THERE WILL undoubtedly have been roars of delight as Newcastle Falcons clambered out of the Championship at the first time of asking, but for one man watching Falcons 31-24 victory over Bedford Blues in the play-off second leg – winning with an aggregate score of 49-33 – there would have been a hefty sigh.
Posted 18 days ago
Posted 25 days ago
“AMBUSH AT the Allianz” could be a way of describing the Aviva Premiership semi-final between Northampton Saints and Saracens. That would do a disservice to Saints, though, who maintained an impressive level of defence, breakdown abuse and thumping counter-runs in order to topple the clear favourites at their own patch.
Posted 25 days ago
STAYIN’ ALIVE by the Bee Gees was a late 70s sentiment so powerful that it generated an eponymous follow-up movie to Saturday Night Fever in which John Travolta hustles to become a Broadway star. Fast forward through a few decades and the funky lines of “Feel the city breakin’, and ev’rybody shakin’, and we’re stayin’ alive, stayin’ alive” could well describe Dublin this Saturday as several British and Irish Lions give their all to win the the RaboDirect Pro12 title.
Posted 39 days ago
IT IS awards season and whether you agree with the esteemed panels or punters’ votes, there are a few players carrying off more gongs than Daniel Day Lewis. Ulster’s Nick Williams was the talk of the Celts, with the brutish No 8 claiming the RaboDirect Pro12 players’ Player of the Season as well as the same award from the Irish Rugby Union Players’ Association, a fillip for the wrecking-ball breakaway before tonight’s Pro12 semi-final against Scarlets.
Posted 40 days ago
Posted 48 days ago
LONDON WASPS wings Christian Wade and Tom Varndell have proved to be a lethal double act this season, scoring tries for fun in the Aviva Premiership and the Amlin Challenge Cup. Now they’re offering you their top tips so you can improve on your speed and agility. Here’s their advice for in the gym…
And this video has tips for training…
Posted 56 days ago
THE RHETORIC of battles is always used in professional rugby, as if the weeks of weights and hours of Xbox were shared experiences with servicemen and women garrisoned around the globe. The battle of the breakdown, the scrap at the set piece and more commonly the fight for the title and the relegation dog-fight.
Posted 75 days ago
Posted 82 days ago
WITH LONDON Welsh losing their appeal against a five-point deduction for fielding an ineligible player, Tyson Keats, they remain five points behind nearest Aviva Premiership rivals Sale Sharks. With four games left to go, the relegation battle at the foot of the table is tighter than Scrooge McDuck wrapped in clingfilm, and with the last two matches of the season for Welsh coming against London Irish
Posted 84 days ago
AS A nimble Tom Varndell danced up the touchline against Northampton Saints at the weekend – an act of human dressage so well timed that both teams must have choreographed it a week in advance – he notched his twelfth try of the season and his 72nd try in Premiership history, only five behind leader of the pack, Mark Cueto, with 77. This is impressive outright, but it also makes the Wasps winger the most prolific try scorer in the top European leagues.