15.co.za http://www.rugby15.co.za | Rugby News, Live Scores, Results, Fixtures Thu, 30 Jul 2015 13:02:23 +0000 en-US hourly 1 EP U19 AND U21 PREVIEW http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/ep-u19-and-u21-preview/ http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/ep-u19-and-u21-preview/#comments Thu, 30 Jul 2015 13:02:23 +0000 http://www.rugby15.co.za/?p=45930 THE EP Kings U19 team will have to do without captain and centre Jeremy Ward when they clash with the Blue Bulls in the Absa U19 interprovincial competition, kicking off at the Wolfson Stadium in Port Elizabeth at 15.00 on Friday (July 31).
Ward, who has led the side to three victories and a spot at the top of the log this season, suffered a head injury against Western Province last weekend and has not been considered for the Bulls match.
The game, therefore, will be a test of the Kings’ depth as they are coming up against the only other unbeaten team in the competition this season and it promises to be a showdown of note against the Pretoria-based outfit.
The Bulls are second on the log, but have played a match less than their PE rivals, so everything points to a tough encounter at the Wolfson Stadium.
The Kings, who just missed out on a spot in the playoffs last year, have underlined their potential this year by starting with two away wins against Free State and the Leopards, following that up with a narrow 13-10 result against WP last weekend.
That match was played in pouring rain and was a true test of the character of both sides as the players battled in the wet conditions.
Ward was responsible for EP’s only try and flyhalf Michael Brink showed his skill with the boot by slotting a conversion and two crucial penalties.
The conditions are sure to be better on Friday after a week of sunshine in the region, but EP will not be able to let their guard slip against a dangerous Bulls outfit.
In the later game, at 17.00, the EP Kings U21 side will be striving to pick themselves up after three straight defeats when they take on their Bulls counterparts.
The visitors have not set the season alight either, with a win and a loss in their two matches, which sees the two sides propping up the bottom of the log.
The Kings will be looking for an allround improvement after being well beaten by Western Province last weekend and a good performance against the Bulls could be the spark they need to kick-start their season.

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Sharks side for warm-up game against the Lions http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/sharks-side-for-warm-up-game-against-the-lions/ http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/sharks-side-for-warm-up-game-against-the-lions/#comments Thu, 30 Jul 2015 12:27:48 +0000 http://www.rugby15.co.za/?p=45928 Absa Currie Cup Warm-up Game
Cell C Sharks vs Xerox Golden Lions

Date: Friday, 31 July 2015

Time: 19h00

Venue: Woodburn Stadium, Pietermaritzburg

15. SP Marais
14. Charles Mayeza
13. Paul Jordaan
12. Andre Esterhuizen
11. Alcino Izaacs
10. Joe Pietersen
9. Michael Claassens
8. Philip van der Walt
7. Jean-Luc du Preez
6. Khaya Majola
5. Marco Wentzel
4. Etienne Oosthuizen
3. Lourens Adriaanse
2. Monde Hadebe
1. Dale Chadwick

Replacements
16. Juan Schoeman
17. Franco Marais
18. Thomas du Toit
19. Wiehan Hay
20. Pieter-Steph du Toit
21. Francois Kleinhans
22. Dave McDuling
23. Christiaan de Bruin
24. Stefan Ungerer
25. Lionel Cronje
26. S’bura Sithole
27. Heimar Williams
28. Wandile Mjekevu
29. Odwa Ndungane
30. Garth April
31. Gerhard Engelbrecht
32. JC Astle
33. Tonderai Chavhanga

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Michael Hooper suspended for one week http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/michael-hooper-suspended-for-one-week/ http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/michael-hooper-suspended-for-one-week/#comments Thu, 30 Jul 2015 09:31:23 +0000 http://www.rugby15.co.za/?p=45925 JUDICIAL HEARING NEWS RELEASE
Hearing Details: 29 July 2015 @ 5:00pm AEST, 7:00pm NZST, 4:00am ART and 9:00am SAST via videoconference
Reconvened Hearing Details: 30 July at 4:00pm AEST, 6:00pm NZST, 3:00am ART and 8:00am SAST.
Judicial Hearing Chairman: Nigel Hampton QC
Player: Michael Hooper
Team: Australia
Position: Flanker
Date of Incident: 25 July 2015
Nature of Offence: 10.4 (a) Punching or striking, A player must not strike an opponent with the fist or arm, including the elbow, shoulder, head or knee(s).
Elapsed time in match when offence occurred: 59th minute

A SANZAR Judicial Hearing has found Michael Hooper of Australia guilty of contravening Law 10.4 (a) Punching or striking after he was cited for alleged foul play during a Rugby Championship match at the weekend.

