• Trinidad Already Preparing for CAC Games

    <span style="color:#666666"><strong>Selectors looking for new talent</strong></span> <span style="color:#666666"><em><strong>Curtis Nero, Trinidad and Tobago Rugby Football Union (TTRFU) chairman of selectors, has confirmed that T&amp;T’s 2010 Central America and Caribbean (CAC) Games rugby sevens preparation begins with this weekend’s National Sevens Championships, scheduled for the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port of Spain.</strong></em></span> <div class="image_block"><a href="http://www.rugbybahamas.com/images/nerosolomon.jpg"><img src="http://www.rugbybahamas.com/images/nerosolomon.jpg" alt="" title="" width="225" height="225" /></a></div> <div align="center"><span style="color:#009900"><em><strong>Curtis Nero (right) with Guyana Head Coach Sherlock Solomon</strong></em></span></div> According to Nero, the TTRFU selectors will pay close attention to the day’s activities. <blockquote><p><img src="http://www.bigblogmedia.com/images/start_quote_rb.gif" align="texttop" alt="" /> ’We will be looking to see if any youngsters will stake a claim for inclusion in the training squad. The Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee’s (TTOC) first fitness test is on Saturday but we will miss out due to the National Sevens. But we will shortlist players following the sevens and submit those names to the TTOC for future fitness tests.’ <img src="http://www.bigblogmedia.com/images/end_quote_rb.gif" align="absbottom" alt="" /></p></blockquote> Nero said the disappointment of losing to Guyana in last month’s NACRA Sevens final is still being felt, but he is confident T&amp;T will rebound in 2010 and win the CAC gold medal and qualify for the 2011 Pan Am Games. Source: <a href="http://www.trinidadexpress.com/index.pl/article_sports?id=161566387">T&amp;T Express</a>

     
  • IRB Dubai Sevens: New Zealand back to winning ways

    <span style="color:#666666"><em><strong>A brilliant display from New Zealand has seen them crowned Dubai Sevens champions getting their 2009/10 IRB Sevens World Series campaign off to the perfect start.</strong></em></span> <div class="image_block"><a href="http://www.rugbybahamas.com/images/NZdubai.jpg"><img src="http://www.rugbybahamas.com/images/NZdubai.jpg" alt="" title="" width="300" height="200" /></a></div> With the Kiwis not winning a leg last season, the win will come as welcome relief for coach Gordon Tietjens. The Kiwis faced an inspired Samoa side in the final winning 24-12 thanks to a brace from Tomasi Cama. Scores from Levasa and Lolo Lui originally put the Samoans ahead but DJ Forbes and Kurt Baker’s efforts were enough for New Zealand to take it. Australia stunned South Africa 7-0 to take the Plate and World Champions Wales were far too strong for Zimbabwe winning the Bowl 38-7. Russia enjoyed their first Dubai Sevens experience claiming the Shield against Portugal thanks to a hat-trick from the impressive Vasily Artemyev. In the Cup Semi-Finals it was New Zealand who shone clinically beating old rivals Fiji with some highly charged physical Sevens that saw them win 19-0. Samoa blitzed England to go 21-0 almost immediately with Lolo Lui, inspirational throughout the weekend, eventually aiding them to a 28-19 win. Defending Champions South Africa were stunned in the first of the day’s Cup Quarter-Finals losing to an Fiji, with New Zealand also going through after they came from behind to edge Kenya at the death. England needed sudden death extra time to beat Argentina thanks to a Ben Gollings score. Lolo Lui’s dramatic late conversion was enough for a one point win over Australia in what was a thrilling hour and half’s play at ‘The Sevens’. The Series moves to George next week for the second leg of the IRB Sevens World Series. Source: <a href="http://ur7s.com/news/667/day_2_irb_dubai_sevens_new_zealand_back_to_winning_ways?utm_source=UR7s+Newsletter&amp;utm_campaign=1504841395-UR7s_Newsletter_Whole_List_09December200912_8_2009&amp;utm_medium=email">Ultimate Rugby Sevens</a>

