Match Preview Qantas Wallabies versus Wales- all you ever wanted to know as well as some Trivia

Match Preview Qantas Wallabies versus Wales

Qantas Wallabies Spring Tour 2011, Match #2 – Saturday 3 December, 2011

Australia versus Wales, Millennium Stadium, Cardiff, 2.30pm

Referee: Jonathan Kaplan (South Africa)

Introducing Wales

Nickname: The Dragons

National Emblem: The Prince of Wales (Three) Feathers

Home Union: Wales Rugby Union

Founded: 1881

Rugby World Cup Record: Semi-finalists 1987 (3rd), 2011 (4th), Quarter-finalists 1999, 2003, Pool participants 1991, 1995, 2007.

Current IRB Ranking: 8 (5 in 2004, highest)

Coach: Warren Gatland

Captain: Sam Warburton

On the web: www.wru.co.uk

Territorial Size: 20,779 km2

Population: 2,999,300

Capital: Cardiff

Language: English/Gaelic

Notable Landmark: The Severn Bridge – a key road link between England & Wales

Famous Citizen: Catherine Zeta-Jones – actress

Number of Clubs: 326

Registered Player Numbers: 50,557

A revitalized Wales appear poised to dismantle the established international order following recent wins over England (pre-World Cup) and Ireland, as well as gallant defeats by one-point against South Africa and France, and three against Australia during the Rugby World Cup. While still a relatively young side with an average age of 26 years per player, Wales retains a core of hardened pros who have experienced their share of success through two Six Nations Grand Slams from the last six championship campaigns. Australia has experienced the resurgence first hand during visits to Cardiff. Although the Wallabies have won more matches than they’ve lost since first landing in Wales in 1908, Australia has won on just three of its last six visits to the Millennium Stadium.

The Trophy – The James Bevan Trophy

The James Bevan Trophy was established in 2007 to commemorate the 100th year of Test Rugby between Australia and Wales. The trophy is named after James Bevan, an Australian born Welshman who was the first ever captain of the Welsh Rugby team. It is contested each time the two sides meet. Australia won the inaugural James Bevan Trophy in 2007 winning the series 2-0 on home soil, before conceding it to Wales a year later. The Trophy is now back in Australian possession after a 33-12 success at Cardiff in 2009. It was successfully retained after last year’s 25-16 win at the Millennium Stadium but was not at stake during the recent Bronze Final between the two nations at the Rugby World Cup.

The Last Meeting (Six weeks ago at a neutral venue) – Australia 21, Wales 18 at Auckland, 21 October, 2011

Australia collected the Bronze at the Rugby World Cup, while completing a third consecutive victory over Wales after a three-point success on a dramatic night in Auckland. Despite injuries playing havoc with Australian playing resources, the Wallabies held their nerve to bank the win, finishing it off with four minutes to go when Ben McCalman crossed to make the game safe at 21-11. The performance gave the Wallabies a positive end to the tournament, while cementing their world number two ranking. It represented a great show of character five days after the agony of losing a World Cup semi-final to the eventual tournament champions, New Zealand.

For Australia: Tries by Berrick Barnes and Ben McCalman; conversion and 2 penalty goals by James O’Connor; dropped goal by Barnes.

For Wales: Tries by Shane Williams and Leigh Halfpenny; conversion and a penalty goal by Stephen Jones, penalty goal by James Hook.

Referee: Wayne Barnes (England)

Australia: Kurtley Beale (replaced by Rob Horne, 9 min), James O’Connor, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Berrick Barnes, Digby Ioane, Quade Cooper (replaced by Anthony Fainga’a, 21 min), Will Genia (replaced by Luke Burgess, 68 min), Ben McCalman, David Pocock, Scott Higginbotham (temporarily replaced by Radike Samo, 30-33 min), Nathan Sharpe (replaced by Rob Simmons, 46 min), James Horwill (captain, replaced by Radike Samo, 70 min), Salesi Ma’afu (replaced by Ben Alexander, 60 min), Tatafu Polota Nau (replaced by Saia Fainga’a, 51 min), James Slipper.

Wales: Leigh Halfpenny, George North (replaced by Scott Williams), Jonathan Davies, Jamie Roberts, Shane Williams, James Hook (replaced by Stephen Jones), Mike Phillips (replaced by Lloyd Williams), Ryan Jones, Toby Faletau, Dan Lydiate (replaced by Andy Powell), Luke Charteris, Bradley Davies (replaced by Alun-Wyn Jones), Paul James (replaced by Ryan Bevington), Huw Bennett (replaced by Lloyd Burns), Gethin Jenkins (captain).

The Last Meeting (in Wales) – Wales 16, Australia 25 at Cardiff, 6 November, 2010

Australia completed back-to-back wins against Wales in Cardiff for just the third time, scoring three tries to one in a comfortable nine-point victory. While the visitors had their challenges at scrum time, and were briefly threatened when Wales pulled back to 16-22, 10 minutes from time, the result was never really in any doubt, although the score-line was closer than the 21-point hammering that had been administered to Warren Gatland’s men at the same venue 12-months earlier.

For Australia: Tries by David Pocock, Kurtley Beale and Ben Alexander; 2 conversions and 2 penalty goals by James O’Connor.

For Wales: Try by Richie Rees; conversion by Dan Biggar, 3 penalty goals by Stephen Jones.

