Planet Rugby

Who's hot...and who's not!

05th November 2013 10:52

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Hot or not Novmeber 5 2013

Hot: Scoring lots of tries - Not: Going backwards

It is time for our weekly wrap up of who has their name in lights at the moment...and who is making the headlines for the wrong reasons.

They're on fire!

Saracens: Still top of the Premiership after their five-try, 40-point demolition of Newcastle, Sarries have now claimed six wins from their seven domestic games so far. Impressive.

Matt Giteau and Jonny Wilkinson: All the pre-game hype ahead of Toulon's clash against Bordeaux-Begles surrounded Bryan Habana, who made his first Top 14 start in front of the Stade Felix Mayol faithful. But Giteau and Wilko stole the limelight as the former Wallaby scored yet another try while newly-married Jonny kicked 22 points, including two drops. RCT went on to win 37-17.

Chris Robshaw: England's captain was one of their better players against the Wallabies. Good awareness saw Robshaw pounce for the try that levelled the scores, whilst he also made more tackles than any other player on either team with 14. For a player whose leadership and place were under threat before November, this was a statement of intent.

David Strettle: Six tries in seven Premiership matches this season make Strettle the form winger in England. Christian Wade is not far behind him with four. Chris Ashton has scored two and was ineffective against Australia. Based on current form, it seems pretty harsh to leave Strettle out of not just the England side, but the whole squad.

Scarlets: Unbeaten since October 5th, the Scarlets have been on an impressive run both domestically and in Europe. Their win over Harlequins at the Stoop was a shock but they backed it up with a 26-26 draw at Parc y Scarlets against the star-studded Racing Metro. A frustrating draw with Zebre followed, but a possible loss was avoided away in Italy, before they defeated frontrunners Ulster on Saturday. Simon Easterby's side are in very good shape given his team sit top of their Heineken Cup pool and in the Pro12's top six.


Broken Thermostat:

England: Winning against one of the souther hemisphere giants normally earns a spot in the top half of this column, but Stuart Lancaster's boys were luke warm at best. Victory at Twickenham came courtesy of a healthy dose of good fortune as their new-look midfield failed to fire, points were left by the wayside from the tee and the tactics in general were less than inspiring. That performance would not have worried the All Blacks.

James O'Connor: We were ready to put rugby's Bieber in the hot section at full time of his debut for Exiles but he then proceeded to walk around waving to fans with a fat grin on his face, even though his team lost. Then he was spotted at a popular London watering hole putting away Jäger bombs. Then he was spotted in France chatting to Toulon's recruitment chief...living the dream man, living the dream.


Get these guys a cup of warm soup!

Match Officials at Twickenham: "Not enough" obstruction? Eh? There either was or wasn't obstruction from Dylan Hartley in the build up to Owen Farrell's try...and there clearly was. Penalty to Australia.

Wallabies: The officials didn't do Australia any favours at Twickenham but Ewen McKenzie's team didn't exactly shut England down either. The Wallaby pack gained a TOTAL of 45m over the course of 80 minutes. All Will Genia wants for Christmas is a bit of 'front foot ball'.

Toulouse: France's most decorated team have yet to win away from home in the Top 14 this season. They were dismal in the first half against Brive, most notably in the set-piece. Guy Novès equated his team's sloppy performance in the first 40 minutes to a "training session." Not good enough.

Worcester: Zero from Seven. Enough said.

Newcastle: 69 points scored in seven games. That's an average of 9.8. Worcester will come right eventually, but if the Falcons want to stay up they need to start scoring a few points.

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Heineken Cup
Saturday , April 26
Saracens vs Clermont Auvergne15:40
Sunday , April 27
Toulon vs Munster15:30
More Heineken Cup fixtures
RaboDirect PRO12
Saturday , April 26
Glasgow vs Edinburgh19:05
More RaboDirect PRO12 fixtures
Amlin Challenge Cup
Friday , April 25
Northampton vs Harlequins20:00
Sunday , April 27
Wasps vs Bath13:00
More Amlin Challenge Cup fixtures
Super Rugby
Friday , April 25
Blues vs Waratahs17:35
Brumbies vs Chiefs17:40
Sharks vs Highlanders19:10
Saturday , April 26
Hurricanes vs Reds19:35
Western Force vs Bulls17:40
Cheetahs vs Stormers17:05
More Super Rugby fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , April 20
Northampton 36 - 21 London IrishNorthampton vs London Irish Report
Newcastle 18 - 23 SaracensNewcastle vs Saracens Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Cardiff Blues 17 - 13 ScarletsCardiff Blues vs Scarlets Report
Newport Gwent D'gons 10 - 20 Ospreys
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , April 19
Bath 32 - 20 WorcesterBath vs Worcester Report
Exeter 12 - 55 SaleExeter vs Sale Report
Wasps 38 - 30 GloucesterWasps vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Zebre 26 - 13 EdinburghZebre vs Edinburgh Report
Connacht 23 - 32 MunsterConnacht vs Munster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Oyonnax 19 - 19 ToulouseOyonnax vs Toulouse Report
Biarritz 19 - 13 Brive
Perpignan 31 - 46 ToulonPerpignan vs Toulon Report
Racing Metro Paris 22 - 6 Clermont AuvergneRacing Metro Paris vs Clermont Auvergne Report
Stade Francais 37 - 23 Bordeaux-Begles
Grenoble 21 - 21 Bayonne
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Chiefs 17 - 18 CrusadersChiefs vs Crusaders Report
Sharks 19 - 8 CheetahsSharks vs Cheetahs Report
Waratahs 19 - 12 BullsWaratahs vs Bulls Report
Stormers 18 - 3 LionsStormers vs Lions Report
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , April 18
Harlequins 24 - 20 LeicesterHarlequins vs Leicester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Leinster 62 - 7 Benetton TrevisoLeinster vs Benetton Treviso Report
Glasgow 27 - 9 UlsterGlasgow vs Ulster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Castres 22 - 15 MontpellierCastres vs Montpellier Report
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Hurricanes 39 - 20 BluesHurricanes vs Blues Report
Melbourne Rebels 22 - 16 Western Force
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Saracens2080
2Northampton2071
3Bath2064
4Leicester Tigers2064
5Harlequins2058