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Friday’s Rugby News

Friday’s Rugby News

Fridays Rugby News sees two games cancelled, Tahs sign Gamble, changes for the Wallabies and, bye-bye Ma’a Nonu


 

 

Two World Cup Games Cancelled

Rugby World Cup – William Web Ellis Trophy

Typhoon Hagibis could wreak havoc on the Rugby World Cup finals. With New Zealands match against Italy and England’s game against France already cancelled attention now moves to Japan versus Scotland for a spot in the finals.

But while Australia sat tight in Shizuoka – their Friday night game against Georgia unaffected – all eyes quickly turned to Sunday’s games, which included the blockbuster Pool A decider between Japan and Scotland in Yokohama, plus Namibia v Canada (Kamaishi), US v Tonga (Osaka) and Wales v Uruguay (Kumamoto) .

The result of the Japan v Scotland match, scheduled for 7.45 pm in Yokohama, will decide which of those teams makes it through to the knockout stages.

Under tournament rules, a pool match that can’t be played must be cancelled and declared a 0-0 draw, with both teams, awarded two points.

If it does not go ahead, Scotland’s campaign will end in the group stages for only the second time in World Cup history. Japan, topping the pool with Ireland snapping at their heels, will advance to the quarter-finals for the first time.

Organisers said a call on the match would not be made until Sunday morning. The worst of the typhoon should have passed but they cannot predict what damage its winds and rain could wreak on the city and stadium.

“The decision will be made in the morning [Sunday],” Japan Rugby 2019 chief executive Akira Shimazu said.

“In principle, we make the decision six hours before kick-off but we would like to make this as early as possible on Sunday. We will look at the damage, we will consider carefully. We will make every effort so the spectators will see the match.”

 

Charlie Gamble Signs For The Waratahs

The NSW Waratahs have secured the signature of highly-rated Shute Shield loose forward, Charlie Gamble for the 2020 Vodafone Super Rugby season.

The former Crusaders Academy product has penned a one-year deal with NSW Rugby, after dominating the Shute Shield in 2019.

Gamble has performed strongly for Sydney in the National Rugby Championship (NRC), providing stability for Chris Whitaker in the back row after making a successful return from injury.

Gamble’s rugby journey in Australia started even lower down the ranks at NSW Suburban level in 2018, where he guided Petersham to a premiership and was named player of the competition.

“It really freshened me up, allowed me to enjoy my footy,” Gamble said.

The 23-year-old’s signing follows the appointment of Kiwi Rob Penney as head Waratahs coach to replace compatriot Daryl Gibson at the end of the 2019 Super Rugby season.

Penney said Gamble would prove a valuable addition to his 2020 squad.

“Charlie comes highly regarded and I’m looking forward to working with him,” he said.

“With a full pre-season under his belt and some time back in a professional system, he’ll have every opportunity to make an impact …”

 “It’s a great story, he’s a guy that’s come to Australia, found that enjoyment in his rugby and is now making the most of his opportunities.”

Hooper Out!

Michael Hooper

So… Australia’s Mr perpetual motion has finally come to a halt, at least for the moment. It appears the Wallabies captain has succumbed to muscle soreness and will sit out the game against Georgia. He is replaced by loose forward Lukhan Salakaia-Loto.

And in other news, Aussie fan favourite, Rob Simmons has replaced Adam Coleman on the bench.

Forwards coach Simon Raiwalui indicated the shuffling among the reserves was related to Australia having become assured of qualification when pool rivals Fiji lost to Wales on Wednesday night.

It took a layer of pressure off against the tier two Georgians and allowed them to fully rest regular captain Hooper and Coleman, who both had general soreness but could have comfortably played, he said.

“At the moment they’re just little niggles that are nothing too major,” Raiwalui said.

“With that (qualification) confirmed, we decided to go that way.”

It was the perfect outcome for 30-year-old Simmons, who avoided much of the fanfare that may have otherwise accompanied his milestone.

