Saturday, 21 January 2017

Things that make me feel old #4

The GRANDSON of English cricketing legend Ian Botham has been called up to the Wales Sevens squad.

18 year old James Botham - a member of the Cardiff Blues academy - will make his international Sevens debut in the World Rugby series in Wellington on 28-29 January.

I think I might cry 😢

Thursday, 19 January 2017

Residency rules under attack from common sense?

I’m not sure how impressed to be by reports that the RFU is pushing for reforms to international eligibility regulations by demanding that the residential qualification period increases from 3 to 5 years and has hinted that, even if the measure is not voted through by World Rigby in May this year, England may impose its own 5 year residency rule.

This follows the announcement by the French Rugby Federation in December that it would no longer select players qualifying under the 3 year residency rule but instead would only select players with a French passport.

As far as I am concerned, any move towards tightening the regulations is welcome (and I would also scrap the grandparent rule) and it would appear that common sense is beginning to prevail.

It does, however, seem strange that the RFU is spearheading this particular crusade, given that Fijian Nathan Hughes was capped by England under the 3 year residency rule as recently as November 2016.

Far be it for me to suggest then that the RFU’s present stance might be a tad confusing, inconsistent, opportunistic and, dare I say it, hypocritical?

Wednesday, 18 January 2017

Secrets and Lies

It’s all a bit secret squirrel at Sale Sharks where winger Tom Arscott has been suspended for allegedly leaking information to Bristol prior to the New Year’s day game between the two teams, a game which Bristol won 24-23 after overturning a 0-15 deficit.

Both Sale and the RFU are investigating and, while Bristol have confirmed that Arscott did meet his brother (and Bristol player) Luke the day before the match, the West Country club insists that "nothing of any sporting value" was passed on.

The facts seem rather thin on the ground but a few things to note here:

- that two brothers met up for a chat on New Year’s Eve hardly seems a justifiable basis for such scrutiny;

- it seems that the attention of Sale’s DoR, Steve Diamond, was drawn to the issue by members of the Sale squad, suggesting deeper underlying issues amongst the players?

- how much information of value does a winger actually possess? 😄

Monday, 16 January 2017


Distinctly unimpressed by the antics of Scarlets’ James ‘Cubby’ Davies on Saturday.

Fresh from a return from a ban for being a sweary disrespecter of referees, Davies surpassed himself on Saturday when appearing to be poleaxed from the slightest of slaps from Saracens’ Will Skelton.

Skelton deservedly received a yellow card, but the reaction Davies, falling to the ground as if he’d been clubbed by Mike Tyson, was utterly ridiculous and equally worthy of sanction.

Brian Moore is correct when stating that this sort of play-acting should have no place in rugby.

I admit I was a fan of James Davies when he starred for Team GB in the Olympics, but he’s quickly establishing a reputation as a bit of a twat and his residence in the Hall of Wazzocks looks assured for some time.

Perhaps his big brother should have a word?

Friday, 13 January 2017


News this week that US website Groupon are advertising an unofficial England Grand Slam 2017 T-Shirt.

Typical arrogant English 😀

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

RFU unveil new England shirt sponsor

(or Total Flanker revives 2 year old post to take advantage of England's injury crisis in a doomed attempt to appear funny).