Top 14

Sir Bill Beaumont has recently been re-elected as chairman of the International Rugby Board. He has been in this position since 2016. Beaumont is a former captain of the England team, where he earned 34 caps. He played for England from 1975-82 and for the British and Irish Lions from 1977-80. Opportunities and Challenges for […]

James Barker, Editor - Mar 28, 2020

For reasons that we are all aware of, the 2019/20 rugby season is in increasing danger of never being finished. While it will not be the highest priority on everyone’s minds, some retiring rugby players may have already played their last game. If the season cannot be completed, some big names of World Rugby will […]

Greatest Amateur Era XV

It’s time to pick your greatest amateur XV. We’ve compiled a list of the greatest players in every position from the amateur* days of rugby. The players played all or most of their significant careers pre-1996 and YOU can choose who gets in each jersey. 88 men have been brought together in a who’s who […]

With the rugby season up in the air it could do with looking at cricket’s Duckworth-Lewis-Stern method in order to decide future fixtures – if they can’t be played due to the Coronavirus pandemic. In order to finalize the tables, and ensure fair and proper qualification for the subsequent European competitions a year later, this […]

World Rugby shuts down for the 'foreseeable future'
Soji Olufunwa - Mar 24, 2020

World Rugby is coming to a halt as stated by global politicians throughout this month, we are in the midst of unprecedented times. The rapid spread of the Coronavirus has had an impact on all nations and everyday life as we know it. Sport no different to other industries in preventing virus Elite athletes are […]

Soji Olufunwa - Mar 4, 2020

With three wins from three played, many are wondering if the French are back to their best. Are we witnessing a French rugby renaissance? A strong start in 2020 saw four valuable points gained in their opening Six Nations match victory over England. Within sixty minutes of game two (against Italy) the try bonus point […]

Best-placed French Top14 teams prior to Six Nations window

Looking at the French Top14 team’s classment, prior to the 2020 Six Nations beginning on February 1, may indicate which teams could ultimately be best placed for a run towards the 2019/20 title. As the season was placed ‘on hold’ for the European Professional Rugby club competitions; Champions Cup/Challenge Cup, with Round 14 about to […]

Guinness Pro14

With Brexit due on January 31 for the UK there are far more permutations than just domestic ones. Rugby will suffer as a consequence if a no deal is passed through and faces challenges in the months following the result, whenever MP’s decide for that to take place! No deal Brexit changes everything Currently, citizens […]

Tom Wade - Jan 23, 2020

Toulon and Wales International scrum-half Rhys Webb is set to leave the club after agreeing to mutually end his contract early, according to reports in his home country. According to Wales Online, Webb has reached an agreement with the Top 14 club to end his stay with French team earlier than expected. The 31-year-old, who […]

Rugby Team of the Decade

As the end of the decade approaches it is a prime moment to look back and reflect on a scintillating 10 years of rugby. Years of quality football from both hemispheres, where a singular Team of the Decade conversation is a recognition of the sport, and of the game. Our senior writers and management have […]

European Champions Cup Pool 2 In Focus
David Challis - Nov 14, 2019

Just as the Rugby World Cup concludes rugby fans are treated to the start of the European Champions Cup. It promises to be an exciting ride with a number of exciting sub-plots rumbling on, including Saracens’ salary cap misdemeanors. Here Last Word on Rugby focuses in on Champions Cup Pool 2 which comprises Exeter Chiefs, […]

James Barker, Editor - Nov 13, 2019

Following Saracens’ fine and points deduction in the Gallagher Premiership, the London club are unlikely to be able to compete on both domestic and European fronts this season. They will most likely to also not feature in the Champions Cup next season. Therefore, it is time for a new winner in the Champions Cup 2019/20 […]

James Barker, Editor - Sep 21, 2019

It is a well worn cliché that France are unpredictable, sometimes uninterested and able to interchange between magical and dreadful with alarming ease. But they proved it in the 2019 Six Nations and they proved it again in their opening World Cup match against Argentina. It took a drop goal from replacement Camille Lopez to […]