A first-choice lock in the 2015 campaign, he has become more appreciated for is off-field influence and leadership over the last two years. Fourteen of his last 17 Tests have been off the bench.

Matchday captain Pocock hailed the man from Theodore in central Queensland for his reliability and desire to put the team ahead of personal ambition.

“It’s very special for him but it’s typical though, he didn’t want anything made of it until after the game,” Pocock said.

“He’s a well-loved member of the team and of those guys who goes about his business. It’s pretty amazing to have someone like him on the bench, to be able to call on someone with that experience, knowing that he steps up when he’s needed.”

 

Ma’a Nonu Joins Major League Rugby

genia2of2

Former All Blacks centre Ma’a Nonu has become the highest-profile player to commit to a Major League Rugby franchise, signing with San Diego Legion.

The 37-year-old two-time World Cup winner announced on Thursday he was quitting the Auckland-based Blues Super Rugby team to play in the fast-growing North American league in 2020.

Nonu is a veteran of 103 Tests and more than 300 professional games, winning World Cup titles in 2011 and 2015, five Tri-Nations or Rugby Championship titles and eight Bledisloe Cup series.

He played Super Rugby for the Hurricanes and Highlanders and spent three seasons with French club Toulon before joining the Blues last year.

However, he failed to win New Zealand selection for the current World Cup in Japan, making a comeback to international rugby unlikely.

His signing with San Diego is a major coup for the MLR.

Ma’a is a huge addition for us,” Legion head coach Rob Hoadley said.

“It is undeniable that he will have a major impact on the MLR this season.”

Major League Rugby played its inaugural season in 2018.

The competition now features 12 teams – 11 from the US and one from Canada – with the Seattle Seawolves claiming its first two titles.

 

  • Nutta

    One thing I will say about Hooper is he does rack up the minutes. A break would do him good most likely.

    And likewise, credit to Rob Simmons. Congratulations. It’s x100 more than I ever achieved.

    • Custard Taht

      A much maligned player, but he is well respected by his peers and 100 caps suggests he does what his coaches ask of him. Good on him.

    • Nick Gregory

      100×0 is…100?

      • Ads

        Well 100 x 1 might work, which makes Nutta Dan Palmer?!? Or Peter Kay, Ross Turnbull, or Keith Bell. All one test props if the internet doesn’t lie.

        • Nutta

          Peter Kay was my favourite. A little guy but massive heart if I recall. Was a powerlifter who had a gym at Parramatta I think.

        • Yowie

          All that and a chubby pommy nostalgia-based comedian as well. Amazing.

  • Custard Taht

    Well feed me garlic and call me stinky, but surprise surprise, the game at Toyota has been recalled….thank fuck no games were scheduled in Takata, that would have frag’d the whole tournament.

    • Yowie

      If we played at Subaru Stadium our No. 4 might cop a hard knock.

      (quite a technically specific joke for Subaru owners there, but with sufficient research others may enjoy it)

      • Missing Link

        dak dak

        who’s there?

        big end

        big end who?

        • Yowie

          Is that you Rod?

        • Hoss

          Unhappy, he just got piston……

        • Yowie

          I’m only just bearing this terrible humour.

        • Timbo

          We should chuck these jokes in the Otto cycle bin

        • Yowie

          Yeah, our comic timing is either too far advanced or retarded.

        • disqus_NMX

          You sure did spark up a thread

        • Yowie

          We seem to be in no danger of exhausting the puns

        • Anonymous bloke

          Car.

        • Missing Link

          I know what Cheika will be thinking going into the Quarter finals: “22b or not 22b? That is the question”

        • Yowie

          Defiantly 22b. That would be better than picking up a brand-new STI

        • Custard Taht

          Or maybe he is think 180B!

        • Missing Link

          hey guys, let’s stop mucking around before things get overheated and the mods blow a gasket

        • Who?

          This is clearly a Subaru thread, seriously turbocharged in my absence.

        • Yowie

          It’s just been rumbling along.

