Seven teams will directly qualify for the next Women’s Rugby World Cup, with five qualifying from regional routes
Following a comprehensive review of this year’s successful tournament, the World Rugby Council agreed that the top seven teams from Women’s Rugby World Cup 2014 will qualify directly, meaning reigning champions England, Canada, France, Ireland, New Zealand, USA and Australia are confirmed for the 2017 tournament.
The additional five teams will be determined through the following qualification process:
- The two best ranked Women’s 6 Nations teams (outside of those teams already qualified) from the combined results of the 2015 and 2016 Women’s 6 Nations tournaments.
- The winner of a home and away playoff match between the lowest ranked side in the Women’s 6 Nations (combined 2015 and 2016 results and outside of the teams already qualified) and the Rugby Europe Women’s champion.
- The two best ranked teams from a final qualifying tournament featuring South Africa, one team from Oceania and two teams from Asia. The qualification process for the Oceania and Asian teams into the final qualification tournament will be determined at a later date.
The host selection tender and the qualifying process was ratified by the World Rugby Council at their meeting in London last month.
Head of Rugby World Cup Alan Gilpin said: “The record-breaking success, appeal and excitement of Paris 2014 underscored just why women’s rugby is one of the world’s fastest-growing team sports.
“We’re happy that the qualification process for the 2017 tournament is robust and will ensure the 12 best teams in the world will be competing.
“The host selection tender process has already stimulated significant interest, and I predict a fantastic Women’s Rugby World Cup in three years’ time, wherever it’s held.”
The tender process to host Women’s Rugby World Cup was launched in November and World Rugby Council will make a decision on the host union at a scheduled meeting in May 2015.
The tournament, which was won by England in Paris last August, will move to 2017 to maximise synergy with the Olympic and Rugby World Cup Sevens cycles. The event will return to a four-year cycle after 2017.
Daniel Carter to leave New Zealand Rugby at end of 2015
The All Blacks and Crusaders first five-eighth has announced he has signed a three-year deal with French Top 14 club Racing Metro. It will be Carter’s second stint in France after he played five games for Perpignan in 2008-2009 during his sabbatical from New Zealand rugby.
32-year-old Carter said it was exciting to confirm his future post 2015.
“It’s going to be an awesome adventure for me and my family. Having visited France many times, including my time with Perpignan, I know what the French culture and their rugby culture is like and it’s something I really love.
“Having said that, it’s the immediate future that is exciting me at the moment. 2015 is going to be a big year and I’m looking forward to getting into it, firstly with the Crusaders and then hopefully with the All Blacks. My body is feeling really good, I’m training really hard and getting some good conditioning in so I can hit the ground running next year. I’m looking forward to getting out and playing some good footy.”
New Zealand Rugby Chief Executive Steve Tew said while everyone was looking forward to seeing Carter in action in 2015, today’s announcement was an opportunity to celebrate everything he had already achieved in New Zealand rugby.
“I am sure all New Zealand rugby fans will celebrate Dan’s remaining time in New Zealand and he will leave with New Zealand rugby’s very best wishes.
“Dan has been incredibly loyal to New Zealand Rugby over the years and for that we thank him. Whilst everyone is aware of his outstanding achievements on the rugby field, it’s also important to note that during his career he recommitted to New Zealand at two critical junctures in our rugby history – after the 2007 Rugby World Cup and again following the 2011 tournament.
“That decision by Dan and other senior players to re-sign with New Zealand Rugby after 2007 should not be underestimated; he was a key part of a group of players who formed the backbone of the All Blacks over the following years, which ultimately helped the All Blacks to victory at Rugby World Cup 2011. For that we will be eternally grateful to him. We look forward to having him in New Zealand for one final season.”
All Blacks Head Coach Steve Hansen said: “On behalf of the All Blacks, I want to congratulate Dan on his decision and also on his career to date. He is still in the midst of a wonderful career, both as a provincial and Super Rugby player and an All Black, and will leave us as the greatest first five-eighth ever.
“Whilst he hasn’t finished yet in New Zealand, he has already set the benchmark for first five play, and we look forward to seeing him out on the paddock in 2015.”
