South Africa Rugby Championship Squad


South Africa Rugby Championship Squad

Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus has named his 35-man squad for the upcoming 2018 Rugby Championship. A plethora of Test regulars return to the South Africa side after having not featured in their 2-1 series win over England in the summer.

The Lions quartet of Malcolm Marx, Warren Whiteley, Ross Cronje and Lionel Mapoe all come back into the squad for the first time this year. Bath forward Francois Louw, Lwazi Mvovo and the man mountain Eben Etzebeth also return to the squad.

Erasmus said: “Eben and Warren have been out of the Bok mix for a while because of injury so it’s very pleasing to have them back in the squad, while Malcolm has regained his good form with the Lions since recovering from his injury.”

In relation to Etzebeth, he said: “He has trained with us since the Stormers had their bye before their last (Super Rugby) match,” Erasmus said.

“He has done every single physical thing. He is functionally up there and definitely one of the fittest guys in the squad, that I can promise you, just by looking at his stats and the way he has trained.”

There are also several young players selected in the squad, including Damian Willemse, Marco Van Staden and Cyle Brink.

“It is also pleasing to again add some young players who been showing good form and consistency for their franchise teams during Super Rugby,” Erasmus added.

South Africa Rugby Championship Squad

2018 Rugby Championship Squad

Forwards: Cyle Brink, Jean-Luc du Preez, Thomas du Toit, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Eben Etzebeth, Steven Kitshoff, Siya Kolisi (captain), Francois Louw, Wilco Louw, Frans Malherbe, Malcolm Marx, Bongi Mbonambi, Franco Mostert, Tendai Mtawarira, Sikhumbuzo Notshe, Marvin Orie, RG Snyman, Akker van der Merwe, Marco van Staden, Warren Whiteley

Backs: Lukhanyo Am, Ross Cronjé, Faf de Klerk, Aphiwe Dyantyi, André Esterhuizen, Elton Jantjies, Jesse Kriel, Willie le Roux, Makazole Mapimpi, Lionel Mapoe, Lwazi Mvovo, Embrose Papier, Handré Pollard, Ivan van Zyl, Damian Willemse

original article appeared on

Rugby giant Siya Kolisi wins July vote for sports brilliance


Siya Kolisi has won the July Laureus Sporting Moment of the month competition after a vote by thousands of sports fans around the world.

Kolisi‚ who comes from Zwide township in Port Elizabeth‚ was named SA’s first black Springbok Test captain by coach Rassie Erasmus ahead of the 2-1 series win over England in June.

In his first match as Bok captain‚ Kolisi led the Boks to victory over England at Ellis Park, where he donned the iconic No6 jersey worn by former president Nelson Mandela after the Springboks won the 1995 Rugby World Cup Final at Ellis Park.

For the Laureus Sporting Moment of the Year, he joins ski-jumping legends Sven Hannawald and Kamil Stoch; rugby player Doddie Weir; Rochdale football star Joe Thompson; and double-amputee Xia Boyu, who climbed Mount Everest.

Every month from March to December the public select their favourite moment from a shortlist of four videos‚ chosen by the sporting legends of the Laureus World Sports Academy.

Monthly winners then go head to head in a final public vote, with the winner being announced at the 2019 Laureus Awards ceremony.

Tackle height in rugby union to be lowered in Championship Cup trial


The height of a legal tackle in rugby union will be lowered next season in a significant trial designed to make the game safer.

The Rugby Football Union’s second-tier Championship Cup competition will be played under new laws, with the height of a legal tackle below the armpits rather than the line of the shoulders.

It comes after the latest English rugby injury audit revealed a rise in injuries and concussion in the professional game.

It is understood there had been a plan to have the whole of the Championship season played under the new guidelines, but that was not approved by the clubs.

“We believe lowering the height of the tackle will benefit both the ball carrier and the tackler,” RFU professional rugby director Nigel Melville said.

“The Championship Cup provides an opportunity for us to assess the impact of lowering the height of the tackle on the elite adult game.

“It will be a critical part of helping us develop game-wide approaches to concussion and injury reduction.”

Governing body World Rugby has already started a similar trial, with the height of the tackle in the World Rugby Under-20 Trophy moved from “the line of the shoulders to below the nipple line”.

“We applaud the RFU and the Championship Cup clubs for embracing this important trial,” chairman and former England captain Bill Beaumont said.

“The global game is committed to an evidence-based approach to injury prevention. The outcomes from this trial will provide comprehensive data and feedback to inform our continued commitment to further reducing concussion risk in rugby.”

