Weekend Rugby Wrap Up: Autumn Internationals, Aviva, RaboDirect, Tier 3

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The 2013 undefeated AIG New Zealand All Blacks
The 2013 undefeated & untied AIG All Blacks

NEW YORK, NY – The Autumn Internationals essentially came to an end this weekend (except for 1 or 2 next week)… and what a way for them to end! We’re still in shock from what transpired in Dublin… Anyway,  along with the Aviva Premiership and Rabodirect Pro 12 fired up again, there was plenty ‘o action. much action. So without further adieu, let’s get into the Weekend Rugby Wrap Up.

Autumn Internationals: The majority of the games this weekend were incredibly close, each for vastly different reasons… France ran South Africa close for most of the match but an inability to click when in the attacking 22 hurt them. Wales won a slugfest in a physical encounter with a fiery Tonga side.  Rugby’s kissing cousins Italy and Argentina faced off in a tense affair that saw Argentina fight for the victory. Global superpowers and rugby minnows USA and Russia duked it out in London. The match was a comfortable victory for the Americans. As soon as the video emerges, expect our usual match review and Rugby Rain Man Collective analysis.  Scotland  had their winning streak against Australia come to an end. It was extremely painful because they had victory in their sights. Samoa traveled to Eastern Europe to face Georgia and got a big shock as the Georgians scraped by them for the victory. Romania was denied an undefeated season by Fiji who traveled to Bucharest and put the Romanians to the sword. Meanwhile, Canada enjoyed the warmth of Lisbon and hammered our friend Pedro Leal‘s Portugal.  Japan did likewise to Spain.

On Sunday, the unstoppable force known as The Blackness, the AIG New Zealand All Blacks, descended upon Dublin to face IrelandDeclan Yeats’ boys gave them all they could handle and were winning by 5 in extra time before a late AB converted try in the corner allowed the All Blacks to be the first national team in the professional era to finish a calendar year undefeated and untied. But that recap doesn’t tell the story. You need to watch this epic match. It is simply stunning.

Here are this weekend’s results:
Fri – 22 NOV 2013
Wales 17 – 7 Tonga
Sat – 23 NOV 2013
Italy 14 – 19   Argentina
Scotland 15 – 21   Australia
France 10 – 19    South Africa
Russia 7 – 24 USA
Portugal 8 – 52 Canada
Spain 7 – 40 Japan
Georgia 16 – 15 Samoa
Romania 7 – 26 Fiji
Sun – 24 NOV 2013
Ireland 22 – 24 New Zealand

Robshaw (Thanks to Getty Images)
Robshaw (Getty Images)

Aviva Premiership: Our East Midlands Machiavellian rugger, Nick Hall will cover this in depth, so check back with him… Sale had a resounding win at home against Worcester, firming up Worcester’s position in the relegation zone… England captain, Chris Robshaw returned to club duty and led Harlequins over GloucesterLeicester dispatched London Irish and Exeter came up short at home against SaracensNorthampton shutout Newcastle and Bath saw off Wasps with ease. The Bath victory will make the George Ford/Kyle Eastmond situation even more interesting… again look for Nick.
Here are this weekend’s results:
Fri – 22nd Nov 13
Sale Sharks 26 – 10 Worcester
Sat – 23rd Nov 13
Harlequins 27 – 19 Gloucester
Leicester 20 – 11 London Irish
Exeter 9 – 16   Saracens
Northampton 18 – 0 Newcastle
Sun – 24th Nov 13
Wasps 5 – 28 Bath

Connacht fans went home disappointed.
Connacht fans went home disappointed.

Rabodirect Pro 12: The Pro 12 was back on with a full slate of matches. Edinburgh were slaughtered by Ulster, Newport-Gwent had no trouble on the road at Glasgow, Ospreys handled Zebre, while Connacht were unlucky at home against Scarlets. The mighty men of Munster were too much for the Cardiff Blues in Cardiff and Leinster just edged by Italian side Treviso.
Here are this weekend’s results:
Fri – 22nd Nov 13
Ulster 41 – 17 Edinburgh
Glasgow 8 – 23 Newport Gwent Dragons
Sat – 23rd Nov 13
Ospreys 30 – 20 Zebre
Connacht 21 – 24 Scarlets
Cardiff Blues 10 – 31 Munster
Sun – 24th Nov 13
Benetton Treviso 20 – 21 Leinster

Tier 3 Action: In the ENC this week, we have nothing but a tour match. Andorra welcomed Denmark and they were able to handle the guests with very little trouble.

Here are this weekend’s results:
Sat – 23 NOV 2013
Andorra 22 – 11 Denmark

The Autumn internationals is fond of tri-nation rugby tournaments. Following in the steps of the Serendib Cup, the TRNT, and The Victoria Cup we have another contest.  RWU has bestowed upon it the name SlAzTuR Cup, it features the first two letters of the 3 teams involved, Slovakia, Azerbaijan and Turkey, with R for Rugby at the end. With Slovakia defeating Azerbaijan the first weekend and Turkey beating Azerbaijan in the midweek. The final match became the championship and it saw Turkey absolutely crush hosts Slovakia for the title.

Here are this weekend’s results:
Sat – 23 NOV 2013
Slovakia 3 – 55 Turkey

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Thanksgiving 7s Tournaments: If you are in the New York City area next weekend, you should definitely treat yourself to watching the New York 7s. Don’t be surprised to see Johnathan Wicklow Barberie running around. This year the tournament is hosted by AIG Rugby. This wing of the insurance company AIG is dedicated to supporting the growth of youth rugby and rugby in general throughout the USA and around the world, hence bringing the Maori All Blacks to the USA. In accordance with this mission, AIG Rugby and the New York Rugby Club ask that you bring your children out for the day and have them participate in the Rookie Rugby Program.  Here is the link to enter – http://newyorkrugbysevens.com/2013/10/enter-rookie-rugby/. In addition, please pass the info on to anyone you know who may want to have their child/children participate.

If you can’t make to the New York 7s, you should check out the Niagara Wasps Rugby Tournament in Niagara, Ontario. The tournament is being run by one of my great rugby friends, Caleb Smith.

If you can’t make either Tournament or want to play a tournament before you get to New York, I recommend you play the JAS 7s in Fairmont Park, Philadelphia. The tournament honors the memory of Josias A. Sterling, a young HS rugby player that lost his life when he was pulled out to sea unexpectedly while with his friends at the beach. Young Josias couldn’t swim, so the proceeds for this tournament benefit the Josias A. Sterling Foundation, an organization started in the Philadelphia area teaching young men and women to swim.

That’s it for now… feel free to comment below, look for and “Like” our Facebook Rugby Wrap Up Page and follow us on Twitter @: RugbyWrapUp, Junoir Blaber, DJ Eberle, Nick Hall, James Harrington, Cody Kuxmann, Jaime Loyd and Declan Yeats, respectively.

And until the next time… stay low and keep pumping those legs.

 

About Junoir Blaber 867 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.