Wednesday’s Rugby News

Tim Hoar July 24, 2013 11

No GravatarWednesday’s top rugby news has Richie burying the hatchet, Mortlock’s advice, Benji looking likely for the Blues and the French fullback attacked.


McCaw buries Cooper hatchet

mccaw bookEvery time they meet, whether in the Test arena or Super Rugby, there is plenty of hype built up around the animosity between Richie McCaw and Quade Cooper. Most of it emanates from the incident in 2011 where Cooper kneed the All Blacks captain in the head, as well as some choice words that McCaw had for the Reds number 10 in his autobiography. According to McCaw, however, the situation is ‘something that’s been blown out of proportion’ before emphasising his respect for Cooper on the field.

McCaw also spoke in depth about the Crusaders’ finals victory over the Reds. He believes that no matter how good your scrum half and flyhalf are, if a team gets dominated at the breakdown like the Reds did, there is little they will be able to do to turn the game around.

Stirling advice for beating Bulls

Stirling Mortlock FarewellThere is no doubt the Brumbies face a tough battle to beat the Bulls this weekend. According to Stirling Mortlock, the last man to lead the Brumbies to a win in Pretoria, there are a few keys to getting the victory. Namely, adjusting to both the altitude of 1350m and the imposing atmosphere created by the Bulls’ faithful as well as getting a little luck.

On the issue of altitude, Mortlock pointed out that the Bulls players will be going through the same thing, saying ‘the reality is at some stage the body will be burning, and in talking to a lot of the South African guys, they have that burn as well.’ How the players handle that period that is the key, according to Mortlock. The Brumbies will also have some wisdom on the field, with Clyde Rathbone and George Smith both part of the team that defeated the Bulls in Pretoria in 2006.

Benji looking blue

Benji_Marshall kickingWhile nothing is confirmed, it appears Benji Marshall’s commitment to New Zealand will beat his desire to continue living in Sydney. Speaking yesterday, Marshall’s manager Martin Tauber stated ‘Benji’s made it quite clear that he would never do anything but wear the Silver Fern.’ As such, the Auckland Blues, who met with Marshall over the weekend, are the clear favourites to land him. They have not yet made a formal offer. Marshall’s desire to play for the All Blacks would also suggest he will not be heading to France or Japan, though that has not been ruled out.

The ARU is believed to be keen for Marshall to play for the Melbourne Rebels, who could use some star power. However the governing body is also holding firm on the assertion that no top-up will be available to players not eligible to represent Australia.

France fullback has jaw broken

france rugby ballDetails are still emerging, but there is a pretty concerning story coming out of France where Brice Dulin, fullback for France and Castres Olympique, is facing up to two months out of the game after having his jaw broken. Dulin has played five Tests for the French after debuting against Argentina in 2012 and also played in two matches on the recent tour to New Zealand.

Initial reports suggest that the player was attacked at a festival in France where Dulin and some of his teammates were displaying the French Championship trophy. Castres Olympique won the title last month after defeating Toulon in the final. Full details have not yet emerged, it is pretty horrifying that a player could be attacked while on promotional duties.

Discussion

  • booooo

    I think Richie was as disgusted at the display by ‘fans’ at the game on the weekend, Israel’s tweet showed great humility and respect. Pity many of the public can’t gain that same level of maturity.

    • Westy

      what did the tweet say?

      • YesMan93

        “Great win by the boys but please peeps give @QuadeCooper a break!! Disappointed by the boos!!! #moveon”

    • http://about.me/cbiggins Christian Biggins

      Was horrendous. A terrible display by the halfwits booing at every opportunity.

  • Goldman

    Hopefully we wont be playing Qc against the Abs please EM.. It’s a bit of a shame, had so much potential 2 years ago, just hasn’t really progressed much imo. Time to look at other options we’ve got 2 years to prepare a replacement.

    • Jimmy

      I think both Toomua and Foley have the potential to be good fly halves. Maybe not all time greats but good enough to take to a WC. We cannot persist with Cooper – just too many flaws in his game and an inability to rise for the big occasion.

  • HK Red

    I’m appalled by the behaviour of NZ fans booing kickers. It’s been going on for years now and has no place in the game. Time for NZ rugby supporters to grow up.
    While we’re at it, this falsehood that Quade instigated the “feud” between himself and Richie is ridiculous. It started in HK when Richie first kicked Quade after he’d legitimately cleaned out McCaw from a ruck. Then later in the game, Quade standing behind a defensive Australian ruck, Richie runs through and elbows QC in the face. What Quade did kneeing McCaw in the head was a low act and it was stupid. But, Richie started it, so stop your bleeting.

    • Roland Chan

      Brumbies crowd booed Smit on Sunday like theirs lives depended on it. The only fans that don’t boo are European. Munster fans particularly.

    • ben

      You imply aus crowds dont boo. Rewind the lions series especially the last kick 2nd test. There hasnt been a test where aus crowds havent booed the kicker. I bet you commented on them too. Maybe not.

      • HK Red

        Ben, please outline exactly where I upheld the Australian crowds as a beacon of light. Did I do that? Did I say that Australian crowds don’t boo? hmmm, no I didn’t. You can cherry-pick individual moments all you like, but regardless, NZ crowds are ruder, more boisterous, and more disrespectful of opposition kickers, than Australian crowds.
        Oh, and there’s a reason why I didn’t comment on the Aus crowds booing during the Lions series. Can you guess why that is? That’s right! Because I don’t exactly remember the Lions supporters being quiet for opposition kickers. Do you? No you don’t you numpty, because they weren’t.

    • ben

      …..and whos bleating! Ritchies clearly got the better of the feud. His team beats quades more often than not.

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