James Barker, Editor - Jun 25, 2019

England Rugby U20s sealed fifth place in the World Rugby U20 Championship on June 22nd, with a comprehensive 45-26 win over Wales. This was their poorest performance in the tournament since 2012, having either won or finished runners up in the past six years. A bad sign for the future prospects of these players? U20s […]

Challenge Cup draw offers up scintilating ties

The Challenge Cup draw is usually a secondary affair with all eyes on the Champions Cup. This year has been different with a whole stack of big-name clubs falling into the tier competition, thus making it a very satisfying product to watch unfold. Robert Rees previews the 2019/20 competition. Pool 1 Castres, Worcester Warriors, Dragons, […]

Champions Cup draw - Holders Saracens headline pool of death

The Champions Cup draw has thrown up some titanic match-ups in the pool stages as the defending champions Saracens get drawn into the group of death. Robert Rees has your preview ahead of next season’s competition. Pool 1 Leinster, Lyon, Northampton Saints, Benetton Last year’s runners-up Leinster are expected to claim the top spot somewhat […]

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Ben Smith Nasi Manu 'championship combo' to inspire 2023 Highlanders

The Ben Smith Nasi Manu ‘championship combo’ who took the side to the franchise’s only Super Rugby title, have been assigned key management roles to inspire the 2023 Highlanders squad. Highlanders head coach Clarke Dermody will welcome the pair to both senior roles in the administration, but more likely in how they each work with […]

Autumn International Series
Charlie Inglefield - Jun 20, 2019

The Springboks have roared back into being one of the favorites for the World Cup next year. They utterly destroyed England at Twickenham on Saturday despite being at half-strength. They join Ireland and France as genuine contenders. There were upsets, led by Georgia’s memorable win over Wales, last-minute thrillers, and plenty of controversies. Charlie Inglefield […]

Doddie Weir 1970-2022

Over this weekend, the rugby world paid it’s last respects to Doddie Weir. The former Scotland and British and Irish Lions’ player succumbed to his debilitating motor neuron disease at the age of 52. From the personal tributes and obituaries, a sense of the man can be found. One who played with energy and pride, […]

Wallabies victory 'stolen' out of the arms of defeat against Wales

In a memorable revival, this weekend’s Wallabies victory was one ‘stripped out of the arms of defeat’ against Wales. Stolen because the Welsh side had stretched out to a 20-13 lead after a pair of Australian players were sanctioned with yellow cards. Yet from that poor position, the Wallabies would then add 26 unanswered points, […]

Autumn International Series
Charlie Inglefield - Jun 20, 2019

South Africa’s Autumn International Series 27-13 demolition of England on Saturday at Twickenham was a brutal reality check for English rugby. England were completely dominated in every department. To further compound what was one of the worst displays by an England rugby team in many a year, the Springboks were down to 14 men going […]

France's flanker Charles Ollivon celebrates win on November 12, 2022
Connor Dickins - Jun 20, 2019

Are ‘rugby values’ truly superior to those of other sports? Not according to Rugby analyst Robbie Owen (or Squidge Rugby, as preferably known). According to Owen, rugby often pats itself on the back for actions that “other sports can do without needing a round of applause”. Some fans may not like it, but he is […]

England's 'finishers' provide blueprint to beat the Springboks
Charlie Inglefield - Jun 20, 2019

Sir Clive Woodward is not a fan of the expression ‘Finishers’. His understandable argument is that all players should be capable of playing 80 minutes. But with all due respect to Sir Clive, England’s finishers nearly pulled off a remarkable victory over the All Blacks on Saturday. Messrs. Dave Ribbans, Mako Vunipola, Will Stuart, Freddie […]

Suspensions to Antoine DuPont/Pieter-Steph du Toit for red cards

With suspensions announced for star players Antoine DuPont and Pieter-Steph du Toit, it comes at the wrong time for World Rugby. The last fully contested weekend of the Autumn Nations Series was bereft of two superstars that are both former recipients of World Rugby men’s Player of the Year. It is bad timing, especially for […]