THIS WEEKEND 2 JUNE

 

02.06.2007

Australia 31, Wales 0 in Brisbane

Australia won by 31 points. I predicted Australia by 12.

 

Previews

“Stephen Larkham has recovered from a minor hamstring injury that forced his late withdrawal from last week's Test in Sydney. Sam Norton-Knight, who filled in at No.10, drops out of the 22-man squad. Lock Dan Vickerman completes his long recovery from shoulder injury with his first starting sport in the Wallabies since last November. He takes over in the second row from Mark Chisholm, who will start from the bench. Benn Robinson starts at tighthead prop in front of Waratahs team-mate Matt Dunning, George Smith takes over from Phil Waugh at openside flanker, while the other change to the XV sees Western Force flyer Digby Ioane win his first Wallabies cap with a start on the wing. Mark Gerrard goes back to the bench with Scott Staniforth dropping out of the squad. With Waugh on the bench, Stirling Mortlock has been named as captain and will again partner Adam Ashley-Cooper in the centres, while Matt Giteau retains the scrumhalf starting role ahead of veteran George Gregan.

 

For the Red Dragons, skipper Gareth Thomas will earn his 94th cap by taking over at fullback for Lee Byrne. Chris Czekaj switches from left to right wing with Aled Brew coming in at No.11. In the forwards, 37-Test veteran Mefin Davies takes over at hooker from Matthew Rees, who has returned home for the birth of his child, while Michael Owen replaces Brent Cockbain at lock after the Australian-born second-rower suffered heavy concussion in last week's last-gasp loss to the Wallabies in Sydney. The other changes see back-rower Robin Sowden-Taylor given his first chance on tour with a bench spot along with scrumhalf Andy Williams, and the still uncapped Scott Morgan.”

From http://www.rugby.com.au/news/wallabies_v_wales,_preview,58901.html/section/21893

 

LAST FIVE ENCOUNTERS

04.11.2006 Drawn 29-29 in Cardiff

26.11.2005 Wales 24-22 in Cardiff

14.06.2003 Australia 30-10 in Sydney

25.11.2001 Australia 21-13 in Cardiff

23.10.1999 Australia 24-9 in Cardiff (World Cup, Quarter Final)

 

GWC Rugby Rankings: World Table-Australia 6th, Wales 7th

 

Match Data Sheet

 

New Zealand 42. France 11 in Auckland

New Zealand won by 31 points. I predicted NZ by 64.

 

Previews

All eyes will be on the All Blacks for this their first outing of the season. This is the team that has appeared head and shoulders above all other teams since the beginning of the Tri Nations series in 2006. They have performed at a consistently high standard whilst all other teams have surged and/or waned. The All Blacks are favourites to take the World Cup final in 2007 and that path starts with this game.

 

http://www.allblacks.com/index.cfm?layout=displayNews&newsArticle=6103

 

LAST FIVE ENCOUNTERS

18.11.2006 New Zealand 23-11 in Paris

11.11.2006 New Zealand 47-3 in Lyon

27.11.2004 New Zealand 45-6 in Albany

20.11.2003 New Zealand 40-13 in Sydney (World Cup, 3rd/4th Playoff)

28.06.2003 New Zealand 31-23 in Christchurch

 

GWC Rugby Rankings: World Table-New Zealand 1st, France 5th

 

Match Data Sheet

 

South Africa 55, England 22 in Pretoria

South Africa won by 33 points. I predicted South Africa by 38.

 

Previews

LAST FIVE ENCOUNTERS

25.11.2006 South Africa 25-14 at Twickenham

18.11.2006 England 23-21 at Twickenham

20.11.2004 England 32-16 at Twickenham

18.10.2003 England 25-6 in Perth (World Cup, Pool C)

23.11.2002 England 53-3 at Twickenham

 

GWC Rugby Rankings: World Table-South Africa 4th, England 8th

 

Teams

 

South Africa:

15 Percy Montgomery, 14 Akona Ndungane, 13 Wynand Olivier, 12 Jean de Villiers, 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Butch James, 9 Ricky Januarie, 8 Danie Rossouw, 7 Juan Smith, 6 Schalk Burger, 5 Victor Matfield, 4 Bakkies Botha, 3 CJ van der Linde, 2 John Smit (c), 1 Gurthrö Steenkamp

Replacements: 16 Gary Botha, 17 Deon Carstens, 18 Johann Muller, 19 Pierre Spies, 20 Ruan Pienaar, 21 Francois Steyn, 22 Ashwin Willemse

