Category: World of Rugby

News from around the game, ie outwith Scotland.

Weekend of Rugby

Al’s moving house this weekend, and I’m off on a course on Saturday so it seems likely that we’ll miss the bumper crop of rugby stuff on the TV this weekend, mostly on Saturday. However here’s a list, so you don’t have to miss a thing.

The Glasgow – Edinburgh Magners League derby takes place tonight for readers in the Central Belt I urge you to go along, the last one sounded like a cracker and will hopefully be a great advert for Scottish rugby. It would be great if they get the 5,000 support they are hoping for. If you’ve got Setanta, yes you can watch it there too. I’ll be listening on the radio. Ugh. Tough one to call, but I reckon Glasgow might have the edge. Heart goes with Edinburgh though, ‘mon HUGOOOOO.

UPDATE: Glasgow win 23-14, mostly due to Dan Parks from the sound of things. He doesn’t make it easy, does he?

The world famous Melrose Sevens takes place on Saturday, with a number of guest sides including Leicester Tigers, Ulster, Roma and a Chinese side that will hopefully not be ring-fenced with blue tracksuits. The Scottish Thistles are fielding a pretty strong looking side as well, featuring a number of pro-team up and comers, who should also be in with a shout. Coverage on BBC2 Scotland in the afternoon.

UPDATE: Well done to the Thistles for winning at the end of what looked like a great day. Melrose’s defeat of last year’s champions the Shimlas was a great match as well, it’s just a pity they ran out of legs in the niggly match against Leicester.

On Sky on Saturday you can have Gloucester vs Saracens, which may or may not have any Scottish interest depending on their current view of the Mossy situation. There will more thank likely be some Super 14 action too at some ungodly hour of the morning.

Also on Saturday, the EDF final (BBC2 England) Ospreys vs Leicester. No Nikki Walker, but can Shane Williams and Justin Marshall stop Andy Goode and Skynet? Hopefully it’ll be one for the Magner’s League (and the future of mankind).

UPDATE: Big Jason scored a try in Sales victory over Bristol tonight (Friday) to help them move into 3rd spot. Gloucester coasted to victory over Saracens, although Gordon Ross came on for the losers and looked quite sharp. Rory Lawson and Strokosch showed up well, with Mossy mostly confined to the bench. Well done to the Ospreys too for making it two finals defeats for Leicester in the one day! Mankind lives another day… as for Scottish pro rugby, well that’s another matter…

O’Sullivan Quits Ireland

Not really Scottish news this, but of interest nonetheless. Despite having around 3 and a half years left on his contract, Eddie O’Sullivan stepped down as coach of Ireland yesterday, pre-empting the possibility that he might have been fired. It’ll be interesting to see if indeed he took the opposite tack to former England football manager Steve Maclaren and forewent any possible contract buyout by the IRFU, but at the moment it certainly looks like he did the gentlemanly thing.

Interestingly the BBC’s current short list of coaches states:

“Declan Kidney is among those tipped to take over, but Mike Ruddock, Pat Howard, Wayne Smith, Jake White and Alan Gaffney are also in the frame.”

Whether any of these would be interested in the Scotland vacancy (should it arise) would be debatable (Kidney would be unlikely, and may be the most likely successor to O’Sullivan), but certainly the likes of Pat Howard and Alan Gaffney would be interesting. Not another Aussie, I hear you say…

Cipriani’s chance turns to a Pumpkin…

Breaking news today that Danny Cipriani, the new Wunderkind of English rugby, has been dropped from the English squad to play Scotland this coming Saturday. According to reports Cipriani was seen sneaking out of a nightclub after midnight and Brian Ashton has taken the hump with Cipriani’s late night escapade and has dumped him out the squad. Cipriani will now line up for Wasps at the weekend.

Reports that Cipriani was seen canoodling with Jodie Marsh on the back of a giant pumpkin pulled by a team of mice in waiters jackets have yet to be confirmed…

For the benefit of the scottishrugbyblog.co.uk lawyers that last comment was for humorous purposes!

Over and out…
Al

The Laziness of the Long-Distance Runner

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I know I was supposed to post something meaningful this week, but I haven’t got round to it yet. Hopefully I’ll have something over the weekend.

In the meantime here’s the rugby you might like to catch on TV over the weekend:

First up, something called the Super 14 kicked off today, and while we don’t usually hold with playing rugby in pyjamas, it’s usually quite fun. Tonight gives us a chance to see Al’s “favourite” 10 after Gregor Townsend, Freddie Michalak, in action for the his new team the Sharks against the Western Force, who will no doubt be fielding several players with Scottish names. New Zealand fans may well agree that Michalak will fit right in to the “lateral” passing of the Super 14… (Sky Sports Xtra from 5pm).

Tonight sees a return to action for the Scottish pro-teams, and you can catch them both on the TV if you’re not attending in person. Edinburgh are fielding a strong team including Ally Hogg, Gav Kerr and Hugooooo and featuring flanker Roland Reid returning to his old position on the wing against visiting Munster and new signing Doug Howlett. Hopefully SRBlog favourite Nick DeLuca will get a run off the bench to try and rediscover his club form ahead of team selection for Ireland next weekend (Setanta Sports 2, from 7.20pm). Glasgow travel to Llanelli to play an under-performing Scarlets team and try and transfer some of their European form to Magner’s league position (BBC2 Wales, Channel 991 on Sky, access through the Red Button because of snooker).

There’s even some Frenchies throwing it about on Eurosport 2 tonight too, if you have a lot of free time/videotapes…

Don’t forget, avid rugby hunters amongst you in the UK with Sky can press the following “magic” combination to view all the rugby showing, well, everywhere: Press “Tv Guide” > “Yellow” > “5” > “Blue”.