Halftime: Australia 7, Wales 6

Referee: Wayne Barnes (England)

Australia: Kurtley Beale, Drew Mitchell, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Matt Giteau (replaced by Berrick Barnes, 68 min), James O’Connor, Quade Cooper, Will Genia (replaced by Luke Burgess, 75 min), Ben McCalman, David Pocock, Rocky Elsom (captain), Nathan Sharpe, Rob Simmons (replaced by Mark Chisholm, 72 min), Ben Alexander (replaced by James Slipper, 62 min), Saia Faingaa (replaced by Huia Edmonds, 55 min), Benn Robinson.

Wales: James Hook, Will Harries, Tom Shanklin (replaced by Chris Czekaj, 75 min), Andrew Bishop, Shane Williams, Stephen Jones (replaced by Dan Biggar, 66 min), Mike Phillips (replaced by Richie Rees, 66 min), Jonathan Thomas, Sam Warburton (replaced by Martyn Williams, 66 min), Dan Lydiate, Alun Wyn Jones, Bradley Davies, Adam Jones, Matthew Rees (captain, replaced by Huw Bennett, 72 min), Gethin Jenkins (replaced by Paul James, 72 min).

Two Years ago (in Wales) – Wales 12, Australia 33 at Cardiff, 28 November, 2009

Australia concluded its 2009 autumn tour of Europe on a commanding note, recording its second biggest win in Cardiff as it trounced Wales 33-12. The Qantas Wallabies scored four tries to nil as they convincingly reversed the previous year’s defeat at the Millennium Stadium.

For Australia: Tries by Digby Ioane, David Pocock, James Horwill and Tatafu Polota-Nau; 2 conversions and 3 penalty goals by Matt Giteau.

For Wales: Penalty goals by Stephen Jones (3) and Leigh Halfpenny.

Halftime: Australia 23, Wales 12

Referee: Wayne Barnes (England)

Australia: Adam Ashley-Cooper, Peter Hynes (replaced by James O’Connor, 60 mins), Digby Ioane, Quade Cooper, Drew Mitchell (replaced by Kurtley Beale, 70 mins), Matt Giteau, Will Genia (replaced by Luke Burgess, 79 mins), Wycliff Palu (replaced by Wycliff Palu, 70 mins), David Pocock (replaced by George Smith, 40 mins), Rocky Elsom (captain), Dean Mumm, James Horwill, Ben Alexander (replaced by Matt Dunning, 70 mins), Stephen Moore (replaced by Tatafu Polota Nau, 55 mins), Benn Robinson.

Wales: James Hook, Leigh Halfpenny (replaced by Andrew Bishop), Jamie Roberts, Jonathan Davies, Shane Williams (replaced by Tom James), Stephen Jones, Dwayne Peel (replaced by Martin Roberts), Andy Powell, Martyn Williams, Dan Lydiate, Luke Charteris (replaced by Jonathan Thomas), Alun Wyn-Jones, Paul James (replaced by Duncan Jones), Matthew Rees (replaced by Huw Bennett), Gethin Jenkins.

The Last Meeting (in Australia) – Australia 31, Wales 0 at Brisbane, 2 June, 2007

It was decisive on the scoreboard, but the numbers disguised a much closer contest as Australia wrapped up the inaugural James Bevan Trophy series by blanking Wales in the second Test. The visitors had only fallen to an after the bell try in the first match in Sydney a week earlier, and threatened to go the distance again and give the Australians another uneasy experience after they held the Wallabies to a 6-0 halftime advantage the second time around. This time, Wales was unable to sustain the effort, falling away as Australia posted three second half tries to blow out to a deceptively comfortable winning margin.

For Australia: Tries by Digby Ioane, Drew Mitchell and Julian Huxley; 2 conversions and 4 penalty goals by Stirling Mortlock.

Australia v Wales head-to-head record

Year Winner Score Venue
1908 Wales 9-6 Cardiff
1927 Australia 18-8 Cardiff
1947 Wales 6-0 Cardiff
1958 Wales 9-3 Cardiff
1966 Australia 14-11 Cardiff
1969 Wales 19-16 Sydney
1973 Wales 24-0 Cardiff
1975 Wales 28-3 Cardiff
1978 Australia 18-8 Brisbane
1978 Australia 19-17 Sydney
1981 Wales 18-13 Cardiff
1984 Australia 28-9 Cardiff
1987 Wales 22-21 Rotorua *
1991 Australia 63-6 Brisbane
1991 Australia 38-3 Cardiff *
1992 Australia 23-6 Cardiff
1996 Australia 56-25 Brisbane
1996 Australia 42-3 Sydney
1996 Australia 28-19 Cardiff
1999 Australia 24-9 Cardiff *
2001 Australia 21-13 Cardiff
2003 Australia 30-10 Sydney
2005 Wales 24-22 Cardiff
2006 Match Drawn 29-29 Cardiff
2007 Australia 29-23 Sydney
2007 Australia 31-0 Brisbane
2007 Australia 32-20 Cardiff *
2008 Wales 21-18 Cardiff
2009 Australia 33-12 Cardiff
2010 Australia 25-16 Cardiff
2011 Australia 21-18 Auckland*

