Johann Muller signs contract extension

first_imgLATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS TAGS: Ulster ‘It was a successful season for us and we are taking steps in the right direction, but the players and the coaching staff need to keep working hard for next season. Teams are judged on silverware and we have nothing to show for our season. We are determined to win something for the trophy cabinet at Ravenhill next season and to do that we must keep improving.‘I’ve been in the fantastic position of having a leadership role within the squad. I hope I can keep trying to help the younger players and they keep improving. The more games they play and the more experience they get will be of benefit to themselves and Ulster. If, in a couple of years I leave Ulster and have managed to help a few players develop, I will be delighted with that.’ Ulster Rugby today announced that second row forward Johann Muller has signed a one year contract extension.The South African arrived in Belfast last summer from the Natal Sharks on a two year deal and his contract extension means that he will play his rugby for Ulster until June 2013.Muller captained the Ulster team on numerous occasions this season while Rory Best was absent through injury or international duty. He has clocked up an impressive 2027 minutes of the pitch for Ulster during the 2010/11 season, starting all but four of Ulster’s competitive games this season, and he has become a firm favourite with the fans at Ravenhill.Winner of the Heineken Ulster Rugby Personality of the Season at last week’s gala awards ceremony, he was lauded for the contribution he has made to the club both on and off the pitch. He has been credited with inspiring much of the change at Ulster this season, with the team reaching the Heineken Cup quarter final stages for the first time since 1999, as well as the Magners League play offs. On signing the extension Johann said:‘I’m delighted to extend my contract with Ulster Rugby by another year. I’ve really enjoyed my first season with Ulster, not only in terms of rugby but also personally. The people of Northern Ireland have been great to me and my family so staying an extra year wasn’t a decision we had to think about for long.last_img read more

Wales: Five things we learned v France

first_img Super Sam: Warburton was the top ball-carrier against France and returned to his best after a couple of quiet gamesThe Wales we knowAfter a week of harsh words from coaches, supporters and media alike, Wales comprehensively beat France 27-6. It was a welcome return to basic platforms and senior players executing their core skill sets to their maximum ability. The Welsh front row was very effective, with both Adam Jones and Gethin Jenkins dispelling the knee-jerk calls for their retirement. The Welsh back-row were particularly dominant with Dan Lydiate back to his ‘Flymo’ best – dictating the tackle-line and leading the tackle stats for both teams.Whilst Sam Warburton played one of the best games of his career. Rhys Webb made a palpable difference to Wales’ ruck-speed and the resulting fast, clean ball allowed Jamie Roberts and George North to regularly plough over the gainline – Roberts beat more defenders than any other player on the field. North, particularly in the first half, made countless damaging forays over the gainline. North’s name was mentioned so many times in the first half that the commentary sounded like a SatNav. Wales are back in the game – and not just metaphorically. England’s victory against Ireland means that Wales are back in THE game. It’s all to play for.Luke-ing good: Wales’ lineout dominateTight five. TremendousThe Welsh management spoke to every single player this week regarding their performance against