Crusaders Head Coach Todd Blackadder added: “Dan Carter has given so much to rugby in this region. He is one of the most famous rugby players in the world, but he is still a local lad who has never forgotten his roots. ‘DC’ is the ultimate team player and his contribution is as significant off the field as it is on the field.
“The Crusaders will be very sad to see a player of DC’s calibre go, but we are thankful for all that he has given us over the last 11 years and we are looking forward to a final season with him in 2015. I know that this will be a special season for Dan and we’ll certainly be hoping to help him leave on a high note.”
Daniel Carter – biography
From the small rural Canterbury town of Southbridge, 32-year-old Daniel Carter has grown into an icon of world rugby since making his provincial debut for Canterbury in 2002 and his Super Rugby and All Blacks debut the following year. World rugby’s foremost first five-eighth and two-time World Rugby Player of the Year, he holds numerous All Blacks and international rugby records. He is one of five All Blacks centurions and the leading points scorer in world rugby, scoring a staggering 1457 points (29 tries, 260 conversions, 258 penalties, six dropped goals) in his 102 Tests to date, for an average of 14 points per Test. He is also the leading points scorer in Investec Super Rugby and a Super centurion, amassing 1581 points (33 tries, 264 conversions, 285 penalties, 11 dropped goals) in his 11 seasons to date. Carter was named New Zealand Player of the Year in 2004, won the New Zealand and World titles in 2005 and was again World Player in 2012. He was also a World Player nominee in 2006 and 2008.
New Zealand and Australia are top of the standings after Dubai but will face difficult match-ups in Brazil.
At the last round in Dubai, New Zealand continued their intense rivalry against Australia with another thrilling cup final, which was claimed by the Kiwis with the last play of the match.
However, it was the improvement of teams such as Russia and France that also grabbed the headlines during round one, with both teams making great strides from last season.
World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series 2014/2015 Brazil, February 7/8
|Pool A||Pool B||Pool C|
Pool C makes for some interesting clashes with Canada, England and Russia all set to do battle in Sao Paulo in February, along with South Africa.
With less than two years to the Olympics Games in Rio de Janeiro, rugby returns to Brazil on 7-8 February with round two of the women’s series kicking off in Sao Paulo. This season will see the top four teams qualify for the Rio Games in 2016, and as a result, the competition has already seen a step up in intensity, energy and skill levels.
Last year’s event at the Arena Barueri saw passionate crowds turn out for the first ever series event in the world’s sixth largest city, and organisers are hopeful of even larger crowds in 2015.
All rounds of the 2014-15 season will be live streamed on worldrugby.org with geo blocking applying in some areas.
The action from round two in Sao Paulo gets underway at 11:00 local time, with Fiji taking on China.
All Blacks Head Coach Steve Hansen has been reappointed until the end of the 2017 season, New Zealand Rugby (NZR) confirmed today.
The contract extension, announced by NZR Chief Executive Steve Tew at a media conference in Wellington, will see Hansen coach the All Blacks beyond next year’s Rugby World Cup into the 2017 season when the British and Irish Lions tour New Zealand, in what will be a major event for the country.
“We think this is fantastic news for the All Blacks and New Zealand Rugby and Steve is the right man for the job, having won the World Rugby and Steinlager Coach of the Year awards for the past three years and 38 of his 42 Test matches in charge. On behalf of all New Zealand rugby, I would like to congratulate him on his reappointment.
“Steve is the first All Blacks coach to be given a contract extension beyond a Rugby World Cup which demonstrates just how much faith the Board and our wider organisation, together with the All Blacks players and management, have in him.
“He has huge experience and under his guidance the All Blacks have reached remarkable heights. To have him re-sign as Head Coach through to 2017 gives the All Blacks the continuity they will need as they make the transition into 2016 and beyond, following next year’s Rugby World Cup.”
All Blacks Head Coach Steve Hansen said: “I am honoured by the faith and confidence the Board has shown in me by offering an extension to my contract.
“It’s a privilege to be part of the All Blacks and not something you could ever take for granted. After getting the support of my family and various team personnel to continue, I asked myself if I still had the hunger and desire to continue in the role, which I do, so the decision to continue became a no-brainer, because there is no better job in world rugby.