* denotes Rugby World Cup fixtures

At All Venues: Australia 20 wins, Wales 10 wins, 1 drawn

In Australia: Australia 8 wins, Wales 1 win

In Wales: Australia 11 wins, Wales 8 wins, 1 drawn

At Neutral Venues: Australia 1 win, Wales 1 win

Biggest Australian win (margin) at all venues: 57 (63-6) Brisbane, 1991

Biggest Australian win (margin) in Wales: 35 (38-3) Cardiff, 1991

Heaviest Australian defeat (margin) at all venues: 25 (3-28) Cardiff, 1975

Heaviest Australian defeat (margin) in Wales: 25 (3-28) Cardiff, 1975

Biggest Australian winning score at all venues: 63 (63-6), Brisbane, 1991

Biggest Australian winning score in Wales: 38 (38-3) Cardiff, 1991

Heaviest Australian defeat (by score) at all venues: 28 (3-28) Cardiff, 1975

Heaviest Australian defeat (by score) in Wales: 28 (3-28) Cardiff, 1975

Most points scored by Australia at all venues: 63 (63-6) Brisbane, 1991

Most points scored by Australian in Wales: 38 (38-3) Cardiff, 1991

Most points conceded by Australia at all venues: 29 (29-29) Cardiff, 2006

Most points conceded by Australia in Wales: 29 (29-29) Cardiff, 2006

Most tries scored by Australia at all venues: 12, Brisbane, 1991

Most tries scored by Australia in Wales: 6, Cardiff, 1991

Most tries conceded by Australia at all venues: 4, Cardiff, 1975

Most tries conceded by Australia in Wales: 4, Cardiff, 1975

Individual Player Statistics

Most appearances by an Australian player against Wales: 9, George Gregan 1994-2007 & Nathan Sharpe 2002-2011

Most points in a Test by an Australian player against Wales: 23, Michael Lynagh, Brisbane, 1991

Most points in a Test by a Welsh player against Australia: 14, Jonathan Davies, Cardiff, 1996 & Stephen Jones, Cardiff, 2005

Most tries in a Test by an Australian player against Wales: 2 by nine players.

Most tries in a Test by a Welsh player against Australia: 3, John (JJ) Williams, Cardiff, 1975

Most tries in a Test career by an Australian player against Wales: 5, Chris Latham, 2001-2007

Leading Australian Point-scorers against Wales

84 Matthew Burke

58 Michael Lynagh

47 Matt Giteau

34 Paul Mclean

28 Stirling Mortlock

Leading Point-scorers for Wales against Australia

59 Stephen Jones

36 James Hook

22 Neil Jenkins

Leading Australian Try-scorers against Wales

5 Chris Latham

4 Michael Lynagh

3 Marty Roebuck

3 Tim Horan

3 David Campese

3 Matt Giteau

3 Digby Ioane

Leading Try-scorers for Wales against Australia

5 Shane Williams

4 Gerald Davies

3 John (JJ) Williams

Most Australian Caps against Wales

9 Nathan Sharpe

9 George Gregan

8 David Campese

7 Tim Horan

7 George Smith

7 Mark Chisholm

6 Joe Roff

6 Phil Waugh

General Trivia:

The Man in charge: He was once Sean Fitzpatrick’s understudy seemingly forever. He was also John Mitchell’s flat-mate. But Warren Gatland has emerged from their respective shadows to establish himself as a bit of a super coach. After 140 games for Waikato between 1986 and 1994, and 17 non-Test match outings hooking the scrum for the All Blacks, Gatland began his professional coaching career with Irish province Connacht between 1996 and 1998. He then took on Ireland from 1998 to 2001, coaching against Australia during the 1999 Rugby World Cup. Gatland won 18, drew one and lost 19 while in charge of Ireland, before beginning a five-year stint as director of Rugby at London Wasps which helped re-establish the famous club as a genuine European heavyweight. While Gatland was in London, the club annexed the English Premiership three times (2003, 2004 & 2005) and also won the Heineken Cup in 2004. Gatland then returned to his native New Zealand, bagging the Air New Zealand Cup (NPC) with Waikato in 2006, and serving as Chiefs’ assistant coach in Super Rugby, before he returned to the international ranks with Wales in 2008. The Dragons had humiliatingly missed the quarter-finals at the previous year’s Rugby World Cup, but Gatland instantly turned their fortunes around, guiding Wales to the 2008 Six Nations Grand Slam. Wales returned from the 2011 Rugby World Cup having won 23, lost 24 and drawn one under the Gatland regime.

Four Play: The Wallabies will achieve their fourth straight Test win over Wales should they be successful at the Millennium Stadium this weekend. That would represent the outright second best winning sequence for Australia against Wales, trailing only the nine straight wins gathered between 1991 and 2003. The three wins in a row currently achieved have matched the three wins claimed in 2007 for the second best Australian winning sequence against Wales.

The Whizz Kid of Oz: 21-year-old James O’Connor will feature in his 37th Test on Saturday, one scoring play away from becoming just the eighth Wallaby to surpass 200 Test points. Fresh from a Rugby World Cup campaign where he finished as the tournament’s second highest point-scorer (behind South Africa’s Morne Steyn) with 52, O’Connor begins this weekend with 199 Test points to his name. He was the second youngest player to reach 100 Test points behind England’s Jonny Wilkinson.