Ireland. Publicly, in Wales, it was the front five that received the most criticism. And if the criticism must be damning when things go wrong so must the praise when things go right. The Welsh tight five were superb against France. Despite a very slippery surface which resulted in more slips and slides than an event at Sochi 2014 the Welsh front row dominated their French counterparts.Adam Jones’ scrummaging was powerful and both Richard Hibbard and Gethin Jenkins put in the sort of performance that fuses the role of a front row forward with that of a back rower. Luke Charteris carried Wales out of some very tricky situations and executed a series of wrap tackles that, with his long arms, make it look like the ball carrier has been set upon by a boa constrictor. And let’s not forget Jake Ball’s input which, given the late withdrawal of Alun-Wyn Jones, was particularly pleasing.Clever lineoutThe return of Luke Charteris was always going to benefit the Welsh lineout and it did. The Welsh lineout ran at a comfortable 87.5% – with Wales winning 14 and losing just two. But Charteris’s impact on the Welsh lineout may not be as obvious as you may expect. Whilst Charteris had four clean takes in the game, he was largely used as a decoy. His enormous, obvious, presence in the middle of the lineout created some clear space at the tail, and aided by the accurate throwing of Richard Hibbard, allowed Wales to dominate the back of the set-piece. It created a steady stream of fast, ‘tail’ ball and made Sam Warburton the games’ top lineout jumper. Clever work.Speed merchant: Webb provided quick ballRhys Webb. Fast ballWhilst the quality of Welsh lineout ball at the tail and the work of the pack obviously contributed to the speed of the Welsh ball against France; Rhys Webb also made a significant contribution. His ability to get the ball away from the base of the ruck against France was crisp and allowed Rhys Priestland a valuable extra split second on the ball.It’s no coincidence that Rhys Webb is able to move the ball at greater speed – it’s a matter of bio-mechanics. Webb stands at 5ft 8inches tall – Mike Phillips at 6ft 3iches tall. This means that Webb is able to bend down to the ball and back up again faster than a taller scrum-half can. It’s also no coincidence that the majority of the world’s finest passing scrum-halves have all been under 5ft 10 inches tall – Joost van der Westhuizen being a rare exception. Webb made a valuable contribution against France and deserves another shot against England.Sam Warburton. A captain’s performanceSam Warburton has featured in many a negative headline recently. Many regarding central contracts. Many critical. Many unnecessary. That won’t be the case this week. Warburton was tremendous against France. But it wasn’t just his core skill set which excelled on Friday. Yes, of course his defence and ‘jackaling’ was first class – his body position in some of the rucks was so low that it was lizard-like. But Warburton also excelled in some other, sometimes, less obvious aspects of his game. LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Warburton was the pack’s top ball-carrier – even out-carrying the ever impressive Taulupe Faletau. Warburton was the game’s top lineout forward and he demonstrated some slick, instinctive passes which avoided contact and opened up space. And of course he scored a try with a 464lb leg drive – he had Nicolas Mas and Dimitri Szarzewski on his back as he crawled over the line. Bravo, Warbuton. CARDIFF, WALES – FEBRUARY 21: Rhys Webb of Wales kicks clear from the scrum during the RBS Six Nations match between Wales and France at the Millennium Stadium on February 21, 2014 in Cardiff, Wales. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images) last_img read more

