6N Move, Robinson, Giteau, Senatla, Revouvou, Rugby Championship

Seabelo Senatla
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6N on the move?
6N on the move?

NEW YORK, NY – Welcome to the weekend. The fixture list is getting congested again, which we love, because it means there is more to cover. In this edition of the Weekend Preview we have news re: 6N Move, Robinson, Giteau, Senatla, Revouvou, Rugby Championship and more… so without delay, here you go.

News & Transactions:

Pro 12: PRO12 managing director Martin Anayi has added to the calls for the Six Nations to be moved to later in the year. Anayi was speaking at the tournament’s launch in Dublin on Tuesday and also revealed that “early” talks had taken place with with USA Rugby, broadcasters and sponsors over the future involvement of a North American franchise in the league… Scottish Rugby Union chief executive Mark Dodson has given an honest assessment of the future of the PRO12, as the new season approaches. His dire forecast can be read if you, Click hereSuper Rugby Stormers fullback Jaco Taute will join Munster according to South African media reports effectively immediately… Leinster coach Leo Cullen, who is still searching for a new defense coach, has moved to downplay links with former Bath coach Mike Ford for the position.

Andy Robinson
Andy Robinson

Aviva Premiership: Bristol confirmed that their director of rugby Andy Robinson has signed a new, three-year, deal that sees him at the helm until 2019. Bristol also bolstered their front row with the arrival of Wales international loosehead prop Ryan Bevington with immediate effect. The 27-year-old – who joins the Premiership newcomers from Ospreys on a two-year deal – has thirteen Wales caps following a debut in 2011.

Top14: Australia center Matt Giteau is not expected to return to action for his club, Toulon, until close to Christmas after breaking his ankle… Toulon owner Mourad Boudjellal has announced that he intends to run for the presidency of the Ligue Nationale de Rugby. The outspoken millionaire hopes to win this year’s election, which takes place on October 4, having had his application to be considered as a candidate accepted…  Western Province of the Currie Cup, winger Kobus Van Wyk has signed with Bordeaux-Bègles will join them with immediate effect. Joining Van Wywk in France will be teammat and flanker Rynhardt Elstadt who will be heading to Toulouse… Fiji international wing Timoci Nagusa has not yet returned to his club, Montpellier, leaving his future in doubt.

Seabelo Senatla
Seabelo Senatla

Super Rugby: Olympic Bronze medallist  and Springbok Sevens star, Seabelo Senatla has signed a three-year tripartite contract with Western Province Rugby and South African Rugby Union (SARU) that will make him available for both Western Province and the Stormers, when he is not representing a national team... Melbourne Rebels have received a significant boost as wing Dom Shipperley has an extension which will see him stay at the organization until the end of 2017… Former Reds and Australia international back-row Beau Robinson has signed a contract with RFU Championship side Doncaster Knights.

Currie Cup: The EP Kings might have their Currie Cup funding cut after the Democratic Alliance (DA) took over the Port Elizabeth municipality. After South Africa’s elections, it would seem that the Democratic Alliance would review the funding the African National Congress (ANC) promised the Kings after financial turmoil threatened the unions’ involvement in the prestigious tournament… 2015 World Rugby Sevens Player of the Year and Olympic bronze medallist, Werner Kok, joins the Western Province on loan after an agreement between the WPU, the SARU and the player, making him available for Western Province until the end of the season. The trio of utility back Scott van Breda, hooker Martin Ferreira and flank Stefan Willemse have all joined Western Province on short-term contracts, whilst hooker Neil Rautenbach is on loan from the Free State Cheetahs.

Australia NRC: The Western Sydney Rams have signed Fijian Olympic gold medalist Vetemo Ravouvou for the 2016 Buildcorp NRC season.  The Rams feed into the NSW Waratahs.