A Fond Farewell: He has already scored more tries – five – against Australia than any other Welshman, and Shane Williams will be looking for a spectacular farewell as he bids adieu to Test rugby in the James Bevan Trophy match. A try-scorer at Eden Park in the Bronze Final, the 34-year-old has scored a Welsh record 57 tries from his 86 Test caps for the Principality, while also winning the 2008 IRB Player of the Year award after the team’s run to the Six Nations Grand Slam that year. He is also a two-time British and Irish Lions tourist.

The Magnificent Millennium: The Millennium Stadium, which was finally completed in 1999 after two years of construction, is the fourth largest stadium in the United Kingdom behind Wembley, Twickenham and Old Trafford. It has a capacity of 74,500 and was built on the site of Cardiff Arms Park. The construction cost the WRU £126 million, which was funded by private investment, £46 million of public funds from the National Lottery, the sale of debentures to supporters (which offered guaranteed tickets in exchange for an interest-free loan), and loans. Saturday’s Test will be the 82nd played by Wales at the stadium since its opening 12 years ago. From the previous 81 matches, Wales have recorded 42 wins, 36 defeats and three draws.

Did You Know?: Wales has only scored more than two tries against Australia once in 18 Tests since the 1987 Rugby World Cup match between the nations. Australia has scored three or more tries in eight of its last 10 Tests against Wales.

For Once the Numbers Lie: The performance by Wales in reaching the World Cup semi-finals represented a genuine resurgence by the national side and was recognized as such, especially as Wales had failed to even make the quarters at the previous edition of the tournament in 2007. Even so, the three losses Wales endured during the 2011 tournament also represented the most the country had ever suffered at a single World Cup.

The Lucky Charms: Wales has only twice beaten Australia since 1987 and Stephen Jones and Shane Williams featured in both of them. The ‘lucky charms’ were the only Welsh players to be on the field in both the 2005 and 2008 victories achieved by Wales. Nathan Sharpe was the only Wallaby to figure in both matches.

Sevens Heaven: Wales is not traditionally known as a Sevens haven, but the principality shot to stardom in 2009 when it took out the Rugby World Cup Sevens in the United Arab Emirates – sharing the podium with the championship-winning Australian women’s team at Dubai. Wales beat Argentina in the final after earlier having taken out traditional Sevens powers Samoa and New Zealand en-route to the decider.

source article from – Matt McILraith | Qantas Wallabies Media Manager

Pocket Power , one of South Africa’s greatest ever race horses has recently retired and a bo ok is coming out

Pocket Power , one of South Africa’s greatest ever race horses has recently retired.

A book on his life story and achievements will be introduced on Thurs 1 Dec at his new home in Constantia where he is now retired.

The book was written by Gary Lemke .

Introducing… The Barbarians RFU Great history read ….

Qantas Wallabies versus Barbarians

Qantas Wallabies Spring Tour 2011, Match 1 – Saturday 26 November, 2011

Australia versus Barbarians, Twickenham Stadium, London, 2.35pm

Referee: Romain Poite (France)

Introducing… The Barbarians RFU

Who are they: The (British) Barbarians Rugby Football Club is an invitation club that has been producing teams that play with spirit and adventure for 120 years. While the club has no official home ground, teams bearing its name and traditional black & white hooped strip have appeared at all of the major grounds in Great Britain. Players are selected to appear for the Baabaas on an invitation basis and are awarded life membership to the club on the date of their first appearance.

The Founding of the Barbarians: The idea for the club came one evening in 1890 at Leuchters Restaurant in Bradford in the north of England, and was the brain child of WP Carpmael. As the British season at that stage closed in March, his idea was to form an invitation team “from all sources” that would then play a number of leading clubs in the land. The formation of the team would allow players the opportunity to play alongside others who they would usually only see as opponents. So the Barbarians were born, and the concept has largely remained the same ever since.

Barbarians Traditions: Even though the rugby landscape has changed dramatically in the last 16 years, since the advent of open professionalism, the Baabaas have endeavoured to maintain a number of traditions. One is that the players almost always wear the socks of their own clubs in matches. Another is the tradition of fielding at least one player in major matches who has yet to be capped by an international side. Both the Barbarians and the Qantas Wallabies observed this tradition at Wembley in 2008, with the Baabaas fielding the uncapped Western Province (South Africa) flanker Nick Koster, while Brumbies lock Peter Kimlin made his maiden appearance for the Wallabies off the bench.

What’s in a name: There are various theories as to how the Barbarians got their name ranging from some classical authority who deemed it appropriate to give the club a name “dignified by the famous victory of Arminius over Varius and his legions in Germany some two thousand years ago” to that put forward by former club president Emile de Lissa, who thought it more likely the “Barbarian was chosen in defiance of those who would style all rugby players as just that”. The club’s first crest featured a skull and crossbones but this quickly gave way to the monogram the jerseys still carry today, of the letters BFC inter-twined.

A world wide phenomenon: Twelve decades on from its formation, the club boasts over 2800 members worldwide. All are judged to have been worthy of upholding the Barbarian motto instituted by the Right Reverend W.J. Carey (former Bishop of Bloemfontein and an original member) which is: “Rugby Football is a game for gentlemen in all classes, but for no bad sportsman in any class”.

The first matches: The Barbarians kicked off in 1890 with matches against the Northern English clubs, Hartlepool Rovers and Bradford. The club’s second tour in 1891 also took in matches in Wales. As well as fixtures against international sides, the Barbarians play a number of traditional club fixtures on an annual basis against the likes of Cardiff, Newport, Swansea and top English club Leicester.

