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Monday’s Rugby News

Monday’s Rugby News

Monday’s Rugby News looks at the results from Super Rugby Australia and across clubland, celebrates the appointment of Amy Perrett and ‘Super Saturday’ continuing to grow.


Super Rugby recap

Michael Wells is tackled by Michael Hooper Waratahs v Rebels Super Rugby 2020 (Credit - Keith McInnes Photography)

With the finals on the horizon, the match mattered even more in round eight of the Super Rugby Australia competition.

The action started in the freezing ACT where the Brumbies took on the Force as the home side attempted to wrap up top spot and a home final.

The Force put up an inspired fight, taking it to the Brumbies as the match went down to the wire with 15 minutes remaining, with the Dan McKellar’s men leading by just three points.

However, replacement centre Len Ikitau and outside back Andy Muirhead would cross for late tries to seal the 31-14 victory and a home grand final for the Brumbies.

“It’s really, really special (to host the final),” Brumbies captain Allan Alaalatoa said.

“For us, we try not to think about that (the finals) and just try and execute our gameplay and I think for us it’s just about continuing momentum, we’ve got a big game against the Reds.”

The focus then shifted to Leichhardt Oval, with the Waratahs looking to keep their slim finals hopes alive when they faced the Rebels.

Needing to ensure that the Rebels didn’t get a bonus point, the Waratahs looked set to pull off the impossible when Will Harrison swan-dived over after a Michael Hooper intercept.

In the end, Rebels fly-half Matt Toomua would slot a 77th-minute penalty goal to snatch a bonus point and ensure that they only need a victory by four or more points next week.

This left Waratahs coach Rob Penney shattered despite securing the win, with his maiden season with the Tahs now out of their control.

“For me, it feels a bit like a loss,” he said.

“Like I haven’t got my head around the fact that we actually won, so a bit of mixed feelings of course.”

Club recap

Seru Uru Easts v Sunnybank QLD Premier Rugby (Photo Credit: Brendan Hertel / QRU)

The club action around the country continues to impress as teams start to get back into the rhythm regular rugby.

Starting with the Shute Shield and it was Eastwood who pulled off the major upset with a 43-42 victory over ladder-leaders Randwick.

In other results, Norths held off Two Blues 40-26, Manly thumped Penrith 64-22, Souths were narrow winners over Warringah 39-38, Gordon outclassed West Harbour 24-12 and Easts overcome a valiant Hunter 31-21.

The Queensland Premier Rugby continues to deliver, with Brothers outgunning Wests 49-47 in a thriller.

Around the grounds and it was GPS that held off Sunnybank 17-15, Queensland Uni dominated Souths 50-14 and Bondi Uni defeated Easts 32-22.

In the John I Dent Cup in the nation’s capital, Uni-Norths won it on the death with a penalty as they beat Wests 25-24, Gungahlin held off Queanbeyan 26-16 and Royals narrowly defeated Vikings 29-27.

Down in South Australia and Burnside pulled off the upset of the weekend defeating undefeated Brighton 32-19.

In other results, Onkaparinga molly whopped Adelaide Uni 106-0, Woodville dominated Elizabeth 80-10, Souths blanked Barossa 70-0 and Old Collegians cruised to a 91-7 victory over Port Adelaide.

Finally in Western Australia, Cottesloe maintained their unbeaten start with a thumping 87-10 win over Curtin Uni whilst Coastal held off Bayswater 28-24.

Along with this, Wanneroo held off Joondalup 43-25, UWA dominated ARKs 61-14, Palmyra overcame Kalamunda 23-14 and Associated defeated Nedlands 40-13

Living in Inf-Amy

Embed from Getty Images

Australian official Amy Perrett continues to make history, becoming the first female to referee a Super Rugby match on Friday during the Brumbies-Force match.

Perrett has been a trailblazer in the sport, becoming the first women in be included in a Super Rugby match official team in 2017.

She has made her mark across the Sevens circuit, bringing up another significant milestone earlier in the year as she refereed her 100th Sevens World Series Match during the Sydney 7s Final.

