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

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Francois Hougaard's great try saving tackle on Adam Ashley-Cooper

One of the defining moments of the classic Tri Nations match that took place in Pretoria on Saturday has to be when young Springbok scrumhalf Francois Hougaard made this fantastic last ditch try saving tackle on Adam Ashley-Cooper.

After affecting the turnover when the Springboks looked threatening, the Wallabies then ran the ball out from behind their own tryline as they trailed 34-31 in the second half. The Boks were under the cosh but managed to get back and form a defensive line, with a one-on-one between Hougaard and Ashley-Cooper looking likely to be a try as the Wallaby centre cut back inside to beat the cover.

Hougaard has already shown he’s the business though, as his performances in the last two Tests have given some relief to South African fans who have been left without star number nine Fourie Du Preez while he recovers from shoulder surgery.

While it was desperation stuff, Hougaard managed to jolt the ball free in what has been described by Ashley-Cooper himself as game changing.

"I can safely say that had a direct result on the match and that just comes down to doing the basics well and I didn't do it at the time," he said.

"It was probably a wrong-sided ball carry and it probably would have been a different result if I'd carried it in my right hand. I obviously give respect to Hougaard, he did very well to make that tackle.

"It popped out of my hand and I was very disappointed with that because I know that that's a non-negotiable for me and the other nine times out of 10 I would have kept that ball," he added.

The tackle itself happens right at the end of this clip, but the whole passage of play is included as it was an equally thrilling breakout by the dangerous Wallaby backs.

Time: 03:18


Exclusive interview with Wales and British & Irish Lions center Jamie Roberts

Jamie Roberts attended an event in Newport last week where he, other Welsh players, and a group of youngsters all took part in Under Armour's Combine training. RD got an opportunity to ask him some questions, so here is the video interview with the highly rated center.

Roberts, who was named as the Lions player of the series against South Africa last year, is actually out of action right now after picking up a wrist injury in the second Test against the Springboks. He soldiered on, including touring New Zealand recently, but has since had an operation and will be out until the end of the year.

Despite being a full time professional rugby player, Jamie has managed to juggle that with being a medical student, as he aims to become qualified in the next few years. Rugby will take most of his focus for now, but it won't be long before he has something great to fall back on.

In this interview Jamie talks about the event with the Under Armour testing, but then also goes into detail about his injury, his younger days as a fullback, what he plans to specialise in, and gives his thoughts on this years Tri Nations.

He also then tells us who he thinks the best centres in world rugby are, who the toughest he's been up against is, the three best things about being a professional rugby player, and then gives some great advice for those out there wanting to achieve and get good value out of life.

In association with the Welsh Rugby Union, sponsors Under Armour have introduced the Combine training method which is a high level testing experience popular with American athletes. Under Armour is a leading developer, marketer, and distributor of branded performance apparel, footwear, and accessories. Find out more at www.underarmour.com

Time: 07:19


Monday, August 30, 2010

The History of Rugby - Parts 10 & 11

It's been a while since the last History of Rugby posting, so today we continue with the next two parts as this fascinating documentary picks up with the 1974 British & Irish Lions in South Africa.

In the previous part there was talk of the physical nature of the tour, with the infamous ’99 call being a big talking point on a hard fought series. As the Lions won the first Test, South Africa was thrown into turmoil as they didn’t know how to deal with it.

The same followed in the second Test, as the visitors played some fantastic rugby. By the time the third Test came around, tensions were high as both sides exchanged some devastating blows in what were some ugly scenes. The Lions went on to win the match though, and pick up the historic series win.

It was also a great period for Welsh rugby, and by the time the next Lions tour came around in 1977, they were feeling confident against New Zealand. That was to be an entirely different tour altogether though.

By 1980 England rugby had picked up again as Bill Beaumont’s side won the Grand Slam, including a famous win over Wales with a last minute penalty kick by the aptly named, Dusty Hare.

In 1981 it was the year of the infamous Flour Bomb Test in New Zealand, a match that was marred with protests, violence, and one man flying an airplane around the stadium while dropping flour bombs on the field below. Isolation followed for South African rugby for the next decade due to the right wing governmental policies that were in place at the time.

The Wallabies toured the British Isles in 1984 on their Grand Slam quest as they managed to beat each of the home nations, with young David Campese coming to prominence. Scotland won a Grand Slam of their own earlier that year, taking the Five Nations Championship.

The two parts below are posted as a playlist for simplicity's sake. Just hit play once, and the second will follow after the first. If anyone has any trouble with the playlist, please shout.


ITM Cup in New Zealand - Highlights from Round 5

There have been quite a few requests for more tries from the ITM Cup in New Zealand, so today here is a package that is ten minutes long and features the best moments from every New Zealand provincial championship game of the weekend.

Starting on Thursday, Taranaki made it four from four as they beat Otago 25-15 in Dunedin. Both sides scored some good tries but Otago failed to get off the bottom of the table as they’re still winless so far.

On the opposite end of the table, Southland continued their fine form as they beat Tasman 21-16 with fullback Robbie Robinson kicking seven penalties. Tasman snuck a bonus point at least, kicking a penalty with time up on the clock.

Waikato scored some nice tries as they powered over Counties Manukau with a convincing 39-3 win in Hamilton. The game was finely balanced at 7-3 at the halftime break, but Waikato stretched their legs in the second, playing some great rugby.

The Wellington and Northland game was a little closer, with the latter taking a 31-28 win in which the impressive Rene Ranger featured prominently. Some sensational tries were scored by both sides, but Victor Vito’s for Wellington would probably pick up the try of the game award.

Canterbury got off to a great start and followed through, eventually winning 35-16 in their match with Auckland in Christchurch. In Rotorua, Hawke’s Bay were to good for Manawatu as they cane out 17-9 winners, while North Harbour won 39-29 against Bay of Plenty in an entertaining match in Rotorua.

The quality of these highlights isn’t fantastic, but the quality of the rugby is never in question. Sit back and enjoy a total of ten minutes of tries as each game of the round is recapped. If there is anything in particular that you spotted on the weekend that you think should be featured as an individual post, please post a request.

