Weekend Rugby Wrap: Signings, Top 14, Aviva, Pro 12, BT Sport and Welsh Regions

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BT SportNEW YORK, NY – With the New Year in sight and Christmas in the rear view, the three big European leagues – the Aviva Premiership, Top 14 and RaboDirect Pro 12 – were in full flight. There were big matches and derbies affecting playoff and relegation positions. So with no further adieu, let’s get to the Weekend Rugby Recap:

Top 14: RWU TOP14 expert-du-jour, James Harrington has all the coverage from a Top 14 Sunday chalk full of big matches and tight clashes. CLICK HERE.

Aviva Premiership:  Our East Midlands Machiavellian rugger, Nick Hall, has the New Year resolutions for all 12 clubs, just CLICK HERE… As for the weekend’s results, Wasps traveled to  Newcastle and left victorious, Northampton emphatically stopped Bath‘s winning streak and showed them the difference between 2nd and 3rd place… Leicester managed to squeeze by Sale, Worcester were no match for an on-fire Saracens side, while Harlequins were too much for Exeter and Gloucester heaped more misery on the lowly London Irish.

Samu Manoa of Northampton
Samu Manoa of Northampton

Here are the results:
FRI – 27TH DEC 13
Newcastle 12 – 17 Wasps
SAT – 28TH DEC 13
Northampton 43 – 25 Bath
Leicester 30 – 23 Sale
Worcester 8 – 26 Saracens
Harlequins 22 – 6 Exeter
SUN – 29TH DEC 13
London Irish 19 – 22 Gloucester

Rabodirect Pro 12: This was Boxing Day weekend and the Pro 12’s fixture schedule was filled with derbies.  We covered the Boxing day results already, so we will move on to the other clashes. In an intriguing Irish derby, Munster struggled past Connacht and Leinster proved too tough for Ulster and in the  Italian derby, Treviso had too much class for Zebre.

Here are the results:
THU – 26TH DEC 13
Scarlets 6 – 10 Ospreys
Edinburgh 16 – 20 Glasgow
Newport Gwent Dragons 22 – 16 Cardiff Blues
FRI – 27TH DEC 13
Munster 22 – 16 Connacht
SAT – 28TH DEC 13
Benetton Treviso 20 – 15 Zebre
Leinster 19 – 6 Ulster

Freddie Burns on the move!?!
Freddie Burns on the move!?

Conversion Kick
Previously we announced that according to unconfirmed reports Leicester flyhalf Toby Flood has agreed to terms with Toulouse for next season. It was rumored that as a replacement, Leicester was looking at Gloucester flyhalf Freddie Burns. Now, with Burns contract expiring at the end of the season, it appears that he has signed with Leicester. Neither party have confirmed this but sources close to both parties claim it’s a done deal. We will all await the official announcement for both Flood and Burns.

Welsh Regions Drama: In the latest twist to the Premiership Rugby Limited partnership with BT Sport and the plan to have a revamped European competition, the focus is now on Wales. The Wales Rugby Union (WRU) and Regional Rugby Wales (RRW) are in a fierce fight, as the WRU is holding firm on limited funds for the 4 Welsh regions, while the regions are desperate for funding to hold on to players, stay afloat and stay competitive. BT Sport has offered £4 million to each of the four regions to join the Anglo-Welsh competition. The payment is exactly the same as the 4 regions get now on their current contract, which expires on 12/31/13.

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.

Oh, and we’d be remiss if we didn’t share this with you:

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.