Sunday Social: A legend says goodbye and quick feet

Date published: May 30 2021

It is time for Planet Rugby’s Sunday Social, your quirky recap of the serious and not so serious talking points from the past week’s action.

We kick off in the PRO14 Rainbow Cup where Munster legend CJ Stander said goodbye to his Thomond Park home – ahead of his retirement – on the occasion of his final game at the venue, in the Irish province’s win over Cardiff Blues.

It turned out to be a very special day – and a double cause for celebration – for Stander.

Elsewhere, in the Premiership, Bristol Bears back Ioan Lloyd’s quick feet got the better of Sale Sharks’ defence at the AJ Bell Stadium and he was rewarded with a five-pointer for his efforts.

That game also saw the return to action of Sale, England and British & Irish Lions centre Manu Tuilagi – after an eight-month absence through injury – and he received a rousing applause when he came on as second half replacement.

It was a sad day for the game after the sudden passing of BT Sport director Steve Docherty and commentor Nick Mullins gave a fitting tribute to his departed colleague.

Meanwhile, there was a huge backlash after England centre Henry Slade said he would not be taking the Covid-19 vaccine.

The fallout from the Slade story continued with the journalist who interviewed him writing this. Kate Rowan expressed her dissatisfaction over the abuse he received, but she was also disappointed with how it was handled by Slade and his club, Exeter Chiefs.

Moving Down Under, where the Chiefs showed their class with magnificent try in their Super Rugby Trans-Tasman defeat to the Reds in Townsville.

Despite that five-pointer, the Reds hung on for the win – a significant result in the grander scheme of things in that tournament.

Blues scrum-half Finlay Christie was not to be outdone in the try-scoring department as he came up with this outstanding effort in his side’s victory against the Brumbies at Eden Park.

While this long-range score from Hurricanes hooker Asafo Aumua, in his team’s win over the Western Force in Napier, was also pretty special.

And finally, Crusaders and All Blacks fly-half Richie Mo’unga turned 27 recently. To celebrate it, we posted this video of this brilliant piece of skill from the outstanding playmaker.