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All Blacks prop Ben Franks
says they are putting extra effort
into scrum training as they head
towards the World Cup play-offs,
after being taught a lesson by
They are expecting similar
treatment from Tonga, who they
play in Newcastle on Friday,
believing the islanders will
have picked up some tips from
watching the powerful Georgian
pack ply their trade.
“Our trainings are some of the
hardest trainings in my time in
the All Blacks,” said Franks, who
has played 44 tests since 2008
and joins London Irish after the
“In New Zealand you’re in
your own little bubble a little
bit. You play South Africa,
Australia, Super rugby, Rugby
Championship, Argentina now as
they have come in.
“ We don’t really get exposed
to the type of scrummaging and
tactics like Georgia. To get the
opportunity to play such teams in
our pool matches we get to learn
lessons before encountering it in
“If we go further in the
competition we’ ll be able to bank
on some of those lessons.”
There were times when the All
Blacks pack wobbled against
Georgia which they will have
to sort out once they enter the
sudden death phase.
The Australian scrum was
exceptional when they knocked
England out of the World Cup,
a point noted by All Blacks
halfback Aaron Smith.
“Australia’s scrum was probably
the biggest thing,” he said.
“Seeing what they did to
England was massive. They looked
really clinical and they ’re looking
Charlie Faumuina, who started
in the front row against Georgia,
said the All Blacks had to
learn how to adjust their game
immediately they are under
“ We’ve just got to adapt a bit
quicker. I think they tried a few
things and we were slow to adapt.
“ You train for it throughout
the week and if it’s going the
way you’ve been training then
hopefully you’ve got the tools to
stop it. But there’s a few tricks up
every prop’s sleeve.”
The All Blacks specialist scrum
coach Mike Cron rates the
Georgian scrum as one of the best
in the tournament which made
assistant coach Ian Foster pleased
with the way their pack handled
“Particularly on our ball it was
excellent. we got a couple of set
piece tries, went really good,
and clearly they had a couple of
little victories on their ball and
apparently we’re going to learn
“ Tonga are going to again bring
a hard physicality to us. They’ll
probably try to do some things to
us that we think some other teams
might do to us later on so it’s
good preparation.” — AFP
RUGBY WORLD CUP
All Blacks working
overtime on scrums
PICTURE: Getty Images
The All Blacks practise the scrum during a training session.
The Kiwis are facing an experience
crisis ahead of the upcoming England
tour, after the loss of captain Simon
The absence of Mannering, who
was ruled out due to ongoing
health issues, is the latest of a series
of withdrawals, mostly of senior
It follows the earlier losses of
Kieran Foran, Manu Vatuvei, Jared
Waerea-Hargreaves and Shaun
Johnson and Thomas L euluai was
scratched midway through the NRL
season with a major knee injury. A
question mark also remains over
Cowboys lock Jason Taumalolo
(knee complaint), although coach
Stephen Kearney said yesterday
“early indications” were positive.
It means the Kiwis will be missing
almost one-third of the squad who
trumped Australia 26-12 in this
year’s Anzac test. More importantly,
the absentees create an experience
vacuum. That afternoon in Brisbane,
New Zealand had eight players who
had played 20 tests or more. Now
only four remain.
But Kearney remains optimistic,
preferring to accentuate the current
depth in New Zealand league.
“I ’m positive because that is the
reality,” he said. “ There is a certain
expectation we have helped to
create over the last 20 months and
nothing changes with regards to that
Kearney has developed impressive
depth over the last few years and
players like Tohu Harris, Kevin
Proctor, Martin Taupau, Sam Moa
and Peta Hiku are all seasoned NRL
campaigners, even if they lack test
match experience. But it will be
hard to replace certain individuals
and contemplate a three-test
series against England with a rookie
halves combination and a brand new
Kearney would not be drawn on
who might take the armband, saying
he had “a couple of players in mind”
and all would be revealed tomorrow
with the squad is announced.
Kearney said the decision to
pull Mannering out was taken to
“protect ” the long-serving skipper,
as he had not sufficiently recovered
from an outgoing gastric issue.
“ Tests haven’t confirmed a major
issue but he hasn’t really got any
better,” said Kearney. “It ’s been done
to protect Simon.
“He would want to get away on
tour, to try and do what is best for
the team in whatever condition he is
in. He can be his own worst enemy
in that sense.”
