Goldie Lookin’ Chain take On Wales Rugby Squad – Video

first_imgSam Warburton and George North stand over GLC members Rhys and EggsyRhys and Eggsy from Goldie Lookin’ Chain decided to take a drive around town and accidentally ended up at the Wales training base just outside Cardiff. They stumbled upon Sam Warburton and George North and thought it would be a good idea to try their hand at the sport.No offence guys, rugby is not the sport for you.All the guys were sporting the new Wales kit, designed by Under Armour. LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Check it out…last_img read more

A ball on the beach in Italy

first_imgLATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS The competition is now in its 11th year and has been hosted in Lignano, Italy since its conception. Italian stallions: Padova Beach captain Giovanni Colleselli and his team celebrateBy Beth AshtonTHE LIGNANO International Super Beach 5s in July saw teams from around the world competing to be crowned beach champions.Summer Flair: Nsa Harrison, of Flair Bears, shows his powerEngland’s representatives the Flair Bears crashed out in the semi-finals after the team, more used to playing sevens, missed out to experienced Belguim side The Ghant Magnets. The Flair Bears had already defeated New Zealand, Croatia and Tonga in the pool stages and a Dutch team in the quarter-finals.Italian team Padova Beach then went on to win the tournament in a gripping all-Italian final between defending champions and rivals I Pessimi.center_img Teams from New Zealand, Holland, Germany, the Pacific Islands, Tonga, Ireland, Belgium, Italy, Croatia, Ireland and France joined the English side on the beach over the two days. This year was the first time that the cup was streamed live on the internet for supporters around the world.It was the first time that the English Flair Bears had diversified from sevens to beach rugby and their motivation for playing is not just limited to travelling to places like Lignano and beyond. The team is part of a campaign to raise awareness for UK Brain Tumour Research after their captain and founder Barty Hills was diagnosed with a brain tumour in 2007. Having made a full recovery, he and the team hope to taste success and raise money through rugby.last_img read more

Journey through rugby – Riki Flutey

LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Tana Umaga was a huge influence on me when I started playing for the Hurricanes. I was assigned an amateur club, Petone, which is an awesome club. Tana was also at that club and he had a big impact on me.Development was huge for me in my first season at the Hurricanes. Obviously I didn’t get a lot of game time for them, so I went back to Petone to play and it was great for me to have a club to turn out for.I’d train at Petone on Tuesdays and Thursday, otherwise I wouldn’t have got a game on the weekend. This was the level below NPC, playing in a very strong senior competition. From the amateur club you’d play NPC for Wellington Lions, then Super Rugby for the Hurricanes.You need to play the game and test your skills under pressure if you’re going to progress, rather than just spending hours and hours in the gym.I love to play rugby and this summer I put out a message on Twitter asking to join a touch rugby team, and I had some great nights in Richmond. I only like having a week off from the game in the summer. After that I want to get my hands on the ball and practise my skills.I hope I’m approachable. If someone wants a signature or a photo I remember back to when I used to do that to an All Black and how approachable my idols, Joe Stanley and Sean Fitzpatrick, were when I was a kid. I had a smile on my face for weeks after I met guys like that.My family are proud of my achievements and proud of me playing for England. They back me 100%, no matter what.DID YOU KNOW? Twenty-nine per cent of England’s 45-man preliminary World Cup squad were born overseas, Flutey being one. He qualified for England on residency in 2007, making his debut in the autumn of 2008 and becoming a Lion the following summer.This article appeared in the September 2011 issue of Rugby World Magazine.Find a newsagent that sells Rugby World in the UK Riki Flutey failed to get a place in the 2011 England World Cup squadName: Riki John FluteyPosition: Inside-centreAge: 31 (10 Feb 1980)Born: Featherstone, NZMilitary-run is how I would describe my boarding school. There was a big emphasis on respecting people around you.I couldn’t get enough of rugby in my teens. I was playing for Te Aute College first XV and if we had a home game, afterwards I’d drive over to play half a game of club rugby at Clive in Hawkes Bay, where my brother played.Challenging myself is what I liked to do, so when I came home in school holidays I’d also play for the Martinborough men’s side when I was 16.You grow up pretty quickly playing men’s rugby in New Zealand, although I was glad to have a few of the older guys around me at times.A great learning experience is how I found playing a lot of my early rugby against people bigger and older than me. I came through the New Zealand age grades on the back of playing against men, which I know is a little different to how it is now in England.I still have the VHS cassette tape at my mum’s house of the day the New Zealand Maori came to train at our school. I became a TV reporter for the day, interviewing Adrian Cashmore and filming their training session. I was looking through the lens and thinking, ‘I want to be where they are.’I was constantly trying to better myself, and goal-setting was a big part of my teen years. I was trying to drive myself on to new levels. Every kid in New Zealand who plays rugby does the same.I captained New Zealand Schools, then I received a phone call from Wellington Hurricanes coach Graham Mourie. I was still in school at the time and the call was huge for me because Jonah Lomu, Christian Cullen and Tana Umaga were three of the huge names playing at the Hurricanes at the time (1997).I reached another level with my rugby thanks to my time in the Hurricanes Academy. I also spent time at the New Zealand Academy, for which they only picked around ten guys a year.I was playing at scrum-half when New Zealand won the U19 world title, and it was only at the U21 World Cup that I moved to ten. To begin with it was me at scrum-half, Aaron Mauger at fly-half and Seilala Mapusua at 13. Aaron got injured just before the final and another mate of mine, David Gibson, was brought into the nine shirt and I moved to ten.Significant is how I’d describe that move, because when I came back I got a lot more game time at ten. They knew I’d played quite a lot of first five-eighth. Or perhaps you’d like a digital version of the magazine delivered direct to your PC, MAC or Ipad? If so click here.For Back Issues Contact John Denton Services at 01733-385-170 read more