Having been given the landmark opportunity, Perrett admits that it something that she had never imagined since she “never saw it as a possibility.”

“I’ve been really fortunate to already achieve a lot, so everything now is all a bit of a bonus, and it’s just a case of just taking any opportunity as it arises,” she told Rugby.com.au.

“It’s an old cliché, but if you can’t see it, you can’t be it,

“However, I do hope now that I’ve done it, anyone else can.”

Despite the historic occasion, Perrett still will treat it as another game, with her goal simply to be consistent and provide a positive role model for her son Liam.

“Every fixture is important to those involved, and all I’m trying to do is ensure I have consistent performances because every match I’m a part of means something to somebody,” she said.

“I now do things to show Liam what is possible, if you work hard for something and put your mind to it you can achieve it,

“And now when I go out there it’s not only to enjoy it but also to make my family and son proud.”

Super Saturday gets bigger

Alex Mafi and Folau Fainga'a

Alex Mafi and Folau Fainga’a

If you think next Saturday couldn’t get bigger, it continues to do so with the confirmation of the North v South game.

The game between the best of the All Blacks was originally set to take place this week, however, multiple players were prevented from travelling due to a sudden coronavirus outbreak in Auckland.

In order to maximise the viewing experience for fans, Rugby Australia has announced that the final round clash between the Melbourne Rebels and Western Force has been brought forward to kick-off at 3 pm ECET (East Coast Elite Time).

The match shapes as a much win for the Rebels, who require a win by four or more points over the Force to book their place in the finals.

With the North v South game in Wellington slated for 5.10 pm, the triple-header of rugby will conclude with a potential grand final preview as the Queensland Reds host the Brumbies at Suncorp Stadium.

RA CEO Rob Clarke thanked Fox Sports and the teams for the willingness and co-operation throughout the process, believing that the final round festival is a perfect way to finish off the regular season.

“Next Saturday’s action is just getting better and better so thank you to our broadcast partners FOX SPORTS as well as the Melbourne Rebels and the Western Force for accommodating this new addition,” Clarke said in a statement.

“What an afternoon next Saturday will be for Rugby fans in Australia. We are now at the very pointy end of what has been an enthralling Super Rugby AU competition – and with finals berths there for the taking, everything is still to play for.”

Following the games in Round nine, it has been confirmed that the Brumbies will host the final on Saturday 19 September at GIO Stadium in Canberra, playing the winner of the Qualifying Final.

  • Nutta

    Thx Nathan.

    Great to see the ongoing focus on equality of opportunity with our female colleagues. Long may it continue.

    Was that a reference to cooperation between NZ & Oz national bodies? Ah, no, silly me. It’s only one side manoeuvring in isolation around the other in a commercial operation to maximise its product. Given the relations of late I expect someone to move something in the next day or two. We’ll see.

    Go Donkeys. Go Scum.

    • Greg

      I thought the great thing about Ms Perret’s performance was that it wasn’t mentioned in the match reports beyond noting her achievement. Just what is needed from a referee.

      • Keith Butler

        What I liked about her performance was that unlike most of her male counterparts she didn’t need explain in great detail what she wanted, particularly at scrum time. Sometimes I get the feeling that refs try to hog the limelight too much.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Concur!

        • Hoss

          Its called ‘Roaching’ – referee coaching.

        • Happyman

          TBH mate most refs have never worn the noble low numbers on there back so would know as much about them as I would using a hairdryer.

          I thought she was excellent understated and in control. The speed looked to have her out of breath a couple of times.

  • Alister Smith

    I thought the tahs were a touch unlucky as the Rebels player who gave the inside ball for the last try appeared to go into touch – still, they needed to play better earlier in the season. I think there are genuine

    I made a disingenuous comment last week about the much maligned Ned Hannigan. I thought he had a good game on the weekend. I think he is sometimes harshly criticised simply for having been picked by a coach and I even understand why the coach picked him – he has the potential to be that big bodied 6 that we were looking for. He is a real trier and never shirks.

