

Remember that if you'd like to see those tries, and the rest of the highlights from this game and others in the Guinness Premiership, check out the Omnisport Player in the sidebar here.

For a veteran player who's used to hard graft his whole career, this was great reward for the many hours Barnes has put in. It was only his fifth try ever for Bath, but he finished like a champ, sprinting away and heading for beneath the posts. Great stuff.

Time: 02:15
Note: This try was only found because it was asked for in the Request section. Please use it if you'd like to see or share something in particular yourself.


Reds vs Waratahs classic derby ends dramatically

As round one of the 2010 Super 14 got underway this weekend, old foes the Queensland Reds and the New South Wales Waratahs battled it out in Brisbane for bragging rights in this traditional cross state derby.

The match ended in heartbreak for one of the sides right at the death, so if you want to avoid the spoiler, stop reading now and skip straight to the video to watch events unfold for yourself.

The Reds looked to have the game sealed up as they led 28-23 with three tries to one and little time left, but big Wycliff Palu charged in under the posts to break the hearts of Queensland players and fans alike.

Daniel Halangahu slotted the easy conversion to take the 30-28 win and leave the Reds wondering how they managed to throw away all the good work they’d done until that point.

Losing captain James Horwill was absolutely devastated, saying he was "shattered", pretty much summing up the feeling in the side that were considered underdogs going into this season.

It was a high-tempo, free flowing game that contained plenty to talk about. Dean Mumm has been suspended since the match, and Will Caldwell made an accusation of biting, aimed at Adam Byrnes, who in tern mentioned eye gouging.

Caldwell left the match with 26 stitches to his head, a cut finger, and a disciplinary hearing following the tussle with Byrnes. Sufficent evidence wasn’t found though, so both players were cleared of any wrong doings.

''I think everyone saw it was a pretty tough encounter out there, but that's sort of thing you probably like to expect in a NSW-Queensland match. I was certainly in the thick of it with a bit of claret out of the head, but I think most of that actually came from friendly fire,'' he said.

Eventful right till the end, it was definitely one of the games of round 1, and a classic in the two sides' long history. Enjoy.

Time: 06:20


Monday, February 15, 2010

Jerry Flannery cited for kick at Alexis Palisson's legs

Ireland hooker Jerry Flannery has been cited for his moment of madness against France on the weekend which resulted in French winger Alexis Palisson needing to leave the field injured.

Flannery will appear before a Six Nations independent committee after he was cited for the ‘alleged kick’ at the Stade de France on Saturday. The hearing will take place this week, and doesn’t look good for Flannery, or Ireland, as there’s no doubt he’ll be getting a few weeks on the sideline for this.

Incredibly, he was only penalised at the time, with both referee Wayne Barnes and his assistant ref failing to see the incident clearly. In fact, the touchie said it was a shoulder, and Flannery stayed on the field.

A red card should have been issued at the time, so Flannery will definitely be in hot water at the hearing later this week, as he’ll struggle to explain how he took a flyhack at a ball that was bouncing around a good few seconds before Palisson cleanly collected it.

The bizarre thing is that Flannery looked apologetic, as though it were an accident, but you can clearly see that he had plenty of time to pull out of the challenge. That makes it all the more malicious, and puzzling to be quite frank.

Such a fuss was made of the trip that Alun Wyn Jones made when England played Wales a week back, and the impact it had on his team’s chances in the match.

That misdemeanour simply doesn’t compare to this incident, and Ireland will surely play the rest of the championship without Flannery’s services, perhaps further wrecking their hopes of a successful campaign, following on from a heavy 33-10 defeat to the French.

UPDATE 17 FEB 2010:
Flannery has been suspended for six weeks. You can read more about it here.

Time: 01:59


Sunday, February 14, 2010

England see off a determined challenge from Italy

England held off a spirited effort from Italy to narrowly win their Six Nations encounter 17-12 at the Stadio Flaminio in Rome earlier today.