     
  • Guyana: Ministry of Sport has not acknowledged rugby achievements

    <p><strong><em><strong><span style="color:#666666"><strong><em><strong>Is it true that success breeds enemies? Well, one would hope that that is not the reason why the [Guyana] Ministry of Sport, the National Sports Commission or the Government have not seen it fit to acknowledge the outstanding achievements of the national rugby teams who successfully defended their NACRA titles in Mexico recently.</strong></em></strong></span></strong></em></strong></p> <p><br />The teams arrived home last Tuesday and up to press time no release from those establishments has surfaced, not even to congratulate the two teams. It appears a bit insensitive and uncaring and one wonders what could have caused such indifference to two outstanding national units who’ve both represented this country with distinction for years.</p> <p><br />Obviously, members of the rugby fraternity should feel aggrieved by the lack of care exhibited by those in authority, especially the ones responsible for the development and support for sports. However, it is not too late for them to publicly apologise and make amends for the glaring omission. It is indeed hard to see in your mind’s eye such an episode occurring in Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, Barbados or anywhere else in the world.</p> <p>One example readily comes to the fore on how to treat athletes or teams who’ve achieved outstanding results is just to look at what the little island of Antigua &amp; Barbuda did for their native son Daniel Bailey, who finished fourth in the 100 metres at the World Athletics Championships in August this year. He returned to a heroes welcome and was given significant gifts from the Baldwin Spencer Government including being named ‘Sports Ambassador’.</p> <p>Just to emphasise the point here is an excerpt from the speech made by the Honourable Prime Minister Spencer at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium to honour Bailey’s achievement of reaching the final of the Men’s Blue Riband event in Germany,</p> <blockquote> <p><img src="/images/start_quote_rb.gif" alt="" align="textTop" /> “Ladies and gentlemen, the series of events which began earlier this afternoon represents our nation’s, our people’s, high regard for the outstanding performance of our own people. It is also indicative of our government’s commitment to the promotion and development of sport and recreation.<br />This commitment derives from our knowledge that sport and recreation serve to build our nation and are an essential part of our efforts to improve the quality of life of all.<br />“I will admit that there are challenges, but I am also pleased to announce that there are also changes. I wish to commend the Ministry of Sports for the significant time and effort which is being invested in the restructuring of the Department of Sports.<br />I underscore my support for the new approach of Ministry of Sports to place a greater focus on policy formulation and facilitation of key stakeholders to implement home-grown developmental programmes and less on direct implementation.<br />“I am also pleased to report that significant progress has been made to complete a standardized athlete recognition system which would not only provide for consistency in individual acknowledgement, but also serve as a motivator for all who aspire to excellence in sports.” <img src="/images/end_quote_rb.gif" alt="" align="absBottom" /></p> </blockquote> <p><br />The relevant stakeholders here need to take a page out of the book of Mr. Spencer and understand the importance of recognising the achievements of our athletes and rewarding them for it. Very often the sports pages have been inundated with speeches outlining the importance of sport in the national framework, but also very often it ends up being just that, lip service accompanied by little if any action.</p> <p>These athletes have done us proud and not to be recognised by the very institutions that speak about the promotion of sports and how it could impact and improve the lives of Guyanese is an indictment on us as a nation. Let us therefore recognise the rugby teams’ feat and reward them justly.</p> <p> </p> <p>Source: <a href="http://www.kaieteurnewsonline.com/2009/11/22/it-is-true/">Kaieteur News (Guyana)</a></p>

     
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  • USA qualify for 2011 Rugby World Cup

    <p> </p> <p><strong><span style="font-family: Arial;"> <p align="left"> </p> </span></strong><span style="font-family: Arial;"> <p align="left">With their fourth win in five matches, USA qualified for New Zealand after recording a 27-6 home win over Uruguay to complete a 54-28 aggregate playoff victory over Los Teros.</p> <p align="left">USA captain Todd Clever scored two tries at Broward County Regional Park, Lauderhill, Florida to assist his team to a total of eight tries during the two matches. Uruguay's points came through two Jerónimo Etcheverry penalties, to add to the 13 points he scored in the first leg.</p> <p align="left">In front of 2237 spectators, Mike Hercus kicked a penalty for the home side early on, before Lou Stanfill and Kevin Swiryn extended USA's lead with two first-half tries. Etcheverry kicked penalties either side of half time to bring Uruguay back to 13-6 down, but Clever touched down twice in the second period to leave the final score at 27-6. Uruguay was not helped when Uruguay prop Mario Sagario was sent off with 25 minutes remaining for dangerously charging into a ruck.</p> <p align="left">USA will face Australia, Ireland, Italy and a European qualifier in Pool C at RWC 2011, playing matches in New Plymouth, Wellington and Nelson.</p> <p><span style="font-family: Arial;"> <p align="left">Uruguay will have one last chance to qualify through the cross-continental play-off.</p> <p align="left">Source: <span style="color:#0000CC">IRB by mail</span></p> </span></p> </span></p>