Time: 10:12


Sunday, August 29, 2010

Best tries of the Top 14 - Round 2

Today we head to France and the Top 14 for one of the most entertaining leagues in the world, and certainly one that will be featured regularly here on RD. Last week things were a little quiet Top 14 wise, so here is a recap of the best tries from Round 2 of the highly competitive tournament.

I’m not going to go through match by match, but what I will say is that the standard of these tries, especially the top half, is superb and well worth watching.

The one exception, or contentious effort at least, was Chris Masoe’s try for Castres against Toulouse as he went over but looked to have lost the ball over the line. Castres won the match, with Toulouse coach Guy Noves fuming afterwards. "Masoe knocked it on in the in-goal area," said Noves.

For Clermont, wing Wesley Fofana’s dummy allowed him to stroll over to score a great try after a neat chip from flyhalf Brock James. Brive’s Gerhard Vosloo also brought out the skill as he charged down field against Perpignan for a fantastic try.

In the same match, lock Damian Browne got on the end of a great series of passing to cross for a wonderful try. That was matched, if not bettered, by Montpellier against Racing Metro as they scored one of the team tries of the season.

At number one though, as featured here earlier in the week, it’s Julien Arias and his top quality solo effort against newcomers, La Rochelle. It's certainly worth watching again.

It's not always possible to get Top 14 clips promptly, if at all, so please be patient but also bear in mind that all contributions are encouraged, and very much appreciated. If you can get hold of top quality footage and help out with sharing it on RD, please get in touch. Thanks!

Time: 05:32


Saturday, August 28, 2010

Springboks come good against the Wallabies at Loftus

Victor Matfield celebrated his 100th Test match in style as the Springboks ended their four match losing streak with a 44-31 win over the Wallabies at Loftus Versfeld in what was a thrilling Tri Nations match.

Australia came out firing as they streaked off to a 14-0 lead after just five minutes, silencing the Pretoria crowd. The Boks bounced back but were later trailing 21-7 in what proved to be a frantic, free flowing Test. Five tries were scored in the first 15 minutes.

The game was finely poised at 28-24 to the Wallabies as they went into the second half, but they only managed another three points, while South Africa scored in the 49th minute through the returning Francois Steyn, and sealed the win later with a JP Pietersen try, their fifth of the match.

It was a much improved display from the Springboks, who ironically defended really well throughout most of the match. The Wallabies looked lethal on attack at times though, especially early on, finding gaps and slipping through a little too easily for the home sides’ liking.

In the end the match produced nine tries and the South African win meant that the Wallabies still haven’t won on the Highveld since 1963.


Friday, August 27, 2010

Friday Funnies - Stephen Brett, the water bottle, and the big hit

As the week comes to an end, there’s still time for a funny clip from the ITM Cup game between in which Tasman upset Canterbury 27-25. Today however I’ve included a great hit from the match, as it occurred on the same player just a few minutes later.

The amusing clip is of Canterbury flyhalf Stephen Brett attempting to clear the field of a stray water bottle after the medical staff had left it lying around. Mr cool tosses it towards the sideline, but gets serious hangtime as it goes straight up in the air. Good thing it was only at Trafalgar Park, and not in front of a packed 90 000 arena.

Brett wasn’t too bothered though, at least from what he showed on the outside, but a few minutes later he had another rough moment as he picked a channel that was being covered by big prop, Fai Mika, who smashed him.

Incidentally Brett is in the running for the backup spot for the Tri Nations game between the All Blacks and the Wallabies on September 11th. Daniel Carter is of course out now after ankle surgery, so the good bet is that young Aaron Cruden will start at flyhalf.

The place on the bench as cover is open though, and seems to be a three-horse race between Brett, Luke McAlister, and Colin Slade. Some have suggested that Piri Weepu may even fill in there if needed.

Stephen Donald and Mike Delany aren’t options, as they’re both injured. Cruden will get a run in the national championship this weekend but then be rested, while McAlister will get a chance to impress as he starts for North Harbour at number ten against Bay of Plenty.

There’s two clips below, embedded as a playlist. First the funny clip, then the great hit. Enjoy, have a good weekend, and feel free to give your predictions or thoughts on who you think will be turning out for the All Blacks at flyhalf, and as backup.


Exclusive interview with David Strettle and Danny Care

A while back I asked for some of you to submit questions via the Facebook Page for England backs David Strettle and Danny Care. Following that, Rugbydump was given the opportunity to interview them ahead of the new season. This is what they had to say in what was a very laid back, interesting interview.

When being told I could get some questions together for David Strettle, it immediately made me think back to that hilarious clip from a Question of Sport a few years back where he failed to answer what most thought was a pretty straight forward question. Not being able to resist, we bring that up again in this interview.

There's also a few other funny question and answers for the two of them, who are clearly good mates after their time at Harlequins together, despite Strettle now moving on to Saracens.

Amongst some of the more pressing questions asked regard England and their World Cup chances next year, what it's like having Martin Johnson as a coach, and how much of a wake up call was the horrific injury to Scotland's Thom Evans earlier in the year.

We also get to find out who has the better sidestep of the two, who is the faster sprinter, and which of the two would get further in Britains Got Talent.

Post sponsored by: Nike Pro Combat

David Strettle and Danny Care wear Nike Pro Combat when training and playing to help with protection, moisture management and recovery. Buy this sports bag essential at www.nikestore.com


Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Rugby Club Plays of the Week - Your letters answered

The reach of the Plays of the Week stretches far and wide these days, due in large part to the internet, the quality of the clips, and the fact that they usually show skimpily dressed girls shaking inappropriately.

This week is no different as the team at Fox Sports, headed by Sean Maloney, bring us the best of the weekend’s action from down south.

Your questions are answered as the Australian Rugby Club’s mailbag was chock-a-block with letters from all over the place, asking the kind of things that we’ve all been obsessing about for the past week or so.

What to expect? Girls, big hits, great tries, women, the All Blacks, the human speedbump, John Smit down on his knees, and a strange Counties fan in a very disturbing mask. That’s a whole lot of action squeezed into two minutes of plays.

This one is hilarious, and all that's missing now is a question from yours truly. Reckon you can you sneak the word Rugbydump on there next time, Sean?

Enjoy the video, and keep those requests coming in for videos you'd like featured here on RD.

Time: 02:12


Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Romain Terrain fantastic try saving chase and tackle on Rory Lamont

Toulon beat Biarritz 13-3 in the French Top 14 on Friday night, their first win away at the club in 29 years. Kris Chesney scored the only try of the match, for Toulon, but this great clip actually comes from a Biarritz forward.

Biarritz had beaten Montpellier in the first round but were unable to continue the form as they went down in a disappointing loss at the Stade Aguilera. One guy who gave his all though was hooker Romain Terrain, who made a great effort to stop Toulon fullback Rory Lamont from scoring in the corner after he had pounced on a loose ball.

Lamont returned to action, playing for Toulon for the first time since January, and looked certain to score if it weren’t for the incredible chase by the determined Biarritz hooker. The look on Lamont’s face afterwards was priceless.

A few minutes later Terrain showed his all round skills once again as he picked up a kick ahead and cleared the ball superbly. Not bad for a front rower.

Remember, featured clips are varied on here to include the best of all the top tournaments around the world. If you would like something in particular featured, get in touch with details or post a request and I'll see what can be organised. Cheers

Time: 01:49


The Sharks go top of the table by beating Western Province

The Sharks hosted Western Province in round 7 of the Currie Cup for a top of the table clash that was touted as being the match of the weekend. The Sharks ended up being too good at home though, as they went top with a 27-16 win at Kingspark.

The first half was tight with the Sharks trailing 9-8 at halftime despite scoring the only try, finished off by wing Odwa Ndungane after being set up by Ryan Kankowski and Keegan Daniel.

They then took the lead from the previously unbeaten WP side with a great try to Kankowski, who stepped a few defenders before diving over. The Sharks then maintained control of the match as their forwards outmuscled the Cape-based unit.

Young Patrick Lambie kicked 14 points for the Sharks, with Willem De Waal slotting three penalties for his team.

Nick Koster scored a consolation try for Province right at the end, but it was a convincing win for the Durban side and one they’ll take a lot of confidence from. They also went top of the table, three points ahead of WP.

Rather than full highlights that included a few kicks at goal, here’s the best two tries of the match, from the winning side. The first had a bit of an unspotted forward pass unfortunately, but was nice interplay between the loosies. The second was a piece of wonderful stepping from Kankowski, who has been called back to the Springbok sqaud for the match against Australia.

Time: 02:49


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Hosea Gear makes a great try saving hit against Waikato

The Wellington Lions were comfortable 26-14 winners over Waikato on the weekend in their ITM Cup meeting at the Westpac Stadium in New Zealand. The lethal wing pairing of Hosea Gear and Julian Savea made quite a difference as both showed their quality throughout.

Savea, a promising youngster who recently starred in the Junior World Cup, crossed for a try and linked up with Gear to set up another. This clip here though features Gear making a fantastic try saving hit just as Waikato looked like they were going to cross for a great team try.

We’ve all seen what Gear can do with ball in hand, but in this instance he showed that he has the timing and instinct to make those crucial tackles when needed. His speed off the mark was impressive, and is backed up by recent speed training tests done recently.

Wellington did a testing session on artificial turf not too long ago for the entire squad. The test was over the standard distance to measure rugby players speed, 40 metres. Savea came in third best with 5.02s, with second going to young back Buxton Popoalii.

The quickest was, as you guessed, Hosea Gear, who clocked in with a time of 4.96s.

While Gear hasn’t featured at all for the All Blacks this season, their loss is New Zealand Sevens’ gain as he joined up with the Sevens squad as they prepare for the Commonwealth Games in Delhi in October.

Coach Gordon Tietjens is aiming to win their fourth gold medal in as many attempts, with Gear no doubt a big part in his plans. Gear himself feels that Sevens may just be his way back in to the hearts and minds of the All Black selectors.

"There are quite a few handy players around. Its going to be good competition but the same time be good for my game as well if I can do well with the Sevens then obviously results will come later on following that," says Gear.

"Its going to be something quite special and something good to experience seeing top athletes from around the world and all different sorts of sports," he added.

This try saving tackle put an end to a great piece of play from Waikato that in itself should be applauded. It didn't work out for them thanks to Gear making the right decision in a situation where he needed pull off the hit to prevent the overlap being utilised. Great play all round.

Time: 01:56


Ma'a Nonu loses his boot as he sets up Israel Dagg winning try

Thing didn’t go quite as planned for John Smit this past weekend. Celebrating his 100th Test match, Smit and his side were on track for their first win of the Tri Nations, until Ma’a Nonu slipped the grasp of the Bok captain, leaving his boot as a souvenir before setting up Israel Dagg for the winning try.

The try was featured in the highlights a few days ago, but it was without replays and all the rest, so here’s a longer version since there has been a lot of talk about the Smit missed tackle, and the fact that Nonu’s boot was left in his clutches.

Nonu - who for many years has been known as a superb tackle breaker but not a great distributor - then raced down field with only one boot on before delivering a pinpoint pass to replacement Dagg, who scored the decisive try with things tied up at 22-22, and 79 minutes on the clock.

Smit admitted to the error in the post match interview, and has since spoken out on the pain of the loss, and the feeling within the camp that it is only up to them to get out of the miserable hole they’ve found themselves in during the tournament.

"You got to look at yourself and the mistakes. To lose a test in that manner was very emotional for me. Losing is one thing and I understand it. It doesn’t mean I like it," Smit said, before discussing the similarities between this year and the 2006 loss of form.

"It is important not to use 2006 as an excuse and be comfortable with it and then to think that in 2011 we will be as good as we were in 2007. That is the trap we can’t fall into. In 2010 we have a much more experienced side that is getting beaten like this. Perhaps it is a high mileage thing where some players have had a bit too much rugby and their bodies are talking.