    However, I don’t know that picking him as a lock is doing him much good (unless there is something I can’t see). If Wikipedia is correct he is 6’4″ and 110 kg. Locks these days are substantially taller and bigger and this puts him at a disadvantage both with pack weights and at lineout (though he seems a reasonable technician in the lineout). I think he has greater value on the side unless the Waratahs want to play a different style of game. I think this is one of the biggest areas the Waratahs need to address for next season – they will lose Rob Simmons – the lineout leader (and overall leader) who is also, by some accounts I have seen here, a very strong contributor at scrum time. The don’t really have that other type of second rower with the aggressive type that Pottgeitner provided when they were successful who set the tone for the forward pack and Ned is, well I don’t think he is a natural lock though he is filling in capably. So, if I was filling out my wish list for the Tahs for next season, I would be looking to fill the two lock spots first and potentially looking to Argentina for one of them (in the short term) – a lineout leader and large brutal madman.

    • Nutta

      I agree with you about Ned. His original identification and selection was targeted as the next Mad Jack Potgieter. But that was hugely unfair and shortsighted to put on a guy with a developing body to be expected to be a crowbar. It didn’t stop him trying to his real credit but his enormous detriment in-terms of injury, wear & tear and pundit-reputation.

      Listen to him speak- he’s no fool. He’s well spoken, reasonably eloquent, well presented, not breathtakingly ugly, so he could be a very good marketing ‘face’ for rugby as well as a potential on-field leader with time and development given he doesn’t seem prone to stupidity and cheap-shot yellow cards.

      So at 6-3 and 110kg he fits as a stereotypical blindside BA but he will gain another 5kg as he matures. However there are quite successful locks of similar size (including the best ever – Thorn?).

      Given our national lock stocks are low ATM and the flush of loosies we have available, it seems lock will be his home for a while to come. Then as age slows and heavies him a little it will stay his home thereafter. I wish him well.

      I think particularly in these times of recognising mental health issues, we as pundits need to mature a wee bit and grow up a little from the shit we used to heap on the likes of Mummy and Foley for getting selected. Myself included.

      • Brisneyland Local

        Brad Thorn, though was HAF! Hannigan has a long way to g to harden up. But the weekends game was a great step forward for him.

        • David Creagh

          If there was a Moh’s sale of hardness for Rugby players Thorn would be diamond and Hannigan would be calcite.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Yep, the other thing that shits me about Hanigan is when there is hand bags at 10 paces he has run in and have a go. It is like because everyone calls him a powder puff he feels he has to show how tough he is, but in the process just makes himself look like a tool.

        • David Creagh

          Yep, the hardest guy I ever played with did his talking not in the scuffle but the work he did in the ball carry and the bone crunching defence. Never ran into a scuffle and he never started a fight but I saw him finish a few when someone else took a swing at him. .

        • Brisneyland Local

          Yep I have played with guys exactly like that. Their silence in general scared me.

        • David Creagh

          Walk softly and carry a fist the size of a christmas ham…..

        • Brisneyland Local

          So true.

        • Nutta

          Now you know me and my blood-lines well enough to know I truly appreciate the truth of that statement. However, again, if what was wanted was a caveman head-splitter, then go pick, or even better go find and develop, said crowbar for headsplitting. You can’t want an axe, so pick up a tomahawk, then blame the tomahawk for not being an axe. That’s on the coach, talent identification and pathways team.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Very true Nutta.

      • Alister Smith

        and me too re: the heaping shit though I would be disappointed if Ned took notice of anything I said –

        I guess my comments were based on my own limitations. I was a 6’3″ 110kg lock. Still, unlike Ned, I couldn’t jump, was too slow and was a bit dull in the head (I also hate him for having hair as I have none) – still I feel though that if he could succeed on the side he would have more value to the national side but he is doing his best for the team. He is also from Dubbo so he can’t be that bad. (though would be better if he was from Narromine).

        • David Creagh

          I agree that he does his best. I someone once said on this forum (paraphrased a little “It is not his fault he has been selected, he goes and does the best with what he has got. What one of us would not want to be in his place?”.

