Non-RWC Weekend Rugby Preview: Burgess, Russell, NRC, IRB Awards, USA Rugby And World Rugby News

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Is Burgess on his way out?

Is Burgess on his way out?

NEW YORK, NY – Beyond the big Rugby World Cup final there is plenty action to be found this weekend. We have final in Australian domestic rugby. In the northern hemisphere, the 3 top leagues will once again be kicking into gear. We have games in rugby Europe and combine all of that with the news and transactions and we have plenty to go over. So with no further adieu, here’s the Weekend Rugby Preview.

News & Transactions:

Aviva Premiership: Media in the UK and Australia have suggested that Sam Burgess had been granted a break by his club, Bath, to re-consider his future in the sport after receiving plenty of criticism for his involvement in England‘s disastrous World Cup campaign. However, Bath head Mike Ford told the BBC that Burgess would be honoring his contract and had been given some time off until next Monday. In other Bath news, the Academy have confirmed the signing of Wigan Warriors Under 19 center, Liam Forsyth... Scottish international hooker Scott Lawson will continue to ply his trade at Newcastle Falcons after agreeing a new contract with the club, starting in season 2016/17… Worcester Warriors have signed up Georgian hooker Jaba Bregvadze, bolstering their front row… Leicester Tigers have announced the signing of former South Africa captain Jean de Villiers.

Top 14: Fiji captain and backrower Akapusi Qera signed a new contract to keep him at Montpellier until 2018… France loosehead prop Eddy Ben Arous has extended his contract with club side Racing 92 through to 2019.

Finn Russell

Finn Russell

Pro 12: Glasgow and Scotland fly-half Finn Russell has signed a new long-term contract with the Warriors, keeping the international will be staying with the club until at least May 2018… Scarlets have confirmed that Wayne Pivac has committed his future to the region by signing a new contract… The Welsh Rugby Union have rejected Newport Gwent Dragons’ request to sell star Eightman Taulupe Faletau. Dragons were denied permission to proceed with a possible transfer following the submission of a formal request to Warren Gatland last week…Ospreys back-row Tom Smith has accepted defeat in his ongoing fitness battle, confirming that he is to finally hang up his playing boots two years after suffering a serious knee ligament injury… Munster and Ireland full-back Felix Jones has been forced to retire from rugby on medical grounds, it was confirmed. Having most recently sustained a neck injury during the Round 3 PRO12 encounter against Glasgow Warriors at Thormond Park, Jones has been advised to retire from rugby. Munster have recruited the services of full-back Lucas González Amorosino and flanker Sean Doyle on short-term contracts. The contracts are for 3 months though the retirement of Jones means Amorosino maybe around longer and possibly Doyle also depending on how long the regulars take to recover.

Super Rugby: The Sharks announced the signing of former Springbok and Toulouse hooker Chiliboy Ralepelle. Ralepelle was recently suspended for a doping offense, with the hooker free to play again on April 10, 2016.

usa_rugby_logoUSA Rugby: USA Rugby announced a partnership with BridgeAthletic to provide strength, conditioning, and skill training program management, test data management, and athlete readiness performance logging for all USA Rugby national teams, including the two internationally-ranked rugby sevens teams and the men’s and women’s 15s Eagles. 

RWC 2019 logo

RWC 2019 logo

World Rugby:World Rugby unveiled the official logo and set tournament dates for RWC 2019. The design features two of Japan’s most recognizable symbols, the rising sun and Mt Fuji… With a very special and record-breaking Rugby World Cup reaching its climax, the 12th World Rugby General Assembly kicked off in London this week with harnessing record global growth, player welfare advances and development of the 2016-20 strategic plan the headline agenda topics. At the assembly, Agustín Pichot, Council Member for Argentina, has been elected onto World Rugby’s Executive Committee.
Pichot was elected by the World Rugby Council in accordance with the Bye-Laws, replacing Ireland’s Peter Boyle, who stepped down following elections within his union… The World Rugby Team of the Year 2015 nominees are Rugby World Cup 2015 finalists New Zealand and Australia, along with semi-finalists Argentina and Japan, who caused the biggest shock in the tournament’s history by beating South Africa on the opening weekend. The men at the helm of these four nations – Steve Hansen (New Zealand), Michael Cheika (Australia), Daniel Hourcade (Argentina) and Eddie Jones (Japan) – are nominated for the prestigious World Rugby Coach of the Year 2015 award. The 2015 nominees for World Rugby Player of the Year 2015 are: Daniel Carter (New Zealand), Michael Hooper (Australia), Alun Wyn Jones (Wales), Greig Laidlaw (Scotland), David Pocock (Australia) and Julian Savea (New Zealand)… The contenders for the International Rugby Players’ Association (IRPA) Try of the Year 2015 have been revealed by World Rugby, with the winner to be announced at the World Rugby Awards on November 1st. Here is a look at the nominees

The weekend’s fixtures:

Aviva Premiership: The 2015/2016 Aviva Premiership keeps rolling along. Round 3 kicks off tomorrow with Saracens hosting London Irish, Bath take on Harlequins and Gloucester face the Worcester. On Saturday, Newcastle and Exeter will do battle, Sale will clash with Northampton and finally Leicester face a big challenge from Wasps.