“Whilst I am well aware that there is a lot of work to do, I am really looking forward to the future, starting with 2015 and the opportunity and challenge that awaits us at the Rugby World Cup. 2016 will bring its own challenges with a number of senior players likely to be moving on and then 2017, when the British and Irish Lions tour, which will be massive.
“Finally, I would like to thank my wife Tash and family for their ongoing love and support. Without that, I wouldn’t be able to do the job.”
Steve Hansen biography
55-year-old Steve Hansen CNZM was born in Mosgiel and has been coaching for two decades at club, provincial, Super Rugby and international level. He was appointed Head Coach of the All Blacks following the All Blacks’ famous Rugby World Cup 2011 victory after serving as Assistant Coach for eight years. The All Blacks have fashioned an enviable record under Hansen with 38 wins, just two losses and two draws for a winning record of 90 percent. The record includes the historic unbeaten season of 2013, victories in the Steinlager Series and Investec Rugby Championship each year, and the retention of the Bledisloe Cup. Hansen has been named World Rugby Coach of the Year in the last three years, with the team also getting the ‘three-peat’ as World Rugby Team of the Year. Prior to joining the All Blacks, Hansen coached Wales for two years, was Assistant Coach of the Crusaders during their title–winning seasons in 1999 – 2001 and won titles with Canterbury in 2001 and 1997.
The New Zealand Rugby is set to confirm this afternoon the re-signing of All Blacks coach Steve Hansen.
NZRU Officials have called a media conference for today at 3pm in Wellington.
At this stage Hansen is signed through until the end of next year’s World Cup, but is now likely to resign until after the next Lions tour in 2017.
Hansen has been with the All Blacks for a decade, as head coach he and has a near impeccable record.
Since taking the reins in 2012 Hansen has had 38 wins, two losses and two draws as head coach.
Colombia’s Rugby selection with the triumph last Saturday before Mexico 62-24 in Mexico , this week climb 8 places to position 50, the highest in the history of the Colombian rugby in the official rankings of RugbyRedefined who rank 155 Nations who play Test Rugby.
The top 10 of the RR rankings remain the same:
Toucans on 8 June 1996, played their first international game, precisely against the snakes of Mexico, that took place in the city of Medellin and ended with a 10-10 tie.
The resounding triumph of toucans in Mexico, closes a bright year Colombian rugby, that in the second half of 2014 won the South-American older B developed in Apartado, Colombia; They were the champions of the South American B of Juveniles in Lima, Peru; and it was the only the Sevens of Colombia to reach the medals of gold in both branches, both female and male Rugby Sevens of the Central American Games and the Caribbean in Veracruz, Mexico.
South Africa have beaten New Zealand 26-17 in the Cup final at the Cell C Nelson Mandela Bay Sevens in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, in a repeat of last year’s victory.
- Cup final: South Africa defeat New Zealand 26-17 in front of 36,425 fans
- Blitzboks move to first in standings with win as road to Rio heats up
South Africa have defended their title and won their second consecutive round of the HSBC Sevens World Series with a 26-17 win over defending series champions New Zealand at the Cell C Nelson Mandela Bay Sevens in Port Elizabeth, round three of the Series.
New Zealand looked every inch the defending series champions early, Sherwin Stowers crossing out wide to give the All Blacks Sevens a five-point lead. But the form team of the series didn’t take long to spring into action, Philip Snyman on the end of a Blitzbok raid to level shortly after.
Cecil Africa sent the 36,000 strong crowd into raptures with the host nation’s second try, extending the lead to 12-5 just prior to the break before Joe Webber capitalised on Afrika’s sin bin to reduce the deficit to two.
Two minutes into the second half Kwagga Smith broke from the back of a ruck on half way, offloading to Seabelo Senatla who did what he does best making a bee line for the corner setting up 19-10 lead before Webber responded for the All Blacks Sevens reducing the margin to two once more with five minutes remaining. Smith scored next, however, the benefactor of great support play as the Bliztboks took control with an unassailable 26-17 lead.
Earlier, South Africa survived a scare from the Wallabies to advance to their second consecutive Cup Final with a thrilling 19-10 win. The hosts coming from 10-0 behind at half time after Ed Jenkins and Pama Fou took advantage of overlaps to give last week’s runners-up the lead.
