NEW YORK, NY – The Lions vs Waratahs was the game most neutrals were watching this weekend. However, the USA Rugby doubleheader of the USA Women vs France followed by the USA Men vs Tonga were what most American rugby fans were watching on Friday evening.
USA vs France: The USA women came up short in their 3 match series against France, 2-1. All the matches in this series were tight and though losing it hurts, one must remember how few matches the US women get compared to their European counterparts . It says a lot about the program that they are able to compete and win on a regular basis. Final Result:
USA 12 – 18 France
Lions v Waratahs: The Lions sent out what most thought would be the makings of the 1st test match side against the Waratahs. The Waratahs didn’t roll over but they were out matched. They managed to keep it handy and not embarrass themselves which was the key. The Lions did suffer injuries to key players, like Jamie Roberts,will be out for the 1st test. In the meantime re-enforcements were called in for the Tuesday match against the Brumbies, including two head scratchers like Brad Barritt, who was sitting at home on vacation and Shane Williams who is retired from international competition and was in Japan. Apparently Williams will play the one match Tuesday and leave on Wednesday. Lions fans and traditionalists are not happy about these call-ups or how they have been managed but if the Lions win the test series, all will be forgiven. Final Result:
NSW Waratahs 17-47 British and Irish Lions
Summer Tours: Japan are the new holders Raeburn Shield, The hypothetical trophy between 1st and 2nd tier champions. Ireland roared back to form against an injury riddled Canada. New Zealand shut out a lethargic France. Scotland gave South Africa all they could handle and were unfortunate not to win. Samoa rose to 6th place in the IRB rankings after they thoroughly dismantled Italy. England looked superb as they defeated Argentina. The final results were:
Japan 23 – 8 Wales
Canada 14 – 40 Ireland
New Zealand 30 – 0 France
South Africa 30 – 17 Scotland
Samoa 39 – 10 Italy
Argentina 26 – 51 England
Junior World Cup: The JWC is the yearly World Cup held for U-20 teams of the top-tier rugby playing nations. The USA is in it this year after winning the Junior World Trophy, the second tier competition. There were no matches this weekend but playoffs begin at midweek. There will be playoffs to determine 1-4, 5-8 and 9-12. The US is in the 9-12 playoff against Fiji, Samoa and Scotland. The playoffs for the title are between New Zealand, South Africa, England and Wales.
Tbilisi Cup: This is an inaugural tournament, created by the IRB was won by the SA President’s XV. The faced a very determined Georgia side looking to win on home soil, however the hosts would come up just short. The final results were:
Georgia 16 – 21 SA President’s XV
Uruguay 33 – 42 Emerg. Ireland
Nations Cup: The Tblisi Cup’s big brother tourney is The Nations Cup. It is aimed at providing more competition for tier one A sides, as well as select second tier nation. That aim was reached as Romania won the Cup for a second consecutive year and appear to be going from strength to strength as they dominated the Jaguars. The final results were:
Russia 19 – 27 Emerging Italy
Romania 30 – 8 Jaguars
CAR: The RWC Qualifier matches were not close as Namibia showed its dominance against Tunisia and Senegal rolled over Botswana. In the yearly Elgon Cup match between neighbors Kenya and Uganda, Kenya was able to do enough at home to win by the slimmest of margins. The final results were:
Tunisia 13 – 45 Namibia
Botswana 5 – 41 Senegal
Kenya 18 – 17 Uganda
That is it for now, feel free to comment below, look for and “Like” our Facebook Rugby Wrap Up Page and follow us on Twitter @RugbyWrapUp, @JunoirBlaber, @Declan Yeats, @Mathew Drew Turner and @Ebstide52, respectively. And until the next time… stay low and keep pumping those legs.