Ireland need to get back to winning ways

first_imgDUBLIN, IRELAND – NOVEMBER 10: Patrick Lambie of South Africa compete during the International rugby match between Ireland and South Africa in the Aviva Stadium on November 10, 2012 in Dublin, Ireland. (Photo by Patrick Bolger/Getty Images) Ready for the fight: Cian Healy was pumped for the South Africa game but couldn’t stop them winningBy Claire GlancyI CAN’T begin to imagine the impact on Ireland’s pysche having come so close to beating the World Champions on their own turf, and then suffering a record defeat the following week and being nilled in the process. But I’m guessing it comes pretty close to complete demoralisation. Ireland have had to wait five long months to right the wrongs of that evening in Hamilton and all the talk in the build up to the South Africa game gave the impression they would end the losing streak, and then some.Two days before the Test, Cian Healy laid bare his mindset to his twitter followers:“‏@ProperChurch: I can already feel the excitement in my body for this game, #bloodBoiling #spineTingling relishing the physical fight! #TickTock”So after forty minutes, a nine-point lead against the Springboks is a scoreline Ireland would happily settled for before kick off. It certainly sounds like a move in the right direction, even if all the points came from Jonathon Sexton’s metronomic boot.Release: Connor Murray spreads the ballMore worryingly, Ireland never really threatened with ball in hand. South Africa looked surprisingly rusty and lacklustre for a team coming off the back of The Rugby Championship. In fact, afterwards Coach Heyneke Meyer admitted as much, “it was the worst forty minutes of rugby I’ve ever seen South Africa play.”  Frustrated at their performance, indiscipline crept into the Boks play as they gave away 11 penalties in the first-half.  JP Pietersen’s shoulder charge on Chris Henry was at best careless and epitomized their frustration. Despite the game’s slow tempo, the break couldn’t come quickly enough for South Africa. When in trouble most coaches will say concentrate on getting the basics right and things will get better.  The Boks came out a different side in the second-half and went back to their traditional strength of catch and drive. Although they didn’t score from that directly, it did give them field position and did enough to get Jamie Heaslip a yellow card and put themselves in a position where adopted Ulsterman Ruan Pienaar sniped over from a yard.Ireland’s kicking out of hand in the first half was as good as it was poor in the second.  They just couldn’t get possession of the ball in the right areas or really break the wall of green. The desire was there but the ability to create space wasn’t. The hosts struggled to mix up their game effectively and couldn’t build front foot phases or get through the SA defensive line. As a result Ireland started to play deeper and deeper.Without the hugely experienced, Paul O’Connell and Rory Best, the line-out really was the Achilles heel in the first-half. Ireland struggled to win their own balland never looked likely to disrupt the South African’s with the outstanding Eben Etzebeth. The second-half was much improved, however.Focus: Pat Lambie kicked his penaltiesThe scrum was an improvement from the summer tour and apart from a few debatable decisions from the referee, it will give the Irish confidence for the rest of the Testseason. Looking at the some of the newer faces in the Irish starting line up, Chris Henry was committed and showed the value off having an out and out open-side at the breakdown especially in the first-half. Mike McCarthy was abrasive in defence and Simon Zebo showed promise for a player only in his second test.Afterwards Ireland didn’t look for excuses. There was no blaming the injuries, the young guns, the referee or the Captain’s sin-bin that saw the scoreline rise at a point a minute. Ireland have to do what South Africa did in the second-half, work on getting the basics right and run with more directness and conviction and find their attacking creativity. A further defeat in this series could see them perilously close to dropping out of the top eight in the IRB rankings ahead of the draw for the 2015 World Cup which takes place in early December. As if Ireland needed any more motivation to end this losing streak against the red-hot Pumas, surely that will be it. LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALSlast_img read more