Meanwhile, New Zealand kept their try line intact with a convincing 29-0 win over Argentina setting up a mouth-watering Cup final.
Australia finished third on the back of a Pama Fou hat-trick defeating Argentina 34-19 in the playoff for third place after leading 19-14 at half time.
PLATE FINAL: USA UPSET FIJI
A Perry Baker try and tenacous defence in the final minutes swept the USA to a surprise 21-14 win over Fiji. Speedster Carlin Isles continued his good form in the tournament racing away for the USA’S first try before a converted try to Andrew Durutalo extended the margin to 14 at the break.
One of Fiji’s best throughout the tournament, Savenaca Rawaca got his side back in the contest with a converted try shortly after the restart reducing the margin to seven before Vatemo Ravouvou’s try ensured an exciting finish.
Earlier, an injury-depleted Fiji got through to the Plate Final after defeating England 31-0, two opportunistic tries to Savenaca Rawaca and Amenoni Nasilasila gave Fiji the early jump. While the USA, accounted for Scotland 26-19 in the other semi final, Carlin Isles starring with a double.
BOWL FINAL: CANADA TOO STRONG FOR KENYA
After defeating Kenya 19-12 in the Shield final in Dubai last week Canada repeated the dose only this time in the Bowl with a convincing 24-5 win. Sean Duke impressed as Canada capitalised on a better than even share of possession with tries to Mike Fuailefau and Lucas Hammond in the first half. Duke picked up a well-deserved five-pointer just after the break extending Canada’s lead to 17-0.
Earlier, Canada came from 14-7 down at the break against Wales with three unanswered tries to Conor Trainor, Sean Duke and Ciaran Hearn securing a 24-14 victory and booking their place in the Bowl final, while Kenya edged out France 14-12.
SHIELD FINAL: PORTUGAL BEAT SAMOA
Portugal defeated Samoa 19-14 in the Shield final at the Cell C Nelson Bay Sevens in Port Elizabeth scoring three tries to two, including a first half brace by Bernardo Cardoso.
“It’s always good to beat one of the top five or six so this is a big win for us, and our first silverware of the season,” said Portugal’s Carl Murray.
Samoa qualified for the final defeating Zimbabwe 21-14 in their semi final match while Portugal advanced after defeating Japan 24-15.
POSSIBLE RR World Rankings outcome on Result
|Possible Outcome||Rating Point
|If MEX win by 1-15 points||0.842||44.05||43.79||Yes|
|If MEX win by more than 15||1.263||44.47||43.37||Yes|
|If result is a draw||0.158||43.05||44.79||No|
|If COL win by 1-15 points||1.158||42.05||45.79||No|
|If COL win by more than 15||1.737||41.47||46.37||No|
- Wednesday, 10 December 2014 16:36
- Written by FECORUGBY
All Black Brodie Retallick has backed up his World Rugby International Player of the Year award by being named the Kelvin R Tremain Player of the Year at the 2014 Steinlager Rugby Awards tonight.
The 23-year-old’s outstanding form saw the 35-Test powerhouse lock join team mates Richie McCaw, Kieran Read and Jerome Kaino who have won the top honour in recent years.
The All Blacks who retained their number one world ranking for the fifth consecutive year, took out the adidas Team of the Year for the fourth successive year while Steve Hansen earned his third successive Coach of the Year award.
Under Hansen’s guidance the All Blacks equalled the record of 17 consecutive victories by a major nation, secured a clean sweep in the Steinlager Series against England, retained the Bledisloe Cup for a 12th year in a row, won a third successive Investec Rugby Championship title and returned home undefeated from the recent MyRepublic Northern Tour with wins over USA, England, Scotland and Wales.
Their success was also recognised by their international peers last month when they were named World Rugby (formerly IRB) Team of the Year and Hansen; Coach of the Year.
Rugby’s annual celebration of achievements on and off the field was held at the Viaduct Events Centre in Auckland for the first time.
In congratulating the winners, New Zealand Rugby Chairman Brent Impey said 2014 had been an outstanding year for many teams. He made special mention of the efforts of those in the community game where the number of registered players topped 150,000 for the first time.