        • Who?

          Oh, so it’s really a Toyota, too..? I thought – apart from the 86/BRZ, Subarus were all turbo’d these days..?
          Is it really a Toyota/Subaru joint venture stadium after all that?
          Or is the typhoon related to the oversize dump valve on the stadium..?

        • Missing Link

          you could even say I’m CRANKy

        • Nutta

          Wow. Stop.

        • Yowie

          Sometimes (like today) I have a moment of insight into why my wife gets the shits.

        • Andrew Luscombe

          Her Subaru is noisy?

        • Andrew Luscombe

          Or you keep knocking her up?

        • Yowie

          With proper timing (over the month) we should prevent knock (up).

        • Hoss

          Thats a bit personal.

        • Yowie

          “her boxer engine” isn’t a euphemism.

        • laurence king

          But thankfully, the timing is OK

        • Custard Taht

          And there is more than one Distributor of bad puns

        • Yowie

          Indeed, the punsters are manifold.

        • Custard Taht

          And lucky that GGR has no filter.

        • Damo

          Let this be the end of this silly torque.

        • Custard Taht

          Agreed….this thread has run out of gas.

  • Kiwi rugby lover

    Thanks Sully,
    Good to see Hooper getting a rest as he certainly gives 100% on the paddock and a rest is probably a good idea. It’ll be interesting how the rest affects Coleman’s chances of playing in the game against England. He seems to be a bit off his pace and probably needed a big game to be certain of securing his place in the team.
    Pity about the game cancelations but it wasn’t unexpected. TBH the only one that I see really affecting the pool outcome would be the Japan vs Scotland game. I’m actually expecting Scotland to win this one so a draw will be an issue. I guess that’s what happens when you schedule a competition in a country that has typhoons during typhoon season. Gotta be a lesson there you’d think.
    Good recruit by the Tahs, just hope we see him play rather than the Gibson policy of having players in the squad and not using them ala Hegarty.

    • Patrick

      I’m expecting Japan to win and I hope it goes ahead.

      • Kiwi rugby lover

        I’d love Japan to win but I think Scotland will use their experience and control the game

        • onlinesideline

          mate disagree with you here. Think the Japs will be pumped out of their skin and so will the crowd and they are good and the Scots are OKish. We shall see.

        • Christopher

          The Japan tempo is something which would be unsettling. If Scotland can control that, they are a chance. if not – I’m screaming at the TV (in delight) Sunday.Monday night.
          The Jap winger is my favourite player of the tournament Matsu….

        • Patrick

          Just like Ireland did?

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Yeah Ireland underestimated them big time. Not sure Scotland will

        • Yowie

          Yeah, the stereotypical cheery Scottish optimism has no place heading into the Japan game.

        • onlinesideline
        • Custard Taht

          Agreed. There is no way Scotland will misunderestimate them.

        • Patrick

          I’m seriously not sure it will matter that they do or don’t

        • Happyman

          Mate as a Scottish fan you always understand that the light at the end of the tunnel is an oncoming train.
          The fundamental difference between being say an New Zealand Fan and a scottish fan is we celebrate success while expecting it to not happen and as such remember our great victories.
          New Zealand Expect success but dwell to much on failure.

          I expect to lose against Japan but will celebrate if we win.

        • adastra32

          Wouldn’t bet on it. Scotland are as wobbly as…

      • Custard Taht

        Really looking forward to this game, it will be a shame and a loss for rugby if it needs to be shitcanned.

  • Patrick

    It appears that Hooper should have been rested against Uruguay… surprise.

  • AllyOz

    It says something that someone like Rob Simmons, who has had phases of his career where he has been on (or off )the fringe of selection. Congratulations on your resilience, patience and determination. I was never a huge fan but 100 tests is a huge achievement and his decision to stick around and play locally to win back his spot is something that others could look to.