The incident occurred in the 59th minute of the match between Argentina and Australia at Estadio Malvinas Argentinas in Mendoza on 25 July 2015.

The SANZAR Judicial Hearing was heard by Nigel Hampton QC via video conference on Wednesday 29 July at 5:00pm AEST, 7:00pm NZST, 4:00am ART and 9:00am SAST. The hearing was adjourned and reconvened Thursday 30 July at 4:00pm AEST, 6:00pm NZST, 3:00am ART and 8:00am SAST. Stefan Terblanche was the former professional player who attended as a Judicial Technical Adviser.

In his finding, Hampton ruled the following:

“As the Judicial Officer, I considered all the evidence before me including a number of videos which showed additional angles of the incident, medical reports for the Argentina flyhalf, Nicolas Sanchez, the citing commissioner’s report for the incident and submissions made for the player by his legal representative, Anthony Black SC.

“It was submitted on Hooper’s behalf that the action he performed was part of an attempt to stop himself being held by Argentina player, Nicolas Sanchez. The action was described as a ‘push with an open hand’ and not a punch. It was submitted that this action was similar to a fend by a ball carrier attempting to stop himself from being tackled. It was also submitted that the offence could not be made out as a strike because the law specifically lists the offences as the use of a fist, arm or elbow but not an open hand.

“I found that this submission could not be accepted. Allowing open hand striking motions such as this of force to any part of an opposing player’s body could not be deemed an act within the laws of the game and not able to be sanctioned. Striking with an open hand could fall within the definitions of a breach of Law 10.4 (a) Punching or striking.

“The action can not be compared to a fend by a ball carrier. A fend is an accepted arm/hand movement made by a ball carrier on a would-be tackler. In this incident, the ball was not in play.

“The video supports Hooper’s account of events that he was grabbed intentionally by Sanchez who maintained contact as he moved behind Hooper, causing him to become unbalanced, rotate around and effectively run backwards. This action was done to prevent Hooper from supporting a teammate who had the ball and was running towards the goal line. If Hooper was not held in this way, he could have supported his teammate in a number of ways so that his team could potentially score.

“Hooper tried to extricate himself from the hold when he wasn’t released by Sanchez. The actions of Sanchez while deliberate, illegal and an act of considerable provocation, do not allow for retaliation in an illegal way including striking the opponent. Hooper’s account and the video support the notion that he did not punch the opponent in the face. However, it matters not where a strike lands on an opponent if there was indeed a strike.

“It was found that Hooper, in circumstances of considerable frustration and in order to try and rid himself of his opponent, drew back his free right arm and, voluntarily using additional momentum over and above that given to him by the actions of his opponent, struck out at the opponent’s head and neck area with his open hand, making contact with the back of the opponent’s neck and head with considerable, and intentional, force.

“After taking all relevant facts into consideration, I found that the striking offence was committed. I found the incident to have a lower end entry point which stipulates a two-week suspension. I found no aggravating factors to be present but did find a number of mitigating factors including Hooper’s good character and repute along with his good disciplinary record. On that basis, the maximum allowed reduction of 50% was given to the Player, reducing the period of suspension to 1 week.

“The Rugby Championship schedule is such that Australia’s next match is in two weeks time on 8 August 2015. However, due to Hooper’s limited playing time in the match in which he was cited, evidence was submitted and confirmed in the hearing that Hooper and other players who needed game time would be made available and scheduled to play on the weekend of 1 August 2015. The Sydney Club competition has qualifying finals this weekend with Hooper’s club Manly to play Randwick on Saturday 1 August 2015. I was officially advised in written form by all parties that if Hooper was available, he would play in this match. I was also advised that other players were being made available to their clubs which I accepted.

“I found this match could not be considered inconsequential and would have meaningful consequence for Hooper given his current competition and rotation within the Australian squad. The player has a close allegiance to the Manly club who have an important match this weekend and he expressed his desire to play in the match following the Argentina v Australia match. Under Regulation 17, all matches are equal and if a player is scheduled to play, then the match should be included in the suspension if it has meaningful consequence to the player.

“The player is found to have contravened Law 10.4 (a) and is suspended up to and including Saturday, 1 August 2015.”