"Suspensions haven’t helped us either, and as much as we have excuses, we only have ourselves to blame. There is hurt and this weekend will highlight that. We’ve felt this feeling before.

"You want to reflect back on this in a year’s time when you need it – when you’re 20-all against Fiji. You want to remember this hurt. You want to reference back to this moment when you feel like actual death to get you out of that," Smit added.

"It's always hard talking after the game when you are the loser. To be honest, we had very little to take out of the first three games. This one we know if we are a little closer intensity we want every week, we know we can make any team ordinary.

"This is the team that is leading the way in world rugby and suddenly their passes went down and we were tackling them backwards. Suddenly we started to look like world champions again. Sunday I woke up and realised the biggest positive is that if we play right, we will win any game every time," he said.

As for Nonu, he’s in the form of his life and has finally silenced the critics, whether he's playing with one boot or two.

Time: 02:29


Monday, August 23, 2010

Julien Arias great individual try for Stade Francais

Stade Francais made it two from two this weekend as they beat newcomers La Rochelle 41-26 in the Top 14 at the Stade Charlety. Julian Arias scored a fantastic individual effort, which is featured here today.

Under new boss Michael Cheika the Paris based side are looking good so far, even if it is only two weeks into the new campaign. Their disappointing form in recent times led to the sacking of Ewen Mackenzie, and later Jaques Delmas and Didier Faugeron.

Cheika arrives with huge expectation, and he’ll have his hands full in the quest to satisfy club president Max Guazzini. He proved himself at Leinster, so whether he can do the same in Paris will be fascinating to watch.

La Rochelle threatened early in the this game, but Stade ran out convincing winners in the end after tries by centre Mathieu Bastareaud, Ollie Phillips, Dimitri Szarzewski, Hugo Southwell and then this great effort from Julien Arias.

They’ve now made it two from two and scored over 40 points for the second week running. Whether they can maintain that form is another matter altogether, but with a backline littered with talent, they will be an exciting side to watch this year.

Time: 0:47


Sunday, August 22, 2010

Referee Nigel Owens takes a tumble at Soccer City

Yesterday’s Tri Nations clash was packed with intensity as the Springboks and All Blacks battled it out in front of 94 000 fans. No inch was given and poor old Nigel Owens found that out the hard way as he got bundled over in a nasty collision.

As the second half approached, Jimmy Cowan made a dart off the back of a maul and as Bok flanker Juan Smith came across to close down the space, Owens got a shove in the back as he got in Smith’s way.

Unfortunately referee Owens ended up in the middle of the tackle, with Cowan and Schalk Burger landing on the Welshman in what looked like a pretty messy position.

Luckily Owen’s was tough enough to get through it and his neck wasn’t damaged, despite a short delay and needing to be attended to by a team medic.

- In other news, it’s since been reported that Dan Carter will undergo ankle surgery and will be out for eight weeks. He has been carrying the injury throughout the tournament and has opted to have an operation now after he said it was affecting his ankle movement.

- Francois Steyn looks likely to rejoin the Springbok team after he played a full eighty minutes for Racing Metro in the Top 14 last night. Steyn had been in South Africa but was supposedly injured, so went back to France.

If there are any incidents that you've seen over the weekend that you'd like featured here on Rugbydump, please post a request on the forum or send an email. That includes Tri Nations, Top 14, ITM Cup, and Currie Cup rugby.


Saturday, August 21, 2010

All Blacks snatch victory with late tries as they take the Tri Nations 2010

New Zealand clinched the Tri Nations title as they beat South Africa 29-22 in front of a capacity crowd at Soccer City in Johannesburg earlier today. Late tries from Richie McCaw and Israel Dagg proved the difference after a great encounter between the two old enemies.

It was Springbok captain John Smit’s 100th Test match appearance and in front of over 90 000 fans, the home side were looking on track to make it a special occasion as they were in the lead up until the 78th minute.

Morne Steyn had kicked 17 points and Schalk Burger scored a try as the Springboks were in command for most of the game, on track to pick up their first win of this years tournament.

The All Blacks played their free flowing game when possible though and created a huge amount of space out wide as lock Tom Donnelly provided the scoring pass for prop Tony Woodcock to canter over.

With two minutes left All Black captain Richie McCaw then crossed for a try in the corner that needed to be referred to the TMO. The sideline conversion was missed by Dan Carter, but shortly afterwards Ma’a Nonu broke the line and set replacement Israel Dagg away for the match winning try, sealing the Tri Nations title in the process.

"I really thought we had done enough. We worked hard and I really enjoyed the Test but the last minute," said a dejected Smit afterwards.

"At 22-all we wanted to get into a good field position so that Morné Steyn can have a go at a drop-goal, but we turned over possession, I missed a crucial tackle and it was game over.

"I can’t think of anything worse than losing your 100th Test by missing a tackle at the death. I’ll be disappointed for a very long time," he added.

Richie McCaw was thrilled with the win, saying he was incredibly proud of his team and that they did well to take the late opportunities, especially that last try.

"I'm happy we won but I feel sorry for John. For a guy like that, he probably deserved better but that's the way rugby goes. It's a cruel game," said McCaw.

Springbok coach Peter De Villiers congratulated the tournament winners.

"Well done to the All Blacks – we saw last year what a great thing it is to win the Tri-Nations. They deserved it this year and played entertaining rugby. It’s a huge disappointment for us – the dressing room felt like a funeral afterwards," he said.


The Rugby Club Plays of the Week - Drewster the Rooster

In a few hours time the first Tri Nations gets back underway after a week off as New Zealand travelled to South Africa to face the Springboks in front of 90 000 at Soccer City. There was plenty of other rugby taking place last weekend though, so here’s the Plays of the Week.

Better late than never, it’s time to catch up with the boys down under as we get the run down of the best from Australian club rugby, the ITM Cup, and then there’s Drew Mitchell flaunting his stuff. Not sure what to say about that.

Amongst the tries, Israel Dagg finished off a classic Hawkes Bay counterattack from deep in their half against Tasman. Incidentally, Dagg has signed for powerhouse side Canterbury for the next two years, so expect to see plenty more tries from him soon.

