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The TRUTH
13-03-06, 04:33 PM
I just thought i'd create a thread for all the Super14 stories in the news this week.



Reds ready to fight for Drew
By Jim Morton
March 12, 2006

RELIEVED Queensland Reds coach Jeff Miller says the Super 14 bye couldn't have been better timed for his side, and the same was true of last night's win over Western Force.

Both come as Queensland desperately tries to retain star winger Drew Mitchell.

Mitchell, like Brumbies star Matt Giteau earlier this week in Canberra, was courted by all four Australian franchises this morning at Brisbane's Sofitel Hotel.

The Australia flyer is the Reds' biggest name coming off contract and is commanding an upgraded Australian Rugby Union salary after a dazzling European tour which netted him four tries in as many Tests.

Mitchell, 21, has since had less opportunities to show his class with the Reds, who were in danger of a highly-damaging fifth straight loss at Suncorp Stadium last night when trailing Force 18-3.

Miller admitted Queensland's hopes of keeping their blue-chip finisher would have been far leaner without the assured second-half comeback.

"It would have been a lot harder to sit around the (negotiating) table if we had lost, particularly the way we played in the first half," he said today.

Rattled by interstate niggle in the first 30 minutes, the Reds ensured they could go into the round six bye with some confidence thanks to 26 unanswered points for the 29-18 triumph.

The ill-discipline and panic that featured in the Reds opening three fadeouts against New South Wales Waratahs, the Crusaders and the Blues were absent as the home side coolly played an effective field-position game.


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"I'd like to think it's been a learning experience for us and I think (last night) we showed we learned from the first three weeks," Miller said.
Mitchell bravely finished at the unfamiliar inside centre carrying badly bruised ribs in a patched-up backline.

He couldn't be replaced after halves Elton Flatley and Sam Cordingley copped bad knocks and young No.12 Lloyd Johansson's night was cut short after a nightmare first half.

X-rays today cleared him of a break. There was further good news with Flatley and Cordingley cleared, while first-choice playmaker Berrick Barnes is set to return for the three-match tour of South Africa starting in a fortnight against Central Cheetahs in Bloemfontein.

"The bye couldn't come at a better time," Miller said. "We have been taping the team together for the last few weeks so the bye should allow us to go to South Africa in good shape.

"Now we can go away on a high."

The bye also means the Reds will not miss Commonwealth Games sevens duo Chris Latham and Tom McVerry for any matches, like their fellow Australian teams.

Johansson also comes off contract and is in the sights of the Waratahs.


http://foxsports.news.com.au/common/imagedata/0,5001,5121899,00.jpg

FOX SPORTS (http://foxsports.news.com.au/story/0,8659,18437355-5002381,00.html)

The TRUTH
13-03-06, 04:36 PM
Sharpe collapses after loss

Bret Harris and Dan Koch
March 13, 2006

WESTERN Force captain Nathan Sharpe collapsed in the dressing room after his team's loss to Queensland Reds on Saturday and was rushed to a Brisbane hospital.

Sharpe had a virus in the lead-up to the game and was not feeling well during the warm-up at Suncorp Stadium.

But Sharpe, who was at the centre of a recruitment war between the two teams last year, pushed aside his malaise to play because of the importance of the game for himself and the Force.

The Wallabies vice-captain went down ill several times during the game and eventually came off midway through the second half while the Force was still in the lead.

A spokesperson for Sharpe said he did not remember much of the game and was disoriented at times on the field. He remained in hospital over the weekend and is expected to be released today, pending the results of blood tests.

Sharpe was one of the Force forwards who successfully "baited" the younger Queensland pack into giving away a series of undisciplined penalties. Queensland skipper John Roe conceded the Reds forwards will face a torrid time on the team's three-week tour of South Africa, if they continue to lose focus.

James Horwill, who spent 10 minutes in the sin bin for a high tackle on fullback James Hilgendorf, prop Rodney Blake and hooker Stephen Moore were all drawn in by their opponents' taunts and gamesmanship -- a fact that will not be lost on the powerful pack of the Cheetahs, who host the Reds in Bloemfontein in a fortnight.

"We were getting flustered with some of the niggle that was happening, especially at scrum time and it threw us off our game early on," Roe said. "There was plenty of passion between the sides, lots of guys questioning each other and there was a lot of old bull-young bull sort of stuff in terms of setting the scrums and coming down late or setting in different positions so we would have to reset. We probably got thrown by that early."

After addressing the problem at half-time, Queensland's forwards turned in an improved effort in the second 40 minutes, as coach Jeff Miller's side overran the Force 29-18, to record its first win of this year's series.

Both Roe, who was one of his side's best in his return from a knee injury, and Miller said the win was "essential" heading into the bye round next week, before the testing tour of South Africa, where the Reds will play the Cheetahs, Sharks and Cats. After losses in the opening three rounds, Queensland played poorly against the Chiefs last week and on Saturday night looked clumsy and disorganised for much of the opening hour.
A try to Roe just before the break kept Queensland in the game, before the Reds' superior depth and improved in general play from Julian Huxley and Chris Latham, saw the home side finish over the top of the Force, with Moore and Greg Holmes scoring tries in the final six minutes to seal the win.

Force coach John Mitchell said the opening half of football was his side's best of the series.

The former All Blacks coach was also encouraged by the efforts of new prop Tai McIsaac and powerful winger turned inside centre Scott Staniforth.

"We were right in the contest for 75 minutes, the game was there for the taking," Mitchell said. "We aren't far away from getting the mix of our team right."

One problem facing Miller is the form of veteran five-eighth Elton Flatley, who was replaced midway through the second half with a shoulder injury.