Rugby now smells good!

first_imgAn exclusive interview with The Rugby Fragrance So in a nutshell, you are giving back to the game?We love rugby and saw an opportunity to grow a loyal fan base of people who also love this tremendous sport. We initially went for a small boutique batch operation, but people love me and it looks like I’ll be around for a while now.With Christmas rapidly approaching – do you think you’ll be under a few trees?Heavy nights out you mean?Christmas trees…Oh, sorry. Without doubt – the ladies love me, the gift market for husbands, boyfriends, dads and so on has really got our product in front of die-hard fans. I can’t thank them enough; it’s nice to feel the love.I think we’ll leave it there. Thanks for your time.Always a pleasure – would you like a quick smell? Advertising featureLet’s face it, rugby smells of the endurance and pain required to compete at the highest level – but now a bunch of fans, with the involvement of some key players, have set out to change this perception. We sit down with a bottle of aftershave, The Rugby Fragrance, to see how it feels about the challenge…The Rugby Fragrance – good to finally meet you.Always a pleasure.So what’s this all about?Scoring some man points.Could you elaborate a little further?Our game is played by real men and this is often overlooked in the world of customer profiling and mass media. Seeing adverts of weedy guys spraying a blast of some rubbish and becoming undeniably attractive to the opposite sex seems a little far fetched to me. A man is meant to smell musky, woodsy, fresh – not of Belgian vanilla chocolate or whatever ‘scents’ they are putting out right now.We see you are also affiliated with some legendary players and charities…Both Ronan O’Gara and Serge Betsen have become great supporters of our work. They believe in what we are doing and are giving something back to the game for the fans that have to sometimes settle for scents often made for gentlemen who maybe play the sport with the round ball. We also have a charitable angle, with Wooden Spoon in the UK and Ireland benefiting from our sales. The Rugby Fragrance, priced at £19.99, is available in leading UK high street stores or with free shipping from therugbyfragrance.com. For a chance to win a bottle, click here.For the latest Rugby World subscription offers, click here.center_img Good scent: The Rugby Fragrance have a gift set available for Christmas LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALSlast_img read more