     
  • NACRA's Response to the Untimely Death of Jacob Thompson

    <p align="left"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><strong><span style="font-family: Arial;"><em><span style="font-family: Arial;"><strong><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="color:#666666"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><strong><span style="font-family: Arial;"><em><span style="font-family: Arial;"><strong><span style="font-family: Arial;">There has been a lot of very significant Rugby played this week, with USA qualifying for the 2011 Rugby World Cup, and Canada’s women and men in action. These matches are reported below. But it all seems rather irrelevant currently as we deal with the murder, in his own house, last Friday, of one of the leading figures in NACRA Rugby;Sergeant Jacob Thompson, Chairman of the Jamaica Rugby Union. </span></strong></span></em></span></strong></span></span></span></strong></span></em></span></strong><span style="font-family: Arial;"> <p align="left"> </p> <p align="left">Jacob was the winner of the 2007 IRB Development Award and, only a month ago, in the proudest day of his life, on Jamaica’s National Heroes Day, his beloved country rewarded his years of selfless effort with the</p> </span></span></p> <p align="left"><em><span style="font-family: Arial;">Order of Jamaica Badge of Honour for Long and Faithful Service</span></em><span style="font-family: Arial;">, the nation’s fourth highest civil honour, “for valuable service to the youth of Jamaica through the game of Rugby”. <p align="left">He had been the Chairman of Jamaica Rugby Union since 1999, and was appointed Vice-President of West Indies Rugby Union from the period 2005-2007. In 2007 he was selected as an Executive Committee Member of WIRU.</p> <span style="font-family: Arial;"> <p align="left">His relentless drive and leadership carried the Jamaica Rugby Union and its coaches, referees, administrative staff, Rugby development officers and players to the highest levels in the Caribbean region.</p> </span></span><strong><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: x-small;"><strong><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: x-small;"></span></strong></span></strong><span style="font-family: Arial;"> <p align="left">He was the primary reason that thousands of children from some of the poorest and most troubled inner city neighbourhoods now play Rugby in Kingston and around Jamaica.</p> <p align="left">He was proud to say that Rugby is now permanently a piece of the fabric of Jamaican society. Today there are mixed primary school competitions, boys’ and girls’ high school leagues and cups, and senior leagues for men and women.</p> <p align="left">Jacob also invested a fortune of his own money, so that in a country where poverty is widespread, besides ensuring playing and touring opportunities, if a player was hungry, he fed him; if a player was injured, he ensured that she was treated.</p> <p align="left">Jacob Thompson was the embodiment of Jamaican Rugby. Whatever the future may hold for his cherished Country and Union, no one will ever forget the massive commitment he gave to his people, and to Rugby in Jamaica.</p> <p>Rest in peace.</p> </span></p> <p align="left"> </p> <p> </p> <p>Source: <span style="color:#0000CC">NACRA, by email</span></p>

     
  • IRB mourns the death of Jacob Thompson

    <p class="articleText"><strong><em><span style="color: #888888;">The International Rugby Board has described the death of Jamaica Rugby Union Chairman Jacob Thompson last Friday as a huge loss to the Game.</span></em></strong></p> <p class="articleText">Thompson, who received the IRB Development Award in 2007, was the driving force behind considerable growth of Rugby across Jamaica and the North America and Caribbean Region.</p> <p class="articleText">He devoted 40 years to the Sport, establishing programmes within schools and clubs in Jamaica, growing participation at all levels and was also the primary reason that thousands of children from some of the poorest inner city neighbourhoods within the country are now enjoying Rugby.</p> <p class="articleText">"On behalf of the global Rugby family, I would like to express my deepest sadness for the loss of a wonderful servant of the Game and a man who dedicated so much time to the development and promotion of the Sport that he loved," said IRB Chairman Bernard Lapasset.</p> <p class="articleText">"This is a huge blow for Jamaican Rugby and obviously a terrible tragedy for Jacob's family. The thoughts of everyone involved in the Game go to Jacob's family and the Jamaica Rugby Union at this very difficult time."</p> <p class="articleText">IRB General Manager for the North America Caribbean Rugby Association (NACRA) Region, Tom Jones also paid tribute to the man described as an inspiration to sports men and women throughout Jamaica and the Caribbean.</p> <p class="articleText">"Jacob was proud to say that Rugby is a prominent piece of the fabric of Jamaican society. His achievements were remarkable and epitomised the dedication and devotion of a man who lived and breathed Rugby."</p> <p class="articleText">"Jacob's legacy will be extensive. There are now dedicated structures for mixed primary school competitions, boys and girls high school leagues and cups, and senior leagues for men and women across all communities. The Game is really taking off." <br /><br />In October Thompson was awarded the prestigious accolade of the Order of Jamaica Badge of Honour for Long and Faithful Service, the nation's fourth highest civil honour, for valuable service to the youth of Jamaica through Rugby.</p>

     
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