Heroes and Zeroes
The judiciary saga is finally over with the Wallabies flanker now cleared by Sanzar’s appeals committee to face the All Blacks in Saturday’s Rugby Championship decider. He was originally slapped with a two-match ban for striking Argentine fly-half Nicolas Sanchez during the Wallabies’ comprehensive 34-9 win against Argentina in Mendoza. However, Hooper’s suspension was halved to one week due to his positive reputation, making him available for the Rugby Championship decider this weekend.
After escaping jail time last year, Alesana Tuilagi at 34 seemed to have the look of a boxer pushing it with one fight too many. However, since turning things around he was not only was he named in Samoa’s squad for the Pacific Nations Cup, he got handed the captaincy. Scoring once in their win over The USA and making the second try via a sublime cross-field kick, rugby’s renaissance man now skippers them in Monday’s final against Fiji. This is a true zero to hero story.
Uruguay had a massive boost for the upcoming World Cup when they overcame an Argentina XV 30-26 in Montevideo to notch their first victory over a senior Argentine side. The Argentines scored four tries to two but Teros fly-half Felipe Berchesi kicked five penalties, including two in the last 16 minutes to give Uruguay victory. His half-back partner Agustin Ormaechea also weighed in with a conversion and a penalty as Uruguay upset to the odds to win.
The 28-year old Cardiff Blues wing has left the Wales’s World Cup training squad after not being able to participate in their training camps in Switzerland and Qatar.
The Wallabies have lost experienced lock Rob Simmons ahead of Saturday night’s clash with the All Blacks in Sydney. The 52-test veteran has succumbed to a wrist injury and will have surgery on Tuesday before a race against time to be fit for the Wallabies’ World Cup warm-up against the United States in Chicago next month.
A story that just will not go away and it’s probably the most negative thing on the Rugby Union news agenda. Enraged Toulon owner, Mourad Boudjellal, has threatened to sue the ARU for “millions of euros” if the playmaker backflips on his big-money deal to join the French heavyweights. I think everybody just wants Quade Cooper to put an end to this story and make a decision.