The first international: Australia had the honour of being the Barbarians’ first full international opponent, when a match was arranged to conclude the Wallabies’ 1948 tour of Great Britain, primarily to raise money to help cover the touring party’s expenses for its journey home via Canada. A crowd of 45,000 jammed into Cardiff Arms Park to see the Baabaas defeat the Wallabies 9-6. The most recent match between the Baabaas and Australia, on the team’s historic visit to the Sydney Football Stadium in 2009, was the 11th match to have been played between the teams. Australia has won eight of these, including the last seven in a row.

The Baabaas as an overseas touring entity: The 2009 visit was the Barbarians first appearance in Australia, but the club has toured often enough, having dispatched teams to 25 different countries. These include Canada, South Africa, Russia, Zimbabwe, Spain, Japan, Germany, Portugal, Tunisia, Georgia, Italy and Argentina.

Matches against Test sides: Recent years have seen the Barbarians involved in more and more matches against full international sides. They regularly feature at Twickenham playing England, and usually host matches against the major Southern Hemisphere nations at the stadium as well. The Baabaas on Saturday are seeking a notable hat-trick, having beaten the All Blacks in London in 2009 and South Africa last year.

Where do the players come from: Over 25 countries have been represented by players in the Barbarians through the years. This includes Australia, where names such as David Campese, Michael Lynagh, George Gregan and Matt Giteau have been associated with the famous jersey. Media baron and former Irish and British Isles winger AJ (Tony) O’Reilly holds the record for the most tries in the Barbarians jersey. O’Reilly scored 38 tries for the Baabaas in 30 appearances between 1955 and 1962.

The Australian connection: The appearance of former Wallaby captain Stirling Mortlock at Twickenham with the Barbarians this weekend continues a strong Australian-association with the club. Mortlock, who is Australia’s fourth most capped Test skipper after leading the Wallabies on 28 occasions in Tests, was captain when Australia beat the Barbarians 55-7 at the Sydney Football Stadium two years ago. The Baabaas were led on that evening by the then 77-Test Wallaby Phil Waugh, who went on to play to Tests for Australia later that same season. The tradition of players turning out for the Barbarians against their own countrymen was started by an Australian – Sir Nicholas Shehadie, who achieved the rare honour of playing both for and against the Baabaas. Sir Nicholas opposed the festival club when the Barbarians played Australia at the end of the Wallabies 1947-48 tour of the UK, Ireland and France. This was the first time the Barbarians had been assembled to play against an international touring side. He then featured for the Baabaas a decade later, being invited to wear the now famous black-and-white-hooped jersey against his Wallaby team-mates.

The most famous match: Many would claim that the 1973 match when the Barbarians beat the All Blacks 23-11 at Cardiff Arms Park is the best display of rugby ever seen. Certainly it ranks up there with the ‘match of the century’ – the 39-35 thriller played out between Australia and New Zealand in Sydney 11 years ago. The Barbarians’ match included a try by Gareth Edwards which took play from inside the Barbarians quarter through seven different pairs of hands before the try was finally scored by the Welsh great in the corner at the opposite end of the field. The Baabaas were also the only side to beat the Springboks on their 1961 tour of Great Britain and Ireland, capturing the Springbok head – a trophy traditionally presented by the South African tourists to the first side to beat them when on tour – after a 6-0 win at Cardiff Arms Park. The last two years have seen the Baabaas beat New Zealand 25-18 and South Africa 26-20 on their Spring Tours.

Olympic Gold Medal Recalled: The historic match between the Qantas Wallabies and the Barbarians at London’s Wembley Stadium in 2008 marked the 100th anniversary of Australia winning an Olympic gold medal for rugby union at the 1908 London Games. Australia defeated Cornwall, who represented Great Britain, on that occasion. The Australian side which beat the Barbarians featured 11 players who were in their first year as Wallabies, including the second youngest ever Australian representative; James O’Connor, who handled the goal-kicking at Wembley. In All Black Richard McCaw, Springboks Bryan Habana and Schalk Burger and Welshman Shane Williams; the star-studded Barbarians combination of that night featured four of the last five IRB Players of the Year.

Southern Association: The Baabaas have a strong association with Southern Hemisphere rugby. The team has twice toured South Africa. It has also played New Zealand on 10 occasions (for two wins, alongside a draw and seven losses), and South Africa seven times – for four wins and three defeats. One of the best wins achieved by the Barbarians came against the Springboks in 2007, when they beat the newly crowned Rugby World Cup champions 22-5. That match was the last in charge of South Africa for the new Brumbies coach, Jake White.

The Coaching Connection: All Blacks coaches Graham Henry and Steve Hansen are following in the footsteps of 2007 Rugby World Cup winner Jake White, in taking on the Baabaas to play Australia. White, assisted by ex-Wallabies coach Eddie Jones, prepared the star studded Barbarians outfit that was defeated by the Wallabies at Wembley Stadium in 2008. Henry and Hansen were then on the losing side against the Baabaas a year later, as a Nick Mallett prepared Barbarians team beat the All Blacks. South African Mallett, then the head coach of Italy, also prepared the Barbarians when they beat the Springboks last year.