The Wallaby players took the opportunity to stretch their legs a bit as they turned out to play some club rugby before they left for South Africa for their two upcoming Test matches.

It’s another entertaining week’s summary, and you can’t beat seeing Drewster the Rooster doing his thing in an attempt to bring in the ladies. Enjoy.


Friday, August 20, 2010

Friday Funnies - The Five Second Rule

While the Women's World Cup kicked off today, there was a bit of interesting debate and one or two rude comments about it in a previous post. Here is a funny clip that shows that whether you're male or female, rugby isn't for sissies.

It comes from a rather wet and miserable ITM Cup game last weekend between Bay of Plenty and Auckland at a muddy Mt Maunganui, a low scoring game which Auckland won 11-6.

This clip shows how Bay of Plenty flyhalf Phil Burleigh securely caught a high ball as he called for the mark, which caused his gumguard to pop out and onto the muddy surface. Undeterred, he picked it up, wasn’t in the least bit bothered about wiping it off, and shoved it right back from whence it came. Remember the five second rule.

This type of thing probably does happen more often than we realise, but the cameras and commentary captured it nicely, so it provides a pretty funny moment in what was otherwise a rather dull game.

This weekend should be more exciting though – the Top 14 continues with round 2, the ITM Cup has already started, the Women’s World Cup got underway earlier today, there’s Currie Cup games tonight, and then tomorrow is the big one as South Africa host New Zealand at Soccer City in Soweto in front of 90 000 people.

Have a good weekend and if you enjoyed this video, please tweet it, share it on Facebook, or just send the link to your friends. Please also check out the new RD Cares section, which aims to help create awareness for severely injured rugby players around the world. Cheers!


Thursday, August 19, 2010

Womens Rugby World Cup 2010 launch

A lot of you out there may not realise it, but the women's Rugby World Cup kicks off on Friday in England as the best female rugby players in the world converge to fight it out for the trophy that New Zealand currently holds.

Speaking ahead of the tournament, former World Cup winner and Sky Sports pundit Will Greenwood has said that it will be the biggest moment of the women's careers.

"For athletics it is the Olympics, for cricket it is the Ashes, for men's rugby it is the World Cup and for Women's Rugby it is this," said Greenwood.

"This is it, this is the pinnacle, and they are all looking in tremendous physical condition. There is always time to make the right decisions and you must have total faith in each other, total faith in your coach and trust your fitness to suceed."

The tournament will take place over 17 days and will be broadcast live around five continents, with the UK & Ireland having most games live on Sky Sports. Outside of that, you can watch the matches streamed live on rwcwomens.com. If you are in the UK or Ireland, you can get them delayed online, on demand 24 hours after the game.

There will be pressure on host nation England in front of their home crowd, an experience that Greenwood says will be very special for the women's team, especially as it's the World Cup.

"Our girls go into the tournament as second seeds and clearly the Kiwis are on the horizon and are always the team to beat but there are so many cracking teams and it is going to be a wonderful tournament," he said.

Has anyone got any insider info or predictions on who the top three sides will be in the end?

Time: 03:20
Note: Thanks to the IRB and rwcwomens.com


The Stuart Mangan documentary - The day my life changed

Early last week I let you know that there was a show coming up on TV about Stuart Mangan, the young player who suffered a horrific rugby injury while playing for his club in London. Thanks to the help of a friend, we’ve managed to organise that you can watch the full version of this touching documentary right here on the site.

If you’re not familiar with the story, Irishman Stuart broke his neck when playing rugby in London in 2008. Only 24 at the time, the young flyhalf went into a ruck and suffered what has been described as one of the worst spinal injuries to be seen in the sport.

Stuart was left with no feeling below his neck as the C1 complete break meant his life changed dramatically in an instant. Requiring a ventilator to breathe, and 24 hour supervision, this is the story of what the next 16 months were like for him.

Tragically, Stuart contracted an illness and passed away a year ago, in August 2009.

This is not a rugby documentary. It is however the story of how a talented young man, who had the world at his feet, had his, and his loved one's lives changed forever after something that happened on the rugby field.

His story is that of courage and determination, and as you’ll see, he showed remarkable strength given the circumstances that he found himself in for the last few months of his short, but eventful, life.

We all play and love the wonderful game of rugby, and while these type of injuries are incredibly rare, it’s important that we come together when they do happen. Donate what you can, give your time, and make a difference where possible.

Once again, this is a heartbreaking story and rugby is not featured prominently in it. I thought it was important to share with you all though as Stuart’s enthusiasm and determination is infectious and inspiring to say the least. It’s just under an hour long and tracks his new life after the injury, up until his untimely passing.

The documentary is in 5 parts, so it's presented to you below as a playlist. That means that it will start at Part 1, and change to Part 2 automatically, etc. You can control which part you see by clicking the button to the right of the play button.

Total time: 56 mins
RD Cares
Rugbydump has a new initiative that hopes to make a difference by creating awareness for those who have been severely injured and need the help of others from the rugby community. Young Ben Leia is one such player, as he broke his neck in January of this year in Samoa.

You can find out more about RD Cares and Ben by following the link. It's a work in progress that will be added to and improved as we go along. If you know of organisations or individuals that need help, please get in touch. Thanks.


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Waikato have two carded in punch-up with Taranaki

Waikato had all the momentum as they made a great comeback against Taranaki in the ITM Cup on Sunday, but controversial yellow cards for forwards Liam Messam and Romana Graham halted their progress as they went down 33-23 in the end.

Taranaki escaped punishment for their part in a scuffle that looked like it was started by hooker Laurence Corlett. Corlett reacted to something which led to him striking out at Messam, who in turn retaliated, only to be joined by lock Graham for an old style scrap that is rare these days.

Somehow, the assistant referee’s not only failed to name Corlett as the instigator, but also tried to dog-in the Waikato number eight, who was already sitting on the bench.

Unfortunately for Waikato the two powerful forwards being sinbinned meant an end to their rousing comeback, but they did manage to show great courage as they didn’t concede any points during that ten minute spell.