        • Geoffro

          I dont think any of them are going to slit their wrists over having shit dumped on them by a bunch of keyboard warriors.Ned seems like a nice kid – maybe thats his problem :)

        • Nutta

          I played for the Narromine Gorilla’s once. It was a John Doe vs Dubbo Roos in 2006 I think. Played 3rds and 2nds. Still have the jersey somewhere…

        • Alister Smith

          I coached Narromine Gorillas 1st Grade in 2004 (and played some 3rd Grade) – one of my prized possessions is a signed jersey that hangs on my bedroom wall. A great club. Looks like I just missed you.

      • KwAussie Rugby Lover

        Mate I’m with you. Not his fault he was selected and let’s face it if Foster called me up I’d be there in a heartbeat, and be absolute crap too. I fell sorry for him a bit but I still thought that he could have done more to help himself at times. He also tried to do the hard man shit stirring at times which was just laughable. Too small and ineffective at international level but a good super player is how I feel. Noting of course that what I think doesn’t matter at all.

        • UTG

          Agree, he’s just a good Super player and a good sign for Australian Rugby that, at best, he may be a wider Wallaby squad member. To build a good competition you do need players like him that might not be pushing for higher honours but still perform at high level.

        • KwAussie Rugby Lover

          I agree. Not everyone has to be a superstar.

        • Reds Revival

          I would put Jock Campbell into that category too. Great player, but not sure if he will be international standard. However, he will certainly push the other fullbacks all the way.

    • David Creagh

      Look, I have never been a big fan of Hannigan. I think he is serviceable at Super Rugby level but is found out at test level. I will concede that he has been better this year but I still think that there are major deficiencies in his game; his ball carry is often poor and he does not fight in the contact zone lacking strong leg drive and post contact meters (when he does cross the gainline it is usually because the defender missed the tackle), in defence he is mostly passive (it is rare that he makes a big shot) and he often turns up late to the breakdown and flops on it (if referees policied this better in Super Rugby AU he – and quite a few others – would be a penalty magnet).

      • IIPA

        One thing Hanigan is showing is good hands. And ability to shift a pass quickly and softly and an ability to take passes at speed and in traffic. We need more of that.

        The two worst teams imho ( Rebels and Force ) have demonstrated little skill or desire to pass the ball within their forward pack. On Saturday I think Orr offloaded twice ( and has been good ever since resumption ) but that was it.

    • Yowie

      I would rather get back your 10 blue (or whatever colour they are)

      I’m a big fan of “Hands-off black 7″.

      • Alister Smith

        Has a lovely ring to it….certainly better than “do whatever you like Sir Ruchie”

      • Greg

        “Hands-off black 9″ is a whole other story….

        • Yowie

          Gold.

        • GeorgiaSatellite

          These comments have been disabled.

  • David Creagh

    Well done to Amy Perret who continues to pave the way as a female in male elite sport. I thought she did I good job the only thing I could have hoped for more was for her to say “Piss off Gardiner, I am carrying the whistle in this game”.

    • Brisneyland Local

      Here here

  • Juan_Time

    Whilst I have an ingrained disposition toward disliking the tahs, there is indeed some really positive signs (mainly in the backs). Gordon has been given the chance to show his ability and leadership and is in the mix for wallabies. Harrison is a good old school 10 and getting better. Ramm we know. Now Walton has shown some really good signs too. Previous week he straightened and hit the gas, and this week took his try well. The ex-league is a big unit, not sure if he has any strings to his bow. Like the hooker too. If they can recruit or find some locks they will be formidable.
    Rebels lineout again good – credit to Uelese, Philip and Hosea for making their ball look easy, and really disrupting tahs. That’s why Harrison subconsciously didn’t find touch in crucial moment.

  • Missing Link

    The Rebels make it so hard for themselves. They always seem to play catch up, sometimes they win but very rarely get out to an early lead and can afford to wind down the clock with field position. Every year, it comes down to the final round to make the finals and pressure gets the better of them. now the only team that stands in their way is their perennial banana skin team, the Force. It could have been different this year. The draw against the Reds, a very narrow and lucky victory against the Force while other teams blew them off the park. Losing to the Reds – not being able to score after the Reds repelled 40+ minutes of relentless attack, losing to the Tahs due to some silly mistakes. Hope I don’t have complete this post next Monday by saying, couldn’t even get the job done against the Force who motivated themselves to “end a poor season on a high”. The Rebels should have been battling for top spot, not a spot in the top 3, and it’s not a Wessels thing, I think he’s doing well, this seems to be something ingrained in the psyche of the 5 stars since its inception.