PRO Rugby: The PRO Rugby Dream Team was announced earlier this week. For a look at the squad, click here.

usa_rugby_logoUSA Rugby: The AIG Women’s Collegiate All-American Sevens team finished runner-up at the inaugural ATAVUS Elite Women’s 7s Tournament at Infinity Park over the weekend, losing only to 2016 USA Rugby Emirates Airline Club 7s National Champion Scion Rugby Academy. Click here for the full report.

World Rugby LogoWorld Rugby: The Wallabies’ problems at Test level can be attributed to Super Rugby‘s new 18-team tournament which was formed earlier this year. That is the word of former New Zealand Rugby Union chief executive David Moffett who believes taking Super Rugby back to a 12-team competition will help to rebuild the struggling Wallabies, who suffered a 42-8 loss to New Zealand in their Rugby Championship opener at the weekend. For his full opinion, Click here… The dates and venues for the 2016/2017 HSBC World Rugby Womens Sevens Series have been announced, see below.

HSBC World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series 2016-17 dates and venues:

Dubai: 1-2 December, 2016
Sydney: 3-4 February, 2017
Kitakyushu: 22-23 April
Victoria/Langford, Canada: 27-28 May
Clermont-Ferrand: 24-25 June

The weekend’s fixtures:

top14logo on grassTop 14: If it feels like the Top 14 season just ended, it did. It was less than 60 days between the end of the Top14 final and the start of the season, not to mention the players also had to deal with pre-season. The season was extended a month because of the Rugby World Cup so hopefully this year, it won’t last as long. The twelve returning teams this season are champions Racing 92, runners-up Toulon, Clermont, Montpellier, Toulouse, Castres, Bordeaux, Brive, La Rochelle, Grenoble, Pau and Stade Français . Two new teams from the 2015–16 Pro D2 season were promoted to Top 14 this year, Bayonne and Lyon in place of the two relegated teams, Agen and Oyonnax. It marks the first time that both teams relegated are both promoted in the following season (Bayonne and Lyon where both relegated during the 2014–15 Top 14 season). The line-up for the weekend begins with Pau hosting powerhouse Toulon, Bayonne tackle Castres, and Brive welcomes Stade Francais. The weekend continues with Grenoble clashing with La Rochelle, Racing 92 battle Lyon and Toulouse will face a stern challenge from Bordeaux-Begles. An earlier season possible finals preview sees Montepellier, aka MontiBok, at home against Clermont-Auvergne

Here are the results:
Sat – 27 Aug 2016
Pau – Toulon
Bayonne – Castres
Brive – Stade Francais
Grenoble – La Rochelle
Racing 92 – Lyon
Toulouse – Bordeaux-Begles
Sun – 28 Aug 2016
Montpellier – Clermont-Auvergne

The-Rugby-Championship logo 1The Rugby Championship: New Zealand will host round 2 of the Bledisloe Cup and look to secure it for another year in the opening match of the weekend for The Rugby Championship. In the other match, Argentina and South Africa will make long trips from the Republic to face each other as it is now the Pumas turn to be the host team in their match-up.

Here is the schedule:
Sat – 27 Aug 2016
New Zealand – Australia
Argentina – South Africa

2016 Currie Cup qualification: The tournament is a competition that will be played between 5 August and 15 October 2016 and will feature nine teams that qualified through the 2016 Currie Cup qualification competition. The 9 South African provincial unions are Pumas, Sharks, Blue Bulls, Western Province, Eastern Province, Boland, Griquas, Free State and Golden Lions. This will be the 78th edition of South Africa’s premier domestic rugby union competition. The fourth round of fixtures begins with the Golden Lions, looking to bounce back from their shock defeat last week, taking on Boland. Pumas get to host Griquas, while we see a battle of the Provinces when Eastern welcomes Western. Finally, the Sharks will face their long time rivals the Blue Bulls.