Rugby World reveals 50 Most Influential People in Rugby

first_imgAgustin PichotEddie JonesSteve HansenBill BeaumontPaul GozeDan CarterFikile MbalulaMark McCaffertyDavid PocockNigel MelvilleFor the full list of 50, see Rugby World’s September issue – on sale tomorrow.For the latest Rugby World subscription offers, click here. TAGS: Highlight LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS In Rugby World’s September issue, we have compiled the ultimate list of rugby’s movers and shakers – and we have named Agustin Pichot as the most influential person in rugby.The former Argentina scrum-half and newly-appointed World Rugby vice-chairman tops our list of the 50 most influential people in the sport.Pichot has already helped Argentina secure entry to the Rugby Championship and Super Rugby competitions, as well as play a part in restoring the sport to the Olympics after a 92-year hiatus. He’s wasted no time putting rugby’s residency rules high on the agenda and is set to be a driving force behind shaping a global season.As renowned rugby journalist Stephen Jones writes in our September issue: “It is possible to tower over Gus Pichot and still feel in awe of him. He is now without doubt the best administrator produced by a non-foundation union of all time.”Powerful pair: Bill Beaumont and Agustin Pichot are both in Rugby World’s top four. Photo: InphoEngland’s 2016 renaissance is reflected by Eddie Jones securing second spot on the list. The straight-talking Australian has led England to a Six Nations Grand Slam, a first series whitewash of Australia on home soil and an unbeaten nine-game run to push them to No 2 in the world rankings.World Cup-winning coach Steve Hansen, who has just extended his contract with the All Blacks to 2019, is close behind, while new World Rugby chairman Bill Beaumont is in fourth place. The former England captain is a respected statesman in the world game and exudes rugby’s values.The Top 14’s growing financial influence as the richest league in the world makes it a honey pot for the game’s superstars, so its chief Paul Goze is highly placed. The top-ranked player in the list is Dan Carter, the world’s top point-scorer and a poster boy for the sport for a decade.Lovely bubbly: Dan Carter is the highest ranked player on the list. Photo: InphoPolitics is never far from the surface in sport and South African Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula has exerted his power by dictating Springbok selection policy through the country’s transformation laws, even banning the governing body from bidding for the 2023 Rugby World Cup for not complying quickly enough.center_img Closer to home, Mark McCafferty, Premiership Rugby’s chief executive, and No 1 on the list in 2014, is eighth. Fresh from a £200m+ deal with the RFU and emboldened by BT Sport’s lucrative contract, McCafferty has put the English league into an enviable financial position and driven it to new frontiers.The only other player to join Carter in the top 10 is David Pocock, the Wallaby loose forward. For many, Pocock was the player of the World Cup and his principles on human rights matters set him as a man apart in a team game.Wallaby wonder: Australia’s David Pocock in action during last year’s World Cup. Photo: InphoReturning to England after a decade in the US is former scrum-half Nigel Melville, who has a wide-ranging role for the game’s biggest and richest union, the RFU.Rugby World editor Owain Jones said compiling the list was an exhaustive process. “We canvassed the opinions of the game’s most informed journalists from all corners of the globe before putting together a panel to debate the merits of those put forward. That panel included RPA chairman Christian Day and former England fly-half Rob Andrew. We are in no doubt that our list, which runs extensively over 36 pages, is essential reading for any rugby fan interested in how our game is shaped.”Here’s the top ten of Rugby World’s Most Influential People in Rugby… In the latest issue of Rugby World, we rank rugby’s powerbrokerslast_img read more

Sergio Parisse closing in on 100 Test losses

first_imgLATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Sergio Parisse closing in on 100 Test lossesIf Italy captain Sergio Parisse loses his next Test, against Scotland on Saturday, he will have lost 100 international matches.The 34-year-old No 8 already holds the record for Test match losses. He has lost three times as many matches as he has played for the Azzurri, with 33 wins to his name, alongside the 99 losses (and a draw against Wales). No matter the result this weekend, Italy will take the Wooden Spoon for this year’s Six Nations. However a win would not only freeze Parisse on 99 losses, but also avoid a tournament whitewash.Related: What is the Wooden Spoon?Although Parisse is already considered one of the all-time great No 8, the Stade Francais back-rower has always been up against it. His record may also suffer due to the sheer volume of international matches he has played in, with 133 games to his name. He is now fifth on the list of most-capped players ever.Happy memory: Parisse after defeating Scotland in Edinburgh in 2015His first ever Tests outing was against the All Blacks – a team he has faced seven times, losing every time. He has never overcome England in his 14 attempts, or Australia in any of the ten times he has met them. No stranger to kicking: Parisse can put boot to ballCuriously, Parisse has never scored a try against Scotland. He has scored 15 Test tries in his career and he has scored against all of the other Six Nations sides. We cannot forget that scored a drop-goal against them, knocking the kick over in the 21st minute of the 26-6 loss in Edinburgh, in 2009. Perhaps he is overdue a try against them…Italy’s final outing of the 2018 Six Nations takes place against Scotland at the Stadio Olimpico, with kick-off at 12:30pm on Saturday 17 March. Holding nothing back: Proud Parisse talks to his defence against France He has defeated South Africa, leading his team to that stunning 20-18 victory in Florence, in 2016. And who can forget the 22-15 win over Ireland, in Rome, back in 2013 (even if Parisse was yellow carded in that encounter)? He has also famously defeated France twice, and Wales once.Related: The Six Nations tableFiji, Samoa, Tonga, USA, Russia, Japan, Argentina, Portugal, Romania, Georgia, Canada and Spain have all fallen to him.So what about Scotland? Well the good news is that Parisse has faced the Scots 17 times and won five times – and only three of those were at home, showing that fear factor is not an issue.last_img read more