“ While tests we’ve conducted
haven’t revealed anything to cause
alarm, Simon still isn’t right and
requires further assessment,” added
Warriors head doctor John Mayhew.
Mannering has missed just one
Warriors match in the last three
years, as well as playing 11 out of a
possible 12 tests for the Kiwis.
The England tour begins on October
23 with a warm-up game against
Leeds, with the three tests scheduled
for Hull (November 1), London’s
Olympic Stadium (November
7) and Wigan (November 14).
— N ZME -New Zealand Herald
Kiwis facing experience crisis as tour looms
The West Coast under-13 girls’
hockey team got their Festival of
Hockey tournament off to a solid
start yesterday with a 3-0 victory
over the host side, North Otago.
The match was played in
scorching temperatures reaching
28degC, which saw West Coast
struggle as they too often failed to
deliver accurate passing and
Coast were not at their best
in this encounter, however they
dominated but only poor shooting
and finishing by their opponents
allowed Coast to take the honour.
They had the game under control
by the break when they were up 2-0.
Emma Boddy scored off a direct
shot from a penalty corner and
Alyssa Blacktopp got the second.
The second half saw West Coast
scored once more from a well
struck back stick shot from the
circle edge by Boddy.
The penalty corner count went in
Coast ’s favour, 6-1.
For West Coast, Boddy and Tyra
Jamieson were solid on defence
and in the midfield, while Molly
Williams worked tirelessly.
West Coast today had a ‘must
win’ game against the Nelson
Development side, which, if they
win will give them a spot in the
Coast girls open tournament with 3-0 win
Playing in 30degC heat, the West
Coast primary boys’ hockey team took
a while to adjust in their Hatch Cup
match against Manawatu yesterday,
Manawatu have not lost a pool game
and once Coast settled they produced
some nice attacking play, with good
passing in the for wards between Cooper
Haines, Guy Wilkins and Reuben Lee.
Manawatu scored two quick goals in
the first half.
Mac Williams shone on defence,
tackling well and feeding his forward
line to earn himself player of the
day award. Mikey Wallace and Josh
Levien never gave up after Manawatu
relentlessly kept coming at them on
West Coast had shots on goal for the
first time of the tournament. The young
players Bradley Coll, Wil Pattinson,
Noah Goodwin Lister and Jack South
all showed promise.
Coast boys lose 5-0 at Hatch Cup
The West Coast Heartland rugby
team travels to Paeroa this weekend
for their match against Thames
The draw is.—
2pm: West Coast v Thames
Valley, Paeroa (D Morrison, North
Coast face Thames Valley in Paeroa
Australian vice-captain Michael
Hooper says he is shocked and gutted
by a one-week World Cup ban which
left his team-mates and coaching staff
Hooper admitted he had a “very fair
hearing” in L ondon, which lasted for
two hours in which footage was dissected
of his aggressive clear out of England
fullback Mike Brown from a ruck just
before half-time in the Wallabies’ 33-13
He will miss Saturday ’s final pool game
against Wales at Twickenham, which will
decide who tops pool A and earns the
easier draw through the competition’s
He had been cited by independent
citing commissioner Steve Hinds who
found Hooper had charged “into a ruck
or maul without the use of arms or
grasping the player”.
The result was of great relief for the
Wallabies, who had privately feared the
judiciary would come down hard on the
talented flanker with a ban that had the
potential to end his tournament.
But it is hard for a player to be pleased
about missing a test match.
While the Wallabies never seriously
considered fighting the charge — and
Hooper pleaded guilty — he did admit
for a fleeting moment the thought
crossed his mind.
“Surely it always crosses everyone’s
mind, doesn’t it? That you’re innocent and
you can hopefully play the next week,” he
“Being fresh out of the meeting, I think
we had a fair trial.
“One week is not ideal — I’m not
raving about it. But we can move on and
I’m glad it’s all over and done.”
The base level for the charge normally
carries a two-week ban, but Hooper was
given a lighter sentence as the judiciary
took into account his contrition, good on
and off-field record and good behaviour
during the hearing.
It frees him up to play in Australia’s
quarter-final clash — with the opponent
to be determined by their result against
“Obviously I’m gutted I won’t be able to
be in the mix for selection,” he said.
“It really hurts. You always want
to be in these sort of games — the big
Hooper will be replaced in the starting
lineup by either Ben McCalman or Sean
McMahon — with the other to be picked
on the bench.
He hoped the ban would be used as an
example for team-mates to take more
care in those scenarios, although defence
coach Nathan Grey was adamant that
team policy would remain to go 100%
into every contest.
“It ’s a tough part of the game,” Hooper
“Small margins of errors and you get it
wrong and you’re in a situation that I’m
in or worse.
“It ’s a good example for guys to keep
working on that technique during
training to not be in the situation I’m in
now.” — AAP
RUGBY WORLD CUP
Hooper gutted to miss Wales match
The New Zealand men’s and women’s
hockey teams both had wins last night
on their tours of the South Island.
The Black Sticks women, ranked
fourth, beat world No 3 Argentina 4-1
in Nelson to take a 2-1 lead in the four-
Gemma Flynn bagged a double,
opening the scoring early before capping
off the win in the final moments.
Natasha Fitzsimons added a goal from
a penalty corner and Rachel McCann
also got on the score sheet in the
The Black Sticks men followed it up
with a 2-0 win over India, with Nick
Haig putting the hosts in front after six
minutes, and Jared Panchia double their
advantage just before half-time.
The men play India again in Nelson
tomorrow and the women play
Argentina in Christchurch on Friday.
— New Zealand Herald
Black Sticks impress
with dual wins
Milton Keynes (England)
Uruguay scored their first Rugby
World Cup tries for 12 years but
could not stop Nemani Nadolo
leading Fiji to a rampaging 47-15
victory to end their campaign.
Carlos Arboleya claimed Uruguay’s
first try in the tournament since Pablo
Lemoine, now team coach, crossed
the whitewash against England at the
2003 World Cup.
Agustin Ormaechea scored a second,
sparking more wild celebrations by
the South American underdogs. But
he also became the first player sent off
at the tournament as tempers flared.
Fiji claimed seven tries in a mainly
flowing display of the running rugby
they love. Nadolo, coming back from a
one match suspension, scored the final
try and also kicked six conversions.
Fiji claimed their first pool A win
after being beaten by England, Wales
and Australia in one of the toughest
13 days any team could have known
at the World Cup.
But it was the Pacific islanders
who formed a guard of honour for
Uruguay as they left the pitch at the
“ I am very proud, it was fantastic
that they finally got the tries,” said
Lemoine, now grey haired, who
banged his fists on the window of the
coach’s lookout after Arboleya went
Fiji pushed ahead from the first
whistle and got a penalty try after just
Leone Nakarawa offloaded the ball
to Lepani Botia who powered to the
line but was upended by Ormaechea
diving in with all shoulders but no
Referee J P Doyle ordered the first of
two penalty tries against Uruguay and
sent Ormaechea off for 10 minutes.
The weakened South Americans fell
further behind when Nemia Kentale
escaped down the right wing from a
scrum to dot down.
Nadolo missed the conversion and
Uruguay forced their way back into
the game when Ormaechea came
Alejo Duran hit a penalty and in
the 17th minute blue shirts poured
for ward. Ormaechea put the ball
through to hooker Arboleya, who
pushed over near the Fiji posts
sparking wild celebrations.
The South Americans looked
threatening at times but made crucial
errors against the bigger Fijians.
Doyle awarded a second penalty
try for a scrum offence in the 27th
minute which Nadolo converted for
In a Fijian moment of magic,
Nadolo broke away to the left
drawing Uruguay players with him
before slipping the ball inside to
Leone Nakarawa, who sold a dummy
and headed straight for the posts for
the bonus point try.
Uruguay fans used football
chants to encourage their team and
Ormaechea’s clever kick launched
the offensive in which he eventually
touched down for his side’s second
try. That made it 26-15 to Fiji and the
game was not yet won.
Just after the hour Tevita Cavubati
went over for Fiji but a punch was
landed on the ground and fists flew
for a while until Doyle could calm the
players so Nadolo could convert.
Two minutes later, Kini
Murimurivalu powered over after a
spectacular show of Fiji running. But
there was more tension and Doyle
showed yellow cards to Ormaechea
and Fiji’s Campese Ma’afu.
Ormaechea’s second yellow meant
he was sent off definitively — the
first red card shown in the 2015
Nadolo picked up a decoy pass
and powered past three Uruguayans
unable to stop the Fiji giant for the
final try with just seconds to go.
Fiji scores big win
Fiji’s Nemani Nadolo is tackled by a Uruguayan player.
RUGBY WORLD CUP
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