RBS 6 Nations: Heaslip takes armband to signal new era

first_img Master and pupil: New Ireland captain Jamie Heaslip will receive unequivocal support from Brian O’DriscollBy David BlairWHEN DECLAN Kidney named his extended 39-man training squad for the Six Nations, there’s no doubt the announcement was overshadowed by, perhaps, his boldest decision of his five-year tenure as Irish head coach.The news that Jamie Heaslip would continue to captain Ireland, having led them through the Autumn Series, raised eyebrows from Limerick to Donegal. That Brian O’Driscoll, who had been captain of the national side since 2003, was relieved of his captaincy duties in Ireland provoked a suitably divisive debate, with the decision praised and derided in equal measure, with unexpectedly strong criticism from former internationals. The latter of which is both surprising and, to my mind, inappropriate.No-one can doubt the O’Driscoll legacy. He was the pick of a golden generation in Ireland, arguably their greatest ever. But those critical of Kidney’s decision appear to suggest that their talisman has been deprived of an opportunity to decide how and when he would relinquish those duties.Guiding light: O’Driscoll has offered leadership for 10 yearsSurely, though, it’s the sole responsibility of the head coach to select his captain, especially when his own role may be decided in the coming months. You cannot take that decision away from him, and contrary to Declan Kidney’s previously conservative approach, Heaslip would appear to be the logical, forward-thinking choice.By his own admission, O’Driscoll, 34, knows the 2015 World Cup is too far down the line, this may even prove to be his last Six Nations. He’s only played in three competitive fixtures since returning from an injury suffered in November. And although he will start the opener against Wales, it would be surprising if injury doesn’t rule him out of at least one of the five championship fixtures.Declan Kidney stated that he wants his former captain to concentrate on his own game, removing the burden of leadership, in an official capacity at least. But O’Driscoll’s influence goes beyond the armband.  His captaincy style was to lead by example, inspiring those around him to play over and above their potential. It’s absurd to think that’s going to change because of this recent decision.O’Driscoll’s unrivalled experience, a record 83 of his 120 international caps have been as captain, will be an invaluable asset to Heaslip as he carries on from where he left off in the autumn. Ireland benefited from his fresh approach, and an influx of new faces end a hitherto disappointing 2012 with a resurgent victory over Argentina. Nevertheless Jamie Heaslip leads a strong squad with more than enough ammunition to mount a serious challenge.  Should it be O’Driscoll’s final swansong, I don’t believe it matters a jot that he’s not captain, he’ll be as determined as ever to [email protected]_dave While it’s tempting to be swept away by the potential significance of that November victory over an Argentine squad physically and mentally fatigued after their exploits in the inaugural Rugby Championship, there is a sense Ireland turned a corner in that last fixture of 2012. Led by Heaslip, a new generation were beginning to show glimpses of a promising future.France-bound: Jonny Sexton is in superlative formMoving forward, Declan Kidney should hope to avoid a repeat situation where O’Driscoll and Paul O’Connell were expected to carry the burden of leadership in the Irish camp.  Within this Six Nations training squad there are twelve players with 30 international caps or more, such as Rory Best and Jonny Sexton, who need to share the responsibility of leadership with Heaslip as Ireland look towards the future, sans O’Driscoll.There was a danger that this captaincy debate could undermine an otherwise positive build-up to the championship. But sense appears to have prevailed in large part to O’Driscoll himself, stressing that Heaslip would receive his full support in the coming weeks and months, regardless of any personal disappointment. You wouldn’t expect any less but it seems to have hushed the critics somewhat.Looking ahead, there’s good reason to be positive about Irish hopes. There’s a healthy balance in the squad of relative newcomers keen to kick on from the autumn supported by a core group of experienced internationals bolstered by those returning from long-term injury.Other reasons to be hopeful are the form of Jonny Sexton, Paris-bound in the summer, but an integral cog in the Irish backs division, and Cian Healy. In his current state of mind, no object, opponent or otherwise, looks immovable. Rob Kearney too will hope for a strong showing.The one glaring weakness is a desperate lack of depth at tight-head beyond the presumably bubble-wrapped Mike Ross, hardly a shocking revelation. Ireland’s ongoing problems in this position are no secret yet they look no closer to a solution despite an apparent global search for props with Irish grannies, which yielded only further embarrassment. LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS PARIS, FRANCE – MARCH 04: Jonny Sexton of Ireland kicks the ball upfield during the RBS Six Nations match between France and Ireland at Stade de France on March 4, 2012 in Paris, France. (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images) last_img read more