Here is the schedule:
Sat – 31 Oct 2015
Saracens – London Irish
Bath – Harlequins
Gloucester – Worcester Warriors
Sun – 1 Nov 2015
Newcastle Falcons – Exeter Chiefs
Sale Sharks – Northampton Saints
Leicester Tigers – Wasps

Stade’s Jeremy Sinzelle is wrapped up during the Top 14 champions’ opening game

Top 14: The 2015/2016 #Top14 is nearing its full compliment of world class players so the  action and intensity will just keep going up level after level. This weekend will see Agen play Stade Francais, Bordeaux takes on La Rochelle, Oyonnax face off against Pau. Racing 92 host Brive, Montpellier will face a stern test from Toulouse, Castres travel to Clermont and little Grenoble take giants Toulon.

Here is the schedule:
Sat – 31 Oct 2015
Agen – Stade Francais
Bordeaux Begles – La Rochelle
Oyonnax – Pau
Racing 92 – Brive
Montpellier – Toulouse
Clermont Auvergne – Castres
Sun – 1 Nov 2015
Grenoble – Toulon

Guinness Pro 12: The Pro 12 season have had their international stars back already and the action has kicked up accordingly. Munster edged Ulster in a 9 try thriller and Scarlets were to strong for Newport-Gwent on Friday. On Saturday, Zebre will welcome Cardiff Blues, Connacht host Edinburgh. Sunday will see the Glasgow Warriors tackle the Ospreys and Treviso play Leinster.

Here are the results:
Fri – 30 Oct 2015
Munster 32-28 Ulster
Scarlets 25-15 Newport-Gwent Dragons

Here is the schedule:
Sat – 31 Oct 2015
Zebre – Cardiff Blues
Connacht – Edinburgh
Sun – 1 Nov 2015
Glasgow Warriors – Ospreys
Benetton Treviso – Leinster

rugby europeEuropean Nations Cup:The ENC, or the 6 Nations “B” , is the premier tournament for the second-tier nations of Europe. Believe it or not, the ENC consists of seven divisions, each featuring between four and six teams. The matches played will determine who will get promoted and relegated from groups 1B, 2A – 2D, and 3A over a two-year cycle. Division 1A aka the 6 Nations B is where the six best teams in the rest of Europe reside and there is no promotion to the Europe’s premier international rugby competition, only relegation back to 1B… In action this weekend in 2B, Lithuania goes up against Andorra and Hungary travel to Latvia.

The Rugby Europe Women’s Championship is also going on this week. The four remaining seeds played each other this week. Switzerland beat Russia and Belgium dominated Czech Republic. The match-up for the weekend will see the Czech Republic play Russia in the 3rd Place and Belgium play Switzerland in the final.

Here is the schedule:
Sat – 31 Oct 2015
2B: Lithuania – Andorra
2B: Latvia – Hungary

Rugby Europe Women’s Championship
Here are the results:
Thu – 29 Oct 2015
Russia 12 – 27 Switzerland
Belgium 20 – 3 Czech Republic

Here is the schedule:
Sat – 31 Oct 2015
Third Place: Czech Republic – Russia
Final: Belgium – Switzerland

NRC trophy

NRC trophy

Aus. NRC: Australia’s third tier competition goes into its second year as the National Rugby Championship has kicked off. We took the time to provide a preview and explain the competition, just CLICK HERE. Those with New York Rugby Club ties like me, will be supporting the defending champs Brisbane City since one of their feeder clubs, is New York’s sister club West (Brisbane) Bulldogs.  Those defending champs, Brisbane City and the UC Vikings have topped the table all season. The two sides were the one and two seeds going into the 4 team playoffs. The two teams will face off for the the title this weekend.

Here is the schedule:
Sat – 31 Oct 2015
Brisbane City- University of Canberra Vikings

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, James Harrington, Jamie Wall, Nick Hall, DJ Eberle, Jake Frechette, Scheenagh Harrington, Jamie Loyd, Cody Kuxmann, Karen Ritter, Ronan Nelson, Kaitlin McCabe, Rocky Brown and Declan Yeats, respectively.

And remember to stay low and keep pumping those legs!

Filed in: EuropeGallagher PremiershipGuinness Pro 12Junoir BlaberSouthern HemisphereSuper RugbyTest RugbyTop 14USA Rugby Men's EaglesUSA Rugby Women's EaglesWorld Cup & Tests
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About the Author ()

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.

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