Rugby Wrap-up: The Rugby Championship, Aviva Prem, RaboDirect 12, Top14, Currie Cup, ITM Cup & HSBC Asian Sevens Series

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Rugby Wrap-up: Cardiff fans celebrate new season!

West Ghana, New York – This weekend had plenty of rugby but it also had Father’s Day in some parts – Happy Father’s Day – and Labor Day (Labour for the non-American spelling) in other parts. That’s today, yet we’re working here at RWU HQ… Anyway there was so much to cover as part of our weekend trip around the world – and we are spent. But before we slack-off with some Sin Bin nap-time, let’s fire up the jets and get to our Rugby Wrap-up:

Blaber

The Rugby Championship: No games –  it was a bye week. This gives teams an opportunity to recover from the long flights. Argentina’s Los Pumas flew into Auckland – and then Wellington – on Friday to prep for New Zealand on Saturday. Meanwhile, the Springboks of South Africa arrived in Perth, Australia to begin preparations for their match-up against the Wallabies of Australia, also scheduled for this Saturday.

Aviva Premiership: The English Domestic Rugby season kicked off this weekend. Most of the results went as expected. The loss by the London Welsh to Leicester had London Welsh Coach Lyn Jones lamenting the promotion saga that cost them a month preparation time and leaves them chasing the season. Here are the results for the first week of action.

Wasps 40 – 42 Harlequins
Exeter 43 – 6 Sale
Gloucester 19 – 24 Northampton
London Welsh 38 – 13 Leicester
Worcester 23 – 24 Bath
Saracens 40 – 3 London Irish

French Top 14: While England was going into its first week, the Top 14 was already in its 3 week of action, There were a few surprises but it is a marathon of a season so don’t take too much out of the results.

Grenoble 26 – 12 Stade Francais
Biarritz 22 – 17 Toulouse
Castres 31 – 10 Bayonne
Montpellier 32 – 15 Agen
Clermont Auvergne 53 – 31 Perpignan
Racing Metro Paris 18 – 7 Bordeaux-Begles
Mont de Marsan 15 – 29 Toulon

RaboDirect 12: The majority of shocking results belong to the Rabodirect. Titles aren’t won or lost in the first game of the season so no need to panic, but if teams are trying to send a message, a fair few did.

Newport-Gwent Dragons 37 – 6 Zebre
Benetton Treviso 12 – 6 Ospreys
Ulster 18 – 10 Glasgow
Connacht 9 – 13 Cardiff Blues
Scarlets 45 – 20 Leinster
Edinburgh 18 – 23 Munster

The Currie Cup: Round 4 is done and dusted. I wish they could make this comp as big as it use to be with 10/12 or 14 teams. 6 teams just seem so small and restrictive. Although with the gulf in talent between the Super Rugby franchises, it is apparent why things are this way.

Lions 32 – 42 Griquas
Sharks 34 – 32 Cheetahs
Western Province 42 – 6 Blue Bulls

The ITM Cup: The season is has an insane fixture list so I included the games that occured after last week’s wrap-up and the mid-week matches plus this weekend’s result

Week 1
25 Aug                 Otago                    46-34     Northland
26 Aug                 North Harbour 22-42     Waikato
26 Aug                 Counties Man    30-9       Southland
Week 2
28 Aug                 Wellington          30-15     Hawke’s Bay
29 Aug                 Canterbury         33-11     Auckland
Week 3
30 Aug                 Bay of Plenty     31-19     Otago
31 Aug                 Hawke’s Bay       37-30     Counties Man
01 Sep                  Canterbury         36-3       North Harbour
01 Sep                  Waikato               27-29     Northland
01 Sep                  Taranaki               49-40     Tasman
02 Sep                  Auckland             59-16     Manawatu
02 Sep                  Wellington          40-8       Southland


HSBC Asian Sevens Series, Borneo:For the uninitiated the Asian 7s series is a sub-series to determine which teams qualify for the Rugby World Cup 7s. It is better explained by our friends at Rugby Asia Channel.This weekend’s stop was the Borneo 7s. Such a shame a trip to Borneo is not in the RWU budget. They were kind enough to send us over the results and confirm that Japan won it this year’s tournament for the men and Australia for the women.

Asian Sevens Series final:
Japan 33 Hong Kong 22
3rd-4th:
China 19 South Korea 14

Asia Pacific Women’s Sevens final:
Australia 36 Japan 17
3rd-4th: Papua New Guinea 26
Hong Kong 17

The Japan team celebrates

That is it for me for now. Please feel free to comment below, look for and “Like” our Facebook Rugby Wrap Up Page and follow us on Twitter @RugbyWrapUp, @JunoirBlaber, @Declan Yeats and @Mathew Drew Turner, respectively.

And as always, stay low and keep pumping those legs.

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About Junoir Blaber 868 Articles
Born in Osu, Accra, Ghana, West Africa, Junoir Blaber is a rare commodity; while most Ghanians eat, sleep and dream Soccer (football), Junoir is all about Rugby. A self-proclaimed Rugbyologist, he has been involved in Rugby as a ref, coach, administrator and player since Columbus discovered Ohio. His useful/trivial rugby knowledge qualify Blaber as RWU's Senior Correspondent & known in rugby circles as The Rugby Rain Man. He can also be found moonlighting for our American partners at MeetTheMatts.com.