England Saxons: a glimpse of the future

first_img TAGS: Exeter ChiefsGloucesterNewcastle FalconsNorthampton SaintsWasps Burning ambition: Fly-half Freddie Burns hopes a good performance for the Saxons will lead to an England recallBy Charlie MorganSaturday’s Kingsholm clash between England Saxons and the catchily-named O2 Ireland Wolfhounds – selected directly from Joe Schmidt’s wider Six Nations training group – is not just a Six Nations warm-up, but a fairly mouth-watering prospect in itself. Three of Ireland’s provinces are purring in the Heineken Cup and Connacht have brought fantastic tenacity (a Saracens spanking aside). Opposite them are the hosts, whose match-day 23 is packed with hungry youngsters.Then there are individual sub-plots – the most compelling of which surrounds a certain Freddie Burns, named as vice-captain. Can the mercurial 23 year-old build on an assured performance for Gloucester in Perpignan and impress enough on his home ground to force Stuart Lancaster’s hand in terms of England’s fly-half selection? Time will tell. In any case, here are four other Saxons to keep an eye on.Calum Clark (Northampton Saints)The front is a logical place to start and Saxons skipper Clark will be leading from the trenches. Unsung but effervescent in Saints’ muscular season so far, he could be considered the form flanker in England over the past few months – certainly his ability to spoil opposition attacks through line-speed and breakdown spoiling is second to none. The dreadful discipline issues that dogged his early career seem to have gone and, still aged just 24, he has plenty to offer the national set-up. Clark’s back-row colleagues on Saturday are livewire Luke Wallace and destructive Dave Ewers – on paper, it is a perfectly complementary balance.Dazzling Daly: the Saxons’ gifted full-back Elliot Daly (left)Elliot Daly (London Wasps) HIGH WYCOMBE, ENGLAND – JANUARY 19: Daniel Rudolf Yakopo of Viadana tries to tackle Elliot Daly of London Wasps during the Amlin Challenge Cup, Round six match between London Wasps and Viadana at Adams Park on January 19, 2014 in High Wycombe, England. (Photo by Ian Walton/Getty Images) Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs)Slade must be satisfied with a place among the replacements, but the precocious Chief is talented enough to be a central figure in Test matches for the next decade. Composed and comfortable in possession, he has the intelligence to unlock midfields and looked sharp in training on Tuesday at Loughborough University. Despite a slightly willowy physique, the 20 year-old can also look after himself in defence – all the credentials of a classy inside centre are there. Rob Baxter deployed Slade at 12 and the excellent Sam Hill at 13 in Cardiff last weekend. That might have been a glimpse into the future.center_img Although getting the ball to them in phase play proved tricky last autumn, England are currently blessed with a plethora of fine full-backs. Undoubtedly part of this category, Daly is absurdly gifted across the board – deceptive pace, a burly frame, intelligent running lines, decent hands and a howitzer left boot – and can also operate at centre. He excelled in two run-outs for the Barbarians against England and the Lions last summer and could produce something special alongside Anthony Watson and Charlie Sharples in a scorching back three on Saturday. Even if the 2015 World Cup might come too soon for the 21-year-old, he’ll be a shoo-in by 2019.Scott Wilson (Newcastle Falcons)England Under-20 scrum Svengali Ian Peel – an extremely shrewd judge of tight-five prowess – has very high hopes for Melrose-born Wilson, who was the cornerstone of last summer’s Junior World Championship win. Blossoming steadily at Newcastle Falcons, the tighthead has furthered his education this season with nine replacement appearances in the Aviva Premiership as well as three starts in the Amlin Challenge Cup. Capable of destruction at the set-piece, Wilson has joined the traffic jam of props behind Dan Cole and David Wilson in Lancaster’s pecking order and could send his star higher from the bench on Saturday. LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALSlast_img read more

Lions 2017: Five players with a point to prove