Five things we learnt about rugby in August 2018

first_img All Blacks go old school with fly-halvesWhen we consider the All Blacks and their current domination of the game, we tend to focus on how they’re moving the game forward. But, with their current fly-half choices, New Zealand have taken a wonderful step back to amateur rugby.In the 1970s and 1980s, fast outside-halves were vital. Defensive systems, and back-row play in particular, were nowhere near as refined as they are today. Space in the ten channel meant that outside-halves could make breaks and needed the pace to finish them.That all changed when the game went pro. The ten channel became the most claustrophobic space on the field and the era of the kicking/passing ten began.The same can’t be said of the current All Blacks. Beauden Barrett, Damian McKenzie and Richie Mo’unga are a step back to the old school. And by step, I mean a step off both feet, probably another two steps, followed by a 40m sprint under the posts.Strength in depth: Damian McKenzie and Richie Mo’unga talk to the media (Getty Images)The current New Zealand outside-halves have the skill-set of a ten combined with the speed of a Test wing. This means that all their potential outside-halves can become one-man counter-attacks.Related: Beauden Barrett analysedWhen other Test teams win a turnover, they need to make a minimum of one pass, but often three, from their ten to reach a player who can finish over 40 metres. The All Blacks don’t.Barrett’s four tries against the Wallabies were astounding and have once again redefined what we expect from a Test-level outside-half. The Kiwis have moved the game forward, by going backwards – and it’s mesmerising to watch.Sam Warburton goes out like a rock starSam Warburton’s retirement at 29 years old has given him the ultimate rock-star exit. For Warburton, there will be no sitting on the bench having been overtaken by a younger, better model. There will be no unfortunate camera angle that reveals a growing bald spot. There will be no reference to the vintage Warburton, when the fizz has disappeared and the praise has soured.Warburton went out as the Test-match beast that he was. Half-man, half-landmine, such was his explosiveness in the tackle and jackal.Farewell: Sam Warburton gives the crowd a thumbs up after last year’s Lions third Test (Getty Images)Many have questioned his ability to carry the ball and whether it should exclude him from being considered a true great. But they’re all wrong. Warburton played and mastered the system that Warren Gatland’s rugby required.With predictable straight carries from the inside backs, Warburton had to specialise in being a fetcher. When he played at six, with the burden of the tackle and jackal slightly removed, his carrying and distribution was the equal of many.With a World Cup win highly unlikely, there was nothing left for him to realistically gain in his career, that wouldn’t be offset by losses to his health. A spectacular playing career is behind him, and an equally rewarding media career awaits. He deserves it all.Australia and South Africa struggling with the basicsAugust saw gushing praise for the All Blacks – and rightly so. But while Australia and South Africa have improved from last season, their desire to match the All Blacks in line breaks and offloads isn’t where the problem lies. From New Zealand’s men at No 10 to Eddie Jones’s turnover stats, Paul Williams reflects on all the happenings in rugby this August So far in the Rugby Championship, the Springboks have beaten 61 defenders and made 35 clean breaks. The Wallabies have made 30 clean breaks and beaten 44 defenders. Those numbers indicate that attacking rugby is being attempted and executed. But those numbers also belie the huge failings in the basics for both teams.Grounded: South Africa struggled in their away fixture against Argentina (Getty Images)During the first Bledisloe Cup Test, the Wallabies had a lineout completion of 38% – five from 13. Away in Argentina, the Springboks had a defensive completion of 64% – just 58 from 90.The problem for both teams isn’t that the All Blacks wouldn’t deliver such low numbers; neither would Ireland, England, Wales, Scotland nor France. These are meltdowns in the game’s fundamentals that you simply can’t do in Test rugby. Both are making the basics look complicated and this needs to change.Streaming has brought pre-season to lifeFor many supporters, pre-season is the most exciting part of rugby. A first glimpse of new signings, the reveal of a new kit and a chance to get truly involved with the team before the more casual fans hop on the bus.However, pre-season rugby has historically been like watching something with your retinas detached. You can tell that something is happening, but you can’t see it properly.Most pre-season games are played many miles from the home club and are often part of a small tour, where travel limitations and ticketing practicalities make the games hard to watch. The streaming of pre-season games has changed that – and the impact could be radical.Action: Saracens live streamed their pre-season game against Ospreys (Getty Images)Football embraced the pre-season game more than 20 years ago, and many tours are televised or offered as a live stream. It is potentially a new revenue stream for rugby, where live online feeds could generate much needed cash.For example, 2,000 people watching online at £5 per person is an easy £10,000 and whilst that figure may seem small, it’s means a great deal for many clubs.Rugby has made huge strides in marketing, particularly social media, over the past 24 months, and streaming can be the next step forward. The streaming of some training sessions will hopefully be the next move.Eddie Jones has a problem with turnoversEngland’s problem at openside has lasted more than a decade. And with just 12 months until the World Cup, it remains unsolved. But whilst the ability to win turnovers on the deck remains a problem, the concession of turnovers in the back-room staff remains Eddie Jones’s biggest issue.Man in the middle: Eddie Jones at an England training session (Getty Images)August saw head of sports science Dean Benton follow Paul Gustard, Paul Frawley and Gary Lester in leaving the England set-up. Jones’s retention of staff makes Donald Trump look like employer of the year.It is a remarkable state for a Tier One nation to find itself in so near to the global showpiece. Rugby’s long timelines don’t do England’s coaching turnover justice. Twelve months seems like an eternity in any other business, but it simply isn’t in rugby. This is the equivalent of a normal business having the biggest pitch in its history, then losing four of the pitch team the day before the big meeting. LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALScenter_img Fast show: Beauden Barrett breaks to score a try against Australia (Getty Images) Something isn’t right in the England camp and it seems that many of England’s on-field problems are off-field issues.Follow Rugby World on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.last_img read more