Beware the H-bomb: He might not have made much of an impact against the Wallabies playing for the Springboks this year, but Australia will still be on guard for some explosions from Bryan Habana this weekend. The flying 28-year-old, who has scored a South African record 40 tries from his 74 Tests (five of which have come from his 15 outings against the Wallabies); scored a hat-trick when he last graced the Baabaas jersey in the 25-18 win over New Zealand in 2009. Habana is being accompanied in London by the recently retired King of the second row Victor Matfield, who played his 110th and final Test during South Africa’s 9-11 loss to Australia in the Rugby World Cup quarter-final.

Barbarians Results against Southern Hemisphere Teams

1948: Beat Australia, Cardiff 9-6

1952: Lost to South Africa, Cardiff 3-17

1954: Lost to New Zealand, Cardiff 5-19

1958: Beat Australia, Cardiff 11-6

1961: Beat South Africa, Cardiff 6-0

1964: Lost to New Zealand, Cardiff 3-36

1967: Lost to Australia, Cardiff 11-17

1967: Lost to New Zealand, London 6-11

1970: Lost to South Africa, London 12-21

1973: Beat New Zealand, Cardiff 23-11

1974: Drew with New Zealand, London 13-13

1976: Beat Australia, Cardiff 19-7

1978: Lost to New Zealand, London 16-18

1984: Lost to Australia, Cardiff 30-37

1988: Lost to Australia, Cardiff 22-40

1989: Lost to New Zealand, London 10-21

1990: Beat Argentina, Cardiff 34-22

1992: Lost to Australia, London 20-30

1993: Lost to New Zealand, London 12-25

1994: Beat South Africa, Dublin 23-15

1996: Lost to Australia, London 12-39

2000: Lost to South Africa, Cardiff 31-41

2001: Lost to Australia, Cardiff 35-49

2004: Lost to New Zealand, London 19-47

2007: Beat South Africa, London 22-5

2008: Lost to Australia, London 11-18

2009: Lost to Australia, Sydney 7-55

2009: Beat New Zealand, London 25-18

2010: Beat South Africa, London 26-20

Qantas Wallabies team to play Barbarians named

Qantas Wallabies team to play Barbarians named

Western Force flanker David Pocock will captain the Qantas Wallabies for the first time after being named to lead Australia in Saturday’s match against the Barbarians at Twickenham Stadium in London.

The 23-year-old, who is a two-time nominee for the International Rugby Board’s Player of the Year, led the Force for the first time in Super Rugby earlier this year during the Western Australian team’s 27-24 win over the Melbourne Rebels in the final round of this year’s competition . He also led the Australian team at the Under-20 World Cup in Wales in 2008.

The Pocock appointment comes after Qantas Wallabies coach Robbie Deans and his fellow selectors opted to start regular skipper James Horwill from the bench, in order to lighten what has been a heavy work load for the 26-year-old through the 2011 season.

Horwill featured in all 18 games of the Queensland Reds’ title-winning season in Super Rugby, and has subsequently sat out just two of the 12 Tests played by the Wallabies in the year to date.

“While he ended the Rugby World Cup with a bit of a shoulder niggle, James is in good nick, given the load that he has carried,” Deans says.

“We just felt that this was a good opportunity, both to lessen the load on James, while also giving David the chance to gain experience captaining the side.”

Deans says that Pocock already has a significant influence in on and off field decision making anyway, as a member of the team’s leadership group. Taking on the captaincy for this match simply offers him an opportunity to broaden his leadership skills, while also providing additional support to Horwill.

The new skipper will be surrounded by the core of the side which beat Wales 21-18 in the Bronze Final at last month’s Rugby World Cup.

One notable positional change sees James O’Connor start at flyhalf for the first time, after previously having appeared on the wing or at fullback.

The move had long been flagged as likely for the talented 21-year-old, with the Wallabies taking the opportunity to move the goal-kicking utility closer to the action in the absence from this tour of Quade Cooper, who has been the regular custodian at 10 this year.

O’Connor will play outside halfback Will Genia, and inside of NSW Waratahs playmaker Berrick Barnes, who will start at inside centre.

Barnes’ NSW Waratahs colleague Rob Horne also gains a starting role, although he completed all but nine minutes of the Bronze medal match in Auckland after replacing an injured Kurtley Beale.

That chance saw Horne slot in at centre, with the versatile Adam Ashley-Cooper moved to fullback, and is a formation that Deans has retained for this weekend’s contest.

Horwill’s relocation aside, the starting forward pack is the same as that which Australia fielded in its most recent Test outing.

The bench does show a slightly different look, with uncapped loose forward Dave Dennis and inside centre Ben Tapuai, both featuring amongst a five-forward, two-back, breakdown amongst the run on substitutes.

While Australia has a good recent record against the Barbarians, the squad has inside knowledge of the motivation the representatives of the festival club will bring to the game, with Ashley-Cooper, O’Connor and Genia all having appeared for the Baabaas during their win over the touring South African side last year.

Ashley-Cooper and Genia were also involved the year before, when the Barbarians beat an All Black side prepared by the men who have been directing operations for the Baabaas this week – All Black coaches Graham Henry and Steve Hansen.

“It’s an amazing tradition that the Barbarians have. Receiving the opportunity to play for the club on the big stage, in games like the one this weekend, is a huge honour,” Genia says.