It looked as though a huge upset would be on the cards as Italy threw everything they had at England in the last 20 minutes of the match, getting to within two points of victory.

Despite coming away with the win in the end, it was the Italians who will take more from the match, as they lifted their performance from last weeks game against the Irish in Dublin.

England flyhalf Jonny Wilkinson had an uncharacteristically bad day at the office, missing a few straight forward kicks at goal and failing to control a backline that lacked direction.

He did however kick the dropgoal that extended England's lead, following on from the earlier try, the only one of the match, scored by Matthew Tait.

Despite the less than impressive performance, captain Steve Borthwick brushed the inevitable criticisms aside as he said a lot of positives could be taken from the match.

"We said from the outset that we wanted to win every match, and we have won the first two," said Borthwick.

"Preferably one likes to win by large margins but Italy are a tough side and we said during the week that it would be a tough match.

"I think we played some outstanding rugby. The breaks by Ugo Monye and Delon Armitage down the flanks were fantastic. We can take a lot of positives out of this."

BBC pundit, and former England international, Jeremy Guscott promptly commented on Borthwick's match analysis saying "He's brainwashed. His mind played a different match to his body."

Time: 06:41


Saturday, February 13, 2010

France outclass Ireland at the Stade de France

France powered past reigning champs Ireland as they romped to a comfortable 33-10 win at the Stade de France earlier today, ending an unbeaten run of 15 matches for the Irish.

Cian Healey was sinbinned for a tackle without the ball, which proved to be somewhat of a turning point as France took control of the match, with tries by William Servat and Yannick Jauzion.

Ireland were lucky to not be down to 13 men as hooker Jerry Flannery unleashed a wild kick to the legs of Alexis Palisson. He was apologetic and was supposedly going for the ball, but he kicked a few seconds after Palisson had it in his hands, so will no doubt be cited for the reckless offence.

France led 17-3 at half time after Ireland failed to convert on chances, before battering ram Mathieu Bastareaud, who was impressive on defence all day too, set up a try for fullback Clement Poitrenaud.

Morgan Parra extended the lead with a drop goal, before Ireland clawed back with a try from David Wallace. Parra landed a long range penalty and then replacement Frederick Michalak came on and slotted a drop goal of his own, taking France out of sight and sealing a great victory over the hapless opposition.

Time: 05:59


Wales come back to snatch victory from Scotland

Wales came back from being 24-14 down to snatch a thrilling 31-24 victory against a 13 man Scotland in stoppage time of their Six Nations meeting at the Millennium Stadium.

Wales faced an inspired Scotland who, having not scored a try in their last five Tests, scored two today through John Barclay and Max Evans. Flyhalf Dan Parks put in a stand out performance, as he scored 12 points and controlled matters for the visiting Scots.

Chris Paterson notched up his 100th Test match, but unfortunately picked up an injury that meant he left the field, and along with an injury to Thom Evans, led to a reshuffled Scottish backline.

Prop Allan Jacobsen then got sin-binned for an illegal offence, as did Parks' eventual replacement Phil Godman, so Scotland finished the match with 13 men and a Welsh onslaught, led by Shane Williams, proved too much.

Despite a few bad touches and failing to impose himself earlier in the match, Williams had an inspired last quarter of the match as he first set up a try for Lee Byrne, then played a part in Leigh Halfpenny's seven-pointer.

Wales piled on the pressure and slotted an equalising penalty with less than a minute left on the clock. It was that man Williams though, once again, who proved the difference as he dived over the line with time up on the clock, sealing a dramatic win for the Welsh, crushing Scotland's hopes of a famous win.

Time: 09:37


Friday, February 12, 2010

Friday Funnies - Jean-Baptiste Elissalde the Matador

As a hectic weekend of rugby approaches, here's a quick clip of a pretty funny piece of play that was requested by a regular who spotted it during a match a few weeks back.

The match in question was Sale against Toulouse in the Heineken Cup, and as you can see here, scrumhalf Jean Baptiste Elissalde did his very best to avoid making the tackle on massive Sale number eight Sisa Koyamaibole.

