Scottish rugby seeks stakeholder input
Scottish Rugby is launching a survey of stakeholders as part of its review of male club rugby. The exercise will seek the views of coaches, players and referees. The participants will be identified using information on the SCRUMS database, with further discussion set to take place in March. The aim is to address the problem of attracting and retaining players in the game and to implement a structure that will support this.
Japan considering Six Nations membership
The Japanese Rugby Union is in discussions with both the Six Nations and the Rugby Championship with a view to participating in regular international competition. The union’s chief executive Kensuke Iwabuchi has stated that the preference would be to join the southern hemisphere tournament as this takes place in the same time zone.
Former Edinburgh coach Alan Solomons will retire from rugby coaching at the end of the season, and will be replaced in his current role as Director of Rugby at Worcester Warriors by Steve Diamond. Solomons, who is 71 years old, left Edinburgh early in the 2016-17 season. Diamond has been at Worcester since November, having left Sale Sharks last year.
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Scottish refs on international duty
Scottish officials feature prominently on the list for the Guinness Six Nations, with Mike Adamson involved in four matches in the men’s competition – two as referee – while Hollie Davidson will take charge of France v Ireland in the Under 20 tournament with Ben Blain and Ian Kenny as her assistants and Sam Grove-White as TMO. The men’s tournament represents a breakthrough for Georgian rugby, with Nika Amashukeli appointed as referee for Ireland v Italy, the first official from his country to earn that honour.
Davies becomes Director of Rugby
Former Wales international Phil Davies has been appointed to the Director of Rugby post at World Rugby. Davies is currently with Leeds Tykes, having also been involved at Cardiff Blues, Scarlets and Worcester Warriors, as well as at international level with Namibia. His role will be to work with match officials, national teams and players, as well as supporting emerging nations.
Record crowd for women’s game
Harlequins women set a new attendance record when more than 9,000 spectators attended their game against Wasps at Twickenham between Christmas and New Year which saw the hosts post a 29-5 win. That number exceeded the previous high of 4,837, also set by ‘Quins three years ago.
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Wales women sign full-time contracts
There was more good news for the women’s game when the Welsh Rugby Union signed 12 players on full-time contracts. The deal will allow the players to focus on preparing for the World Cup later in the year, when Wales, who are currently ranked 11th in the world, will play in a pool that features hosts, New Zealand, Australia and a qualifier. A further nine players have been signed on retainer contracts.
Strauss steps into coaching
Former Glasgow Warriors and Scotland back-row Josh Strauss has moved into coaching after taking on a role at the prestigious SACS high school, which has the ambition of becoming a school of rugby excellence in his native South Africa. Strauss will work with the Under-16 team. He left Warriors in 2017 and subsequently played with Sale Sharks, Stade Francais and Tel Aviv Heat. SACS, in Cape Town, is the oldest high school in South Africa.
Garnock goodwill supports charities
Clubs may be struggling financially at present, but West Division One side, Garnock, didn’t allow that to prevent them adopting the role of good citizens by sharing the proceeds of a Christmas raffle between two worthy local causes. Club officials presented a cheque to one of the beneficiaries, Bridgend Cancer Support Group, before the match at home to Carrick.
Garnock Rugby Club are aware of how difficult the last two years have been for charities.The club decided to share the proceeds of our Annual Christmas Raffle with two charities.Prior to yesterday’s home game we presented a cheque in excess of £2k to Bridgend Cancer Support Group pic.twitter.com/1JEJsHkhHp
— Garnock Rugby Club (@garnockrugby) January 16, 2022
Cameraman takes a sore one
Lengthy absences because of injury are not uncommon in rugby, but a cameraman named only as Olivier learned that it is not only players who can be on the receiving end. He suffered a broken leg in this incident during the French Top 14 clash between Bordeaux and Biarritz, keeping him out of action for six weeks.
🎥 Talk about suffering for your art…🤕
We wish Canal+ cameraman Olivier all the best in his recovery after suffering a broken leg in this incident. 🙏pic.twitter.com/IwERdSdgQH
— Planet Rugby (@PlanetRugby) January 3, 2022