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Venue change for U18 International Series http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/venue-change-for-u18-international-series/ http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/venue-change-for-u18-international-series/#comments Thu, 30 Jul 2015 08:59:46 +0000 http://www.rugby15.co.za/?p=45923 Media are advised that both rounds of matches to be held in Cape Town during the Under-18 International Series in August will be hosted at the City Park Stadium in Crawford.

One of the rounds was scheduled to be staged at the Markötter Sports Complex at Paul Roos Gymnasium, which celebrates its 150th anniversary this year. However, heavy rains combined with several matches being played on the Markötter field during the Under-18 Coca-Cola Craven Week earlier this month has resulted in both rounds being played at City Park.

Under-18 International Series fixtures:

Friday, 7 August – City Park Stadium, Cape Town
12h00 – SA Schools A vs Italy U18
14h00 – England U18 vs France U18
16h00 – SA Schools vs Wales U18

Tuesday, 11 August – Outeniqua Park, George
13h00 – SA Schools A vs England U18
15h00 – Wales U18 vs Italy U18
17h00 – SA Schools vs France U18

Saturday, 15 August – City Park Stadium, Cape Town
11h00 – SA Schools A vs Wales U18
13h00 – France U18 vs Italy U18
15h00 – SA Schools vs England U18

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Springbok Sevens shift into gear for momentous season http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/springbok-sevens-shift-into-gear-for-momentous-season/ http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/springbok-sevens-shift-into-gear-for-momentous-season/#comments Thu, 30 Jul 2015 08:49:03 +0000 http://www.rugby15.co.za/?p=45920 · Several players released for Absa Currie Cup duty

· Pre-season plans include two international tournaments

The Springbok Sevens squad will play in two pre-season tournaments as they prepare for a historic campaign which includes a bigger, revamped HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series and the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil.

The South Africans will contest the 2015 SAFLand Sevens taking place on 25 and 26 September in Windhoek, Namibia, before travelling to Singapore a month later to participate in the 68th edition of the hugely popular Singapore Cricket Club Sevens event.

The squad have assembled at the Stellenbosch Academy of Sport (SAS) to start their pre-season training programme following their end-of-season break.

The 2015/16 HSBC Sevens World Rugby Sevens Series kicks off on 4 and 5 December in Dubai and Series champion will be crowned after the conclusion of Round 10 at Twickenham (20 to 22 May).

Neil Powell, the Springbok Sevens coach, emphasised the significance of the forthcoming season. He said: “The new season will be the most important Sevens season yet. The prospects of an Olympic gold medal in Rio and success in the revamped World Series are two massive incentives for all the teams. We have been working very hard to finalise our preparation plans in order to achieve the goals we have set for ourselves,” added Powell.

Players released for Absa Currie Cup duty

Furthermore, SARU also confirmed that several Springbok Sevens squad members were released to play in the upcoming Absa Currie Cup competition, which kicks off on 7 August.

Seabelo Senatla (wing) will turn out for the defending champions, DHL Western Province, while Kwagga Smith (flank) has returned to the Xerox Golden Lions.

Ruhan Nel and Sandile Ngcobo (centres) will be in action for the ORC Griquas, who recently secured their spot in the Absa Currie Cup Premier Division after winning the Qualifier competition.

Two of Ngcobo’s SA Sevens Academy team mates, Lungelo Gosa and Sibahle Maxwane, have joined the Under-21 teams of the Golden Lions and Western Province respectively.

Key dates for the Springbok Sevens in the 2015/16 season:

Sunday 9 August 2015

One year countdown to the 2016 Rio Olympic games

Thursday 24 – Saturday 26 September 2015

SAFLand Sevens tournament in Windhoek, Namibia

31 October – 01 November 2015

Singapore Cricket Club Sevens tournament

Friday 4 December – Saturday 5 December 2015

Start of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series in Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Tuesday 9 August – Thursday 11 August 2016

Rugby Sevens programme at the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

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EP KINGS PRESS RELEASE http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/ep-kings-press-release/ http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/ep-kings-press-release/#comments Wed, 29 Jul 2015 14:22:31 +0000 http://www.rugby15.co.za/?p=45914 Eastern Province Rugby and the South African Rugby Players Association have held a number of constructive meetings throughout the day today to address challenges currently being faced by the union.
Eastern Province Rugby President Cheeky Watson said SARPA had met with both the administration and players over the course of the day and he was positive that concerns over the various challenges currently being faced by EP Rugby had been discussed in detail.
“Our main priority right now is addressing the concerns of our players and putting their minds at ease. This requires open and frank dialogue and we are positive that we have been able to address their concerns in a constructive and positive manner,” he said.
Watson said chief among the concerns was the issue of non payment of players salaries and that the administration had explained the situation in detail to SARPA representatives.
SARPA Chief Executive, Piet Heymans, said he was impressed with the efforts being made by EP Rugby to address the concerns of the players.
Heymans said he had met with the players and had explained their legal position and contractual obligations.
“It was helpful to get the full background from the administration and we are looking forward to seeing this issue resolved by the end of the week,” he said.