Koyamaibole is about 6ft3 and 120kg's, so the far smaller Elissalde, close to 50kg's lighter, probably did a wise thing as he effectively ushered the big Fijian through, while trying his best to make it look like a tackle of course.

If you're a little guy out there and see a brute of a forward charging directly towards you, perfect this technique and you'll live long in the game, as has the 32 year old Elissalde.

Don't forget that this weekend the Super 14 kicks off, as well as the Vegas Sevens, as well as crunch encounters in the Six Nations & Guinness Premiership. Check out details of what's coming up on the newly updated Fixtures page here. Enjoy the weekend.

Time: 0:57


Thursday, February 11, 2010

The Ross Skeate Diary - Contract Negotiations 101

Ross is back with another interesting diary entry for RD today. This week he's back in Cape Town, thinking out loud about Charlize Theron, rugby players being old at 27, and Jacob Zuma's five wives. There's a little bit about contracts in there too.

Hello from Cape Town! No I haven’t returned to the Stormers, but we’ve got a week off and my brother is getting married. Quite convenient really.

But while that’s happening it’s the time of year when the casual and not so casual back and forth of contract negotiations takes place. Or as I like to refer to it: "What the hell is going on!?"

It's at this stage of the European season where it's all about contract negotiations and recruiting. I can almost hear the simultaneous smacking of every agent's lips as we speak.

Of course this is something that the public is somewhat privy to. The huge media saturation of the multi-million Pound and Euro signings of soccer stars - and some big name rugby stars too - have all added to the cause.

Mourad hasn't mentioned anything about my offer yet by the way (see last week’s column) - I knew I should have bought him the Marge Simpson edition of Playboy instead. He is after all, into comics.

But I digress, basically it's now that the clubs across the UK and Europe will be recruiting new players and re-signing new deals. The UK is admittedly a lot quicker on the draw than France, but our club for example has seen the renewal of contracts like Jonny Wilkinson’s and Joce Suta's, as well as a few newbies packing their berets and cheese boards for a southern French move.

Of course the major questions on everyone’s lips - there's that smacking noise again - is the permutations with regard to the quota's recently instituted in the French league. Those aren't just the quotas requiring 40% of each squad to be French nationals this year (I think it's 40%, and re-nationalized individuals also count), but also a new tax structure making each player that much more expensive for each club. Get it? Well it’s got some of us wondering too…

The first quota I can understand but the new taxing requirements just seem like an attempt at controlling the large amounts of cash in some contracts. Note to self: renegotiate fee with Mourad to maybe only 1.1 million Euro. Either way they are here to stay, the quotas that is and not distribution of the Marge Simpson edition Playboy's, and stay they shall, just like Jacob Zuma's five wives.

The first quota, the one to do with the amount of French Nationals in each squad, rises from year to year. This of course affects the smaller, 'younger' clubs more so than it does the established big name clubs like Toulouse, Clermont etc and that's because those clubs are the primary breeding grounds for the French National team.

They contain the majority of the best French players in the country (their stated ambition is to develop or buy the best young French talent). And 'newer' clubs, 'newer' as in newer to the Top 14 and non-Heineken cup playing clubs like Toulon, and Racing-Metro, who have a number of non-French players, shall have a tougher time of it.

But then this seems to be a symptom of the difference between the French domestic set up and the UK one (and South Africa and New Zealand for that matter). With the lack of salary cap and less stringent tax laws in France, there has certainly been a large influx of foreign players into the country.

Great weather, a strong Euro, and a flourishing rugby culture are just a few things that help that transition and so this then becomes a problem in some areas when people feel that foreign internationals are stunting the growth of young French talent as a result. Thus we see the institution of the quotas, which I have to admit I do agree with.

Of course in a country such as England, with clubs being privately owned as in France, a few of the same issues arise, but the lure of the English market has proven less powerful than that of the French for the time being. Continued...