first_imgWhispers that Te’o had crept onto the selectors list came days before the squad announcement, and since then, commentators have lined up to laud the Worcester Warriors midfielder. With the omission of Jamie Roberts, cross-code star Te’o is seen as a credible option to be running down the 10 channel at the end of the month, should he click with those either side of him.Highly-rated: Ben Te’o has gone from a union rookie to Lion in two yearsHow he communicates with Johnny Sexton and Jonathan Joseph will be closely scrutinized against the Barbarians, and even though he’s a quiet man off the field, he nevertheless has belief in his own abilities. His muscular 16st frame belies a shrewd rugby brain and ability to offload in heavy midfield traffic. TAGS: Highlight Upward trajectory: Ben Te’o is on a fast-track to a Test starting spot LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Had you mentioned a year ago that Ross Moriarty would be a Lions tourist, there may have been a few scoffs, but a lively tour in New Zealand with Wales, and a Six Nations campaign, where he showed scant regard for reputations – notably sending Owen Farrell backwards into the Prinicipality Stadium turf – showed Moriarty has the right mentality to thrive.Commitment: Ross Moriarty will be looking to make some explosive carriesA strong finish to the end of the season with Gloucester, where he was named young player of the year, saw him named as one of the shock inclusions. Like his father, Paul, who made such an impression at a young age at the 1987 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand, Moriarty Jnr’s devil-may-care attitude, pace and handling that befit a former full-back, could see him thrust into the Test cauldron.Tommy Seymour (Scotland)The US-born wing has been one of the most consistent wide men in the Northern Hemisphere in recent years, crossing the whitewash 17 times in his 36 appearances for Scotland. Rejected by Ulster in his early twenties, he’s turned into a consummate finisher at Glasgow, and scored tries against Wales and Italy in the recent Six Nations.Scotland connection: Seymour will look to dovetail with Stuart Hogg from deepHis strength in the air, ability to prowl the tramlines and nose for the try-line mean he’ll hope to put pressure on the likes of George North, Anthony Watson and Jack Nowell and rekindle his understanding with favourite for the No 15 berth, Stuart Hogg.Ben Te’o The 2017 Lions tour kicks off within hours after what has seemed an interminable wait. With the Provincial Barbarians expected to put up the least resistance to the Lions in the torrential rain of Whangarei, it’s up to the individuals selected to grasp the game by the cojones and show Warren Gatland they’re not there to hold tackle bags.Here are five players looking to make a big impression…Greig Laidlaw (Scotland)The common consensus, for what it’s worth, is that Scotland’s captain – a late call-up for Ben Youngs – will be watching on as Conor Murray and Rhys Webb tussle over the Lions Test shirt and it’s up to the nuggety Jedburgh old-boy to disabuse onlookers of that notion and force his way into the Test reckoning.Taking instructions: Greig Laidlaw in deep conversation with Neil JenkinsA near 10-week injury break, should give him a spring in his step, and once he shakes off any ring-rust that saw him feature fitfully at the end of Gloucester’s season, before he links up with Clermont, he will need to prove his worth, as a top-rank goal-kicker, astute tactician and shrewd leader. If he can show some zip around the base of the scrum, the aforementioned duo may feel the 58-cap No 9 breathing down their neck.Kyle Sinckler (England)There will be a packed clubhouse in Battersea Ironsides, South-West London tomorrow morning when their former charge, Kyle Sinckler, makes his Lions debut. Built like the proverbial outhouse, the former centre, is renowned for explosive bursts in the loose with Harlequins and England, but Sinckler, under the watchful eye of Graham Rowntree and Adam Jones is making headway as a scrummager.Taking his opportunity: Kyle Sinckler has nothing to lose with the LionsA surprise inclusion, who would likely have been overlooked for WP Nel, had the Edinburgh tighthead not succumbed to long-term injury, Sinckler nevertheless has plenty of fire and from all accounts is thriving on tour. Okay, there’s room to make up on Dan Cole and Tadhg Furlong, but the gap is not insurmountable.FOR THE LATEST SUBSCRIPTION OFFERS, CLICK HERERoss Moriarty (Wales) The Lions finally kick off the 2017 tour and for a few it is the chance to give coach Warren Gatland plenty to think about ahead of the Testslast_img read more