“Being able to play in these games for the Baabaas is a privilege – because selection comes by invitation – but it also carries with it a huge responsibility to perform. Make no mistake, this is going to be a tough match.”

The Genia warning is echoed by Deans, who points to Australia’s experience against the Baabaas at Wembley Stadium on the 2008 Spring Tour, where the Wallabies needed a late try to squeeze home 18-11 in a dramatic contest against a star-studded Barbarians cast not dis-similar in quality to the line-up that has been chosen to represent the club on Saturday.

“They’re all proud men,” Deans says of the Barbarians group, “and they will be looking at this match as a great opportunity with no significant downside.

“The Baabaas results against New Zealand and South Africa in the last two years have shown what is possible, and what they can bring to the occasion. They’ve got class players all over the field who will play without fear or inhibition. That is going to make them a very tough outfit to beat.”

The Qantas Wallabies team to play the Barbarians at Twickenham Stadium, London on Saturday 26 November (kick-off: 2.35pm local, 1.35am, Sun 27 Nov, AEDST) is:

15. Adam Ashley-Cooper (NSW Waratahs)

14. Lachie Turner (NSW Waratahs)

13. Rob Horne (NSW Waratahs)

12. Berrick Barnes (NSW Waratahs)

11. Digby Ioane (Queensland Reds)

10. James O’Connor (Melbourne Rebels)

9. Will Genia (Queensland Reds)

8. Ben McCalman (Western Force)

7. David Pocock (Western Force, captain)

6. Scott Higginbotham (Queensland Reds)

5. Nathan Sharpe (Western Force)

4. Rob Simmons (Queensland Reds)

3. Salesi Ma’afu (Brumbies)

2. Tatafu Polota Nau (NSW Waratahs)

1. James Slipper (Queensland Reds)

Run on Reserves:

16. Stephen Moore (Brumbies)

17. Ben Alexander (Brumbies)

18. James Horwill (Queensland Reds)

19. Dave Dennis (NSW Waratahs)

20. Matt Hodgson (Western Force)

21. Nick Phipps (Melbourne Rebels)

22. Ben Tapuai (Queensland Reds)

Australia v the Barbarians – Historical Notes

  • This will be the 12th match between Australia and the Barbarians since the foundation game in 1948 at Cardiff Arms Park. The Barbarians won on that occasion, 9-6.
  • Australia has won its last seven matches against the Barbarians, and has won eight of the 11 games that have been played.
  • The most recent match between the sides was at the Sydney Football Stadium in 2009 when the Wallabies beat the Barbarians 55-7 during a rare trip by the famous club to Australia. James O’Connor, David Pocock, James Horwill, Ben Alexander and Stephen Moore were all try-scorers for Australia in that match.
  • The last match between the two sides in the United Kingdom was at Wembley Stadium, London, at the end of the 2008 Spring Tour when the Wallabies beat a star-studded Barbarians combination 18-11. Lachie Turner was a try-scorer for Australia in that match.
  • While Saturday’s match doesn’t carry Test status, it will mark the first occasion that Western Force flanker David Pocock has led the Qantas Wallabies. Pocock previously led the Australian team to the Under-20 World Cup in Wales in 2008, becoming a senior Wallaby for the first time later that same year.
  • Saturday’s match continues the strong association that exists between the Barbarians club and the three Tri-Nations countries of the SANZAR alliance. As well as its record against Australia, the Barbarians have played New Zealand on 10 occasions (for two victories, alongside a draw and seven losses), and South Africa seven times – for four wins and three losses. The Baabaas head into this weekend’s contest having beaten South Africa last year, and New Zealand the year before.
  • All Black coaches Graham Henry and Steve Hansen will prepare the Barbarians for the first time. The pair won the Rugby World Cup in their home country last month. The 2008 Barbarians team beaten by Australia was prepared by Jake White and Eddie Jones, who had combined to win the Rugby World Cup with South Africa the year before.

Australia v Barbarians Results 1948-2009

1948: Barbarians 9, Australia 6 at Cardiff

1958: Barbarians 11, Australia 6 at Cardiff

1967: Australia 17, Barbarians 11 at Cardiff

1976: Barbarians 19, Australia 7 at Cardiff

1984: Australia 37, Barbarians 30 at Cardiff

1988: Australia 40, Barbarians 22 at Cardiff

1992: Australia 30, Barbarians 20 at Cardiff

1996: Australia 39, Barbarians 12 at London

2001: Australia 49, Barbarians 35 at Cardiff

2008: Australia 18, Barbarians 11 at London

2009: Australia 55, Barbarians 7 at Sydney

Springbok Sevens name team for Gold Coast

IRB Sevens Player of the Year Cecil Afrika was today included in the final squad of 12 Springbok Sevens players for round one of the HSBC Sevens World Series to be held on Friday and Saturday at the Gold Coast in Australia.

Afrika, also the current SARU Sevens Player of the Year, has recovered fully from his broken jaw suffered during the pre-season and will be in action at Skilled Park, the new home of Australian Sevens after the switch from Adelaide.

Branco du Preez and William Small-Smith are the two players who missed out on selection for the opening tournament of the 2011/12 Series season, which now consist of nine tournaments following the recent addition of Japan.