:: View article on single page ::

Ross, who's played for the Stormers and the Barbarians, has a really interesting website that features plenty of behind the scenes photos, podcasts, and latest news on life with Toulon.

We'll hear back from him soon, but until then, check out www.RossSkeate.com.


Joe Marler great prop try for the England Under 20's

As asked for in the requests section, this is the great try that was scored by prop Joe Marler when England played Wales in the Under 20's Six Nations opener last weekend at Kingsholm.

England trailed Wales 8-6 at halftime, but came back to win the match in emphatic style, scoring six unanswered tries in the second half, winning the match 41-14 in the end.

Marler, who plays for Harlequins, said he relished the challenge of facing Wales. "England against Wales is always a tough game, I was really looking forward to the confrontation and in the second half we just did the best we can."

He scored a fantastic try shortly after the break, breaking through two tackles then shifting into another gear to beat the last two defenders. He scored again later in the half.

"We have got the ability and the talent and it's about believing in ourselves. In the first half it wasn't there and it took a few words at half-time to make us realise we were a better side than what we did in the first half.

"It is great to see the forwards handling and offloading and that's what the game's all about.

"You don't want to play for your country and not enjoy yourselves and it's good that we're allowed to play that way," he said.

It's great to see the speed of the young guy, despite his size. I'm sure we'll hear more about him in the not too distant future. For now, this is one for the archives.

If you're ever watching a match and see something that you think should be shared on here, please be sure to make a note of the time of the incident, then post it as a request. Request submissions, as well as video contributions, are always welcomed and appreciated.

Time: 02:06


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Aurelien Rougerie's big hitting four minutes vs Scotland

France’s big winger Aurelien Rougerie made quite an impact against Scotland on the weekend. In less than five minutes he managed to put in two huge hits, injuring himself in the process and ruling out the chance of being selected to play Ireland.

The Clermont wing hadn’t played for his country in about two years, so was clearly pumped up as he chased the kickoff and timed the great hit on Kelly Brown perfectly. The statement of intent backfired though.

Unfortunately Rougerie came off worse, needing treatment on his arm and shoulder before soldiering on. Undeterred, a minute or so later he flew into another Scottish player, doing more damage to himself.

The kamikaze winger took the full impact of Johnnie Beattie’s shoulder to the jaw in a horrible looking collision that effectively ended his match. He did stay on for a minute or so, but when the ball came to him out wide, he dropped it and threw in the towel, less than five minutes into the game.

The injury to his neck is less serious than initially thought, but he underwent tests on Monday evening and will be out of action for two to three weeks.

It was a long wait for him to get back into the French side, and sadly for him, two big collisions in the space of a few minutes ended it. Vincent Clerc replaced him, and will stay in the side for the big match against Ireland this weekend in Paris.

Alexis Palisson will also play, as debutant Benjamin Fall is also out injured. Julien Malzieu from Clermont, and Jean-Baptiste Poux also join the squad.

"You don't change a winning team," said coach Marc Lievremont. "Playing Vincent Clerc from the start shouldn't cause a debate, there was a lot of discussion on who to play on the left wing.

"We decided to go with the versatility and left foot of Alexis Palisson.

"We know the qualities of Julien Malzieu but it seemed interesting to us to have the presence of Alexis alongside Clement Poitrenaud."

Time: 03:47


Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Alun Wyn Jones retained despite Gatland's threat

Welsh coach Warren Gatland publicly stated that Alun Wyn Jones’ punishment for the yellow card he received against England could be a sacking for Wales’s next match. He’s gone against that now though, picking Jones for the team to play Scotland.

Jones was spotted by referee Alain Roland as he stuck out a leg to trip England hooker Dylan Hartley. Roland immediately issued the sin-binning, and Wales conceded 17 points while Jones was on the sideline.

So often we see teams doing okay with only 14 men, with the average points being scored during that period being seven. But on this occasion England scored two converted tries, and kicked the penalty that was awarded for the trip.

Ultimately, according to coach Gatland, that cost Wales the match. His frankness in the interview after the match was refreshing to see, if not surprising. Normally coaches will stand by their player publicly and give them a telling off in private.

