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Author Archive for Ian Malin

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Aston Villa face task of keeping Jack Grealish after Wembley agony | Ian Malin

No 26 did not deliver destiny for Villa in Championship play-off final, and now Steve Bruce has problems preparing for another promotion tiltSurely football’s gods would not deny Aston Villa this time: 26 May was the 36th anniversary of the club’s…

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England’s Ellie Kildunne dazzles again in Six Nations win over Ireland

• England beat Ireland 33-11 but France win Grand Slam• Danielle Waterman scores record 47th try for EnglandEngland’s women, with their fly-half Katy Daley-McLean controlling the game impressively behind a powerful pack, secured a triple crown with vic…

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England women focused on Ireland but braced for France to deliver bad news

• France can seal Six Nations half an hour after England game ends• England coach Simon Middleton rings changes for Ireland matchEngland are bracing themselves for a bittersweet evening in Coventry on Friday. For while Sarah Hunter’s side should overco…

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England women’s grand slam dreams shattered by France in Six Nations

• France 18-17 England• Last-minute try by full-back Jessy Tremouliere seals France winEngland’s dreams of a second successive grand slam were shattered at Stade des Alpes last night. The team, led again by Sarah Hunter, can still win the Six Nations t…

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France 22-16 England: how the players rated in the Six Nations game

French danger man Maxime Machenaud lived up to his billing, while an out-of-sorts George Ford was substitutedHugo Bonneval 5 Couldn’t repeat his thrilling form against Italy after departing for a head injury assessment. He didn’t return after the break…

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England women make adjustments for Six Nations grand slam crunch in France

• Simon Middleton makes seven changes, two positional• France keen to avenge 2017 World Cup semi-final defeatEngland’s women will be in the Stade des Alpes on Saturday night knowing they have to take their game to new heights against a French side itch…

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Scotland 25-13 England: how the players rated in the Six Nations

Finn Russell produced a brilliant performance under scrutiny, while Joe Launchbury was one of England’s few bright sparksStuart Hogg 6 The full-back did not have the chance to make too many counterattacks but gave a steady display and was a rock in def…

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Katy Daley-McLean takes control as England overwhelm Scotland

• Scotland 8 England 43• England score seven tries in Women’s Six NationsEngland’s surge to another grand slam continued in Glasgow on Friday as they scored seven tries to overwhelm their opponents on another difficult night for the Scots. A much-chang…

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England run rampant against Wales in Women’s Six Nations

• England 52-0 Wales• Teenager Ellie Kildunne scores England’s last and best tryEngland are on course for another grand slam. In miserable conditions at the Stoop they ran in eight tries against a Wales side every bit as outclassed as they had been in …

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Wales 34-7 Scotland: how the players rated in the Six Nations game

Aaron Shingler was the man of the match for Wales, a massive physical presence in a dominant back row. For Scotland there were few stars in a disappointing displayLeigh Halfpenny 6/10 The full-back had not scored a try for Wales for five years but cros…

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Billy Vunipola and Maro Itoje set to make Saracens return in England boost

• Fit-again pair likely to be in Sarries squad to face Wasps next weekend• They will be joined by Nathan Earle at England’s two-day training campEddie Jones has received a boost before the Six Nations, with the news that Billy Vunipola and Maro Itoje a…

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Brian ‘Stack’ Stevens obituary

England rugby international with a reputation for hard forward playEnglish victories against the All Blacks in New Zealand are rare events and the win in Auckland on 15 September 1973 turned the world of rugby union upside down. To say the England team…

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Brian ‘Stack’ Stevens obituary

England rugby international with a reputation for hard forward playEnglish victories against the All Blacks in New Zealand are rare events and the win in Auckland on 15 September 1973 turned the world of rugby union upside down. To say the England team…

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England 58-15 Fiji: How they rated at Twickenham

George Ford showed a wonderful range of passing in the second half and as a result earned a mark of 8 out of 10, the highest of any England player

Alex Goode, full-back, 6/10 This was his chance to lay down a marker for the No15 shirt but had few chances to show his counter-attacking skills. Took first international try well.