    • Bernie Chan

      Always was a fan of the man from Theodore…was not happy when the Reds let him go to south of the Tweed River (seriously…one can’t get much more QLDer…). His set piece work is still good so the scrum and lineout shouldn’t suffer…A great achievement to play 100 Tests (plus 112 Caps for QLD) , and the guy has always been so humble.

      • AllyOz

        His moving on from Queensland at least opened things up for a younger brigade with LSL, Rodda, Blyth and Hockings all coming through. So it’s a position I think they are relatively well served in for the future.

        • Who?

          I don’t think it would’ve been nearly as big an issue if they didn’t have an injured Yamba boy who didn’t ever achieve anything for the Reds on the books for another year after that…
          “We’re getting rid of our 2011 champion Rob, but keeping that bloke who went to Ireland, got bought out by RA, then was sent our way..? That Kane bloke who’s done nothing for us?! Why?!”

        • AllyOz

          Hey , lay off the Yamba boys!!! He was good at the Tahs but yes, undoubtedly his second stint in Australia didn’t quite deliver what the Reds were looking for. The more I look back on that Tahs side the more I think that Pottgeitner was pivotal in setting the tone.

        • Who?

          He played for the Tahs and went overseas the year leading into a RWC. Then he played for the Reds and went overseas the year leading into a RWC.
          I had high hopes for him, but he played maybe two good games in Gold. Luckily (given the coin RA spent on getting him back), they were both at the RWC in 2015.
          But I always thought that it was the hyperactive puppy that was JacPot who really drove that 2014 Tahs pack. His energy was boundless, and can’t be given enough credit for that team’s efforts.

        • Hoss

          Dont underestimate Dave Dennis’ leadership and contributions as well

        • Who?

          Dave played well in that pack, but the energy and hits that were attributed to Douglas, I can’t help but think that’s JacPot. No one ever gave credit to Dennis for that style of play – it wasn’t his go. He was a good honest toiler.

    • Missing Link

      I’ve been critical at times of Simmons and his last few years haven’t been his best, but everyone around Australia was Rob Simmons in the 2015 world cup semi final against Argentina.

      He is a quiet achiever and 100 tests is an incredible feat, the craziest thing is he is only 30!

  • Troy

    So hang on, if Wales v Uruguay is cancelled and the Wallabies get a BP win over Georgia we’ll top the pool?
    Wales are on top with 14 points ATM and +45 points
    Aus are on 11 points ATM and +49 points
    2 points to Wales for the draw and 0 points
    5 points to Aus for a BP win and whatever points they score.

    • Hoss

      First tie breaker is who won the pool match between the sides = Wales.

      No matter what the Typhoon does. Wales top the pool (unless Uruguay roll them) and we face the Soap Dodgers

      • Custard Taht

        I have decided that I am glad we are facing the Poms in the QF…..it will be great to end their tournament early again…I am working on Foley not being the 10.

        Then onto the All Blacks, who will have had an extended break and an opposed training run in the QF, and be ripe for the picking.

        • Yowie

          Hope is a dangerous thing. Hope can drive a man insane.
          (in Morgan Freeman’s voice)

        • Hoss

          ‘In here is where it makes the most sense.’

        • Yowie

          I must admit I didn’t think much of Hoss first time I laid eyes on him; looked like a stiff breeze would blow him over. That was my first impression of the man.

        • onlinesideline

          at 135 kilos (140kg with inflation) it would take Typhon shitsake to blow this one over I think.

        • Hoss

          The Nearlies will also have the Paddies in the QF – that will be a belter

        • Custard Taht

          I see the Jap v Scot game going ahead, with Scotland winning by more than 7. Seeing the Paddies topping the pool and Scotland coming in 2nd and facing the All Blacks.

        • Yowie

          Was it the 2007 World Cup where (presumably due to Scottish cunning) the Scottish and All Blacks jerseys looked almost identical, leading one commentator needing to point our that “the All Blacks are the ones with the ball”?

        • From NooZealand

          When the result was 40 : 00 … because the cunning scots were passing the ball to the kiwis?