“We picked the best available team,” explained Paul Treu, the Springbok Sevens coach. “The new seeding and points format will bring a new dimension to how you approach each tournament and teams will simply have to be at their best if they want to stay in the hunt,” added Treu.

South Africa face Pool B matches against hosts Australia, USA and Japan for the Gold Coast Sevens, following the pool draw which took place at the beginning of November

The winners and runners up from each event will automatically be placed in Pool A and B respectively for the following tournament, before the draw for each pool is made, adding a new element to this Series.

“The USA is always a difficult customer while Japan is improving all the time. Australia will play with a huge amount of pride because it is their home tournament. New Zealand is always strong while Fiji, Samoa and England are formidable,” said Treu.

Last season South Africa ended the Series as the in-form team when they claimed back-to-back Cups in Scotland and England, which enabled the team to secure second spot on the Series standings behind New Zealand.

Treu has selected a balanced and settled squad for the opening tournament. Robert Ebersohn is back after a two-year absence while Chase Minnaar and Renfred Dazel have shrugged off their injuries which kept them on the sidelines for most of last season.

Kyle Brown and Frankie Horne form the core of an experienced forward division while Boom Prinsloo will be keen to add to his impressive performances of last year.

The last time Treu’s side faced Australia was in the Cup final in Edinburgh, one of the most pulsating matches of the 2010/11 Series. South Africa came from 28-7 and 35-19 behind to snatch a dramatic 36-35 victory, but Treu believes each match in Pool B will be just as tough as that against the hosts.

The Springbok Sevens team for round 1 of the HSBC Sevens World Series in Australia:

1. Chris Dry
2. Kyle Brown (captain)
3. Frankie Horne
4. Boom Prinsloo
5. Chase Minnaar
6. Paul Delport
7. Renfred Dazel
8. Mark Richards
9. Steven Hunt
10. Bernado Botha
11. Robert Ebersohn
12. Cecil Afrika

The fixtures on day one (to be televised live on SuperSport, with SA times):

06h47: SA vs. USA

09h53: SA vs. Japan

13h36: SA vs. Australia

Christmas 2011 — Birth of a New Tradition

Christmas 2011 — Birth of a New Tradition

As the holidays approach, the giant Asian factories are kicking into high gear to provide us with monstrous piles of cheaply produced goods — merchandise that has been produced at the expense of South African labour. This year will be different. This year South Africans will give the gift of genuine concern for other South Africans. There is no longer an excuse that, at gift giving time, nothing can be found that is produced by South African hands. Yes, there is plenty.

It’s time to think outside the box, people. Who says a gift needs to fit in a shirt box, wrapped in Chinese produced wrapping paper?

Everyone — yes EVERYONE gets their hair cut. How about gift certificates from your local hair salon or barber?

Gym membership? It’s appropriate for all ages who are thinking about some health improvement.

Who wouldn’t appreciate getting their car valet’d? Small, South African owned car washes would love to sell you a gift certificate or a book of gift certificates.

Are you one of those extravagant givers who think nothing of plonking down the cash on a Chinese made flat-screen? Perhaps that grateful gift receiver would like his driveway fixed, or lawn mowed for the summer, or roof waterproofed and painted.

There are a Gazillion owner-run restaurants — all offering gift certificates. And, if your intended isn’t the fancy eatery sort, what about a half dozen breakfasts at the local breakfast joint. Remember, folks this isn’t about big National chains — this is about supporting your home town South African with their financial lives on the line to keep their doors open.

How many people couldn’t use an oil change for their car, truck or motorbike, done at a shop run by a South African working guy?

Thinking about a heartfelt gift for mom? Mom would LOVE the services of a local cleaning lady for a day.

My computer could do with an upgrade, and I KNOW I can find some young guy who is struggling to get his repair business up and running.

OK, you were looking for something more personal. Local crafts are great. They make jewelery, pottery, knitted stuff, Teddy Bears, paintings and home preserves etc.

Plan your holiday outings at local, owner operated restaurants and leave your server a nice tip. And, how about going out to see a play or ballet at your hometown theatre.

Musicians need love too, so find a venue showcasing local bands.

Honestly, do you REALLY need to buy another ten thousand Chinese lights for the house? When you buy a R50 string of lights, about fifty cents stays in the community. If you have those kinds of bucks to burn, leave the mailman, trash guy or babysitter a nice BIG tip.

You see, Christmas is no longer about draining South African pockets so that China can build another glittering city. Christmas is now about caring about us, encouraging small businesses to keep plugging away to follow their dreams. And, when we care about other South Africans, we care about our communities, and the benefits come back to us in ways we couldn’t imagine. THIS should be the new South African Christmas tradition.

BUY SOUTH AFRICAN – BE SOUTH AFRICAN –

Sting back to Bass tour for SA March 2012 –

Four concerts in South Africa have been added to Sting’s Back to Bass tour, including two performances in Johannesburg on March 24 and 25, as well as two in Cape Town on March 27 and 28 2012..
To celebrate the 25th anniversary of his solo career and in support of Sting: 25 Years, the recently released box set collection, Back to Bass finds Sting performing songs spanning his dynamic solo career, plus a selection of The Police’s greatest hits.

Sting will be joined by a band including his longtime guitarist Dominic Miller, Rufus Miller (guitarist), Vinnie Colaiuta (drummer), Peter Tickell (electric fiddle), and Jo Lawry (vocalist).

%d bloggers like this: