Under the Posts – Week of September 2, 2018

Another big week with lots of news from all over the place. Our highlights include a women’s “Fast Four” tournament being added to Hamilton 7s, more on the IRP player’s survey and how players feel about it, week 3 of the WPL, Russia took Grand Prix 7s for the third year running, Japan upsets China in the first Asia Game Tournament, and more on 15s International tests.

Can’t wait a week? Join us on Twitter, Facebook page or Instagram (NEW) as we will be posting daily. Give us a shout!

As rugby continues to struggle with concussions, Canada’s Jamie Cudmore recounts an incident following a European Cup Final. Cudmore was one among a number of players, coaches and medical experts that opened up about their experiences a new RugbyPass series, ‘Beyond 80’.

The series takes an unflinching look at the reality of concussion in rugby. ‘Knocked’ sees a cast of players, referees, medical experts and stakeholders from the sport, give a unique insight into the condition and what’s being done to raise awareness in the game.

Hamilton Sevens has added a women’s tournament and the Black Ferns will play France, China and England during the New Zealand leg of the World Rugby Sevens Series on January 26-27 next year.

This is the first international women’s sevens tournament in New Zealand.

We covered the International Rugby Player’s (IRP) survey last week and the exposure continues this week as Rugby World is covering it as well.

Among other things, most see a gap between the world’s top teams and those below. The feat is that it will widen without regular tournaments. One player said: “All nations should have more opportunities to play Tests. For all to be competitive, they need more matches.”

We’ve been beating this drum with a few others for awhile now. We continually hear there is little to no funding or interest. If we don’t build, who will come?

Week 3 of the WPL went mostly according to script with the only surprise was Atlanta absolutely smothering the Amazons this week. Berkeley stands atop the blue conference with 14 points and New York has 10 points in the red conference. Are we seeing leaders emerge already?

Russia won the second leg of the Rugby Europe Women’s 7s Grand Prix Series and retains the title for three years running. France with a mostly developmental squad took second and Scotland took third.

In the Asia games, China and Japan have been trading wins the last few years. Last year China stole the Championship and a core spot on the HSBC Sevens Series. Japan got their revenge this year and beat China 7-5 in the first let of the tournament.

Speaking of China, a few years ago World Rugby and Alo isp proposed forming a men’s and women’s league in the XV’s form of the game as well as creating a national sevens programme. This would have essentially professionalized rugby in China for their mena nd women.

However it appears now as if those plans have stalled considerably. In a recent interview, Alisports CEO Zhang Dazhong has indicated that it is too soon to think about investment in the professional game in China at the moment.

New Zealand’s dominance of Australia in international rugby continues with a 45-17 win for the world champion Black Ferns in Auckland on Saturday.

Just as they had done in winning 31-11 in Sydney sevens days earlier, the Black Ferns physically dominated their opponents up front to lay the platform for a 17th straight victory against their trans-Tasman rivals dating back to the first test in 1994.

Speaking of “if you build it, they will come”…did you see the ratings for the New Zealand vs Australia match???

USA Eagles Jennifer Lui and Tiffany Faaee were recently featured in a adidas ad looking to empower women and bring change.

More November Internationals have been announced, Scotland will host Canada at Scotstoun Stadium on 27 November as part of a celebration of women and girls’ rugby.

The autumn test match will combine with the Girls School Cup finals day at the home of Glasgow Warriors, where the best under-18 and under-15 school sides from around the country will take to the field and showcase their talents ahead of the international match.

The meeting with Canada, who are currently ranked fourth in the world, will be one of three capped autumn international friendlies Scotland will be involved in outside of the Women’s Six Nations in 2019. The Dark Blues will travel to Calvisano to play against Italy on Sunday 4 November (2:30pm local-time kick-off), the Canada match on 27 November at Scotstoun Stadium (7pm kick-off) followed by a trip to face Spain on 20 January.

The Red Roses will play three Tests in the 2018 Quilter Internationals, including a first game for the side at Castle Park, Doncaster. They will face USA, Canada and Ireland.

Charlotte Caslick, Emilee Cherry and Evania Pelite have all signed on to continue playing with Australia until at least the 2020 Olympics. Caslick had been headhunted over the last six months to join the Brisbane Broncos in the inaugural WNRL but eventually declined the offer.

The England Rugby Football Union has announced they will integrate its men’s and women’s sevens programms in order to create a “strong culture and identity”.

The women’s squad will move from their present base at Bisham Abbey to join the men at England’s High Performance Centre at The Lensbury in Teddington.

On top of announcing the integration of their sevesn programs, England has also announced their 2018-2019 7s squad. This includes 17 contracts for the upcoming 7s season.

England Women’s Sevens squad

Lizzie Adam*, Holly Aitchison, Claire Allan, Jess Breach, Abbie Brown, Abi Burton*, Heather Fisher, Deborah Fleming, Emma Hardy*, Natasha Hunt, Megan Jones, Ellie Kildunne*, Alex Matthews, Celia Quansah*, Helena Rowland*, Emily Scarratt, Emma Uren*

*new to squad

The Tyrrells Premier 15s began again this weekend and the stars were out to play!

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