    • donktec

      Sums up the season pretty well! It’s been hard to watch at times, getting close, but unable to get over the line when they really needed to. or “shoulda”.

    • RedAnt

      Couldn’t agree more, ML – except for maybe the bit about Wessels. Surely it’s his job to have the players properly prepared. There are no mysterious forces at work here preventing the team from taking its chances, it’s down to them.

      • Yowie

        You would think so, but the rule is:-
        (a) good results = good players
        (b) bad results = sack the coach

        • RedAnt

          Yeah, who’d be a coach, right?
          He’s obviously a decent coach, but it just seems like his teams never quite gel… even when they win they seem to make it harder than it needs be.

        • Hoss

          I get the impression he may be too nice of a bloke to be coach. You don’t need to be a psychotic, dictatorial, borderline serial killer, ill tempered prick to be successful, but it helps.

        • RedAnt

          Ha, I see you subscribe to the M. Cheika coaching method. But you might be right.

        • onlinesideline

          I’m not so sure … Robbie Deans (crusaders), Graham Henry, Steve Hansen. Rod Maqueen, Bob Dwyer – all pretty chill people

  • KwAussie Rugby Lover

    Thanks Nathan, great weekend of rugby as expected. I think I need to either stop my shit predictions or let them go so people know that the exact opposite will occur. TBH I’m actually liking the lack of predictability in the rugby and the fact that even now with a couple of weeks to go there’s still a lot to play for.

    Great to see Amy do so well and hopefully it’ll get more girls involved in refereeing. She had a great game and it was good to see.
    Awesome move by RA on the game timings and providing the ability for fans to watch all they rugby. I still think the final will be Reds vs Brumbies. Rebels better be on their game as I think the Force will be targeting this as one they could get their first win in.

  • Brisneyland Local

    Morning GAGR’s, great games on the weekend.
    BTW does anyone know what the citing process is for AUs SR? As surely a certain Waratahs players will have to be cited.

    • David Creagh

      Does it matter? They have no more games anyway. Now that I think about it would delay Swinton’s return to Sydney Uni and the Shute Shield. As a Uni fan I would like to see him back sooner rather than later.

      • Brisneyland Local

        There has to be some punishment, It was a red card everyday of the week.

        • Custardtaht

          Except Saturday!

        • Brisneyland Local

          Apparently

      • IIPA

        They do if the Force can pull an upset. Leckie must’ve been up the back of the Leichardt Hill getting a pie when that happened.

    • Geoffro

      All (dis)interested parties gather at Daceyville,watch the tapes(mostly of Shute Shield highlights)…..and have another beer (tooheys of course). Nothing to see here folks

      • Brisneyland Local

        Pure gold.

      • Nutta

        As long as they keep their pants on and socially distance…

        • Geoffro

          Puhleeese.Now that Amy is on the panel some traditonal agenda items have been amended.

    • KwAussie Rugby Lover

      Be interesting to see. Technically it’s still Super Rugby so you’d think SANZAAR would be involved but I bet nothing was put in place so nothing will happen. I guess it depends if the Rebels lay a complaint somewhere

      • Brisneyland Local

        Yep. even the commenary team were highlighting it. They have to do something.

        • Missing Link

          Given it’s SANZAAR, I expect a South African review committee to be appointed and hand out a 15 week suspension without reviewing any footage.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Yeah that is about their par decision.

        • Nutta

          If a whistle blows in SA and no one in NSW hears it, did it ever even happen?

  • No comment on anything except we need at least 7 teams in SuperAU.
    Sundays are shit boring.

Rugby
@NathW1997

Loved rugby since the day I could remember, got the nickname Footy to show that, I watch Matt Dunning's dropkick every night before going to bed

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