Women’s Super Series, World University Games, Armand, Hepburn, Lees, POC, Dominguez, LNR & FFR

Exeter's England Saxons (from left):Don Armand, Dave Ewers, Alec Hepburn and Mitch Lees
Please Share.
Exeter's England Saxons (from left):Don Armand, Dave Ewers, Alec Hepburn and Mitch Lees
Exeter’s England Saxons (from left):Don Armand, Dave Ewers, Alec Hepburn and Mitch Lees

NEW YORK, NY – The start of a new Rugby week means its time for fresh coffee and look at what’s transpired and what’s ahead. As fresh as mom’s homemade pie, the Global Rugby Recap has news and info re: the Women’s Super Series, World University Games, Armand, Hepburn, Lees, POC, Dominguez, LNR & FFR and more… so let’s begin.

News & Transactions:

Aviva Premiership: Exeter ended last week with signing three stalwarts that are part of the England set-up and now begin this week by re-signing three key players of the England Saxons. Fresh from helping the Saxons to success on their tour of South Africa, Flanker Don Armand, hooker Alec Hepburn and back-rower Mitch Lees have all put pen to paper on new deals with the Premiership club… Newcastle have bolstered their staff ahead of 2016/17 with the arrival of strength and conditioning coaches Lewis Williams and Tim Payne.

Paul O'Connell begins his coaching
Paul O’Connell begins his coaching career

Pro 12: Munster confirmed that legendary second-rower Paul O’Connell will join their academy in an advisory role with immediate effect. The former Munster and Ireland stalwart joins the province in a part-time capacity for one year.

Top14: Toulon manager Diego Dominguez could be sacked just weeks after taking over from Bernard Laporte. French sports source, Infosport alleges that despite Dominguez being brought in last season in order to get a better feel for the club before taking on the role, he may never get the chance to fully take over with owner Mourad Boudjellal opting to dismiss him…. The Top 14 will introduce a relegation play-off from the 2017/18 campaign, which will see the second last team have a chance of survival. The Ligue Nationale de Rugby (LNR) who represent the Top14 and Pro D2 announced the decision on Saturday which means for example this season Agen would meet the team that finished second in Pro D2.

Dominguez gone already?
Dominguez gone already?

The LNR also ruled that foreign players signed to youth contracts will no longer be considered as JIFF players from next season. JIFF players – joueurs issus des filières de formation, otherwise known as academy-trained players – are required to have either been registered with the Federation de French Rugby (FFR) for five years by the age of 23, or to have spent three years in an FFR-approved training center by 21… Following the adoption of a new collective bargaining agreement between the FFR and LNR by their respective General Meetings and subject to final approval by the French Ministry of Sports, the FFR published the first lists of international players for “Elite” and “Development” to the 2016-2017 season. The players listed will be made available to the FFR for French national team duty during the season so they can get adequate preparation time. In return the FFR will compensate the clubs the players play for, similar to the agreement in England. For a look at the players on the list, click here

usa_rugby_logoUSA Rugby: The USA Rugby Referees’ Selection Committee convened in June and July 2016. The process included reviewing and discussing, in detail, all the current referees on the panel and identified prospects, totaling 22 referees. Click here for the panel list and more information… Rugby Canada’s Maple Leafs won their second match-up with the USA Rugby AIG Women’s Collegiate All-Americans Saturday, a 45-13 result at Regional Athletic Complex. For more information, click here.

World Rugby: Australia’s men and France’s women struck gold at the 2016 FISU World University Rugby Sevens Championship in Swansea. Both defending champions fell at the final hurdle at the FISU 2016 World University Rugby Sevens Championship as three days of superb competition in Swansea ended on Saturday with wins for Australia’s men and France’s women. Australia captain Conor Mitchell’s last-play try secured a 24-20 win to deny Great Britain men a hat-trick of tournament titles while Les Bleues put the disappointment of losing the last two finals behind them to convincingly beat 2014 winners Canada 31-5… The latest movers and shakers in the world of Rugby has been confirmed with the latest version of the World Rugby Rankings released; View the full rankingsFiji confirmed that Jarrod Hayne will not be on their final Rio Olympics 7s team.

The weekend’s fixtures:

Again, Ladies first:

Super Series: The USA Rugby Womens’ Super Series is a four team tournament featuring the USA, France, Women’s Rugby World Cup 2014 Finalists Canada and WRWC 2014 Champions England. Hosted in conjunction with First15 Sport Performance and with the help of Rugby Utah and the Utah Sports Commission, the Super Series will be played at the Regional Athletic Complex, with the teams training at the University of Utah campus, both locations are in Salt Lake City. Canada’s victory over France not only secured the Women’s Rugby Super Series 2016 crown with a perfect record but will also mean a climb to second in the World Rugby Women’s Rankings. Meanwhile the hosts, USA had no answer to the forward dominance showed by England as the Eagles fell and went winless in the tournament.

Here is the schedule:
Sat – 9 Jul 2016

France 10-29 Canada
USA 39-13 England

pro-rugby-logo_smPRO Rugby: Round 13 of the inaugural season of PRO rugby is in the books. In this round, Ohio were made to work hard by Sacramento before winning and staying top of the league. Meanwhile,  San Diego traveled Denver and appeared bereft of ideas on how to stop the Stampede as Denver won comfortably.