In March, English rugby chiefs produced an eight-point action plan after the annual injury report revealed “significant challenges” for player welfare.

This trial, the first of its kind in the UK, is therefore a response to growing concern about the dangers of rugby union, especially regarding brain injuries and concussion.

Get your player safety kits today!

Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018: New Zealand beat England in final

New Zealand became the first men’s side to win consecutive Rugby World Cup Sevens titles as they beat England 33-12 in the final on Sunday.

The All Blacks took a 14-0 lead in San Francisco as Sione Molia scored two tries, both converted by Kurt Baker.

A Michael Ellery converted try halved the deficit at half-time, before a Joseva Ravouvou score took it to 19-7.

Ruaridh McConnochie hit back for England before Akuila Rokolisoa and Trael Joass secured victory.

Scotland claimed seventh place overall after Jamie Farndale scored two late tries in a 29-24 win over against France, while Ireland secured a 24-14 win over Australia in the Challenge Cup final to finish ninth.

Wales had to settle for their lowest place finish since 2001, coming 11th following a 35-12 win over Canada.

Did the knockout format work?

This year’s tournament saw the traditional round-robin stage scrapped in favour of a single-elimination knockout from the opening round of matches.

Australia were a notable first-round casualty in the men’s draw while England’s women fell at the first hurdle in a surprise defeat by Ireland.

“We’re getting a lot of positive feedback from fans about the drama of knockout,” said World Rugby chief executive Brett Gosper, as 102,000 fans attended the event over the three days of competition.

“It makes each game exciting. It can be brutal for teams, but sport’s brutal.”

England head coach Simon Amor said he was “pleased” with how his players adapted to the new structure, but captain Tom Mitchell claims he is “not totally sold on the new format”.

“There are pros and cons to it but it’s up to World Rugby to keep mixing things up and keep improving the game,” said Mitchell.

Despite retaining the title in the men’s and women’s tournament, New Zealand coach Clark Laidlaw also remains unconvinced.

“As a spectacle I’m sure everyone enjoyed it, but when you’ve got coaches and players’ livelihoods at stake, and the format isn’t quite what we’re paid to do, it’s an interesting question,” said Laidlaw.


REPORT: Namibia scored 18 tries to humiliate Tunisia 118-0 in a 2019 Rugby World Cup Africa qualifier over weekend while Kenya upset Morocco 28-24 in another second-round match.

Seeking a sixth consecutive appearance at the four-yearly Rugby Union global showcase, Namibia top the table with a maximum 10 points from two matches.

Kenya come next with five points from a bonus-point victory in Casablanca, followed by Morocco (three) and Zimbabwe (two) while Uganda and Tunisia are pointless.

The table toppers after the round-robin competition go to the World Cup in Japan while the runners-up get a second chance in an inter-continent repechage tournament.

Lesley Klim, who plays for English second-tier club Doncaster, and Johan Corne Greyling scored four tries each for merciless Namibia, who led 52-0 at half-time.

Chrysander Botha got three, Wian Conradie, Johan Deysel, Pieter-Jan van Lill, Damian Stevens, Johann Tromp and Max Katjijeko one each and they were awarded a penalty try.

Cliven Loubser kicked eight conversions, PW Steenkamp four and Botha one at a Windhoek stadium named after current Namibian state president Hage Geingob.

Namibia coach and former Wales lock Phil Davies said: “I am in the process of building a competitive team and our flowing passing game in the second half was impressive.”

Kenya overcame a 10-point second-half deficit to triumph with the consolation for the north Africans being two bonus points.

Tony Onyango and Moses Amusala scored in quick succession during the second half and Darwin Mukidza converted both to turn the match in favour of the visitors.

Onyango completed a brace and Mukidza added the extra points again to stetch the lead to 28-17 before Morocco responded with a converted try.

The home team had a late chance to snatch victory, but a knock-on after a scrum enabled the relieved east Africans to boot the ball into touch and end the game.

Kenya host two-time qualifiers Zimbabwe in Nairobi and Namibia face Morocco in Casablanca this Saturday in the third series of matches while Tunisia and Uganda have byes.

Zimbabwe are coached by Peter de Villiers, who took South Africa to the 2011 World Cup quarterfinals.