Rugby Tech: from heated trousers to gloves and drones

first_img Collapse Grippy gloves used to be all the rage with well-known players like Matt Dawson, Steve Thompson and Stirling Mortlock.Again, like the heated trousers above, there was a logical argument for their use. To give extra grip especially when the ball was greasy and wet.But they have fallen out of fashion big time, and show no sign of returning.Gloves: Matt Dawson used grippy gloves for Northampton and England (Getty Images)GPSBack in 2015, England started using GPS to analyse their training sessions with a little monitor that was placed between their shoulder blades.Sport scientist Ben Pollard was in control of the technology which “sends a signal back and forth from a satellite that picks up how fast and how far they are running, and how many accelerations and decelerations they have had.”This also had the effect of driving up work-rate because each player was so competitive that they wanted to come top of the standings when they analysed the data.This is commonplace now, with all elite sides tracking GPS data. You can also purchase the equipment and software needed for you amateur club, through various companies.Cryo-ChambersThe Welsh national side used cryotherapy before the 2011 World Cup and Warren Gatland’s side continued to use them throughout the 2012 Six Nations. Sam Warburton in particular injured his knee during a victory against England and was sent into a mobile cryotherapy unit to speed up recovery.Italy also used a cryo-therapy camber as a build up for the 2015 World Cup in England.Freezing: Leonardo Ghiraldini uses a chamber before the 2015 World Cup (Getty Images)The chambers do so by subjecting players to intensely cold temperatures, so their bodies release endorphins to allow recovery to occur faster. It also reduces inflammation and swelling. Itis believed that this type of therapy allows players to train up to three times a day. England coach Eddie Jones was verbally abused outside… LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Rugby TechThe 21st century is awash with technology and sport is no different. We take a look at some of the clever, and not so clever, innovations that have hit rugby.Heated TrousersWhen the ‘Beast From The East’ rolled in with its sub-zero temperatures, the idea of heated trousers sounded like a brilliant one. England coach Eddie Jones championed this idea for his side’s Six Nations clash with Scotland in Murrayfield in round three, but he wasn’t the first.He borrowed the idea from British Cycling who introduced heated shorts for the 2012 Olympic Games in London. The product’s creator, Lizard Heat, claims the idea is similar to a Formula One tire in that the trousers are designed to heat deep into the muscle.Bench: Heated Trousers being used by Jamie George (The Times/Getty Images)According to their website, the trousers are rechargeable, have their own power packs, and have three temperature settings. Low is 38-42 degrees, medium 40-45, and high is 45-50 degrees.There is method to the madness as evidence suggests injuries are more likely to occur as muscles cool down after warming up.However, considering England got beaten pretty convincingly against Scotland, it might be a while before the trousers are used again.Related: Six Things We Learnt In Round ThreeDronesDrones have become incredibly popular in modern times as they can offer incredibly picturesque shots as they fly high into the air. But Eddie Jones again sought to find a rugby application for them.The drones were used to film training sessions which had clear benefits. The footage would illustrate where the space on the field is, the shape of the team in defence and attack, the movement of the players, and it gives a video representation of what Jones wants to put across.Sometimes seeing is believing and drones fill that need.Birds Eye: Drones give England Rugby a better view of their training sessions (Getty Images)Grippy Gloves Whole body cryotherapy started in Japan in 1978 and despite being uncomfortable for players, it appears to work. Watch: Eddie Jones verbally abused after Calcutta Cup defeat Eddie Jones admits he got Calcutta Cup preparation wrong Eddie Jones admits he got Calcutta Cup preparation wrong Eddie Jones admits he got Calcutta Cup preparation… Expand We take a look at some of the rugby tech which has come in an out of the game. Whole Body Cryotherapy: The technique has been used in rugby to aid recovery (Getty Images) Watch: Eddie Jones verbally abused after Calcutta Cup defeat Don’t forget to follow Rugby World on Facebook and Twitter.last_img read more