Here is the schedule:
Sat – 9 Jul 2016
Ohio 41-31 Sacramento
Sun – 10 Jul 2016
San Diego 23-59 Denver

Super Rugby: Super Rugby has gone from 6 teams in 1996 to 18 teams in 2016. It only covered 3 countries and 3 times zones then, now it has games in 6 countries, crosses more than 7 time zones and has four conferences. The 20th regular season of the competition nears completion. The latest round of fixtures, started with the Blues shlacking the Brumbies in Auckland. Across the Tasman, the Chiefs were doing the same to the Reds. The Lions emulated the Blues and Chiefs victories when they faced the Kings. In the remaining matches, the Crusaders obliterated the Rebels, the Waratahs fell to the Hurricanes, then the Stormers were too much for the Force. The Bulls cruised past the Sunwolves, the Sharks were too much for the Cheetahs and the Jaguares  fell at home against the Highlanders.

Here are the results:
Fri – 8 Jul 2016
Blues 45-15 Brumbies
Reds 5-50 Chiefs
Lions 57-21 Kings
Sat – 9 Jul 2016
Crusaders 85-26 Rebels
Waratahs 17-28 Hurricanes
Force 3-22 Stormers
Bulls 50-3 Sunwolves
Sharks 26-10 Cheetahs
Jaguares 8-34 Highlanders

Rugby Europe LogoRugby Europe Sevens Grand Prix Series: The 2016 Rugby Europe Sevens Grand Prix Series consists of 3 legs,  Moscow, Russia (4/5 June), Exeter, England (9/10 July) and Gdansk, Poland (16/17 July). England and Wales have been replaced as Great Britain 1(Royals) and 2 (Lions). This weekend they were in Exeter battling it out. The GB Royals won a hard fought match for the title against France in front of their home fans. Here are Rugby Europe Sevens Grand Prix Series standings after this weekend’s action.

2016 Rugby Europe Sevens Grand Prix Standings
Final Standings for Leg 2 (Exeter)
1. Great Britain Royals – 20 points (Cup)
2. France – 18
3. Spain – 16
4. Russia – 14
5. Great Britain Lions – 12 (Plate)
6. Germany – 10
7. Italy – 8
8. Georgia – 6
9. Portugal – 4 (Bowl)
10. Belgium – 3
11. Poland – 2
12. Lithuania – 1

Current Overall Standings 2 legs
1. France 36
2. Russia 34
3. Great Britain Royals 32
4. Great Britain Lions 28
5. Spain 24
6. Germany 24
7. Georgia 16
8. Italy 12
9. Portugal 10
10. Belgium 6
11. Poland 4
12. Lithuania 2

Rugby AfriqueAfrica Cup: The Africa Cup 2016 will be the sixteenth edition of the continental tournament that involves the best African national teams, organized by the Rugby Afrique, formerly known as the Confederation of African Rugby (CAR). Given their superiority, the South African national team has rarely participated in most tournaments. The four times the SARU has participated, they sent either a U-23 team or amateur side, and went on to win it. Beyond South Africa, there are up to 27 rugby countries in the Cup with the national participants in the two divisions with each division divided into three groups (1A, 1B, 1C, 2 West, 2 East, and 2 South), with promotion and relegation. In the 1A this weekend division, Zimbabwe were crushed by Kenya while in 1C Mauritius were destroyed by Morocco.

Here is the schedule:
Sat – 9 Jul 2016
1A: Zimbabwe 15-61 Kenya
Sun – 10 Jul 2016
1C: Morocco 68-3 Mauritius

The battle for the 1B crown goes on during the week. There will be a midweek match between Nigeria and Mauritius.

Here is the schedule:
Wed – 13 Jul 2016

Nigeria -Mauritius

2016 Currie Cup qualification: The tournament is a competition between which will be played between 9 April and 23 July 2016. It will feature all fourteen South African provincial unions plus the Welwitschias from Namibia and will also serve as a qualifying competition for the 2016 Currie Cup, the 78th edition of South Africa’s premier domestic rugby union competition. Nine teams from this competition will play in the 2016 Currie Cup Premier Division, while the remaining six teams will play in the 2016 Currie Cup First Division. Round thirteen’s fixtures began on Thursday night as Griquas defeated Pumas, making them the only home team to win over the weekend. The remaining matches begun with Leopards crushing Eastern Province and SouthWest District fell short against Free State then the Falcons got crushed by the Golden Lions. The last stretch of matches saw Griffons lose to Sharks, Boland were defeated by Western Province and finally Border were the last home team to lose as they were dominated by the Blue Bulls.

Here are the results:
Thu – 7 Jul 2016
Griquas 37–14 Pumas

Here is the schedule:
Fri – 8 Jul 2016
Leopards 54–14 Eastern Province
SWD Eagles 16–24 Free State XV
Sat – 9 Jul 2016
Falcons 14–75 Golden Lions XV
Griffons 27–36 Sharks XV
Boland Cavaliers 14–25 Western Province
Border Bulldogs 26–45 Blue Bulls

That’s all for now, please feel free to comment below, look for and “Like” our Facebook Rugby Wrap Up Page and follow us on Twitter@: RugbyWrapUp, Junoir Blaber, @MeetTheMatts, Luke Bienstock, Ronan Nelson, James Harrington and Declan Yeats.

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.