        • A Dingo Stole My Rugby

          Same happened in 2011 when the Soap Dodgers cynically decided that their away strip would be (cough, cough) “all black”. Didn’t end well for them.

        • Keith Butler

          I think you may be right. Would like to see Japan go through to the Q/Fs though.

        • donktec

          pass me the kool aid please!

        • onlinesideline

          the unpredictability of France can be even more dangerous. On their day when they knucke down in forwards, they can beat anyone. SD’s are more readable for the aussies – its just going to get down to discipline, and doing the basics well. Sounds cliche but we lacked both these when we played them recently. We also seem to get affected by the big pommy crowds (ie 2007 RWC and twickers crowd) and also can go to sleep at times against them. Playing the Poms is a 80% thereabouts mental thing. They are big nigglers and the crowds are big nigglers. That also intimidates the ref if he’s weak. If we cant put 80 mins in its goodbye Irene.

        • Custard Taht

          We also had the Pop Taht kicking aimlessly, direct to a man, and also failing to find touch.

          Not having foley at ten probably takes 14 points away from the Poms.

        • Who?

          Funny thing about getting affected by the Twickers crowd, in RWC matches, we’ve never lost to them in England. Outside England, we haven’t beaten them in a knock out match or since 1987 (our very first RWC match!). We’ve been knocked out by them in the QF’s. Twice.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Love the optimism mate.

        • Custard Taht

          The All Blacks are just 16 men……..

        • Hoss

          Gold.

        • Custard Taht

          17 if you include Skeen!

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Ahh that old chestnut. Funny though

        • From NooZealand

          Vs Ireland? an unopposed QF?

        • Custard Taht

          I think it will be NZ v Scotland.

        • From NooZealand

          I would prefer Uruguay to be on safe side. He he he That’s the group to watch, especially with the Super Hurricane.

        • Keith Butler

          Well not that early CT, at least we made it out of our pool this time round. Could go either way. At least the G&G will have a game under their belt (hopefully without injuries) while we will be fresh as daisies. I expect that EJ will throw in a few ‘competitive’ sessions between now and Saturday to remove any rust.

        • Custard Taht

          It has the potential to be a cracker of a game, it depends on 2 things;

          1. Who Cheika and the panel select
          2. Which Wallabies turn up.

          Because your mob Will definitely turn up and be up for it.

        • Keith Butler

          As long as Spanners in nowhere near the squad you’ll be OK. Will the SDs revert to type and crack under pressure as they did in the 6Ns? They seem to be more together than they have been. Hope it’s a good one.

        • joy

          I notice that The Australian has attributed blame for Scotland’s loss in the 2015 quarters to Australia. No mention of the referee.

          This time around windy.com shows a forecast maximum wind strength of 32 knots during the cancelled England v France game. That’s about the same strength as a standard winter westerly here in central NSW. Non doubt history will again be rewritten. England and France will be remembered as a bunch of pansies for calling the game off. No mention of officials.

          Are you there Wayne Smith?

        • Keith Butler

          Get your facts right. The game was called off by the organisers for safety reasons nothing to do with France or England. They would have wanted to play.

        • Custard Taht

          I think he is saying that the officials called it off….But the narrative in the future will be the two teams didn’t want to play, and the officials will be given a free pass.

        • joy

          That’s exactly the point.

  • Happyman

    Congrats to Sergio Parissi on a fantastic career. A true warrior and IMHO opinion when he was at his best he was the premier number 8 in the world.

    It is a shame he does not get to play his last international swansong and get the send off he deserves but Rugby can be a cruel game at times and very few get that opportunity.

NSW Waratahs
@Only1Sully

Just another Rugby tragic. Shane "Sully" Sullivan has been in man love with the game since high school in the 70's. He inflicts his passion on family and anyone who will listen. He can't guarantee unbiased opinion but he can tell you the Reds are Awesome! To read non-rugby content head to http://www.onesully.com.au

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