Semesa Rokoduguni, wing, 7/10 Up against the enormous Nemani Nadolo but his quick feet and own power steadied the nerves of the Premiership’s form wing. Could not stop the giant’s try but made up for it with a second score. .

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New Zealand fight back after England threaten famous upset at the Stoop

• England 20-25 New Zealand
• World champions too strong after fighting back from 10 points down

A landmark for the England women’s team across the road from Twickenham but New Zealand’s Black Ferns confirmed that, like the All Blacks, they are the undisputed No1 side in the world. The visitors won 25-20 and England might have created an upset had their place-kicking and finishing in the first half been more accurate.

Rochelle Clark, who had led the England team on to the field at The Stoop, came off the bench 15 minutes after the interval to make her 116th appearance, passing the record of Scotland’s back-rower Donna Kennedy. It almost inspired a famous English victory against a side that has recently twice pulverised Australia but England, 17-7 ahead before Clark came on, could not stop a rousing comeback by New Zealand whose scrum-half Kendra Cocksedge scored 20 points, including 14 in five minutes that turned the game on its head.

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Anthony Foley obituary

Ireland rugby international with 62 caps to his name who was a central figure at Munster as a player and head coach

The first game of the Five Nations rugby championship in 1995 was not a happy one for Ireland. Will Carling’s England team swaggered into Dublin and in wretched conditions – the tournament still began in January in those days – their gargantuan pack of forwards helped them to a first win in what was to become a grand slam campaign. There was some consolation for the bedraggled Irish supporters, though. In the dying seconds, Anthony Foley, a 21-year-old flanker from the Shannon club, and one of three debutants in their side, marked his first game with a try from a tapped penalty. A great international career had begun.

Foley, who would go on to win 62 caps in the following decade, became a central figure for Ireland and Munster, whom he would lead to a Heineken Cup victory over Biarritz in 2006. His 202 appearances for Munster are a record. At the time of his sudden death, at the age of 42, he was head coach of Munster and had been preparing his side for their opening game in the European Champions Cup against Racing 92 in Paris. As a mark of respect the game on Sunday afternoon was postponed.

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Paul Gustard believes England can learn new skills from other code

• England defence coach: ‘Other sports can teach us a lot’
• ‘We have turned to judo and rugby league to learn other skills’

England’s last experiment with rugby league may have blown up in their faces when Sam Burgess returned to the 13-man game after the disastrous World Cup last year but one of Eddie Jones’s lieutenants is convinced that union can learn a lot from the other code.

Jones’s England training squad are preparing in Brighton for two days before their four-match Test programme this autumn. But a year on from the Australian masterminding the biggest shock in World Cup history when his Japan team beat the Springboks a couple of miles away at the Amex Stadium, England’s coaches are not on the south coast to enjoy this week’s sunny weather.

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England 25-21 Wales: how the Six Nations players at Twickenham rated

Maro Itoje and Billy Vunipola earn highest marks for England; Alun Wyn Jones stands out among a generally disappointing Wales team

15 Mike Brown 6/10 The full-back’s try broke Irish resistance a fortnight ago but here he butchered an early chance. Always looked strong on the counterattack.

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England 21-10 Ireland: how the Six Nations players at Twickenham rated

Billy Vunipola plays a starring role for England by battering the Irish defence, while Mike Ross looks short of full fitness for the visitors15 Mike Brown 7/10 The full-back was always going to face an aerial threat and was steady under the high balls …

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New Zealand 21-16 England | Under-20 World Championship final match report

New Zealand 21-16 England

England’s senior players are off to Colorado next month to prepare for the World Cup at high altitude. Their Under-20 team have scaled a couple of peaks themselves recently by winning the last two world junior titles. But in the northern Italian town of Cremona it was the young New Zealanders who reached loftier heights.

The Baby Blacks were favourites to win the final and deserved their victory but Jon Callard’s team were more than honourable in defeat. Maro Itoje, the Saracen who was last year’s victorious Under-20 captain, has already forced his way into the senior squad and will be on that flight to the United States and one or two England forwards here suggested they may be stepping up themselves soon.

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