Planet Rugby

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

19th February 2013 10:45

Share:

Danny Care and Dan Evans for Hot and Not

Good and bad: Quins and Dragons

It's time for our wrap of who has their name in lights at the moment ... and who is making the headlines for the wrong reasons in rugby this week.

They're on fire!

Guy Novès: Toulouse's head honcho racked up his 1000th game with the Top 14 side at the weekend. Two thirds of those games have been either as coach or manager while the rest were as a player. It's a pity his men couldn't give him the perfect gift - a win - to celebrate the milestone, after they suffered a home defeat to Perpignan.

Toulon: The Top 14 table-toppers put last weekend's embarrassing 41-0 defeat to Bordeaux-Bègles behind them, bouncing back with a convincing triumph over Montpellier. Coach Bernard Laporte read his troops the riot act after that loss and they certainly responded in emphatic style. Signs of champions in the making? Time will tell.

Harlequins: Like Toulon, Conor O'Shea's men are back in the saddle after going down to Wasps ten days ago. The defending Aviva Premiership champions went top of the table after edging out fellow title contenders Leicester, with Danny Care leading the charge.

Rebels and Brumbies: Super Rugby is back and after the opening round of action it's the Melbourne and Canberra-based teams that have bragging rights after notching deserved derby victories over the Western Force and Reds respectively.

Sale Sharks: Boy did they need that win. Victory over London Welsh puts the Sharks just one point behind London Irish and three off the Welsh. Suddenly things look promising ahead of facing a Quins XV without Care, Mike Brown, Joe Marler and Chris Robshaw...


Brrrrr....it's cold in here!

Scott Higginbotham: The Rebels' star signing's competitive debut for his new franchise will be one he will want to forget in a hurry. Despite his side's win, the Wallaby back-rower received a yellow card for striking an opponent midway through the first-half and he was also caught on camera shoving a ball-boy, in an attempt to take a quick line-out throw.

Reds: In 2012 the men from Queensland grabbed a last ditch opening day victory over the Waratahs in Sydney but this season things began in much more sobering fashion. Defeat to the Brumbies was rarely in doubt as the Reds could not match their opponent, who exacted revenge for not making the play-offs last season. The Reds sorely missed injured captain James Horwill while there is a spark lacking in the three-quarters. We know they're only one game in but the signs of knockout rugby don't look good for Ewen McKenzie's side. Next up is the Waratahs at Suncorp Stadium in what is a huge derby game that whets the appetite.

Dragons: There are hidings and there are hidings, with the Dragons feeling the full force of Glasgow Warriors on Saturday. 8 tries and 60 points were put past the Welsh region on their home patch in a result that sees their points difference move to -157. This result came on the back of three straight victories - against the Ospreys, London Welsh and Treviso - with the Dragons' next game seeing them travel to Parma where they face Zebre. This question now is whether the Italians can record their first ever RaboDirect PRO12 win?

Ardie Savea: The promising flanker was dealt a blow even before a ball has been kicked at Westpac Stadium when he was suspended for four weeks after making a dangerous tackle on Augustine Pulu. What a shame we won't get to see this talent in Super Rugby for another month as big things are expected of the 19-year-old. Hopefully his indiscretion is just a blip on a long and fruitful career for both the Hurricanes and possibly the All Blacks.

By David Skippers and Adam Kyriacou

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , April 18
Harlequins vs LeicesterHarlequins vs Leicester Preview
Saturday , April 19
Exeter vs Sale15:00
Bath vs Worcester15:00
Wasps vs Gloucester15:15
Sunday , April 20
Northampton vs London Irish14:00
Newcastle vs Saracens15:00
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
RaboDirect PRO12
Friday , April 18
Leinster vs Benetton TrevisoLeinster vs Benetton Treviso Preview
Glasgow vs UlsterGlasgow vs Ulster Preview
Saturday , April 19
Zebre vs Edinburgh14:30
Connacht vs Munster18:15
Sunday , April 20
Cardiff Blues vs Scarlets14:00
Newport Gwent D'gons vs Ospreys16:45
More RaboDirect PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Friday , April 18
Castres vs MontpellierCastres vs Montpellier Preview
Saturday , April 19
Oyonnax vs Toulouse14:55
Perpignan vs Toulon17:00
Grenoble vs Bayonne18:30
Biarritz vs Brive18:30
Racing Metro Paris vs Clermont AuvergneRacing Metro Paris vs Clermont Auvergne Preview
Stade Francais vs Bordeaux-Begles20:35
More Top 14 fixtures
Super Rugby
Friday , April 18
Hurricanes vs BluesHurricanes vs Blues Preview
Melbourne Rebels vs Western ForceMelbourne Rebels vs Western Force Preview
Saturday , April 19
Chiefs vs CrusadersChiefs vs Crusaders Preview
Waratahs vs Bulls19:00
Sharks vs Cheetahs15:00
Stormers vs Lions17:05
More Super Rugby fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , April 13
Saracens 28 - 24 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
London Irish 40 - 12 NewcastleLondon Irish vs Newcastle Report
Saturday , April 12
Worcester 33 - 38 ExeterWorcester vs Exeter Report
Leicester 27 - 15 WaspsLeicester vs Wasps Report
Gloucester 17 - 18 BathGloucester vs Bath Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Benetton Treviso 45 - 27 Newport Gwent D'gonsBenetton Treviso vs Newport Gwent D
Scarlets 27 - 20 ZebreScarlets vs Zebre Report
Munster 5 - 22 GlasgowMunster vs Glasgow Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Bordeaux-Begles 20 - 22 ToulonBordeaux-Begles vs Toulon Report
Toulouse 16 - 9 BriveToulouse vs Brive Report
Grenoble 30 - 36 Montpellier
Perpignan 22 - 12 Oyonnax
Bayonne 24 - 19 Stade Francais
Racing Metro Paris 37 - 7 Biarritz
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Chiefs 22 - 16 Melbourne RebelsChiefs vs Melbourne Rebels Report
Western Force 28 - 16 WaratahsWestern Force vs Waratahs Report
Lions 12 - 25 SharksLions vs Sharks Report
Cheetahs 31 - 52 CrusadersCheetahs vs Crusaders Report
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , April 11
Sale Sharks 12 - 27 HarlequinsSale Sharks vs Harlequins Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Ulster 58 - 12 ConnachtUlster vs Connacht Report
Edinburgh 22 - 29 Cardiff BluesEdinburgh vs Cardiff Blues Report
Ospreys 25 - 19 LeinsterOspreys vs Leinster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Clermont Auvergne 23 - 11 CastresClermont Auvergne vs Castres Report
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Highlanders 27 - 20 BullsHighlanders vs Bulls Report
Reds 20 - 23 BrumbiesReds vs Brumbies Report
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Saracens1976
2Northampton1966
3Leicester Tigers1963
4Bath1959
5Harlequins1954