Italy’s Matteo Minozzi: “We have to use this Six Nations to relaunch”

first_imgLATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Bright spark: Italy’s Matteo Minozzi poses for a portrait at the World Cup (Getty Images) Italy’s Matteo Minozzi: “We have to use this Six Nations to relaunch”The game of rugby is all about pace for Italy’s Matteo Minozzi, with his speed of thought and execution a joy to watch and a nightmare to defend against.Success came to him quickly, too, with the Wasps full-back going from scrabbling around the foothills of the Eccellenza domestic league to the shortlist for Six Nations Player of the Championship in less than a year. Minozzi had an extraordinary time of it in 2018, becoming the first Italian to score in four consecutive tournament matches as he brought a splash of vibrant colour to Conor O’Shea’s then charges.Sadly for Minozzi, there was to be an abrupt halt as well. The sickening knee injury he suffered whilst playing for Zebre against Southern Kings that August saw him miss the whole of the 2019 Six Nations, and it wasn’t until Italy’s Rugby World Cup warm-up matches that he was fit to make a return.A couple of tries in Japan – against Namibia and Canada – suggested that he was straight back in the groove, but the 23-year-old insists that although his body is now ready for top-level rugby, the healing process continues.“In the first month after the injury (he sustained extensive ligament and tendon damage and required two operations), I thought I might never get back playing, but then it becomes about getting back to the player you were before. Even now, every time I step on the pitch, I still have that fear of not being able to do the things I did previously. It’s about trying to live the same emotions I did before and recover the same feelings of confidence. It’s a step-by-step journey.”Attending any of last year’s Six Nations games in person was a step too far for Minozzi, who instead watched on television as the Azzurri finished bottom of the table for the fourth year in a row. What he had mapped out as a campaign of personal consolidation and collective progress became a story of thwarted ambition.“My aim before the injury was to prove myself again, to show to myself and the world of rugby that I could have another Six Nations along the same lines. It was very strange to then be looking in at things from the outside.“Honestly, for a while after the injury I didn’t really want to watch any rugby and I pulled the plug a bit. But this is a new year with new opportunities for me. I want to get back to the player I was as quickly as possible, and the Six Nations would be a great place for me to do that.”Italy have not won a tournament match since beating Scotland at Murrayfield back in February 2015, and their barren run in Rome extends a further two years. O’Shea was contracted through to the end of the 2020 championship but resigned his post in November, with Franco Smith, the South African and former Benetton Treviso and Cheetahs head coach, handed the national reins on an interim basis.Minozzi, who has 16 caps, insists that results under the man who first brought him into the squad in 2017 when he won the domestic league with Calvisano do not reflect the progress that has been made in improving depth and mentality. The flyer explains the foundational work.Corner stop: Matteo Minozzi scores a try against Canada at the World Cup (Getty Images)“I think the right bases are in place and that we’ll now begin to see the fruit of the work Conor has been doing for the last two or three years. We have to use this Six Nations to relaunch, to get going again and show we’re a team that wants to compete and continue to get better. A team that wants to beat any side it comes across or at least tries to.“In terms of the coaches, I’ll always be grateful to Conor for what he did for me. In the year I was out, he stayed close and always let me know he was there for me. From the moment he gave me my debut, he always believed in me and trusted me.“On a technical level, in those two years he always played me and never placed any restrictions or limits on how I play. I’m someone who always tries to play my game and enjoy myself, and Conor gave me the freedom to do that.”It was a childhood dream of Minozzi’s to run out in the English Premiership. That wish was granted last summer when Wasps brought him in to help fill the gap left by the departures of Willie le Roux and Elliot Daly.Minozzi has no qualms about being the follow-up act to this much-vaunted pair, insisting that his main motivation is to repay the faith director of rugby Dai Young showed in pushing through the deal when the Italian full-back was still mid-recovery.“When I signed, I had only just started running again,” Minozzi says. “The belief they had in me, not knowing how I would come back from that injury, meant a huge amount. It wasn’t hard to choose Wasps. They’re one of the most highly decorated clubs in England with one of the biggest histories. In the last few years there haven’t been those major wins. But it’s a young group with strong players and bit by bit we can build something that allows us to try and win again. An absolutely magical @WaspsRugby try! Matteo Minozzi finishes off a ridiculous counter-attack!Popping the ball around for fun pic.twitter.com/tr3B4agv9W— Rugby on BT Sport (@btsportrugby) January 5, 2020Minozzi may still adjusting to the differences between life in Coventry and life in Parma but the nature and quality of the rugby is exactly what the speedster expected.Delving deeper into the differences in competitions he has played in, Minozzi adds: “Compared to the Pro14, it’s more physical, the defences are more solid and aggressive, and all the teams are strong. They can all beat each other and they can all lose to each other as well. That makes it a harder league. I’ve always thought the Premiership was the toughest competition in the world and it’s living up to that.”Minozzi hails from Padua, the northern Italian city which has long been an oval-ball stronghold and where his father, Umberto, was part of the great Petrarca Padova side that won four straight Serie A titles in the 1980s with David Campese on the wing.Umberto was himself a back-three man, playing more out wide than at full-back. He also suffered a nasty knee injury, and after surgery to repair his anterior cruciate ligament proved only partially successful, he was forced to retire aged 24.Still, it was he who introduced his boy to the game and indeed coached him for a time in the Valsugana juniors, where Minozzi was initially seen playing at fly-half.“When I went to Calvisano, they put me at full-back and it’s a place where I found myself right at home and could give the best of myself,” he recalls. “As a kid, I began playing rugby just to have fun and I think it’s my strength that I’ve continued to live it like that. Having fun on the pitch has got me where I am and I’m not going to stop now.”With frustrations to make up for and energy to burn, you get the impression that Minozzi is just getting started. Tough times on the sidelines have done nothing to curb the exciting full-back’s sense of adventure, writes Mark Palmer “I know that in my role last year there were players like Daly and le Roux. I know there are big expectations of me, but it is not something that gets me down or that I shy away from. I know what kind of player I am and I know what I can do.“That’s what I wanted when coming here: being able to measure myself against the best players and seeing where I fit in. It’s a great challenge and one that I’m embracing. From the first training session, I saw that the pace and level was much higher than what I was used to.“Being out last year was probably the toughest challenge I’ve had as a player and even more so as a person. But it helped me appreciate the things I perhaps took for granted, like being able to step out onto the pitch every weekend and to train. Even the simple act of running. For three or four months I couldn’t do that. I’m more aware now of what every day means and how to make sure I get the most out of it.” This article originally appeared in the February 2020 issue of Rugby World magazine.Follow Rugby World on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.last_img read more

