Haskell, John Mitchell, Aviva Prem, #Top14, Pro12, USA Rugby and World Rugby News

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James Haskell gets a new deal
James Haskell gets a new deal

NEW YORK, NY – Happy first Monday of the New Year!! Yes, its definitely lacking something and not as nice as Happy New Year. Well anyway, it is a new year and the first batch of matches from Europe’s top three domestic competitions are in the books. We go over the results as well as the weekend’s news and transactions. Without further delay, here is the Global Rugby Recap.

News & Transactions:

Aviva Premiership: Wasps confirmed that co-captain and England international flanker James Haskell has signed a new contract with the Premiership club.

The sometimes odd John Mitchell

USA Rugby: Around lunchtime Monday, USA Rugby announced the hiring of John Mitchell as Head Coach of the Men’s Eagles. Mitchell has been signed to a four-year contract, effective immediately.Mitchell will look to build after a disastrous RWC campaign for the Eagles. He will also have very little time to get the team ready for the Americas 6 Nations, kicking off in February. The USA website has an interview with the new coach already available.

The USA Maccabi All Star team won Silver at the Pan American Maccabi Games with a  49-22 win over Chile. The games, which are being hosted in Chile, is an international multi sport event that gathers athletes of Jewish decent. The squad got their tournament off to a rough start after falling to the Chilean National Champions 60-22, but bounced back with a strong effort in a 28-22 loss to Argentina.

World Rugby: World Rugby released an article of 7s players to watch for in 2016. Click here for a look.

The weekend’s fixtures:

Saracens were too much for Leicester
Saracens were too much for Leicester

Aviva Premiership: The New Year doesn’t necessarily bring lots of good cheer or hope for the remainder of the season. By this time on the calendar teams are well aware that a move needs to made to qualify for the playoffs or avoid relegation. The mid-season began on New Years Day when Exeter fell to Northampton. Saturday saw Gloucester victorious against London Irish, Newcastle surprised Bath, Saracens remained unbeaten by taking down Leicester in the match of the weekend. Wasps continue to struggle in the Premiership as they fell to Sale and the weekend finished with Worcester losing at home against Harlequins.

Here are the results:
Fri – 1 Jan 2016
Northampton Saints 8-3 Exeter Chiefs
Sat – 2 Jan 2016
Gloucester 27-14 London Irish
Newcastle Falcons 19-14 Bath
Saracens 26-6 Leicester Tigers
Sale Sharks 15-9 Wasps
Sun – 3 Jan 2016
Worcester Warriors 20-24 Harlequins

Top 14: The #Top14 let their fans sleep in on New Years day with all the matches scheduled for the weekend proper. Agen fell to powerhouse Clermont, Grenoble crushed Oyonnax, La Rochelle just edged out Castres, Racing 92 narrowly escaped Bordeaux-Begles and finally Montpellier fell by the narrowest margin possible against Brive. Les Galactiques of Toulon held on for dear life against Pau and table-toppers Toulouse came up excruciatingly short against defending champions Stade Francais.

Here are the results:
Sat – 2 Jan 2016
Agen 16-33 Clermont Auvergne
Grenoble 42-17 Oyonnax
La Rochelle 25-21 Castres
Racing 92 23-18 Bordeaux-Begles
Brive 19-18 Montpellier
Sun – 3 Jan 2016
Toulon 21-17 Pau
Stade Francais 18-17 Toulouse

Guiness Pro12 awardGuinness Pro 12: In the Pro 12, New Years day is the second part of the holiday derby weekend matches. Each match was a match between rivals in the same country, with some of them having a long history of facing each other in big games. Ospreys took down Welsh rivals Newport-Gwent meanwhile the other two Welsh sides Cardiff and Scarlets did battle with Cardiff doing just enough to win. The Irish derbies saw Leinster blank Connacht and high flying Ulster fell to an out of form Munster. We saw the second game in the 1872 Cup, which is played between Glasgow and Edinburgh, as the two cities have been rugby rivals dating back that far. That match was scheduled to be played in Glasgow but due to a water-bogged pitch, it was held in Edinburgh, with Edinburgh doing just enough to win the game and secure the cup. The final match of the weekend was the Italian derby and Treviso fell to Zebre.

Here are the results:
Fri – 1 Jan 2016
Ospreys 12-7 Newport-Gwent Dragons
Cardiff Blues 29-27 Scarlets
Leinster 13-0 Connacht
Sat – 2 Jan 2016
Ulster 7-9 Munster
Glasgow Warriors 11-14 Edinburgh
Sat – 3 Jan 2016
Benetton Treviso 8-18 Zebre

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

And as always, 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.