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EP SCHOOLS PREVIEW FOR AUGUST 1 http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/ep-schools-preview-for-august-1/ http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/ep-schools-preview-for-august-1/#comments Wed, 29 Jul 2015 14:09:43 +0000 http://www.rugby15.co.za/?p=45912 GRAHAMSTOWN schools Graeme College and Kingswood will square off in one of the city’s greatest rugby rivalries when they vie for the region’s bragging rights at Kingswood on Saturday (August 1).
Among the leading trio of Grahamstown schools, St Andrew’s have traditionally produced the best results against their rivals, but their youthful team this year have had to play second fiddle to Graeme and Kingswood.
In reality, there is nothing between the three sides because Graeme edged St Andrew’s with a try in the last minute and Kingswood shaded their arch-rivals by one point. Nonetheless, it does add spice to Saturday’s encounter at Kingswood’s City Lords and it would be no surprise if this match went down to the wire.
There are several other big fixtures on this weekend’s programme and none will be tougher than the clash in Bloemfontein when Grey High attempt to beat Grey College on their home ground for the first time.
Grey High ended a 10-year losing run with a 27-20 triumph in Port Elizabeth last year and with several of those players back in action this year, they will hoping to draw on some positive memories to make what would be a unique achievement of winning two matches in a row against their namesakes.
Grey College have not been at their best this year, losing three matches in a row at one stage, but they are not a side to concede anything other than a fight to the bitter end, and the PE side will have to be prepared for a battle royale.
Nico Malan are set for a cracking derby against Uitenhage rivals Daniel Pienaar in Humansdorp, while two other EP schools will have keen contests against Southern Cape outfits. Framesby are at home to Outeniqua, who perennially supply a host of players to the SWD team, while Brandwag will entertain Oudtshoorn in Uitenhage.
The Brandwag team have put together the remarkable record of having won their last 13 games on their home ground and Oudtshoorn will have a tough time overturning that run of success.
In Grahamstown, St Andrew’s who edged home against Marlow 26-24 last weekend, have another testing fixture when they come up against Dale on the Lower field.
In a match set for Friday, Ithembelihle and Linkside will combine to take on touring England side Campion High at Linkside.
The fixtures are (home teams first, 11.30am start unless stated):
Friday: Ithembelihle-Linkside v Campion High at Linkside (16.00)
Saturday: Andrew Rabie v Otto du Plessis, Brandwag v Oudtshoorn (12.30), Despatch v Muir (12.15), Nico Malan v Daniel Pienaar (12.40), DF Malherbe v Humansdorp (11.00), Framesby v Outeniqua (14.00), Grey College v Grey High (15.00), Gamble v Solomon Mahlangu, VP v Newton Tech, John Walton v McCarthy, Pearson v Union High (13.30), Woodridge v Westering, Kingswood v Graeme (15.45), St Andrew’s v Dale (14.30).

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STEVAL PUMAS ANNOUNCE NEW CONTRACTS http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/steval-pumas-announce-new-contracts/ http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/steval-pumas-announce-new-contracts/#comments Wed, 29 Jul 2015 13:55:53 +0000 http://www.rugby15.co.za/?p=45909 Caption: Southy Steenkamp, the latest edition to the technical team of the Steval Pumas. Photo: Hennie Homann / Steval Pumas

On Tuesday morning, the coach of the Steval Pumas, MJ Mentz, announced the Union’s new contracted players to join the Lowveld based squad for the 2016 season.

Two Griquas players, 26 year old Francois Brummer (fly half) and 23 year old Nardus van der Walt (loose forward) will join the squad at the end of the current Absa Currie Cup season.

“Our third player, 26 year old Lambert Groenewald, (loose forward) has been with us as a loan player from the Lions Rugby Union, but has decided to stay on a permanent basis for the next season,” Mentz commented.

Two new appointments have been made to the coaching staff for the remainder of the 2015 Absa Currie Cup season.

Southy Steenkamp, the experienced performance analyst, joined the squad recently after being with the EP Kings for several years.

The former Stellenbosch student with his masters in Biokinetics, Robin Arkell, has been appointed as the new strength and conditioning coach after being with the UCT Varsity Cup-team in Cape Town.

