Author Archive

ARU encourages Argentina in Four Nations bid

Monday September 14, 2009 by  

Australian Rugby Union has encouraged Argentina to continue the hard work required to meet the SANZAR conditions that would allow the Pumas entry to a Four Nations Championship from 2012.

SANZAR has today issued a conditional invitation for the South Americans to join the Wallabies, All Blacks and Springboks in an expanded Southern Hemisphere Test series the year after the next Rugby World Cup.

It is a move that would increase the Southern Hemisphere competition from nine games (where each team currently plays the other two on three occasions) to 12 games where each country would play the other three twice (home and away).

SANZAR envisages that the Four Nations would be played over an eight to nine week period with each country playing six matches. Australia, New Zealand and South Africa already play six games each in the Tri Nations. Read more

Vikings claim title in classic grand final

Saturday September 12, 2009 by  

The Tuggeranong Vikings have scored a converted try after full time to defeat the Queanbeyan Whites 30-28 in a sensational John I Dent Cup (ACT) grand final at Viking Park this afternoon.

The match featured a thrilling final four minutes where the lead changed hands four times and a combined 17 points scored with Tuggeranong claiming the championship on the back of a Tim Curran try and Christian Lealiifano conversion.

Despite scoring three tries to the Whites’ four, the Vikings were kept in the match through the boot of Lealiifano, who sparked a number of attacking raids, set up the Vikings first try and was awarded the Dr Bob Smethills Trophy for man of the match.

Trailing 21-20 at the 76-minute mark, Lealiifano coolly slotted a 30-metre drop goal to give his side a two-point advantage before Whites outside centre Josh Goodall stepped through to score and give his side a 27-23 lead 30 seconds later. Read more

Queensland Rugby to recruit new Head Coach

Friday September 11, 2009 by  

Queensland Rugby will recruit a new Head Coach for the Queensland Reds after deciding to terminate Phil Mooney’s contract, effective immediately, QRU Chairman Rod McCall announced today.

Mr McCall said a meeting of the QRU Board in Brisbane this morning had decided to accept a recommendation from a professional rugby consultative group to terminate Mooney’s contract one season short of his three year term, in order to recruit a whole new coaching team to take the Reds forward.

Backs Coach Damon Emtage resigned at the end of August and Forwards Coach Mark Bell left earlier in the year. Mooney’s contract was due to expire after the 2010 Super 14 season but Mr McCall said he and the other members of the consultative group had reached the conclusion that Mooney’s contract should not be renewed. Read more

Reds to host seven in 2010 Super 14

Monday September 7, 2009 by  

Season Memberships are now on sale for the Queensland Reds’ seven Super 14 home matches in 2010, which includes the first Super Rugby match at Ballymore since 2005.

Six of the Reds’ seven home games – including the opening round blockbuster against arch rivals the NSW Waratahs on Saturday, February 13 – will be played at Suncorp Stadium, recently voted the best rugby venue in the southern hemisphere.

The seventh – the week three clash against New Zealand’s Blues on Saturday, February 27 – will now become a sentimental “back to Ballymore” night due to a scheduling conflict at Suncorp Stadium. It’s expected to be a full house.

The 2010 draw for the Reds, confirmed today by the competition organiser SANZAR, includes two Friday night home games and a Sunday afternoon home match – all at Suncorp. Read more

Force host Brumbies to kick off Super 14

Monday September 7, 2009 by  

The Western Force will host the Brumbies at ME Bank Stadium in round one of the 2010 Super 14 in the first of the club’s six home games for the season.

The traditionally fiery Australian derby will have added spice next year, with 2009 Wallabies squad members Matt Giteau and Josh Valentine returning to Perth to face their former teammates while ex-Brumbies Nic Henderson and Mark Bartholomeusz could face up against their old side for the first time.

It will also mark the first time a Super Rugby game has been held at ME Bank Stadium, which has previously hosted pre-season trials and Western Force Gold games. The 2009 warm-up against the Crusaders was played in front of a sell-out crowd at the venue.

