La Rochelle live the European dream
La Rochelle is steeped in history, whether back to the days of Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine in the 12th century or indeed to the presence of the Huguenots in the 17th. A thriving but small Maritime port was never supposed to carry off the Blue Riband trophy in club rugby, although try telling that to Toulon!
Broken dreams for Champions Cup semifinalists
The brutality of semifinals is that no one remembers the loser. However, for Saracens, Wasps, Toulouse and Racing 92 there were many mitigating circumstances…
European Rugby Scales The Heights
I feel compelled to reflect on last weekend’s European action simply because the quality of what was on offer reached a new record in my view and also there were some conclusions reached I feel are premature. I know I am biased but the adage of the European Cup being like International rugby played in club jerseys was never truer.
Scottish Rugby In Bloom For The 6 Nations?
It may have appeared that Round 6 of the Heineken Champions Cup and Challenge Cup was confirming known truths about Irish dominance and the resurgence of Toulouse as well as a brooding Saracens who look very tough and menacing at full strength.
A Rugby World In Union In 2019?
It was easy to eulogise about the Irish last year – they have the best set up in World rugby and their results were no fluke at National and provincial level. Rarely can Twickenham have been silenced so easily on a big match day as when a chilly first half made Ireland’s 2018 Grand Slam aspirations a reality and England disappeared into the March murkiness.
Irish Repeat Success In Europe But No Racing Certainty
Some say that Ireland is God’s own country and certainly the rugby gods smiled on them with a clean sweep of European wins this past weekend, a triumphant National team this autumn and the good news goes on, it’s no coincidence.
Reasons To Be Cheerful As Southern Hemisphere Rugby Comes To Town
The Rugby world has been so busy this season it has been hard to keep up. Here is what has caught my eye so far
European Rugby – Vacancies At No. 10
I am not referring to various maverick attempts to take on a political poison chalice, nor is it for me to pass comment on random pre-season behaviour by England’s incumbent stand off,
Rugby Finals Scaling New Heights
In this pre World Cup year, we have seen what it is going to take to be successful. Pace and power running from the forwards with ability to pass out of the tackle.
Teddy Thomas may be the headline grabber for Racing 92 and France but Wenceslas Lauret, his teammate, is a King of backrows in Europe alongside a clutch of Irishmen and in my book will be a World Cup star.