The home side were 30-3 down at one stage but managed to get to 30-23 and have the momentum going forward. The fisticuffs ended all that, costing them dearly. The frustration for Waikato afterwards lay with the fact that Corlett wasn’t pinged at all.

The sight of two Waikato men letting loose on the solitary Taranaki hooker led to the inexperienced officials recommending cards for the Hamilton men only.

Taranaki captain Craig Clarke said he wasn’t aware of exactly what happened shortly before referee Nick Briant sent the pair from the park for swinging, and quite possibly landing, a flurry of punches.

This shows yet again that when you retaliate, you're usually going to end up drawing the short straw when it comes to the onfield decisions. It's also possibly a decent case for allowing the TMO to take a look at foul play, a system that was actually trialled in the Currie Cup last season.

Time: 03:31


Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The big hits from Western Province vs the Blue Bulls

The North-South derby between Western Province and the Blue Bulls in the Currie Cup this weekend proved to be everything that was expected of it. Both sides pummeled each other for large parts of a game that had a good old Test match feel to it. No tries were scored, so here’s the best of the rough stuff from what was an extremely physical contest.

Western Province snatched the 15-12 win in front of close to 48 000 home fans at Newlands after Willem de Waal and Jaques-Louis Potgieter battled it out with the boot, with De Waal winning the kicking contest by slotting the one extra penalty.

"I'm very happy and pleased with the four points because in the past, we normally lost close games like this," said WP coach Allister Coetzee.

"You couldn't get a tougher Currie Cup match than this - in the week we predicted it would be like a Test and it was exactly that," he added.

The brutal nature of the match took it’s toll as both sides have injury concerns, with the Bulls looking to be worse off. Fullback Zane Kirchner twisted his knee, ruling him out of this coming weekend’s Springbok test against the All Blacks.

Before the injury came about, Kirchner was in the thick of it as you can see in this clip, making a huge hit then taking one later in the game from Frikkie Welsh.

There were one or two illegal or late tackles, that were penalised, and then there was a fantastic tackle from Province eigthman Duane Vermeulen as he knocked back big Juandre Kruger, who northern hemisphere fans will know well from his time with Northampton Saints in England.

Province remain unbeaten with six wins in a row and top the table at 27 points, whilethe Sharks are one behind on 26. Those two sides meet this coming weekend in what should be another classic Currie Cup match up.

Time: 02:56
Song: Pull me back by The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus


Monday, August 16, 2010

Robbie Fruean's slingshot tackle against North Harbour

Young Canterbury centre Robbie Fruean scored a hat trick of tries against North Harbour on the weekend as his side romped to a 44-22 win in the ITM Cup in Christchurch. Fruean not only scored some nice tries, but he made his physical presence felt.

As everyone knows by now, there is an anxious wait for the grand entrance of league convert Sonny Bill Williams. Williams had a hamstring niggle so he is yet to make his debut in the tournament.

When he comes back, in all likelihood this coming weekend, he will be either joining up with, or replacing, Fruean. It could be Stephen Brett though who may have to make way for what could be the most physically devastating centre pairing prospect the game has seen in some time.

If Fruean continues to show this form though, and lives up to his promise, he may well overshadow the the SBW show this season. Health permitting that is.

Fruean was diagnosed with rheumatic fever two years ago, and a week ago was sidelined after there were concerns that he had an irregular heart beat, or Arrhythmia. At that stage he had a new heart valve attached, enabling him to continue breathing, live a normal life, and incredibly, make a return to rugby.

Sources closer to the team will know more, but at this stage things seem to be steady and when strong, Fruean is a bright young prospect that with or without the Sonny Bill Williams factor, could well be an All Black within a few years.

This tackle was rather comical and if nothing else, showed the power of the guy. It brings back memories of the Gordon Tallis slingshot from a few years back, which you can see in the related posts along with a few others.

Time: 0:48


Bath looking good away from home at Ulster

Ulster went down 26-14 to Bath in a competitive pre-season friendly in Ravenhill on Friday night. Both sides played attacking rugby when possible, and there are encouraging signs for both parties ahead of their respective seasons.

Despite going down on the day, Ulster have plenty of positives to take from the match as they gave starts to a few new caps, with debutant Pedrie Wannenburg crossing for a try late in the game. Wannenburg, formerly of the Bulls and South Africa, made his debut for his new side and says there are good days ahead.

"We must not look at the result we must look at the positives, we kept the ball well in the first 20 minutes and we looking forward to the next game. Coming to Belfast is a new challenge for me and the atmosphere was very good and that is a positive for us,” he said.

"I was a bit rusty as it was the first game of the season and there is still plenty of work to be done, we're looking forward to the next match.

"This is really a good bunch of guys and they have made me felt welcome since the moment I arrived. Bath played pretty well and it was good competition for us but it will be all about the results at the end of the season," he added.

Bath, who now have Lewis Moody in their camp, looked good as they shifted the ball through the hands and created tries for their backs. Matt Banahan crashed through the line for a nice try, as did fellow back Jack Cuthbert.

This is just a quick highlights clip to get you in the mood for the UK rugby season, which kicks off soon. Other noteworthy clips from the NH season will be posted over the next few months.

Time: 03:52


Sunday, August 15, 2010

Bourgoin's Alex Tulou smashes Stade Francais' Dimitri Szarzewski

Alex Tulou is a name probably unknown to most, but from what I've read and what can be seen in this clip, we'll no doubt be seeing more of the big Bourgoin loose forward in the not too distant future.

This clip is a pretty short one, but it needs to be seen as the impact of the hit on French hooker Dimitri Szarzewski is absolutely massive. Tulou was playing in his first Top 14 game for his new club, having only be signed this year.

He's played for Wellington, Taranaki, and the Hurricanes in New Zealand and has been an impressive junior grade player. He's still only 23 and weighs well over 110kg's, while he can get around the park at quite some speed and impact, as you'll see here in Bourgoin's game against Stade Francais.