European Champions Cup Quarter-finals Preview

first_imgLATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS The trophy: This year’s Heineken Champions Cup final will be played at St James’ Park (Inpho) European Champions Cup Quarter-finals PreviewIt’s quarter-finals weekend in European rugby and we asked Ed Jackson, the former Bath, Wasps and Dragons back-row, to make his predictions as to who will reach the semi-finals of the Heineken Champions Cup. Will you agree with his choices?EDINBURGH v MUNSTERSaturday 30 March, 12.45pm, Live on BT Sport, Channel 4 & Virgin MediaThe pick of the bunch for me. The Irish national side might be operating slightly off the pace at the moment but it would be naïve to expect the same from Munster.They made a slow start to the group stages but since round two they have looked imperious. They’re the only group winners to find themselves away from home, but there’s no doubt the passionate Munster faithful will be doing their best to make BT Murrayfield feel like Thomond Park.Wrapped up: Munster’s Niall Scannell is caught by the Edinburgh defence (Getty Images)By this stage of the competition, when European giants Munster head across the Irish Sea in search of their next victim, it is usually to England or France. Rarely do they venture to their Celtic brothers in the North but there’s something happening in the Scottish capital that’s making everyone sit up and take notice.The appointment of Richard Cockerill as DoR is proving to be an inspired one. The former Leicester Tiger is renowned for his uncompromising approach, both as a player and coach, but his tactical astuteness is often overlooked. Both of these facets have undoubtedly rubbed off on his Edinburgh side, who are now not only scoring some scintillating tries but have the ability to strangle teams into submission.Sprinkle that with some stardust like Viliame Mata, Duhan van der Merwe, Darcy Graham and the returning John Barclay, and all of a sudden the men from Auld Reekie are a formidable opponent for any invading army.It’s going to be a close one but, hold on to your kilts, I think Edinburgh are the real deal this year.Prediction: Edinburgh by four.SARACENS v GLASGOWSaturday 30 March, 3.15pm, Live on BT SportThis will be the third time these two meet this season and there are a raft of players getting very familiar with each other for both club and country. There’s certainly no love lost between them and if previous fixtures are anything to go by you can expect plenty of niggle.Soft hands: Billy Vunipola passes the ball as Saracens take on Glasgow (Getty Images)Saracens took the bragging rights in the previous two pool encounters but it was by no means straightforward. Glasgow pose a potent attacking threat and their loose and unconventional style has the ability to make a mockery of most.However, that same style can cause them issues in defence, Saracens crossing the whitewash five times last time they met. Still, the 38-19 scoreline flattered Saracens in what was largely a very competitive game.You can expect a much closer affair this time out, but the two-times European champions want their title back and it’s difficult to see the Scots being the ones to deny them that.Expect tempers to be tested and plenty of points on the board. The May 2019 issue of Rugby World – out now – features an exclusive interview with Edinburgh’s Viliame Mata.Follow Rugby World on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.center_img Prediction: Saracens by 15.Defending champs: Leinster celebrate their European victory last year (Getty Images)LEINSTER v ULSTERSaturday 30 March, 5.45pm, Live on BT SportAn all-Irish affair will see the Ulstermen travel down the M1 to confront European giants Leinster. Ulster have looked inspired in periods this year but, as head coach Dan McFarland pointed out this week, it’s going to take more than just periods of inspiration to topple the defending champions.Injuries aren’t helping Ulster either with Louis Ludik, Iain Henderson, Darren Cave and Will Addison all doubts and Luke Marshall still sidelined – but they might have a trick up their sleeve. Back-row Jordi Murphy moved to Belfast from Dublin last summer having been an integral part of Leinster’s double success in 2018 and is bound to be able to offer his new team an insight into the inner workings of the big blue beast.Insider knowledge: Jordi Murphy wins a lineout for Ulster (Getty Images)How much difference that will make remains to be seen but it’s certainly on the radar of Leinster coach Leo Cullen, who said recently that he is trying to remember what Murphy will know and adjust accordingly.It’s not a done deal as Ulster are yet to put in a full 80-minute performance this year and still find themselves in a European quarter-final. The question is: if they can finally produce a complete display, will it be enough? I suspect not.Prediction: Leinster by 12.RACING 92 v TOULOUSESunday 31 March, 3.15pm, Live on BT SportFrench giants collide in Paris and I imagine we’re going to see fireworks. The resurgence of Toulouse has warmed the cockles of any red-blooded rugby fan, as has the manor in which they have been playing.Foot race: Juan Imhoff makes a break for Racing against Toulouse (Getty Images)Toulouse top the French domestic competition and with the likes of Maxime Medard, Thomas Ramos, Jerome Kaino and Antoine Dupont in fine form, you wouldn’t right them off from coming out on top in Europe as well.However, last year’s finalists might have something to say about that. In Scotland fly-half Finn Russell, Racing have one of the most talented operators on the planet and if he shows anywhere near the form that he did in the second half against England a couple of weeks ago then they should be in business.Two teams with a passion for attacking rugby and the players to produce it, this should be a cracker but my heart says that the team from La Ville Rose will march on.Prediction: Toulouse by two. Former Bath, Wasps and Dragons back-row Ed Jackson runs the rule over this weekend’s four European Cup tieslast_img read more

The 100 best players in the world right now!