Here is the schedule:
Fri – 26 Aug 2016
Golden Lions – Boland
Pumas – Griquas
Sat – 27 Aug 2016
Eastern Province – Western Province
Sharks – Blue Bulls

Mitre 10 Cup: The Mitre 10 Cup (formally known “National Provincial Championship” or “NPC“) is the highest level of New Zealand domestic professional rugby union competition, contested annually from late August to early November and managed by the New Zealand Rugby Union (NZRU). Building off competitions dating back to the National Provincial Championship in 1976, with teams from a number of provinces, the Mitre 10 Cup officially started with the 2006 season with 14 teams after the National Provincial Championship (NPC) was split into this professional competition and the amateur Heartland Championship competition. The competition was known as the Air New Zealand Cup to the end of the 2009 season; the name then changed to the ITM Cup for the 2010 season after ITM, the trading name of Independent Timber Merchants Co-operative Ltd., a New Zealand building supplies retailer took over as lead sponsor. In 2016 the New Zealand-owned home improvement and garden retailer, Mitre 10 took over sponsorship after out-bidding ITM. For the Mitre 10 Cup competition it will involve the top 14 provincial unions of New Zealand. We will hopefully have more information in our Southern Hemisphere preview. The schedule for week two begins with Otago hosting Wellington, Manawatu battling Southland, and neighborly rivals Auckland and Northland going at it. The action continues with Waikato and North Harbour doing battle, Taranaki against Hawkes Bay, Canterbury will take on their little brother, Tasman and finally Counties-Manukau will tangle with Bay of Plenty.

Here is the schedule:
Thu – 25 Aug 2016
Otago – Wellington
Fri – 26 Aug 2016
Manawatu – Southland
Auckland – Northland
Sat – 27 Aug 2016
Waikato – North Harbour
Taranaki – Hawkes Bay
Sat – 28 Aug 2016
Canterbury – Tasman
Counties-Manukau – Bay Of Plenty

NRC logoAus. NRC: Australia’s third tier competition goes into its third year as the National Rugby Championship kicks off. Those with New York Rugby Club ties like me, will be supporting the two-time defending champs Brisbane City since one of their feeder clubs, is New York’s sister club West (Brisbane) Bulldogs. This weekend will see the Perth Spirit open the festivities by taking on the Melbourne Rising. New South Wales Country Eagles will face Brisbane City, while a Sydney derby goes down as the Sydney Rays take on the Western Sydney Rams. Finally, Queensland Country will host the University of Canberra Vikings to close out the weekend.

Here is the schedule:
Fri – 26 Aug 2016
Perth Spirit – Melbourne Rising
Sat – 27 Aug 2016
NSW Country Eagles – Brisbane City
Sydney Rays – Western Sydney Rams
Sat – 27 Aug 2016
Queensland Country – UC Vikings

Sudamerica RugbySudamerica Rugby: Formerly the SAMC now just Sudamerica Ruby is the same as the ENC – except it’s South America, a minor detail – and that it has 4 divisions featuring 15 teams. It is the battle to find the 2nd best team in South America with Argentina the firm number 1. The top division is called the CONSUR division and features Argentina’s B team, Uruguay and Chile. Speaking of the CONSUR, there is a B/C division relegation-promotion match this weekend. Guatemala are the C division champions and will play Ecuador, the last place team in the B division.

Here is the schedule:
Sat – 27 Aug 2016
B/C Promtion/Relegation Playoff: Ecuador – Guatemala

Exhibition: In an exhibition match to help improve each sides depth against international competition, Kenay will face Hong Kong in Nairobi. 

Here is the schedule:
Sat – 27 Aug 2016
Kenya – Hong Kong

“That’s all for now, please feel free to comment below, look for and “Like” our Facebook Rugby Wrap Up Pageand follow us on Twitter@: @RugbyWrapUp,@Junoir Blaber, @MeetTheMatts, @Luke Bienstock,@Ronan Nelson, @Zack Stryfeller, @Brian C Cole,@Garrett Harper, @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.