Category Archives: Rugby Union
It’s taken ten years but the wait is now over. Australia has clinched the rugby tri-nations with a thrilling 25-20 win over the world cup favourites, New Zealand.
Newly promoted skipper James Horwill in his first test as Wallabies captain joined his long-time idol in holding the trophy above his head.
The win has thrown next months rugby world cup wide open.
The match looked over in the first half after the Australian’s setup a 20-3 lead. However, the All Blacks fought back to level the scores 20 minutes out from full-time. Beale got over the line to give the Wallabies a five-point lead but the Cooper conversion went astray.
The aggression and hunger was shown early by the Australian’s with sacked captain Rocky Elsom leading from the front. Robbie Deans was very pleased with how his former skipper competed and was confident that the big man wouldn’t drop his head.
The match was completely different to that played in New Zealand between the two giants of world rugby.
With the Australian win, there are now even more questions with the lead up to next month when 20 sides go head to head with the aim to hold ‘Bill” aloft.
New Zealand, going into tonight’s game, was extremely short favourites with bookmakers, but can they let go of the chocker-tag?
Are The Wallabies now the side to beat? They have been improving game by game and slowly working their way into form need to win the world cup.
Then there is the South African’s. Has time caught up with the Springboks and are they too old to win back to back?
At 15-1 England, the 2011 six nations champion, look to have the easiest draw out of the favoured countries with Argentina and Scotland their toughest opponents, Georgia, and Romania. England at present look more like they will need a further twelve months to be a cup winning team but in saying that, they are a proven performer who will put up a good showing.
France and Ireland round off the others that could cause an up at 34-1 and 126-1 prior to the Wallabies win.
Follow me on Twitter @camcallsthegame.
Defense wins games, wins championships.
That is what it came down to in Port Elizabeth overnight. The Springboks returned to the field with an improved effort after their beating against the Wallabies to overpower the All-Blacks 18-5 in a tightly fought game.
On Saturday in Durban, the Springboks let slip a 6-0 half-time lead to the Wallabies and subsequently went down to the Australian’s 14-9.
The game wasn’t one fans would’ve recorded for the ages as both teams were unimpressive; the only team that would be smiling is the All-Blacks who are sailing nicely leading up to the RWC.
When you run into battle lacking your key weaponry, expect losses. When your focus is on another objective, you bestow your component the edge.
When the Springboks apply their war paint this Saturday at Mr Price Kings Parkin Durban, they will be bringing their full arsenal, and the target for the fourth game of the 2011 tri-nations series isAustralia.
In the opening two games against the Wallabies and All-Blacks, the South African’s were well-beaten, firstly 39-20 then 40-7 respectively. Something to note however is that even with the B or even C grade line-up, they still managed to put 20 on the scoreboard in front of 52,718 at ANZ Stadium, Sydney.
My prediction is for the home team to reverse the result of game 1 and record a comfortable win; here is why.
In their games to date, the Boks have left our 21 of their best personnel due to a mix of injuries and keeping players fresh back home with the main goal being the 2011 rugby world cup which is held later this year in New Zealand.
For Saturday night’s clash of the two powerhouses of world rugby, the hosts welcome back star winger and speed demon Bryan Habana, locks and Vice-captain Victor Matfield and Bakkies Botha, Jean de Villiers in the centre, as well as halfback Fourie du Preez.
Of the players who have crossed the white line in the two losses, there are nine left standing, or should I say retained.
The Boks skipper Jon Smit has a good deal of confidence that his charges can regain regularity and start to gain impetus with the world cup ahead. Smit told reporters on Monday that his side have that ability to surprise the detractors who undermine them.
The Wallabies will enter the arena in Durbanlooking to put behind them a 30-14 loss to the All-Blacks. Although Matt Giteau is still struggling to find a place in the side, Nathan Sharpe, Salesi Ma’Afu and Radike Samo return.
South Africawill then host New Zealandon 20 August at Nelson Mandela Bay in Port Elizabeth, and it will be the first time that a tri-nations test will be played in the city; the final game will see the Wallabies host the All-Blacks.