The WA side will also host marquee home fixtures against the reigning champion Bulls, the 2009 runners-up Chiefs and perennial contenders and fan favourites, the Crusaders. Read more

Brumbies to host seven in Canberra in 2010

Monday September 7, 2009 by  

The Brumbies will play seven home matches at Canberra Stadium in 2010 following the release of the Super 14 draw today.

The ACT-based side will host 2009 Super 14 finalists, the Chiefs, and semi finalists, the Hurricanes, as well as an always anticipated Australian derby against the Queensland Reds on Saturday, May 1.

The Brumbies will open the home season against the Lions on Friday, March 5, with the Sharks, Cheetahs and Highlanders also making their way to the national capital during the season.

The two-time Super Rugby champions will kick off their season in Perth when Brumbies recruits Matt Giteau and Josh Valentine take on their former province, the Western Force, on February 12. Read more

O’Connor commits to the Western Force

Friday September 4, 2009 by  

The Western Force has secured one of the game’s hottest young prospects, James O’Connor, until the end of 2011.

The 19-year-old has enjoyed a meteoric rise in Australian Rugby in just over 16 months, beginning when he became the youngest ever Super 14 debutante in April 2008 and culminating in a hat-trick of tries in his run on debut for the Wallabies in Canberra earlier this year.

The Nudgee College product etched his name in the history books by becoming the second youngest player to ever pull on a Wallabies jersey during the 2008 Spring Tour.

His star continued to rise with a stunning first full year of Super Rugby with the Western Force, scoring five tries in ten matches this season, appearing at both inside centre and fullback. Read more

Back to Ballymore game on Reds agenda

Wednesday September 2, 2009 by  

The Queensland Reds will return to Ballymore for one of their seven Super 14 rugby home matches in 2010.

Season memberships for a red hot seven game package – including the one-off Ballymore match against New Zealand’s Blues set down for February 27 – go on general sale on September 7, with existing members able to renew their seats from today at a preferential price.

The 2010 packages again include ‘kids free’ family membership options.

Under the provisional Super 14 draw, the remaining six matches at Suncorp Stadium include a season opening blockbuster against the NSW Waratahs on February 13, followed a week later by a Friday night match against New Zealand’s Crusaders. Read more

Wallabies make changes for Brisbane

Tuesday September 1, 2009 by  

Queensland Reds halfback Will Genia and Western Force openside flanker David Pocock have been handed maiden Tri Nations starting roles, among the key changes to the Wallabies side named today for Saturday night’s Bundaberg Rum Rugby Series Test against South Africa in Brisbane.

The pair are among five personnel alterations to the starting combination from last weekend’s match against the same opponent in Perth, with the others seeing Berrick Barnes return from injury in the place of Ryan Cross, Drew Mitchell slot in for Peter Hynes on the wing, while Tatafu Polota-Nau takes over from Stephen Moore in the front row.

After being forced to miss the last Test due to the effects of a head knock suffered in the Bledisloe Cup Test in Sydney two weeks ago, Barnes has proved his fitness and been reinstated.

He returns at inside centre, with Adam Ashley-Cooper shifting out one backline slot from last week to take over from Cross at centre. Read more

Victoria has not been “Spurned”

Friday August 28, 2009 by  

Australian Rugby Union wishes to clarify its position on the Melbourne bid for the 15th Super Rugby licence following a newspaper report this morning headlined “ARU spurns Victoria in Super deal”.

To avoid further media confusion the ARU Board has endorsed, and continues to support, Melbourne as its preferred location for the additional Super Rugby team when SANZAR expands the competition in 2011.

Therefore, ARU rejects any notion that Victoria has been spurned. To the contrary, ARU has embraced Melbourne.

Any suggestion ARU had turned its back on Melbourne could only have been leveled if Western Sydney or Gold Coast had been nominated as the preferred Australian location. Read more