“I’m very excited about the new appointments, especially the new players. Although this is a continuous process to find the right player for the right reasons, were are still looking for young and quality players on a daily basis. The appointment of the competent technical staff is a clear indication that we take our position in the Absa Currie Cup Premier Division seriously and want to take the Union to the next level of professionalism,” Mentz concluded.

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MICHAEL HOOPER JUDICIAL HEARING UPDATE http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/michael-hooper-judicial-hearing-update/ http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/michael-hooper-judicial-hearing-update/#comments Wed, 29 Jul 2015 12:00:57 +0000 http://www.rugby15.co.za/?p=45906 A SANZAR Judicial Hearing was held concerning the citing of Michael Hooper for alleged foul play during a Rugby Championship match at the weekend. The hearing was heard by Nigel Hampton QC via video conference on Wednesday 29 July at 5:00pm AEST, 7:00pm NZST, 4:00am ART and 9:00am SAST

The hearing has been adjourned until Thursday 30 July 2015.

No comment from any party will be made until the hearing is complete.

The hearing will recommence Thursday 30 July at 4:00pm AEST, 6:00pm NZST, 3:00am ART and 8:00am SAST.

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FORMER SPRINGBOK PETER GRANT BRINGS 10 YEARS’ EXPERIENCE TO FORCE http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/former-springbok-peter-grant-brings-10-years-experience-to-force/ http://www.rugby15.co.za/2015/07/former-springbok-peter-grant-brings-10-years-experience-to-force/#comments Wed, 29 Jul 2015 06:53:07 +0000 http://www.rugby15.co.za/?p=45904 Peter Grant with his accurate boot (Anton Geyser)

Peter Grant with his accurate boot (Anton Geyser)

The Western Force will add more than 10 seasons of elite rugby experience to its young backline in 2016 following the signing of former Stormers and Springboks flyhalf Peter Grant, for 2 seasons.

Durban-born Grant, 30, has played 104 matches of Asteron Life Super Rugby for the Cape Town-based Stormers and currently sits seventh in the tournament’s all-time scorers list with 866 points.

Having represented the Stormers for nine seasons at the top provincial level, the five Test Springbok, nicknamed ‘Bash’, most recently played a season with French Top 14 club, La Rochelle, having also played four seasons with Japanese Top League club, the Kobelco Steelers.

Head Coach Michael Foley says Grant’s signing is a significant one in the side’s preparation for success.

“Our priority was adding experience to complement the talented young players in our backline, and with the recruitment of Ben (Tapuai), Jono (Lance) and now Peter (Grant), we believe we’ve moved strongly in that direction,” he said.

“Peter’s played a key position for nine seasons of Super Rugby, as well as a number of seasons in Japan and France. When you combine that with his time spent with the Springboks, it equates to a player that not only has a wealth of experience in playing the game, but also has the ability to lead players around him.

“Most importantly he brings calmness in decision making, an eagerness to take the defence on when we attack and a consistency in goal kicking.

“One of Peter’s key tasks will be to mentor and develop our young flyhalves, as well as the other young players within our backline.”

Grant, whose parents and two uncles live in Perth, says he’s excited about continuing his rugby with the Western Force.

“I’m very excited and looking forward to the move immensely. I’ve obviously got a lot of family there with two of my uncles living in Perth, one of them for over 30 years, and my parents as well, so that’s a big draw card, but I love the lifestyle of Australia, particularly in Perth.”

With over a hundred Stormers caps to his name, Grant knows the role he needs to play in the team and is looking forward to being back in the Super Rugby competition.

“I feel like I have a lot to offer to the younger players, especially playing a mentoring role. Giving them a little bit of advice here and there, which is similar to what players did for me in my career.

“I’m really looking forward to being a part of building the Western Force, because I know there’s a lot of talent there and I really feel I can help Michael and the coaching staff develop that talent.”
Profile

Name: Peter Grant

Born: 15/08/1984, Durban (South Africa)

Position: Flyhalf

Height: 186cm

Weight: 92kg

Super Rugby caps: 104

Super Rugby points: 886 (11 tries, 126 cons, 188 pens)

Super Rugby debut: 2006 (Stormers) v Cats, Johannesburg

Test caps: 5

Test points: 0

Test debut: 2007 (South Africa) v Australia, Sydney

Representative Rugby: 2007-2008 Springboks, 2007 Emerging Springboks, 2006-2014 Stormers, 2003 South African Under 19, 2002 South African Schoolboys

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