Happy Thursday Comrades. Our rugby focus will now move to the Northern Hemisphere this week for the international game and for those of us who enjoy the club game finals start this weekend.
As always this is a fan run site and any contribution is always welcome feel free to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org be it with an article an idea or an opinion piece. Always remember this is a broad church so feel free to express your opinion as long as you are not some sweaty cellar based troll your opinion and diversity is welcome.
Are the Wallaby’s Refereed Differently – Opinion
Last week I posed the question are the Wallabies refereed differently. A few thought I was having a go at the Referee and looked at the question through a prism of the previous weeks game.
I would like thank the Ref on the weekend for illustrating my point. Once again, a decision is made that we have never seen before and will never see again and if anyone has I am willing to be corrected.
My point is to Quote NFL coach Mike Tomlin is that we cannot take comfort from the external problems we face but have to figure out ways to manage the situation better. Blaming others is giving you comfort that the outcome is outside your control.
The Ref did say to the Australians to move more quickly into lineouts and may have decided he needed to make a point. My question would be why and how did our captain respond to the first request. Did he seek greater clarity and why did the Ref decide that afterwards he could make the decision against the Australians at that point. We need to be better.
Chocolate Wheel of Justice
Clearly no one wanted him to miss the RWC.
ZANDER FAGERSON will be available to play in the opening match of Scotland’s World Cup campaign against South Africa on 10th September if he completes a ‘Coaching Intervention Programme’.
The tight-head prop was suspended for three matches after being set-off for a dangerous clear-out during Scotland’s win over France at Murrayfield last Saturday, which initially takes in the team’s two remaining World Cup warm-up matches against France in St Etienne this Saturday and Georgia at Murrayfield a fortnight later (26th August) as well as the South Africa game.
However, the panel’s judgement concluded that: “The Player will take part in the Coaching Intervention Programme to substitute the final match of his/her sanction for a coaching intervention aimed at modifying specific techniques and technical issues that contributed to the foul play.”
Scotland prop, Zander Fagerson, appeared before an independent judicial committee via video link having received a red card for an act of foul play contrary to Law 9.20 (a) (Dangerous play in a ruck or maul. “A player must not charge into a ruck or maul. Charging includes any contact made without binding onto another player in the ruck or maul.”) in the Summer Nations Series match between Scotland and France on Saturday 5th August 2023.
The independent Judicial Committee consisting of Rhian Williams – Chair (Wales), Jamie Corsi (Wales) and Juan Pablo Spirandelli (Argentina) heard the case, considering all the available evidence and submissions from the player and his representatives.
In considering submissions made on behalf of the player, the Committee agreed to amend the offence to Law 9.20 (b) (Dangerous play in a ruck or maul. A player must not make contact with an opponent above the line of the shoulders.)
The player admitted that he had committed an act of foul play under the revised Law and that it was worthy of a red card. After reviewing all the evidence, the Committee applied World Rugby’s mandatory minimum mid-range entry point for foul play resulting in contact with the head. This resulted in a starting point of a four week suspension.
Having acknowledged mitigating factors including the player’s admission at the earliest opportunity, his remorse which was conveyed to the French player as well as shown during the hearing, and accepting that there were no aggravating factors to consider, the Committee reduced the four week entry point by one week, resulting in a sanction of three weeks (to be served as the following given the player’s upcoming schedule):
Summer Nations Series:
12 August 2023 France v Scotland
26 August 2023 Scotland v Georgia
Rugby World Cup
10 September Scotland v South Africa
The Player will take part in the Coaching Intervention Programme to substitute the final match of his/her sanction for a coaching intervention aimed at modifying specific techniques and technical issues that contributed to the foul play.
Brisbane Club Rugby Finals
Brisbane Club Rugby Finals week one this weekend.
Saturday Game 1 V 2
Bond V Wests
Bond are coming in as Minor Premiers and have only lost two games all year. Wests are the current premiers and finished second on the ladder. Bond play and expansive side to side game.
Unsigned player to watch you have not heard of Rhian Stowers (Bond) electric winger who can score from anywhere. Lots of Rebels squad players in the Wests team but the best unsigned is Cooper Whiteside 10 or fullback who has an excellent boot.
My pick is Bond as they have lots of points in them.
Easts V Brothers. This 3 v 4 game is a battle between the a very well coached team in Easts and the team with probably the most individual talent in Brothers. Easts play a very structured kicking game with a strong set piece. Brother rely more on the capacity of the individual with an all-professional backline. They would probably have finished mid table until the reds came back to bring them him with a wet sail.
Unsigned player to watch Eli Pilz (Easts) hard to figure out why he has not gotten a run at the next level a halfback with an excellent good kick and pass. Tom Maloney is an unheralded loosehead who just gets through his work.
This game is being played at Easts as part of the Semi finals being played away from Ballymore so I expect a big crowd and a close game. Brothers beat Easts by 7 last week in the final round at Brothers and I expect this week will see the reverse at the most vocal ground in Brisbane.
Force sign Harry Hoopert, Reds respond with Ravai, Du Lutiis signing
The Western Force have strengthened their front-row depth with the signing of Australia A prop Harry Hoopert.
Hoopert makes the move west from the Reds after playing 48 games for the club over the past six years.
The 24-year-old’s strong form in 2022 was rewarded with a call-up for the Australia A program, only to damage his ACL in Japan.
Having missed the entirety of the 2023 Super Rugby season, Hoopert was eager to make up for lost time.
“Crono coached me in the U20 a few years ago; even then, he was incredibly detailed and thorough, which is what I am looking forward to gaining from him,” Hoopert said in a statement.
“I’ve been keeping a close eye on the Force for the last year, and the recent signings especially have caught my attention and made me want to make a move over.
“I have been at the Reds for six years, so the move will be a welcomed change. The opportunity to come to a younger squad and help out, having input where I can, is exciting.
“The coaches have built a strong group and I definitely believe that the Force can build on last season.”
In line with Hoopert’s departure, the Reds confirmed the re-signing of Peni Ravai and the signing of Junior Wallabies prop Massimo de Lutiis.
Ravai, who was just named in Fiji’s Rugby World Cup squad, signs on a one-year deal.
As for De Lutiis, the Gold Coast product returns home after a stint in the Brumbies Academy.
“Peni is great for our squad on-and-off the field,” Reds coach Les Kiss said.
“To have someone with his Test match experience is hugely important for our young props and their development as professionals. He’ll only add to his knowledge at the World Cup and we wish him all the best for the tournament.
“We’re glad Massimo has chosen to join us back in his home state. He’s a player with great promise and will bring plenty to our group of props at Ballymore moving forward.