Some will say Gatland should have reacted differently, and others will say that he’s quite simply using Jones as a scapegoat for an under par performance. Seventy minutes were played with 15 men, and Wales managed to get within three points at one stage, before throwing a loose pass that was intercepted.

So despite what he said in that interview, Gatland decided to retain the British & Irish Lions lock in the starting lineup for the next match.

Kicking coach Neil Jenkins predicted that Jones wouldn’t be dropped.

"I think we've all made mistakes and Alun made one on the weekend and we've had other players in the past that have been sin-binned and we've come through it unscathed.

"On Saturday we didn't, we conceded some points, but it's one of them things. I think we learned from it and we move on. I think sometimes some things are said, aren't they? Alun's a fantastic rugby player.

"He's made a genuine mistake and we've got to accept that, deal with it and move on and hopefully discipline-wise we'll be fine next Saturday," Jenkins said.

This clip shows the incident at hand, as well as the resultant points scored within that ten minute period when Jones was off the field. It also then features the interview with Gatland, and some thoughts from Shane Williams.

What do you think of Gatland's reaction, and the subsequent selection of Jones?

Time: 04:58
Wales team to face Scotland on Saturday:
Lee Byrne, Leigh Halfpenny, James Hook, Jamie Roberts, Shane Williams, Stephen Jones, Gareth Cooper, Paul James, Gareth Williams, Adam Jones, Jonathan Thomas, Alun Wyn Jones, Andy Powell, Martyn Williams, Ryan Jones.
Replacements: Huw Bennett, Gethin Jenkins, Bradley Davies, Sam Warburton, Richie Rees, Andrew Bishop, Tom Shanklin.


Matt Dawson meets Matt Damon and Francois Pienaar

The highest profile rugby movie ever made, Invictus, premiered in the UK recently following releases in the US and the country the movie is about, South Africa. England's World Cup winner in 2003, Matt Dawson, sat down to chat to actor Matt Damon, and the man Damon played in the movie, Francois Pienaar.

The movie follows the 1995 Springbok rugby team as they, along with the help of newly elected president Nelson Mandela, set out to bring a racially and economically divided country together by winning the Rugby World Cup at the first attempt.

Damon played the part of Pienaar, who in reality is far taller and bigger than the actor. Damon put a great deal of pressure on himself to do the role justice, spending many hours in the gym and taking time to perfect Pienaar's South African accent.

"The accent took about six months. It took a lot to get it. They talk real different down there," he said. "It's a big responsibility. It didn't help that I liked Francois so much. I really wanted him to like the film."

When comparing the fitness regimes for Invictus to the Bourne Identity movies, he says this was far tougher than the other physical roles he's played.

"I was in better shape with this movie. Francois came to the gym with me a couple of times. This is his life. I don’t want to embarrass him. If Jason Bourne looks a little flabby, that’s on me! I wasn’t going to be for any lack of effort - which actually is what the team is famous for.

"They are known for going the extra mile. Knowing themselves, to say that we might not be the most talented team and the line is even in the movie, the coach says, “We may not be the best team, but we will be the fittest.” Francois told me their training regiment. It’s unreal what those guys went through."

While reviews of the movie have been mixed, it's fair to say that Director Clint Eastwood wasn't out to change the face of movie making. What he did though, is create a biopic of a great moment in South African history, as black and white stood together to support one team, with a common goal in mind.

Damon and Morgan Freeman, who played Mandela, have both been nominated for Oscar awards for their roles in playing two of the most influential men in the country's history.

"It's such an incredible moment in South Africa's history. I think everybody felt it who worked on the movie. It was different to other movies," the actor added.

Matt Dawson had a chat to Pienaar and Damon to hear their thoughts and feelings surrounding the film, and finds out if Pienaar felt it was a worthy portrayal of events as he remembers them.

If you've seen the movie already, what were your thoughts on it?

Time: 8:04 & 2:52
Credit: BBC


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