Weekend preview: End of the Year Tours (EOYT) and LV= Cup

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Maori HakaNEW YORK, NY – The Autumn Internationals, aka the End of the Year Tours (EOYT) according to our  friends in the Southern Hemisphere, are in full swing. There will be matches across all 3 tiers, including inter-tier battles and two Rugby World Cup Qualifiers  along with Women’s test rugby this weekend. There is still high level domestic action with the start of the  LV=Cup.   So, let’s get into the Weekend Rugby Preview.

Ladies First:
A midweek match that was the 2 leg of a a 2 match series  between Canada and France begins the womens test rugby action. There will also be one test this weekend between England and France.
Here is the midweek result and this weekend’s schedule:
Tue – 5th Nov 13
France 6 – 11 Canada
Sat- 2nd Nov 13
England – France

Tier 1 & 2: There are 11 matches featuring tier 1 and 2 teams this weekend.  In the all Tier 1 matches, England look to gain momentum against Argentina, Italy welcomes Australia, Wales look to ambush South Africa, and France tries to stop New Zealand. Though the Ireland versus Samoa clash can be classified as a tier 1 versus tier 2 contest, it is important to know that Samoa is currently ranked ahead of Ireland, Scotland, Argentina and Italy. Yet they still can’t get a game against New Zealand!! A more genuine tier 1 v tier 2 match-up is Scotland facing off against Japan. The all Tier 2 derbys feature, Canada on the road against Georgia, Romania at home against Tonga (ranked higher than Italy), Our Friend Pedro Leal‘s Portugal will take on Fiji in Lisbon. We have a tier 2 v tier 3 match when Spain are home against Chile. Though they don’t belong to any specific tier the New Zealand Maori are better than some tier 1 sides and they make the trip to the USA to face the Eagles in a soldout PPL Park Stadium, in Philadelphia.

Here is this weekend’s schedule:
Sat- 9th Nov 13
England – Argentina
Scotland – Japan
Italy – Australia
Portugal – Fiji
Chile – Spain
Georgia – Canada
Wales – South Africa
Ireland – Samoa
Romania – Tonga
USA – NZ Maori
France – New Zealand

Luke Wallace
Luke Wallace

LV=Cup:With the rugby calendar so full, the LV= Cup has developed into one of the premier developmental tournaments for young players in Wales and England. It has the 12 Aviva premiership teams along with the 4 Welsh regions battle it out to find a champion. The main thing it does is it lets starts of tomorrow showcase their abilities. Courtney Lawes, and Dan Biggar are a couple of the internationals that have used this tournament as a stepping stone, you will be soon adding Luke Wallace of Harlequins to that list.

Here is this weekend’s schedule:
Fri – 1st Nov 13
Cardiff Blues – Worcester
Wasps – Saracens
Scarlets – Newport Gwent Dragons
Leicester – Ospreys
Sale Sharks – Bath
Sat – 9TH NOV 13
Exeter – Harlequins
Northampton – Gloucester
Sun – 10TH NOV 13
Newcastle – London Irish

Stade Pierre Antoine
Stade Pierre Antoine

Tier 3 Action: In the ENC this weekend we have two matches doubling as a Rugby World Cup Qualifiers (RWCQ)Sweden is on the road against Moldova, while Germany takes on neighbor Poland. Lithuania will have the unenviable task on taking on the Netherlands in AmsterdamMalta will be home to  Croatia and the controversial Cyprus side travel to Slovenia. In a real minnow versus minnow match Luxembourg will be at home to face Bosnia & Herzegovina.  On of the most interesting matches of the weekend will take place down the street from RWU pundit  James Harrington, in Castres, France. It appears that two former french colonies and Confederation of African Rugby (CAR)  members Senegal and Cote D’Ivoire will face each other at the home field of the Castres Olympique Rugby Club, the Stade Pierre Antoine.

Here is this weekend’s schedule:
Fri- 8th Nov 13
Senegal –  Cote D’Ivoire  @ Stade Pierre Antoine, Castres, France
Sat- 9th Nov 13
ENC/RWCQ Germany – Poland
ENC/RWCQ Moldova – Sweden
ENC Malta – Croatia
ENC Netherlands – Lithuania
ENC Slovenia – Cyprus
ENC Luxembourg – Bosnia & Herzegovina

The Second Annual Tri-Nations Rugby Tournament (TNRT) is an IRB and CAR sanctioned competition for the 3 countries in CAR’s RWC qualifying pool 1A. The 3 countries are Namibia, Kenya and Zimbabwe. The 4 country in the pool is Madagascar and they already competed and won a separate tri-nation tournament called the Serendib Cup against Poland and Sri Lanka. The TRNT will be held in Windhoek, Namibia this week.

Here is this weekend’s schedule:
Fri- 8th Nov 13
Namibia –  Zimbabwe

Quick Tap:RIP to “Fats” – Sad news came in during the week as we learned of the death of Rugby legend, Peter “Fats” Fatialofa. Fats died of an apparent heart attack after parking his car in Apia. The man was so beloved that police had to block the road to the hospital were he was pronounced dead, as fans lined up to pay their respect.

Fatialofa played for Manu Samoa between 1988 and 1996, making 34 test appearances. He played in two World Cups, most famously leading Samoa into the quarterfinals in the 1991 tournament, with a huge upset win over Wales at Cardiff Arms Park.

Rest In Peace as you play the only game in heaven.

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 @RugbyWrapUpJunoir BlaberDJ EberleNick HallJames HarringtonCody Kuxmann and Declan Yeats, respectively.

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

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.