Coach: Jake White

 

England

15  Michael Brown (NEC Harlequins),  14  Jamie Noon (Newcastle Falcons), 13  Mathew Tait (Newcastle Falcons), 12  Toby Flood  (Newcastle Falcons), 11  Daniel Scarbrough  (Saracens), 10  Jonny Wilkinson, Capt. (Newcastle Falcons),9  Andrew Gomarsall (NEC Harlequins) *8  Benjamin Skirving (Saracens),  7  Magnus Lund (Sale Sharks), 6  Nicholas Easter (NEC Harlequins), 5  Alexander Brown (Gloucester Rugby), 4  Roy Winters (Bristol Rugby), 3  Matthew Stevens (Bath Rugby), 2  Mark Regan (Brisol Rugby), 1  Kevin Yates (Saracens),

Replacements

16  Andrew Titterrell  (Gloucester Rugby),  17  Stuart Turner  (Sale Sharks), 18  Dean Schofield  (Sale Sharks), 19  Christopher Jones (Sale Sharks), 20  Shaun Perry (Bristol Rugby), 21  Anthony Allen (Gloucester Rugby), 22  Nicholas Abdendanon (Bath Rugby).

Coach: Brian Ashton

 

 

Argentina 16, Ireland 0 in Buenos Aires

Argentina won by 16 points. I predicted Argentina by 8.

 

Previews

http://www.planet-rugby.com./Story/0,18259,3551_2160974,00.html

 

LAST FIVE ENCOUNTERS

26.05.2007 Argentina 22, Ireland 20 in Santa Fe

27.11.2004 Ireland 21-19 in Dublin

26.10.2003 Ireland 16-15 in Adelaide (World Cup, Pool A)

23.11.2002 Ireland 16-7 in Dublin

03.06.2000 Argentina 34-23 in Buenos Aires

 

GWC Rugby Rankings: World Table-Argentina 2nd, Ireland 3rd

 

Teams:

 

Argentina:

15 Federico Serra, 14 Tomás De Vedia, 13 Hernán Senillosa, 12 Manuel Contepomi, 11 Francisco Leonelli, 10 Federico Todeschini, 9 Nicolás Fernández Miranda, 8 Juan Fernández Lobbe, 7 Juan Manuel Leguizamón, 6 Martín Durand (captain), 5 Rimas Álvarez Kairelis, 4 Esteban Lozada, 3 Santiago González Bonorino, 2 Pablo Gambarini, 1 Marcos Ayerza

Replacements: 16 Eusebio Guiñazú, 17 Pablo Henn, 18 Pablo Bouza, 19 Martín Schusterman, 20 Nicolás Vergallo, 21 Juan Fernández Miranda, 22 Horacio Agulla

Coach: Marcelo Loffreda

 

Ireland:

15 Geordan Murphy, 14 Brian Carney, 13 Barry Murphy, 12 Gavin Duffy, 11 Rob Kearney, 10 Jeremy Staunton, 9 Eoin Reddan 8 Stephen Ferris, 7 Shane Jennings, 6 Alan Quinlan, 5 Mick O'Driscoll, 4 Leo Cullen, 3 Simon Best (captain), 2 Frankie Sheahan, 1 Bryan Young

Replacements: 16 Bernard Jackman, 17 Tony Buckley, 18 Malcolm O'Kelly, 19 Neil Best, 20 Isaac Boss, 21 Kieran Lewis, 22 Luke Fitzgerald

Coach: Eddie O’Sullivan

 

 

Italy 29, Uruguay 5 in Montevideo

Italy won by 24 points. I predicted Italy by 40.

 

Reviews

http://www.federugby.it/news.asp?i=46211&s=2

 

PREVIOUS ENCOUNTERS

07.07.2001 Italy 14-3 in Montevideo

22.08.1999 Italy 49-17 in L’Aquilla (L’Aquilla Tournament)

 

Previews

http://www.planetrugby.com/Story/0,18259,3551_2161792,00.html

 

GWC Rugby Rankings: World Table-Italy 9th, Uruguay 21st

 

Prediction: Italy by 40 points.