Leicester v Harlequins live stream: How to watch from anywhere

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Leicester: Freddie Steward; Kobus Van Wyk, Kini Murimurivalu, Matt Scott, Nemani Nadolo; George Ford, Ben Youngs; Ellis Genge, Tom Youngs (capt), Dan Cole, Harry Wells, Calum Green, Luke Wallace, Tommy Reffell, Hanro Liebenberg.Replacements: 16 Charlie Clare, 17 Ryan Bower, 18 Nephi Leatigaga, 19 Blake Enever, 20 Thom Smith, 21 Jack Van Poortvliet, 22 Zack Henry, 23 Jaco Taute.Harlequins: Aaron Morris; Joe Marchant, James Lang, Andre Esterhuizen, Nathan Earle; Brett Herron, Danny Care; Jordan Els, George Head, Simon Kerrod, Dino Lamb, Glen Young, Chris Robshaw (capt), Will Evans, Alex Dombrandt.Replacements: 16 Jack Musk, 17 Marc Thomas, 18 Wilco Louw, 19 Tevita Cavubati, 20 Tom Lawday, 21 Martin Landajo, 22 Ben Tapuai, 23 Louis Lynagh.Here’s how to find a reliable live stream of Leicester v Harlequins wherever you are… Leicester v Harlequins live stream: How to watch from anywhereA Gallagher Premiership match of little consequence is elevated sky-high by the farewell appearance of Chris Robshaw, playing his 300th and final game for Harlequins. It is one of four last-round matches kicking off at 3pm today after Covid-linked disruption.Related content: Sale match postponed, Northampton cancelledOnly the second player to reach that landmark for the club, behind full-back Mike Brown (334), Robshaw will captain Harlequins for a club-record 142nd time. The former England captain remains the only player to have won the Premiership Player of the Year award twice and led Quins to the 2012 English title, beating today’s opponents at Twickenham.“He has been one of the standout players in the league for over a decade and is universally respected and loved by his peers and opposition,” said Quins’ Head of Rugby Paul Gustard. “There are few players that have made the impact Chris has over the years, and I am delighted to read, hear and see the regard he is held in.Related content: Chris Robshaw’s Life in Pictures“It is a shame that, with our considerable injury list, with 19 senior players unavailable, those who have played so much with Robbo are unable to take the field with him once more. But I know the squad are determined to play well for him.“While Robbo leaves the team as a player, he will never leave us as a person and will forever have a home at Harlequins. He epitomises everything that is good about our sport and we wish only good things for him and Camilla on their next adventure (Major League Rugby).”Club legend: Chris Robshaw bids farewell to Quins today before joining San Diego Legion (MB Media)Quins will hope to give Robshaw a winning send-off after fluffing their lines in his final home game on Monday. More specifically, Elia Elia’s red card for a tip tackle, when Quins led 20-8, and a disintegrating scrum proved the catalyst for a Wasps fightback.There are ten changes to that Quins side for today’s game at Welford Road. Loosehead Jordan Els, a debutant against Wasps, earns his first start and George Head is alongside him at hooker following injury to Wales international Scott Baldwin.Danny Care and Brett Herron form a changed half-back partnership, with Scott Steele and the red-hot Marcus Smith both sidelined through injury, and centre Joe Marchant shifts to the wing to accommodate Scottish cap James Lang at 13.Academy product Louis Lynagh, son of Wallaby legend Michael, will make his Premiership debut if, as expected, he gets summoned from the bench.The cancellation of the Northampton-Gloucester match, with Gloucester awarded a bonus-point win, doesn’t affect Quins, who are guaranteed a sixth-place finish because of their higher wins tally. Leicester, meanwhile, are already condemned to 11th place in a season that can’t end quickly enough for them.The Tigers make 13 changes to the XV flattened by Bristol in midweek, including a club debut for Kobus Van Wyk on the wing. Harry Wells shifts into the second row alongside Calum Green in the absence of the injured Tomás Lavanini. Flanker Luke Wallace is the only forward who started at Bristol.George Ford will welcome the opportunity to go again after his trials in Toulon, the England fly-half kicking dead or down the opposition’s throats in an unusually errant display.Laying down the law: head coach Steve Borthwick wants to see Tigers eliminate the errors (Getty Images)Head coach Steve Borthwick said: “The team selected need to deliver a full 80-minute effort and step forward our level of performance. This must be the best performance of our season.“At times recently we have had lapses in concentration that have gifted opportunities to our opposition and, at this level, you cannot be giving those chances away.”It’s seven years since Quins won at Welford Road. In the reverse fixture this season, the sides drew 30-30 in the Big Game at Twickenham, the Tigers rallying from 14 points down. In stark contrast to today’s fan-free experience, the attendance was 75,626.Robshaw was a try-scorer that day and we give him the final word. “Quins is my home,” he told BT Sport this week. “It’s all I’ve known and all I’ve ever wanted to know. I’ve loved my time here and I’d do it all over again in a heartbeat.”Watch highlights of the 30-30 draw last Christmas below. LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Twickenham stage: Danny Care issues instructions at a scrum during Big Game 12 last Christmas (Getty) How to watch Leicester v Harlequins from outside your countryIf you’re abroad but still want to watch your local Premiership coverage, like Leicester v Harlequins, you can do so by using a VPN – Virtual Private Network.VPNs allow you to get around any geo-blocking by changing your IP address so you appear in a different location and can watch the same legal Premiership live stream you would at home.Our friends at TechRadar have tested hundreds of VPN and recommend ExpressVPN, which is easy to use, has strong security features and allows you to watch on several devices at once, including smart TVs and phones, iPads, tablets, PCs and Macs.Plus, ExpressVPN comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee. You can try it out for a month for free or sign up for an annual plan and get three months free.Check out ExpressVPNLeicester v Harlequins live stream: How to watch from the UKLeicester v Harlequins, which kicks off at 3pm today, will be shown live on BT Sport Extra 5 in the UK. If you don’t have a BT contract but want to watch the match, don’t worry because you can still easily watch it online.That’s because BT Sport has a contract-free monthly pass that allows you to get instant access to all four of their sport channels for just £25.That’s great value given they are showing every Premiership match played behind closed doors live and will also be covering this month’s European Champions and Challenge Cup finals. Plus, you can cancel at any time because there’s no contract.Get a BT Sport Monthly PassIf you’re from the UK but are overseas when Leicester v Harlequins takes place, you can get your normal live stream but you’ll need a VPN – see the information above.Leicester v Harlequins live stream: How to watch from EuropeIf you’re in Austria, Germany, Liechtenstein or Switzerland, you can watch Leicester v Harlequins (kick-off 4pm) through the live and on-demand streaming service DAZN.Leicester v Harlequins live stream: How to watch from the USAIf you live in the States, the official broadcaster of Premiership matches is NBC, with matches streamed on NBC Sports Gold so you can watch them anytime and anywhere.Leicester v Harlequins will kick off at 10am EST and 7am on the West Coast.The NBC Sports Gold Pass for rugby is $79.99 and includes coverage of the Gallagher Premiership, European Champions and Challenge Cups, and Guinness Six Nations.We recommend VPN services in the context of legal recreational uses. For example:Accessing a service from another country (subject to the terms and conditions of that service)Protecting your online security and strengthening your online privacy when abroadWe do not support or condone the illegal or malicious use of VPN services. Consuming pirated content that is paid-for is neither endorsed nor approved by Future Publishing. 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. Chris Robshaw hits a milestone on his final appearance for Quins, who hope to add to Leicester’s misery in this concluding 2019-20 Premiership fixture for both sides last_img read more