first_img Beauden Barrett narrowly misses out on top spot… The 100 Best Players In The World: 90-81 Expand The 100 Best Players In The World: 2 Beauden Barrett Collapse Find out who makes the cut in the new issue of Rugby World Expand The 100 Best Rugby Players in the WorldEighteen months have passed since Rugby World last compiled the ultimate list of the 100 best players in the world right now. England fly-half Owen Farrell topped the chart back then, but who is the best player in the world right now?It’s no easy task to put together a list like this, so as well as seeking the opinions of our writers from across the globe, we brought together a panel to debate who should make the cut.Fiji’s gold medal-winning sevens coach Ben Ryan, Wasps Ladies director of rugby Giselle Mather, Welsh broadcaster Ross Harries and Kiwi writer Liam Napier joined us for the selection meeting after this year’s European finals – and more than 200 names were thrown into the mix!DOWNLOAD RUGBY WORLD’S DIGITAL EDITIONCutting those down to 100 meant making tough decisions. Players’ recent form has been given precedence over previous achievements – Johnny Sexton is lower down the pecking order as it hasn’t quite clicked for him in so far 2019 – and we haven’t included those who’ve struggled with injury over the past year, the likes of Taulupe Faletau and David Pocock, as there is no form to judge them on.Comparing players across competitions, positions and genders is difficult, so we looked at players’ influence in their teams as well as their skill-sets. Expand Expand The 100 Best Players In The World: 3 Mako Vunipola Expand The 100 Best Players In The World: 70-61 The 100 Best Players In The World: 80-71 Be sure to let us know what you think of the list using the hashtag #RW100 on Twitter and Instagram (@rugbyworldmag), getting in touch via Facebook (Rugby World Magazine) or by emailing [email protected] Rugby World on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. The 100 Best Players In The World: 2 Beauden Barrett The 100 Best Players In The World: 1 Alun Wyn Jones The 100 Best Players In The World: 100-91 The 100 Best Players In The World: 70-61 The 100 Best Players In The World: 10-4 Our bronze medallist in the list of the… Our next section of the 100 best players… Our next section of the 100 best players… Our next section of the 100 best players… The 100 Best Players In The World: 60-51 Follow the links below to find out who makes the cut… The 100 Best Players In The World: 50-41 Expand Expand The 100 Best Players In The World: 100-91center_img New Zealand have the highest representation of players on the list, with 21, followed by England (17), South Africa (12) and Wales (10). There are also nine Irish players and five Scots, with 15 countries represented in all.The age of players spans from 21 to 37, while the most common positions are back three (19%) and back row (18%).We know it will spark opinions and we don’t expect you to agree with all our choices, which is why we want to know YOUR views. Is the right person at No 1? Who is too high or too low? Who have we excluded that you think should be in? We kick off our list of the 100… The 100 Best Players In The World: 40-31 The 100 Best Players In The World: 30-21 The 100 Best Players In The World: 20-11 Take a look at who has made it… Expand Welsh talisman Alun Wyn Jones takes the top… The 100 Best Players In The World: 10-4 The 100 Best Players In The World: 50-41 Our next section of the 100 best players… The 100 Best Players In The World: 60-51 Our next section of the 100 best players… Our next section of the 100 best players… Expand The 100 Best Players In The World: 3 Mako Vunipola The 100 Best Players In The World: 20-11 Expand LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS The 100 Best Players In The World: 90-81 The 100 Best Players In The World: 40-31 Our next section of the 100 best players… Our next section of the 100 best players… The 100 Best Players In The World: 1 Alun Wyn Jones Expand Expand The 100 Best Players In The World: 30-21 The 100 Best Players In The World: 80-71last_img read more

Manu Tuilagi learning salsa dancing to aid recovery

first_img“I went for a 7.5km hike with him around Macclesfield Forest last Friday and he was on great form,” said Sanderson. “We went up to the highest point of Macc Forest. He was climbing over boulders and it’s really undulating terrain, that’s why we took him. He’s got another one this Friday that’s 10km.“It’s about seven to eight weeks for him, maybe. Definitely he’ll play again this season. It’s good to see him up and about. He’s a good lad so he’s adding energy to the place.”Sale currently sit fourth in the Premiership, just above Northampton Saints, and just below Harlequins. Manu Tuilagi on the charge for Sale Sharks (Getty Images) Manu Tuilagi learning salsa dancing to aid recoveryEngland and Sale Sharks centre Manu Tuilagi has taken up salsa dancing to aid his recovery from an Achilles tendon tear. Tuilagi – who sustained the injury against Northampton in September – is expected back on the field in eight weeks, just in time for Sale’s closing regular season matches and possibly a Premiership play-off run-in if they progress. He could well work his way back into British & Irish Lions contention too. “Manu’s walking and learning salsa,” said Sale DoR Alex Sanderson, reports PA’s Duncan Bech. “If you’re hiking and doing salsa you can’t be far off playing rugby. LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALScenter_img The Sale and England centre has also been hiking Can’t get to the shops? You can download the digital edition of Rugby World straight to your tablet or subscribe to the print edition to get the magazine delivered to your door.Follow Rugby World on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. “The salsa is for his ankle and a wife of one of the players is taking [coronavirus] tests because she’s able to teach him salsa. I haven’t watched him salsa, but he’s good with his feet for a big guy.last_img read more

