Rugby

Tuesday’s Rugby News

Tuesday’s Rugby News

Tuesday’s rugby news has Horwill fined, Moore in captaincy talks, an ARU surplus and the European Player of the Year announced.


Horwill hit with fine

_KMY8617Reds captain James Horwill has been fined $2,500 for questioning the refereeing after his side’s Super Rugby loss to the Melbourne Rebels last week. “Once again we were robbed by a stupid refereeing decision,” Horwill said just after the final siren.

The Reds had just suffered a three-point loss after the video match official brought play back and handed a penalty to the Rebels for a suspected eye gouge from Queensland forward Ed O’Donoghue that was later found to be baseless. Despite these circumstances, Horwill was given the substantial fine and ordered to apologise to SANZAR and the match officials.  

Moore backed for captaincy

Brumbies vs Waratahs 2ndHalf _0412_2014_03_15_10747Former Test coach John Connolly believes that Brumbies hooker Stephen Moore “ticks all the boxes” that Ewen McKenzie should be looking for in choosing his next Wallabies captain. Connolly described Moore’s manner as “John Eales-ish” and said his experience  made him the perfect candidate to lead Australia into the upcoming World Cup.

In fact, Connoly said that Moore was in strong contention to captain the Australian side for the 2007 World Cup, with Stirling Mortlock slightly favoured over the ACT hooker and Matt Giteau. NSW Waratahs star Michael Hooper and Queensland duo Will Genia and James Horwill  are also in the running.

ARU records 2013 profit

australian_moneyThe lucrative British and Irish Lions tour has propelled the ARU to a much-needed $19.5 million surplus for 2013. The Lions tour generated an incremental surplus of $35 million, which relieves some of the pressure felt by Australian rugby after recording copmbined losses of $20 million over the previous two years.

ARU chairman Michael Hawker has said that the code must build a more sustainable business model for future growth. “Our efforts to reduce Australian Rugby’s cost base and unlock new sources of revenue will continue in 2014 as we work to develop a business model that is less reliant on one-off windfalls,” Hawker said.  

Armitage wins European MVP

EuropeToulon No 8 Steffon Armitage has won the European Player of the Year award after being instrumental in the team’s Heineken Cup title win over Saracens 23-6. “This is a great honour, and with us winning another Heineken (European) Cup as well, everything has come together at the right time,” Armitage said.

The form of the English-born Armitage has prompted a possible relaxation of the RFU’s ban on picking overseas players. While Stuart Lancaster re-affirmed his support for the exclusion policy, he hinted that Armitage may take part in the 2015 World Cup, saying,  “there are still exceptional circumstances that allow us to select an overseas player, so who’s to say that this time next year if he’s still playing as well, that the door might not be open?”  

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