Monday’s rugby news has Toomua injured again, the female 7s side heading to Rio, Naiyaravoro staying for a Test jersey only and an English star banned from the RWC.
Toomua injury marrs ACT win
The Brumbies are hopeful this weekend’s bye is all the rest Matt Toomua needs to get back on the field after re-injuring his ankle in Johannesburg. The Wallabies playmaker will likely have scans on the sidelines when the Brumbies return to Canberra early this week.
“It’s definitely not as bad as my right ankle – hopefully I won’t miss any games,” Toomua said. “It’s frustrating, but it’s the other ankle so I know I didn’t come back too early.” Toomua’s availability will be crucial over the final three rounds against the Bulls, Western Force and Crusaders, with the Waratahs able to leap the Brumbies on the table if they beat the Crusaders on Saturday night.
Aussie Women set for Rio
The Australian women’s sevens team have basically booked their place in the Rio Olympics after winning the cup final at Twickenham Stadium in London on Saturday. Australia are now a comfortable second on the world series tour with one round left, leaving them well within striking distance of the top-four overall finish required to gain automatic qualification to the Rio Olympics.
Australia’s women snatched victory over Canada 20-17, with three late tries overcoming a 12 point deficit with five minutes remaining. The men’s sevens team, meanwhile, have missed out on automatic qualification, with England taking fourth place in the Sevens series.
Test selection will keep Naiyaravoro
Waratahs winger Taqele Naiyaravoro has asserted that a Wallabies jersey would see him back out of a deal with Scottish club Edinburgh. Naiyaravoro signed a three-year deal with Edinburgh earlier this year with a view to qualifying for Scotland at the end of that period.
But performances in Super Rugby this year have given the 120kg winger some hope of Test selection, although Wallabies coach Michael Cheika firmly emphasised that he would not make any selections just to secure eligibility. “Playing for Australia is a special thing, and if we are going to belittle it by doing things like that, then I shouldn’t be doing the coaching job,” Cheika said.
Tuilagi out of RWC
Manu Tuilagi will not be included in hosts England’s Rugby World Cup squad after being fined for assaulting a police officer in a late-night brawl, coach Stuart Lancaster has said. Leicester Tigers centre Tuilagi pleaded guilty at Leicester Magistrates Court and was ordered to pay $A12,000 in fines, compensation, charges and costs.
“As role models and ambassadors for the game, the highest standards of behaviour are expected from every England player both on and off the field,” Lancaster said. Tuilagi, 23, has been sidelined since October with a groin injury but was hopeful of being fit enough to be considered for selection in England’s squad for the World Cup, which starts in September.