Bourgoin lost the game heavily though, going down 43-12 to a far more powerful side. Former Leinster coach Michael Cheika got his reign underway in style with the convincing win. Hooker Szarzewski, despite taking this massive knock, scored a try, as did the newly mohawked centre Mathieu Bastareaud.

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Cedric Heymans and Colin Slade outstanding trysavers

Amongst the feast of tries and hard hitting action this weekend, there were two stand out try saving tackles that were much requested following games in both the Top 14 and the ITM Cup. Here's a double feature as we've got both for you.

The first clip is a short one of French international winger Cedric Heymans chasing back to make a superb tackle against newly promoted Agen in Toulouse's opening game of the Top 14 season, a game in which they scored six tries and came out 44-24 winners.

Brice Dulin of Agen dashed off down the wing and looked certain to score for his side when Heymans some how caught him and pulled off a miracle tackle as he knocked the ball from his grasp, preventing the try in what was a brilliant piece of play.

A few thousand miles away in New Zealand Colin Slade came up with a similar feat after North Harbour's Ben Botica had broken away from his own 22, stepped the cover, and streaked down field for what was going to be one of the solo efforts of the season.

Slade, who seems to get better every time he turns out for his Canterbury side, sprinted back and made a perfectly timed tackle to knock the Harbour flyhalf into touch.

Both of them were outstanding efforts, so to avoid a double post, they've been included here with the two seperate videos. Great stuff from the Top 14 opening weekend, and more quality in the ITM Cup. If you spotted anything else you think should be featured on RD, get in touch.


Saturday, August 14, 2010

The Rugby Club Plays of the Week - Can you believe it

Before we get to this weekends action, its time to catch up on what happened last week around the southern hemisphere as this edition of the Plays of the Week features a bit of dirty play, some dodgy mascots, and a few outstanding tries.

As they say, seven days is a long time in rugby and while this weekend there was a break in the Tri Nations, for many the Tony Woodcock unpunished charge on Saia Faingaa is still fresh on the mind. We get to see Richard Loe at his best in the late eighties too.

On a positive note, the ITM Cup produced a few late wins and other interesting bits in another entertaining round. Make sure you check out the sensational try by Bay of Plenty eighthman, and captain, Colin Bourke. I'll post the full video on the RD Facebook page if you'd like to see it with replays etc.

There's a nice mention for retiring Australian legend, and bowel cancer survivor, Ray Price, who played rugby at the highest level in both Union and League. He played for the Wallabies eight times before making the switch to league in the late seventies.

With so much great rugby on the way, it's not going to be easy to keep up. RD needs your help! If you see something you think should be shared, please make a note of it, including time and match details, then fire off an email.

Alternatively if you're able to record, edit, and upload, that's even better. Either way, Rugbydump is driven by community interaction so please don't be shy to get involved. Send an email here, or use the handy contact form. Cheers, and enjoy the rest of the weekend.


Friday, August 13, 2010

Friday Funnies - Neemia Tialata scores a try, without the ball

Last Friday you got to see Counties prop Simon Lemalu virtually suspended in mid air as he made a bizarre flying tackle against Otago in the ITM Cup. Today it's another front rower who has come up with an amusing piece of play, although this time he didn't know much about it.

It's little wonder that with the state of All Blacks rugby at the moment, the standard of play in the rest of New Zealand is up there with the best you'll see as the ITM Cup so far has been thrilling to watch.

Round two, where this clip comes from, was jampacked with quality tries, so many in fact that going through all of them took longer than expected, so a compilation of some sort will be posted next week, including the best of this weekend, Round three.

So while Wellington went down to Counties Manukau last weekend, they did have a late burst of great play as their wingers Hosea Gear and Julian Savea started to impose themselves on the match.

In this clip you'll see the two of them playing a large part in what would have otherwise been a great try had it not been for an incredible rip from Samisoni Fisilau, who ruined the moment for prop Neemia Tialata after he had managed to get up there in support brilliantly.


Willem Alberts smashes young Jaco Taute

A few days ago I posted the Currie Cup best tries mix from this past weekend. Included in there was the game between the Sharks and the Lions in Durban, which the Sharks won 48-19. Here's a look at one of the biggest hits of the weekend, which came from that match.

The Sharks have been spoilt for loose forwards of late, with the likes of Ryan Kankowski, Jean Deysel, Jacques Botes, Keegan Daniel, young talent Michael Rhodes, and now this season, big Willem Alberts.

Alberts moved to the Sharks this year after spending a few seasons with the team they faced on the weekend, the Lions. His impressive form in last season's Currie Cup, coupled with his size - 1.92m and close to 120kg - made him a much sought after signing and since arriving in Durban, he hasn't disappointed.

His potential and physical presence have already had some predicting a step up to higher honours in the not too distant future. His ball carrying ability and physicality in the tackle have been a real feature of his play.

Nineteen year old Lions fullback Jaco Taute, himself a promising prospect, found out first hand what a unit Alberts is as his counterattack soon came to naught, with the Sharks number eight smashing him dead in his tracks.

He was actually penalised for the hit, but as captain Stefan Terblanche said, Alberts did attempt to grasp the player, so the impact probably made it look more illegal than it actually was.

You may notice the new 'Like' and 'Tweet' buttons below the video. Please try them out to share posts with your friends and followers on Facebook and Twitter. I'm still tweaking the layout so if you have any feedback, please get in touch. Thanks!


Thursday, August 12, 2010

The new Aviva Stadium at Lansdowne Road

The new Lansdowne Road, now called the Aviva Stadium, was officially launched recently with the first rugby game there since 2006. A Leinster/Ulster team beat the Connacht/Munster side 68-0. This clip tells you more about the historic ground’s reconstruction, as well as shows a few highlights from the one sided game.

The stadium is built on the site of the old Lansdowne Road in Dublin at a cost of €400m and will seat 50 000 at capacity. It will be used for both rugby and football, with the first rugby international set to take place between Ireland and the Springboks on November 6th this year.

The first ever Test was played there in 1878, and while the pitch is the same, the stadium itself is a far cry from the old ground, despite the seating capacity being fairly average for an international stadium.

