"Highest-paid player" - Bath explain Finn Russell absence this weekend with fly-half abroad - Ruck

“Highest-paid player” – Bath explain Finn Russell absence this weekend with fly-half abroad

Bath has justified their choice to allow Finn Russell to skip the Saturday’s loss against Northampton Saints. The Scotland fly-half was granted the weekend off to spend time in New York.

Bath faced a 24-18 defeat at the hands of the Saints at Franklin’s Gardens in the Gallagher Premiership, marking their second consecutive league loss.

Nevertheless, Johan van Graan, Russell’s manager, disclosed that a one-week break had been scheduled for all the players and that Russell would be returning for the upcoming west-country derby against Gloucester next weekend.

“Finn will be back for the derby (with Gloucester) and that is the agreement we had from the start that everyone in the squad will have a week away,” said Van Graan.

“We decided this was the week for Finn and we still have 12 games in a row. We showed against Northampton that irrespective of what team we put out we are good enough to win and, while a few people raised eyebrows (about the decision), with the last play of the game we could have been the victors.

“If you give Northampton field position they are very good at multi-phase attack and they took one opportunity more than us.”

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Rugby World Cup referee’s reveal the ‘toughest’ players to referee

In fairness, dissent in international rugby isn’t as big of a problem compared to something like football. But who are the worst players to manage in rugby history? 

Well, we’ve discovered quotes from six of the world’s finest officials down the years who told stories about trying to control some of football’s bad boys.

Interestingly, one name cropped up on three occasions…

Matthew Carley – Steve Borthwick

On Borthwick: “A difficult question. When I first started refereeing in the Premiership Steve Borthwick was one of the guys who was pretty intimidating.

“He saw that everything was on ‘his terms, whether you like it or not’. He had such presence. I think you learn how to deal with people like that as a ref, but Steve Borthwick, was as tough as they come.” 

Steve Borthwick and Neal Hatley talk before the Guinness Six Nations Championship match between Wales and England at Principality Stadium on February 23, 2018 in Cardiff, Wales. Photo: Phil Mingo/PPAUK


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