World Cup 2018 results: Scores so far and latest group standings from Russia

World Cup 2018 results in full

Thursday, June 14 Russia 5-0 Saudi Arabia Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow
Friday, June 15 Egypt 0-1 Uruguay Ekaterinburg
Friday, June 15 Morocco 0-1 Iran St Petersburg
Friday, June 15 Portugal 3-3 Spain Sochi
Saturday, June 16 France 2-1 Australia Kazan
Saturday, June 16 Argentina 1-1 Iceland Spartak Stadium, Moscow
Saturday, June 16 Peru 0-1 Denmark Saransk
Saturday, June 16 Croatia 2-0 Nigeria Kaliningrad
Sunday, June 17 Costa Rica 0-1 Serbia Samara
Sunday, June 17 Germany 0-1 Mexico Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow
Sunday, June 17 Brazil 1-1 Switzerland Rostov-on-Don
Monday, June 18 Sweden 1-0 Korea Republic Nizhny Novgorod
Monday, June 18 Belgium 3-0 Panama Sochi
Monday, June 18 Tunisia 1-2 England Volgograd
Tuesday, June 19 Poland 1-2 Senegal Spartak Stadium, Moscow
Tuesday, June 19 Colombia 1-2 Japan Saransk
Tuesday, June 19 Russia 3-1 Egypt St Petersburg
Wednesday, June 20 Portugal 1-0 Morocco Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow
Wednesday, June 20 Uruguay 1-0 Saudi Arabia Rostov-on-Don
Wednesday, June 20 Iran 0-1 Spain Kazan
Thursday, June 21 France 1-0 Peru Ekaterinburg
Thursday, June 21 Denmark 1-1 Australia Samara
Thursday, June 21 Argentina 3-0 Croatia Nizhny Novgorod
Friday, June 22 Brazil 2-0 Costa Rica St Petersburg
Friday, June 22 Nigeria 2-0 Iceland Volgograd
Friday, June 22 Serbia 1-2 Switzerland Kaliningrad
Saturday, June 23 Belgium 5-2 Tunisia Spartak Stadium, Moscow
Saturday, June 23 Germany 2-1 Sweden Sochi
Saturday, June 23 Korea Republic vs Mexico Rostov-on-Don
Sunday, June 24 England 6-1 Panama Nizhny Novgorod
Sunday, June 24 Japan 2-2 Senegal Ekaterinburg
Sunday, June 24 Poland 0-3 Colombia Kazan
Monday, June 25 Uruguay 3-0 Russia Samara
Monday, June 25 Saudi Arabia 2-1 Egypt Volgograd
Monday, June 25 Spain 2-2 Morocco Kaliningrad
Monday, June 25 Iran 1-1 Portugal Saransk
Tuesday, June 26 Denmark 0-0 France Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow
Tuesday, June 26 Australia 0-2 Peru Sochi
Tuesday, June 26 Nigeria 1-2 Argentina St Petersburg
Tuesday, June 26 Iceland 1-2 Croatia Rostov-on-Don
Wednesday, June 27 Korea Republic 2-0 Germany Kazan
Wednesday, June 27 Mexico 0-3 Sweden Ekaterinburg
Wednesday, June 27 Serbia 0-2 Brazil Spartak Stadium, Moscow
Wednesday, June 27 Switzerland 2-2 Costa Rica Nizhny Novgorod
Thursday, June 28 Japan 0-1 Poland Volgograd
Thursday, June 28 Senegal 0-1 Colombia Samara
Thursday, June 28 England 0-1 Belgium Kaliningrad
Thursday, June 28 Panama 1-2 Tunisia Saransk

Group standings

3 3 0 0 5 0 5 9
3 2 0 1 8 4 4 6
3 1 0 2 2 7 -5 3
3 0 0 3 2 6 -4 0
3 1 2 0 6 5 1 5
3 1 2 0 5 4 1 5
3 1 1 1 2 2 0 4
3 0 1 2 2 4 -2 1

3 2 1 0 3 1 2 7
3 1 2 0 2 1 1 5
3 1 0 2 2 2 0 3
3 0 1 2 2 5 -3 1

3 3 0 0 7 1 6 9
3 1 1 1 3 5 -2 4
3 1 0 2 3 4 -1 3
3 0 1 2 2 5 -3 1

2 1 1 0 3 1 2 4
2 1 1 0 3 2 1 4
2 1 0 1 2 2 0 3
2 0 0 2 0 3 -3 0

2 2 0 0 3 1 2 6
2 1 0 1 2 2 0 3
2 1 0 1 2 2 0 3
2 0 0 2 1 3 -2 0

2 2 0 0 8 2 6 6
2 2 0 0 8 2 6 6
2 0 0 2 3 7 -4 0
2 0 0 2 1 9 -8 0

2 1 1 0 4 3 1 4
2 1 1 0 4 3 1 4
2 1 0 1 4 2 2 3
2 0 0 2 1 5 -4 0