Super Rugby

Andre-Pierre Cronje - Jul 13, 2020

A Super Rugby break-up could be imminent, and with the South Africans looking north at a spot in the Guinness Pro14, is this really the right option for all involved? Last Word delves into the issues surrounding the move. ‘It must be remembered that there is nothing more difficult to plan, more doubtful of success, nor […]

Warren Gatland can't buy a Chiefs win post-Covid19

The frustration was clear to see, with Warren Gatland experiencing a lean spell of wins with his Chiefs Super Rugby franchise. After gaining four wins in the pre-Covid19 regular season, since the new Super Rugby Aotearoa competition resumed his side can hardly buy a win. Three losses from three matches and the close results are […]

Unheralded success for Blues Super Rugby in 'jolted' season

Not only winning their two opening matches but, at the return of professional rugby there has been unheralded success for the Blues Super Rugby franchise in what is an incredibly ‘jolted’ season. With the Coronavirus pandemic ending the regular Super Rugby season just as the Blues Super Rugby team had won four matches and were […]

Toronto Wolfpack
Sam Harris - Jun 20, 2020

Over the years there has been a natural divide for fans, players and coaches alike when it comes to rugby league and rugby union.  However, some players have switched between the codes and Last Word on Rugby has decided to look at five of the best players to play both. Sonny Bill Williams Sonny Bill […]

Fans, fans, fans everywhere; Super Rugby Aotearoa

When numbers count, the figures for attendance at Super Rugby Aotearoa matches in rounds one and two may reach unfamiliar heights. Yet, in unfamiliar times [Covid-19 enforced] something that is positive is very much required. The positives from rugby resuming are untold. In terms of social importance, in participation in part by the teams as […]

Southern hemisphere Rugby Cities with both League and Union representation

In the southern hemisphere, Australia and New Zealand have five cities that play host to both professional rugby league and union teams. The game has a wide reach throughout the region; Australasia, the Pacific, and across the Southern Hemisphere. Fan loyalty can be engrained, although, at times, it might be whichever game has the most […]

Strategic Breakdown Law variations used by Super Rugby Aotearoa
Scott MacLean - Jun 9, 2020

While strategic to new breakdown law variations, the recent changes to the ruck have been received positively. Super Rugby Aotearoa wants to test these innovations, to judge how successful the law variations will be taken to by players and referees. Last Word on Rugby’s resident rugby referee, Scott MacLean, has cast his eye over breakdown […]

Covid-19 health/family focus now switches back to rugby training mode

From the intense Covid-19 personal health and family focus of the last few months, it now switches back to one of a ‘rugby training mode’ for both men and women across the rugby-globe. Moving from the life-affecting changes to society and to the state of rugby worldwide was monumental for all. One which the Coronavirus […]

Strange in Blue; Dan Carter super-utility rugby signing

Usually wearing a red jersey, Dan Carter will now be [strangely] in Blue. He has now signed as a utility back for the Blues Super Rugby franchise. No, you’re not dreaming. The three-time Super Rugby title winner has 141 caps with the Crusaders and is a surprise signing. It is also a huge boost for […]

Red Card - see your replacement in 20 minutes

Not always, but for the most, a red card in a rugby match is tantamount to a ‘give way’ sign. The defensive effort is often too much – especially if that occurred in the opening half or the third quarter. But as Super Rugby Aotearoa gets set to return, some law variations being trialed will […]

Is a rugby game exciting without a Crowd

The rush to get sport up and running again brings up a unique consideration. With nobody cheering them on, is a rugby game exciting without a Crowd? As Covid-19 health conditions restrict crowds gathering in large numbers in New Zealand, Australia, and across the globe, what will the atmosphere feel like? That is, in comparison […]

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 […]

Super Rugby franchises set to fire-up in June

As all five New Zealand Super Rugby franchises were delighted to hear that professional rugby could restart in 2020, players and fans we equally so, and are becoming fired-up for the June 13 scheduled kick-off. The fixture list was released immediately after Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern confirmed the much-awaited transition to Alert Level 2. On […]

Super Rugby Aotearoa on verge of Level 2 return date

On the verge of returning to action, the Super Rugby Aotearoa intra-conference planned competition is awaiting the Level 2 go-ahead next week. Awaiting the chance to open the gates, that have stood closed for over seven weeks and counting. In fact, all of New Zealand is waiting with bated breath to hear the date when […]

James Barker, Editor - May 6, 2020

In the fourth of our series looking at the best overseas players to have appeared in England, James Barker compiles the South Africa Premiership Rugby XV. This team, starting with the forward pack, features the Springboks who’ve made the biggest impact in England. Last Word on Rugby readers and supporters were given their say on who should make this […]

The New Zealand Rugby Union have recorded a loss of $7,379,000 before tax in their latest accounts. Robert Rees breaks down the report to bring you the latest from down under.  NZRU loss a ‘worry sign of the times’ An increase of losses by more than $5.5m is a worrying sign for the New Zealand […]

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Around LWOS...

Wales tour of South Africa
Thomas Booth - May 3, 2020

Wales men’s rugby team arrived in beautiful but turbulent South Africa this week. The South African nation isn’t alone in experiencing tumult. Truth be told it is a current global phenomenon. Will the men’s XVs rugby provide an entertaining diversion from our perplexing and worrying news cycle? Something that the Lions tour of last year […]

2022 Under 20s Summer Series showcases the very best young talent

With the first round of pool matches complete, the 2022 Under 20s Summer Series showcases the very best young talent from eight Tier One nations. Among the expected results, one outcome has set tongues wagging. Invitee South Africa has defeated England, to set Pool A alight! With the pandemic spoiling the previous pinnacle World Rugby […]

SA Rugby migration

The SA Rugby migration to Europe has been a resounding success. The DHL Stormers defeated the Vodacom Bulls in an all-South African final of the United Rugby Championship. Ryan Jordan considers the success of the transition of SA Rugby’s franchise teams from Super Rugby to the URC, as well as some work to be done […]

Champion Leicester Tigers’ progress continues
Elliott Butlin - May 3, 2020

Newly crowned 2021/22 Premiership Champion Leicester Tigers’ progress continues, after beating Saracens 15-12 in a pulsating final at Twickenham last Saturday. The result capped an extraordinary turnaround for a club that finished 11th in consecutive seasons only two years ago. Leicester Tigers’ progress continues to impress, so how has that come about and how will […]

England's rugby team player Jonny May celebrates scoring his team's second try on June 19, 2022
Charlie Inglefield - May 3, 2020

The Barbarians thrashing of England’s rugby team on Sunday has heaped more pressure on Eddie Jones. With Australia eagerly awaiting a three-test match series on their home turf, it won’t get any easier for Jones or the national side. This was a chastening weekend for England rugby. Last Sunday, the Barbarians put 50 points playing […]

London Irish back Theo Brophy-Clews warms up before game on March 27, 2021
Connor Dickins - May 3, 2020

INTERVIEW – Hanging up your boots is a sad time for many rugby players. But how must it feel for professionals, who can no longer play their cherished sport for a living? We spoke with Theo Brophy-Clews, a former England U20 international who played over 60 games for London Irish. He was forced to retire […]

Rugby Canada player Sophie De Goede wins player of the match against USA Rugby on June 6, 2022

Whangārei, NZ – Rugby Canada wins against the Australian Wallaroos on June 17 in Canada (June 18 in New Zealand). It was their second Pacific Series win and as a result, finished second in the competition. Rugby Canada wins despite giving the first 10 points in the game Three keys to the game Full Game […]

Touring Irish squad will bring toughest mid-year series for 2022 All Blacks

You could say, not since 2017, has the challenge been bigger. And this touring Irish squad has an opportunity like few others, to win games and even the entire 2022 Summer tour. New Zealand will undoubtedly feel the same – by turning this Irish visit into motivation to avenge last year’s loss in Dublin. The […]