 

Teams

 

ITALIA

15 Christopher BURTON (Orleans, esordiente)

14 Kaine ROBERTSON (Arix Viadana, 19 caps)

13 Enrico PATRIZIO (Carrera Petrarca Padova, esordiente)

12 Cristian STOICA (Montpellier, 69 caps)

11 Matteo PRATICHETTI (Cammi Calvisano, 4 caps)

10 Roland DE MARIGNY (Cammi Calvisano, 14 caps)

9 Paul GRIFFEN (Cammi Calvisano, 32 caps)

8 Alessandro ZANNI (Cammi Calvisano, 14 caps)

7 Robert BARBIERI (Overmach Cariparma, 3 caps)

6 Josh SOLE (Arix Viadana, 17 caps)

5 Valerio BERNABO’ (Cammi Calvisano, 7 caps)

4 Carlo Antonio DEL FAVA (Bourgoin, 19 caps)

3 Fabio STAIBANO (Overmach Cariparma, 4 caps)

2 Carlo FESTUCCIA (Rolly Gran Parma, 36 caps)

1 Andrea LO CICERO (Infinito L’Aquila, 64 caps) - capitano

 

a disposizione

16 Fabio ONGARO (Saracens, 46 caps)

17 Matias AGUERO (Arix Viadana, 4 caps)

18 Roberto MANDELLI (Rolly Gran Parma, 7 caps)

19 Silvio ORLANDO (Benetton Treviso, 11 caps)

20 Ezio GALON (Overmach Cariparma, 8 caps)

21 Alessio GALANTE (Rolly Gran Parma, esordiente)

22 David BORTOLUSSI (Montpellier, 6 caps)

http://edit.atleticom.it/atlnew/news.asp?i=46197&s=2

 

Uruguay Squad

1 Rodrigo Sanchez,                  pilar izq.                 Carrasco Polo

2 Federico Capo,           pilar izq.                 Carrasco Polo

3 Martín Espiga,             hooker/pilar izdo.  Old Christians

4 Nicolas Klappenbach  hooker                  Champagnat

5 Carlos Arboleya,         hooker/ pilar dcho. Trebol

6 Mario Sagario,             pilar dcho.              Carrasco Polo

7 Juan Miguel Alvarez,   2da. linea                          Italia

8 Carlos Protasi,             2da. linea                           Carrasco Polo

9 Ignacio Lussich,        2da./3a. linea           Los cuervos

10 Juan Alzueta,           2da./3a. linea           Trebol

11 Roberto Posse,        2da. linea                Champagnat

12 Alfredo Giuria,          3a. línea                    Italia

13 Ignacio Conti,           3a. línea                   Carrasco Polo

14 Santiago Ariano,                 3a. línea                   Trebol

15 Martin Crossa,          apertura                   Old Boys

16 Ignacio Crossa,        wing                         Old Boys

17 Joaquin Pastore,                 centro                       Old Boys

18 Manuel Martinez,                medio scrum           Old Christians

19 Juan Labat,              medio scrum           Carrasco Polo

20 Matias Arocena,       apertura                   Old Christians

21 Juan Martin Llovet,   centro                     Old Christians

22 Nicolas Morales,      centro                       Trebol

23 Francisco Bulanti,     wing                        Trebol

24 Ivo Dugongic            wing                          PSG

 

http://www.uru.org.uy/noticia.php?i=875&op=1

 

 

Australia ‘A’ 27, Samoa 15 in Coffs Harbour (Pacific Nations Cup)

Australia ‘A’ won by 12 points. Exactly what I predicted.

 

These two teams have not met before

 

Prediction: Australia ‘A’ by 12 points

 

Japan 20, Tonga 17 in Coffs Harbour (Pacific Nations Cup)

Japan won by 3 points. I predicted Japan by 4.

 

LAST FIVE ENCOUNTERS

04.06.2006 Tonga 57-16 in Fukuoka (Pacific Nations)

25.05.2002 Tonga 41-29 in Kumaguya

03.06.2000 Tonga 26-25 (Pacific Rim)

08.05.1999 Japan 44-17 in Tokyo (Pacific Rim)

 

GWC Rugby Rankings: World Table-Tonga 16th, Japan 17th CHANGE

 

Junior All Blacks 57, Fiji 8 in Suva (Pacific Nations Cup)

Junior All Blacks won by 49 points. I predicted JAB’s by 12.