The former Wallaby has struggled in general play this season and with Ben Tune demanding a spot in the starting side, Huxley impressing with the boot and young gun Berrick Barnes ready to return from a rib injury, Flatley's spot in the starting side is looking shaky. Miller said he expected Barnes, Nic Berry, Tim Atkinson and Hugh McMeniman to make the trip to South Africa.

The TRUTH
13-03-06, 04:37 PM
Waratahs recall Sailor

March 13, 2006

THE NSW Waratahs have recalled suspended winger Wendell Sailor for the Super 14 clash with Western Force at Subiaco Oval on Friday night.

It will be just Sailor's second Super 14 match for the Waratahs after being sent home from South Africa for an alcohol-fuelled incident.

Sailor, who missed one game with a hamstring injury, was banned one match by the Waratahs and a further two by the ARU for breaking a suspended sentence he received a year earlier for a similar incident with the Wallabies, also in South Africa.

Dean Mumm is the other inclusion for the Waratahs 23-man squad that have lost Lote Tuqiri due to Commonwealth Games rugby sevens commitments.

"It's great to have Wendell back in the squad after losing Lote," said head coach Ewen McKenzie.

"He's pretty pumped up to play after missing the last four matches and his enthusiasm is infectious."

McKenzie said with injury concerns over players like Wycliff Palu (hamstring) it was best to select Mumm as an extra forward in the squad.

"Dean's been hampered by injury (lower back) during the pre-season but has returned to fitness well through the NSW A program," McKenzie added.

"We predict a bright future for him and so it's pleasing to see him involved this week."

The Waratahs were also boosted by the return of Leroy Houston today who spent the last three weeks on personal leave.
Houston will be involved in the NSW A v Qld A match in Brisbane on Friday.

Waratahs squad: Al Baxter, Shaun Berne, Will Caldwell, Matt Dunning, Adam Freier, Daniel Halangahu, Peter Hewat, Stephen Hoiles, Ben Jacobs, Alex Kanaar, David Lyons, Dean Mumm, Sam Norton-Knight, Wycliff Palu, Tatafu Polota-Nau, Benn Robinson, Mat Rogers, Wendell Sailor, Brett Sheehan, Morgan Turinui, Daniel Vickerman, Phil Waugh (vc), Chris Whitaker ©.

The TRUTH
13-03-06, 04:43 PM
Percy gets a break


Monday March 13 2006
Muir calls up Pietersen, Van der Merwe
Sharks coach Dick Muir has decided to give veteran Springbok Percy Montgomery a break and he has flown home from their five-match Australasian tour.


Also heading home after defeats against the Crusaders, Waratahs and Brumbies is hooker Skipper Badenhorst.

Muir has decided to fly in two replacements - talented youngsters JP Pietersen and Heinke van der Merwe, who have both recovered sufficiently from injury.

Van der Merwe will cover at prop, with John Smit and the impressive (especially against the Brumbies) Bismarck du Plessis, who is improving with each outing, giving the coach plenty of depth at hooker.

Muir has not hidden his feelings about JP Pietersen, whom he rates extremely highly, and may well start him at fullback on Saturday against the Highlanders.

He is just one of a number of pedigreed youngsters the Sharks will look to carry their hopes and dreams successfully in the next five to 10 years.

While Montgomery has been in outstanding form for the Sharks, leading the points-scoring for his adopted team, he is well-overdue a rest after playing an inordinate amount of rugby in the past few seasons.

With Tony Brown in excellent kicking form (he was successful with seven out of eight kicks at goal against the Brumbies at the weekend) and Ruan Pienaar providing back-up, the Sharks are well-covered in that department, and what the Sharks lose in experience, they make up for in youthful exuberance.

Planet Rugby (http://www.planet-rugby.com/Tournaments/Super_12/story_49634.shtml)

All other news was from Foxsports.com.au

The TRUTH
17-03-06, 07:22 AM
super14.com (http://www.super14.com/news/show_article.asp?id=659&cat=25)

Spears get legal confirmation of joining 2007 Super 14

Published Friday, 17-Mar-2006
Written by The Tighthead



The Southern Spears have received confirmation that they will play in the Super 14 rugby competition in 2007.
The Spears CEO Tony McKeever yesterday received a letter guaranteeing the Spears’ participation from Christo Ferreira who is the general manager of SA Rugby’s legal division.

In his letter to the Spears, Ferreira reportedly said “I refer to our telephonic conversation and confirm that the Board of SA Rugby (Pty) Ltd at a meeting held on December 2, 2005 ratified a decision of the presidents council of Saru to entrench the team of the Southern Spears for 2007 and 2008.”

There has been a lot of doubt over the Spears participation because the five current SA Super 14 teams had refused to sign the participation agreement that said the lowest finishing SA team in 2006 will be relegated in 2007.

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:lol:

Bull
17-03-06, 07:41 AM
Originally posted by The TRUTH!!@Mar 17 2006, 09:22 AM
super14.com (http://www.super14.com/news/show_article.asp?id=659&cat=25)

Spears get legal confirmation of joining 2007 Super 14

Published Friday, 17-Mar-2006
Written by The Tighthead



The Southern Spears have received confirmation that they will play in the Super 14 rugby competition in 2007.
The Spears CEO Tony McKeever yesterday received a letter guaranteeing the Spears’ participation from Christo Ferreira who is the general manager of SA Rugby’s legal division.

In his letter to the Spears, Ferreira reportedly said “I refer to our telephonic conversation and confirm that the Board of SA Rugby (Pty) Ltd at a meeting held on December 2, 2005 ratified a decision of the presidents council of Saru to entrench the team of the Southern Spears for 2007 and 2008.”

There has been a lot of doubt over the Spears participation because the five current SA Super 14 teams had refused to sign the participation agreement that said the lowest finishing SA team in 2006 will be relegated in 2007.

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:lol:
Idiots :wall: