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Author Archive for Gerard Meagher

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Twickenham considers NFL-style plan for elite to split into two regions

• Nigel Melville suggests geographical spread of clubs• Premiership still wants to ringfence itselfThe Rugby Football Union has proposed expanding the Premiership to 16 teams – split into two conferences – to resolve the continuing debate over promotio…

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Champions Cup preview: Leinster’s Sexton back but Saracens miss Itoje

Bath are without Freddie Burns for crunch match against defending champions; mixed injury news for Saracens, and three-times winners Toulon look for a change in fortunesElliot Daly captains Wasps for their must-win encounter with Toulouse in Coventry o…

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Maro Itoje suffers injury blow as Six Nations campaign looms

• England and Saracens lock has chipped bone in knee• Itoje to miss European double-header against Cardiff BluesMaro Itoje’s participation in England’s Six Nations opener against Ireland has been placed into question by a chipped a bone in his knee. Th…

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Prop crisis may force Newcastle to play Champions Cup tie with 14 men

• Tighthead troubles raise fears of uncontested scrums• Newcastle are away against Edinburgh on FridayNewcastle are facing the possibility of having to play the majority of Friday night’s European Champions Cup tie against Edinburgh with only 14 men, b…

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Warren Gatland among candidates to succeed Eddie Jones with England

• RFU’s Melville plans to speak to Wales coach about his future• Jones’s predecessor Stuart Lancaster also a candidateThe Rugby Football Union interim chief executive, Nigel Melville, is planning to speak to Warren Gatland as part of his search for Edd…

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Leicester must play ‘million times better’ after Bristol loss, says Spencer

• Tigers lock Will Spencer says display was ‘not good enough’• ‘We did not show up as a team or do things we worked on’The Leicester lock Will Spencer pulled no punches after the Tigers found themselves drawn into the midst of the Premiership’s relegat…

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Rugby union power rankings: Ireland overtake New Zealand to be top dogs

Our ratings show Ireland are in pole position and New Zealand have slipped back, while Wales and England have made good progress and South Africa and Australia have much work to doSteve Hansen knew what he was doing when anointing Ireland as the world …

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Eddie Jones stands by Owen Farrell over controversial Australia tackle

• Jones: ‘Owen doesn’t try to tackle outside the laws’• Manu Tuilagi admits to nerves after injury comebackEddie Jones has defended Owen Farrell’s controversial tackling technique after another lucky escape for his co-captain against Australia, insisti…

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England’s Underhill and Te’o opt not to wear ‘uncomfortable’ rainbow laces

• RFU leaves decision to the discretion of players• ‘I won’t be wearing them but I fully support LGBT community’Members of the England team have opted not to wear rainbow laces for the match against Australia amid claims they cause too much discomfort,…

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Bedroom coffee shop helps Manu Tuilagi gear up for England return | Gerard Meagher

The Leicester centre has been at the heart of England’s social scene during the buildup to his first Test outing since 2016As and when Manu Tuilagi comes off the England bench on Saturday you can be sure of two things: first, that his arrival is greete…

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Dylan Hartley loses out to Jamie George in England XV for Australia

Co-captain Hartley named among replacementsManu Tuilagi on bench after more than two yearsDylan Hartley has been left out of Eddie Jones’s starting XV to face Australia while Manu Tuilagi is in line a first England appearance for more than two and a ha…

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England can trade on being hated, says defence coach John Mitchell | Gerard Meagher

Now in his second spell working for the RFU, the Kiwi knows all about the vitriol other nations feel for England but thinks it can be turned to their advantageIt may come as some surprise to hear it has taken a New Zealander to hammer home just how muc…

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England’s Eddie Jones to make late call over Manu Tuilagi for Australia Test

• Jones will announce squad to face Australia on Thursday• Centre Tuilagi has not played for England since 2016Eddie Jones was on Wednesday night set to make a late decision on whether to play Manu Tuilagi against Australia on Saturday. The centre has …

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England’s Eddie Jones to make late call over Manu Tuilagi for Australia Test

• Jones will announce squad to face Australia on Thursday• Centre Tuilagi has not played for England since 2016Eddie Jones was on Wednesday night set to make a late decision on whether to play Manu Tuilagi against Australia on Saturday. The centre has …

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Eddie Jones casts doubt on Australia’s concern over David Pocock injury

• ‘I hear this every time we play Australia,’ says Jones• Wallabies back-row unable to train due to neck problemAustralia are concerned about the fitness of David Pocock for Saturday’s encounter with England because of a neck injury he sustained over t…

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England sluggers to return for scrap against Australia’s ‘street fighters’

• Eddie Jones says Australia ‘will be ready for battle’• Australia have lost nine of their 13 matches since last NovemberIn the aftermath of England’s unconvincing victory over Japan, Eddie Jones’s thoughts turned to the last match of the autumn agains…

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Statues, All Blacks and 6am training: lifting the lid on rugby in Japan

As the hosts of the 2019 World Cup come to Twickenham for the first time, it is worth understanding the impact Eddie Jones had on rugby in JapanWhen Eddie Jones was the coach of Japan he once cancelled a training session and gave everyone the day off. …

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Joe Cokanasiga makes England debut as one of 11 changes for Japan match

• Fijian-born 21-year-old on right wing as Jones rings the changes• Farrell and Hartley are among the front-line players omittedJoe Cokanasiga will make his England debut on Saturday as one of 11 new faces brought into Eddie Jones’s new-look side to fa…

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Eddie Jones steps up preparations for Japan by having a sushi night

• Head coach wants to minimise ‘cultural stress’ of World Cup• Jones surprised players with sushi meal on TuesdayEddie Jones has stepped up his efforts to help his squad acclimatise to playing next year’s World Cup in Japan by arranging a sushi night a…

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Japan captain Leitch says his side will not bow down at Twickenham

• Rank outsiders Japan believe they can beat England• Eddie Jones says his side need to be aggressive or risk an upsetThe Japan captain, Michael Leitch, insists his side are targeting nothing less than victory against England on Saturday, claiming Eddi…