 

Reviews

FMF Flying Fijians 8 Junior All Blacks 57

IRB Pacific Nations Cup

National Stadium, Suva

Half-time: 3-29

Referee: Paul Marks (Australia)

Touch judges: Brett Bowden (Australia), Napolioni Locoloco (Fiji)

Fourth Official: Mikea Rokodrakia (Fiji)

Crowd: 5,500

 

FMF FLYING FIJIANS: 15 Marika Vakacegu (Taniela Rawaqa 58), 14 Mosese Luveitasau, 13 Vereniki Goneva, 12 Gabiriele Lovobalavu, 11 Isoa Neivua, 10 Jack Prasad (Josevata Tora 74), 9 Vitori Buatava (Seveci Takamaiwai 58), 8 Tomasi Soqeta, 7 Netani Talei (Akapusi Qera 27), 6 Alifereti Doviverata (capt), 5 Wame Lewaravu, 4 Ifereimi Rawaqa (Kele Leawere 60), 3 Tiko Matawalu (Apisai Matawalu 47), 2 Sunia Koto (Viliame Gadolo 50), 1 Alefoso Yalayalatabua

Coach: Ilivasi Tabua

Tries: Lovobalvu; Penalty goal: Buatava.

 

JUNIOR ALL BLACKS: 15 Cory Jane, 14 Rico Gear (Scott Hamilton 56), 13 Casey Laulala, 12 Stephen Brett, 11 Anthony Tuitavake, 10 Stephen Donald (Tane Tu’ipolotu 54), 9 Andrew Ellis (Jimmy Cowan 66), 8 Mose Tuiali’i (Marty Holah 69), 7 Daniel Braid (capt), 6 Jerome Kaino, 5 Greg Rawlinson (Tom Donnelly 52), 4 Ross Filipo, 3 Campbell Johnstone (Clarke Dermody 66), 2 Derren Whitcombe (Tone Kopelani 49), 1 Wyatt Crockett (Campbell Johnstone 73).

Coaches: Colin Cooper & Ian Foster

Tries: Laulala, Ellis, Jane, Gear, Tuiali’i, Hamilton, Tu’ipolotu, penalty try; Conversions: Donald (4), Brett (3); Penalty goal: Donald.

 

Scoring sequence (Fiji’s scores shown first):

7min – TRY JABS, Laulala; conversion Donald – 0-7

9min – PEN GOAL FIJI, Buatava (missed) – 0-7

11min – PEN GOAL FIJI, Buatava – 3-7

13min – PEN GOAL JABS, Donald – 3-10

21min – TRY JABS, Ellis; conversion Donald – 3-17

30min – TRY JABS, Jane; conversion Donald (missed) – 3-22

33min – TRY JABS, Gear; conversion Donald – 3-29

Half-time

45min – TRY JABS, Tuiali’i; conversion Donald – 3-36

55min – PEN TRY JABS; conversion Brett – 3-43

56min – TRY FIJI, Lovobalavu; conversion Buatava (missed) – 8-43

65min – TRY JABS, Hamilton; conversion Brett – 8-50

80min – TRY JABS, Tu’ipolotu; conversion Brett – 8-57

Full-time

 

Thanks to Jeremy Duxbury, FIJI RFU.

 

Previews

Tabua juggles backline for Junior All Blacks


FMF Flying Fijians coach Ilivasi Tabua has rearranged his backline for the crucial match against the Junior All Blacks on Saturday. Marika Vakacegu starts at fullback to give Dan Rawaqa a rest, Mosese Luveitasau comes onto the right wing in place of Vesi Rauluni, and Gabby Lovobalavu replaces Dan Baleinadogo who has a slight hamstring strain. Vitori Buatava moves in from fly-half to halfback as Seveci Taka goes to the bench and Jack Prasad takes the No.10 jersey.

 

In the forwards, the experienced lock Ifereimi Rawaqa replaces the injured Langi Peters, while Sunia Koto starts at hooker with Alefoso Yalayalatabua at loosehead as Graham Dewes is rested.”

 

Thanks to Jeremy Duxbury, Fiji RFU

 

PREVIOUS ENCOUNTERS

03.06.2006 NZ Juniors 35-17 in Suva (Pacific Nations)

23.07.1980 NZ Juniors 30-6 in Suva

01.08.1970 NZ Juniors 20-9 in Wellington

 

Teams

 

Fiji

     Jersey       Name                                                   Age  Caps

            15        Marika Vakacegu                     25       2

            14        Mosese Luveitasau                 27       8

            13        Vereniki Goneva                      23       2

            12        Gabiriele Lovobalavu              21       1

            11        Isoa Neivua                               28       2

            10        Jack Prasad                              24       8

            9          Vitori Buatava                            21     2

            8          Tomasi Soqeta                         23       2

            7          Netani Talei                              24       6

            6          Alifereti Doviverata (capt)       30    37

            5          Wame Lewaravu                      24       2

            4          Ifereimi Rawaqa                       26     25

            3          Tiko Matawalu                          29       3

            2          Sunia Koto                                27    12

            1          Alefoso Yalayalatabua           30       1

Reserves

            16        Bill Gadolo                                30    18

            17        Apisai Turukawa                      31      4

            18        Akapusi Qera                            23      8

            19        Kele Leawere                           33    13

            20        Seveci Taka                              25      3

            21        Jo Tora                                       27      6

            22        Taniela Rawaqa                       21      2

 