Nominees for bishop slate announced in Western Michigan

first_img Rector Hopkinsville, KY Youth Minister Lorton, VA Posted Mar 20, 2013 This Summer’s Anti-Racism Training Online Course (Diocese of New Jersey) June 18-July 16 Assistant/Associate Rector Morristown, NJ Episcopal Church releases new prayer book translations into Spanish and French, solicits feedback Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs An Evening with Presiding Bishop Curry and Iconographer Kelly Latimore Episcopal Migration Ministries via Zoom June 23 @ 6 p.m. ET Rector Washington, DC In-person Retreat: Thanksgiving Trinity Retreat Center (West Cornwall, CT) Nov. 24-28 The Church Pension Fund Invests $20 Million in Impact Investment Fund Designed to Preserve Workforce Housing Communities Nationwide Church Pension Group Join the Episcopal Diocese of Texas in Celebrating the Pauli Murray Feast Online Worship Service June 27 Course Director Jerusalem, Israel Canon for Family Ministry Jackson, MS Tags Rector Knoxville, TN Curate Diocese of Nebraska Rector Belleville, IL Rector Tampa, FL Rector Collierville, TN Press Release Service [Diocese of Western Michigan — Press Release] The Search Team has nominated three priests to stand for election as the 9th Bishop of Western Michigan. The nominees for bishop are: Rector/Priest in Charge (PT) Lisbon, ME TryTank Experimental Lab and York St. John University of England Launch Survey to Study the Impact of Covid-19 on the Episcopal Church TryTank Experimental Lab Rector Smithfield, NC Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Hires Reverend Kevin W. VanHook, II as Executive Director Episcopal Charities of the Diocese of New York Submit a Press Release Director of Administration & Finance Atlanta, GA Rector Shreveport, LA Missioner for Disaster Resilience Sacramento, CA Associate Rector Columbus, GA Assistant/Associate Rector Washington, DC Seminary of the Southwest announces appointment of two new full time faculty members Seminary of the Southwest Priest-in-Charge Lebanon, OH Remember Holy Land Christians on Jerusalem Sunday, June 20 American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem Cathedral Dean Boise, ID Director of Music Morristown, NJ Family Ministry Coordinator Baton Rouge, LA Ya no son extranjeros: Un diálogo acerca de inmigración Una conversación de Zoom June 22 @ 7 p.m. ET An Evening with Aliya Cycon Playing the Oud Lancaster, PA (and streaming online) July 3 @ 7 p.m. ET Priest Associate or Director of Adult Ministries Greenville, SC Rector Martinsville, VA Rector (FT or PT) Indian River, MI Featured Jobs & Calls Virtual Celebration of the Jerusalem Princess Basma Center Zoom Conversation June 19 @ 12 p.m. ET The Rev. Jennifer Adams, Rector, Grace Episcopal Church, Holland, Michigan (Diocese of Western Michigan)The Rev. Whayne Hougland, Jr., Rector, St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Salisbury, North Carolina (Diocese of North Carolina)The Rev. Canon Angela Shepherd, Canon for Mission, Diocese of MarylandA letter from each nominee, as well as a summary of education and experience, is included in the slate announcement booklet. The booklet also includes a report of the Search Team describing the search process.To download the booklet as a PDF file, please click here: Nominee Profiles & Petition Process.The booklet is also available for viewing in magazine format here.Further information will be provided about all nominees, including any nominees by petition, in a ballot announcement scheduled for publication on April 22, 2013.The Transition Team will host a series of informational events with nominees from May 3rd-5th at three locations in the diocese; these events will include nominees by petition.The electing convention will be held on May 18, 2013, at Grace Episcopal Church, Grand Rapids.Following the election of the Ninth Bishop, the required consents will be sought from other dioceses of the Episcopal Church.Petition ProcessPetition Process information is included in the slate announcement booklet on pp. 14-17.The Rev. Canon Robert Schiesler, President of the Standing Committee, announces that the Committee is accepting Nominations by Petition from March 20 through April 15, 2013.Due to the time required to complete the required background checks, the Standing Committee asks that any petition candidates indicate their intention by immediately emailing the Committee President, The Rev. Canon Robert Schiesler, with name, address & contact phone. [Canon Schiesler’s email address is published on p. 14 of the slate announcement booklet.]The form for nominations by petition can be downloaded separately here: Petition Form. Submit an Event Listing Bishop Elections AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to PrintFriendlyPrintFriendlyShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThis New Berrigan Book With Episcopal Roots Cascade Books Episcopal Migration Ministries’ Virtual Prayer Vigil for World Refugee Day Facebook Live Prayer Vigil June 20 @ 7 p.m. ET Associate Priest for Pastoral Care New York, NY Rector Bath, NC Curate (Associate & Priest-in-Charge) Traverse City, MI Assistant/Associate Priest Scottsdale, AZ Rector Albany, NY Associate Rector for Family Ministries Anchorage, AK Rector and Chaplain Eugene, OR Bishop Diocesan Springfield, IL Virtual Episcopal Latino Ministry Competency Course Online Course Aug. 9-13 Rector Pittsburgh, PA Inaugural Diocesan Feast Day Celebrating Juneteenth San Francisco, CA (and livestream) June 19 @ 2 p.m. PT Nominees for bishop slate announced in Western Michigan Featured Events The Church Investment Group Commends the Taskforce on the Theology of Money on its report, The Theology of Money and Investing as Doing Theology Church Investment Group Submit a Job Listinglast_img read more