A little over 35 000 turned out to watch the first ever rugby game to be held in the spectacular new stadium, a match that featured under-20 players comprising the two mixed sides. Only 10 of the 44 players that were on show are contracted to provincial academies, so it was very much an occasion for the future of Irish rugby.

The Leinster/Ulster team were way too strong as they ran out convincing winners.

Time: 04:45
Note: Thanks to Total Rugby


Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Currie Cup best tries mix - Round 5

There we some big scores posted this weekend in the Currie Cup as the top dogs flexed their muscles in round five of the highly competitive tournament. Last week I posted a best tries mix from the first four rounds, so today things are up to date with the best from week five.

In Kimberley Western Province ran riot against Griquas as they maintained their unbeaten run and tallied up an impressive 50-3 win away from home. Tries were scored by Juan de Jongh, Deon Fourie, Conrad Jantjes, Gio Aplon, Pieter Louw and Lionel Cronje.

De Jongh, who was part of the Tri Nations tour of New Zealand and Australia, got a chance to show his finishing prowess and he scooted over for the start of the second half rout. Hooker Fourie then showed how good he is in the loose as he finished off a great team try, before fullback Jantjies, who is still getting to full fitness again, scored a great individual try as the Griquas defenders fell off him.

The Blue Bulls and the Leopards was an interesting game as the powerhouse Bulls side got off to a great lead, but then the Leopards came back to give them a bit of a scare. They held on for the 43-38 win, but the Leopards scored some great tries with their great offloading game, especially amongst the forwards.

Wing Gerhard van den Heever showed his out and out gas though as he scythed through the midfield to score the bonus point try for the Bulls.

The Sharks notched up a heavy 48-19 win over the Lions in Durban, despite the scores being close at one stage with the Lions threatening an upset. Two quickfire intercept tries changed that though.

Young Patrick Lambie started at flyhalf for the first time and managed to notch up 28 points himself, including a neatly taken try. Lwazi Mvovo later scored the try of the match as some great interpassing amongst the backs freed him up to stretch his legs down the left wing.

Elsewhere, and not featured in this video, the Cheetahs beat the Pumas 45-30.

Time: 03:55
Music: Firehouse - Overnight Sensation


Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Luke McAlister's 63m penalty kick for North Harbour

Former All Black Luke McAlister kicked a massive 63 meter penalty kick last weekend for North Harbour when they played Auckland in the ITM Cup in New Zealand. It was requested so here it is, another great entry in the archive, which includes a few other incredible long range efforts.

McAlister has struggled to cement his place in the All Black squad since heading back to New Zealand from his few seasons playing rugby up north in the UK. Repeat injuries, form, and a few other top contenders being on the map have all meant that he’s not been an automatic selection at the highest level.

His goal is, as with other high profile Kiwi backs, to make the World Cup squad for next year. He is aiming to use this season’s ITM Cup campaign as a way to stick his hand up and get noticed by the selectors once again, seeing as he only played three Super 14 games.

"It's a good opportunity for me to get back to where I want to be. The ITM Cup isn't at the level of test rugby so it gives you the chance to do a bit more as a player in a more relaxed atmosphere," says McAlister.

"Only playing a couple of weeks here and there, it's hard to get consistent form. I haven't really had that in the 12 months since coming home. My goal right now is to to get back playing consistent rugby... and to be injury free."

He did play for the New Zealand Maori against England and signs were encouraging, leaing to him being selected as cover for Dan Carter against Wales recently. The depth of the squad at the moment has meant that he’s finding times tough.

McAlister has hinted that if he doesn’t end up making the world cup squad next year, he may head back up north where he’s wanted, and can take care of his future financially. North Harbour assistant coach, former All Black, Jeff Wilson still believes in him though.

"Class is permanent, form is temporary. He's too good a player and too talented not to bounce back from these challenges. I'm expecting big things from him," Wilson said.

As you can see here, he’s still got a bit of the x-factor that has made him valuable to every side he turns out for. This huge penalty kick, in damp conditions and with a side-wind, will add to his confidence and hopefully we’ll see him performing more consistently this season.

Some other notable monster penalties:
Paul Thorburn in 1986 | Dan Carter in 2006 | Riaan Viljoen in 2008


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Monday, August 09, 2010

The Stuart Mangan story

It’s been a year since the tragic passing of Irish rugby player Stuart Mangan who was paralysed when severely injuring his spine in a tackle in 2008. To remember the inspiring young man, the BBC have made a documentary of his short, but eventful life. That will be aired tonight, so today we pay tribute to him.

At the age of just 24 years, talented flyhalf Stuart was left paralysed from the neck down when he was injured while playing for Hammersmith & Fulham Rugby Club in London on April 26 2008.

Within seconds he went from being a young man who had it all going for him to being one that needed round the clock care and a ventilator to keep him breathing.

"It wasn't anyone's fault. Whatever way my head and neck went, it just cracked," said Stuart afterwards, holding nobody responsible.

He suffered a C-1 spinal fracture as his third vertebrae went over his fourth, causing him to lose all movement immediately, as well as stop his breathing. He was kept alive by a team mate who gave him mouth-to-mouth resuscitation until paramedics arrived.

He was left with no movement from the neck down, but suffered no brain damage and despite the limitations that followed, Stuart managed to inspire and touch all around him as he went on with daily life, taking each new day as it came.

He untimely passing was a shock to many as he suddenly contracted a chest infection, and then pneumonia which led to him passing away.

During the 16 months that followed the injury, a moving documentary was made by the BBC that documents his life as he left hospital and had to adapt to having no movement from his head down.

The video below is not the documentary, but was made while Stuart was still alive and features interviews with him as he adjusts to his life after the injury.

Please go to www.stuartmangan.org to find out more and how you can help with the Stuart Mangan Trust. The documentary will be screened tonight, 9th Aug, on RTE1 at 9:30pm.

Time: 06:38
Note: The documentary will hopefully be available on the RTE Player over the next few days, or if someone in Ireland is able to record it tonight and upload, we can then share it with the world.


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