Thanks to Jeremy Duxbury, Fiji RFU

 

 

England ‘A’ 17, New Zealand Maori 13 at Twickenham (Churchill Cup Final)

England ‘A’ won by 4 points. I predicted NZ Maori by 16.

 

Previews

http://www.planet-rugby.com./Story/0,18259,3551_2159462,00.html

 

Ireland ‘A’ 22, Scotland ‘A’ 21 at Twickenham (Churchill Cup Playoff 3rd/4th)

 

Previews

http://www.planet-rugby.com./Story/0,18259,3551_2159670,00.html

 

Canada 52, United States 10 at Twickenham (Churchill Cup Playoff 5th/6th)

Canada won by 42 points. I predicted Canada by 8.

 

LAST FIVE ENCOUNTERS

12.08.2006 Canada 56-7 in St Johns (WCQ America 3, North)

17.06.2006 Canada 33-18 in Edmonton (Churchill Cup, Playoff 5th/6th)

26.06.2005 United States 20-19 in Edmonton (Churchill Cup, Playoff 3rd/4th)

25.05.2005 Canada 30-26 in Tokyo (Super Cup Preliminary)

19.06.2004 Canada 32-19 in Edmonton ((Churchill Cup, Playoff 3rd/4th)

 

GWC Rugby Rankings: World Table-Canada 18th, USA 19th

                                             North America Table-Canada 1st, USA 2nd

 

Prediction: Canada by 8 points

 

Teams

 

Canada:

15 Mike Pyke, 14 Justin Mensah-Coker, 13 Craig Culpan, 12 David Spicer, 11 James Pritchard, 10 Ryan Smith, 9 Morgan Williams, 8 Sean-Michael Stephen, 7 Adam Kleeberger, 6 Stan McKeen, 5 Colin Yukes, 4 Luke Tait, 3 Scott Franklin, 2 Pat Riordan, 1 Kevin Tkachuk.

Replacements: 16 Aaron Carpenter, 17 Dan Pletch, 18 Mike Pletch, 19 Josh Jackson, 20 Nanyak Dala, 21 Ed Fairhurst, 22 Dean van Camp.

Coach: Coach: Ric Suggitt

 

United States:

15 Francois Viljoen, 14 Chris Wyles, 13 Paul Emerick, 12 Albert Tuipulotu, 11 Sika Salesi, 10 Malifa Valenese, 9 Kjar Kimball, 8 Louis Stanfill, 7 Todd Clever, 6 Mark Aylor, 5 Mike Mangan, 4 Hayden Mexted, 3 Chris Osentowski, 2 Mark Crick, 1 Mike MacDonald.

Replacements: 16 Blake Burdette, 17 Mike French, 18 Inaki Basauri, 19 Dan Payne, 20 Tasi Mounga, 21 David Williams, 22 Vaha Esikia.

Coach: Peter Thorburn

Referee: Chris Pollock (New Zealand)

 

http://www.planet-rugby.com./Story/0,18259,3551_2161128,00.html

 

Lithuania 36, Hungary 7 in Lithuania (ENC 3B)

Lithuania won by 29 points. I predicted Lithuania by 14.

 

PREVIOUS ENCOUNTERS

27.05.2006 Lithuania 23-17 in Estzergom (ENC 3B)

20.10.2001 Hungary 26-16 in Szazhalombatta (FIRA B, Pool B)

31.05.1997 Hungary 16-3 in Szazhalombatta (WCQ Europe, Pool 3, Rnd A)

 

GWC Rugby Rankings: Europe Table-Hungary 28th, Lithuania 29th CHANGE

 

Finland 27, Israel 20 in Helsinki (ENC 3C)

Finland won by 7 points. I predicted Israel by 4.

 

PREVIOUS ENCOUNTER

02.06.2004 Israel 24-15 in Beauvais (ENC 3C, semi-final)

 

GWC Rugby Rankings: Europe Table-Israel 35th, Finland 36th CHANGE