The Rugby Wrap : Weekend Review (Thursday, 30th, January, 2020 – Sunday, 02nd, February, 2020)

The Sharks began well their Super Rugby campaign with a derby win against Bulls in Durban

That weekend was much-awaited as there were plenty going on in the rugby world. If the domestic leagues in the North were taking a rest, two other mighty competitions were back that weekend.

First of all, in the Northern Hemisphere, it was the opening of the 2020 Six Nations Championship. Meanwhile, in the Southern Hemisphere, the Super Rugby competition was kicking off again.

However, there still was some club rugby played in the North. The ProD2 clubs were still fighting for promotion. Besides, there was the second Pro14 derby between the two south-african franchises.

* Biarritz vs. Angoulême : ProD2 (Aguiléra, Biarrotz, France)

The home side relied on the maul and Lucas Peyresblanques scored. Pierre Bernard added a penalty with Mathieu Ugalde missed his attempt for Angoulême. Biarritz kept the momentum.

Pierre Bernard landed his second penalty for the home side and got a third, later on. Erwan Nicolas kicked a penalty for Angoulême. Pierre Bernard got another kick but Elvis Levi was yellow-carded.

From a scrum, Angoulême scored with Sebastien Laulhé. Biarritz scored another penalty with Pierre Bernard. Biarritz secured the win in a very physical game with many phases of play (FT : 20-08).

* Brumbies vs. Reds : Super Rugby (GIO Stadium, Canberra, Australia)

The Brumbies worked a combination and centre Irae Simone scored the try. The Reds hit back in same fashion with Henry Speight. Bryce Hegarty kicked a penalty and got a try for the Reds.

In the second-half, the Brumbies threw the ball wide and Tom Wright touched down. They set up a maul and Folau Fainga’a got the try. Fullback Tom Banks later scored a stunning try for the team.

Also, Noah Lolesio kicked a penalty for the Brumbies. The Reds were back again with a try from Harry Wilson. The Brumbies held their lines and clinched a valuable home win (FT : 27-24).

* Sharks vs. Bulls : Super Rugby (Kings Park, Durban, South Africa)

In the first-half, Curwin Bosch, for the Sharks, and Morne Steyn, for the Bulls, traded penalties. They both scored two penalties. Just before the Half-Time, Morne Steyn landed a drop-goal.

In the second-half, the Sharks set up an attacking display. Winger S’busiso Nkosi scored from a cross-field kick from Curwin Bosch. The Sharks playmaker later added a third penalty for the team.

After that, Morne Steyn got a kick. He missed his next attempt before scoring another kick. The Sharks got a stunning try from a set-piece move with Sanele Nohamba. They secured the win (FT : 23-15).

* Crusaders vs. Waratahs : Super Rugby (Trafalgar Park, Nelson, New Zealand)

The Crusaders landed a penalty with David Havili. The Waratahs did the same with Will Harrison. The home side got the try out wide with Will Jordan. Will Harrison got a penalty for the Waratahs.

The Crusaders turned the ball over as Brayden Ennor and Leicester Fainga’anu’uku scored tries. In the second-half, Mark Nawaqanitawase got a quick brace for the Waratahs.

After that, Braydon Ennor also got a brace with Luke Romano scoring from a lineout. The Waratahs got a late try with Alex Newsome. The Crusaders got the bonus point win at home (FT : 43-25).

* Wales vs. Italy : Six Nations (Principality Stadium, Cardiff, Wales)

The Wales team built a lead with three penalties from Dan Biggar. Wales threw the ball out wide and Josh Adams scored on the wing. He even got a brace after a very good attacking build-up.

In the second-half, Wales kept the momentum. Replacement centre Nick Thompkins got a try on debut after finding space in the midfield. George North had a try disallowed after a knock-on.

Though, the Welsh winger concluded a build-up, later on. The other winger, Josh Adams got a Hat-Trick. It was a bonus point win for Wales who impressed during that opening game (FT : 42-00).

* Cheetahs vs. Kings : Pro14 (Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein, South Africa)

The Cheetahs set up a maul and Joseph Dweba scored the try. Back-rower Chris Massyn carried over the whitewash as well with Joseph Dweba getting a brace. Though, Walt Steenkamp was binned.

In the second-half, the Cheetahs defended well before counter-attacking as Jasper Wiese scored. The Kings had Elrigh Louw binned. Clayton Blommetjies played the quick-tap and touched down.

He later made the chip-kick resulting in a stunning try for Rhyno Smith. Replacement fly-half Louis Fouché also scored from a big scrum. It was a big win for the Cheetahs (FT : 45-00).

* France vs. England : Six Nations (Stade de France, Paris, France)

The France team built a few phases early and Vincent Rattez concluded for a great try. Romain Ntamack kicked a penalty. Skipper Charles Ollivon later got a counter-attacking try for the home team.

In the second-half, France kept the momentum and skipper Charles Ollivon got a brace. England hit back with a try from winger Jonny May after winning the chase from his chip-kick in the defence.

The winger got a brace, later on. England pushed for more tries but France held their lines in defence. Owen Farrell kicked a penalty for England. France clinched a massive home win (FT : 24-17).

Conclusion

That was a very entertaining weekend with some great games. In the ProD2, Biarritz maintained the standards and could push for Top14 promotion. About the Super Rugby, there were good games.

The Brumbies performed well while the Sharks clinched the home win. Meanwhile, the Crusaders opened with the win, as well. In the Six Nations, Wales and France got some huge wins.

Finally, in the Pro14, the Cheetahs won their derby to get back on track. Next weekend, the domestic leagues would get a rest again. There will be some Six Nations and Super Rugby, as well.

Max.

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