“We often say this, but it’s true. When the community game is in great shape, the game will thrive at the upper levels. It is the foundation on which to build success and tonight we thank all those toiling on behalf of the community game who can take credit for the achievements we celebrate here.”
The Steinlager Rugby Awards also honoured one of those champions of the community game, a man who also made his mark on the upper levels of rugby. Leading administrator and former All Blacks Manager Dick Littlejohn played a key role in delivering the first Rugby World Cup – in New Zealand in 1987 – a successful event which laid the foundation for future World Cup tournaments.
His pioneering work, coupled with a long history of administration in the game locally in the Bay of Plenty, and nationally saw him awarded the Steinlager Salver which recognises an outstanding contribution to the game. He has remained actively involved with Bay of Plenty rugby and now serves as the union’s patron.
Another tireless worker for rugby in the community was also recognised with Shannon RFC Chairman Dean File named the Charles Monro Rugby Volunteer of the Year. He has driven fundraising for the club, improved facilities, built relations with sponsors and led the appeal for injured player Nat Manville.
Blues and All Blacks loose forward Jerome Kaino whose strong return to Investec Super Rugby earned him an All Blacks recall this year. He was named Investec Super Rugby Player of the Year.
In sevens, Sarah Goss was awarded the Women’s Sevens Player of the Year honour. She was a key member of the team that helped New Zealand Women’s Sevens secure their second successive Women’s Sevens Series title and led the team to a come-from-behind final match victory to claim the Dubai Sevens last weekend.
All Blacks Sevens captain DJ Forbes led from the front all season. His consistent form and strong leadership helped the team pick up their fourth consecutive World Series title this year and saw him named the Richard Crawshaw Memorial Sevens Player of the Year, his second such accolade. He also won in 2008.
Black Ferns and Auckland loose forward Rawinia Everitt was again named Women’s Rugby Player of the Year, an award she also earned in 2012. Her strong form helped Auckland Storm to their seventh successive Women’s Provincial Championship title this year.
One of the star players of Taranaki’s triumphant ITM Cup team, Fijian-born and power centre Seta Tamanivalu, was named ITM Cup Player of the Year. His electrifying form saw four Super Rugby teams courting him for the 2015 season, before he settled on the Chiefs.
Rising Waikato back Damian McKenzie was named Age Grade Player of the Year capping a stellar year for the versatile player who was also picked for New Zealand Under 20 and earned a contract with the Chiefs for 2015. Glen Jackson won his second Referee of the Year Award (his first in 2012) after an impressive season where he enhanced his international credentials and was selected for Six Nations duty next year.
Aaron Smith (Ngati Kahungunu) was in stunning form all year as the first choice half back for the All Blacks. He was named the Tom French Memorial Maori Player of the Year.
Buller first five eighth James Lash impressed all season, helping the South Island’s smallest union to the final of the Meads Cup against his old Mid Canterbury team and earning him a call-up for the end of season Heartland XV tour. He was named the Pink Batts Heartland Championship Player of the Year.
Malakai Fekitoa’s stunning solo try on the counter attack for the Highlanders – form that saw the Tongan-born midfielder force elevated to the All Blacks in 2014 – against the Sharks, was the most popular try picked by fans in the second annual SKY Television Fans Try of the Year category. See all 10 shortlisted tries here.
The 2014 Judging Panel was:
- Brent Anderson (panel chair) – New Zealand Rugby General Manager Community and Provincial Union Rugby
- Andy Leslie – New Zealand Rugby Life Member, former All Blacks Captain, former New Zealand Rugby President
- Graham Mourie – former All Blacks Captain, former New Zealand Rugby board member
- Grant Nisbett – SKY Sports commentator
- Toby Robson – Dominion Post rugby writer, former USA Eagle and Wellington representative player
2014 Steinlager Rugby Awards winners
New Zealand Rugby Age Grade Player of the Year
Damian McKenzie (Waikato)
Charles Monro Rugby Volunteer of the Year
Dean File (Horowhenua Kapiti)
New Zealand Rugby Referee of the Year
Glen Jackson (Bay of Plenty)
Pink Batts Heartland Championship Player of the Year
James Lash (Buller)
New Zealand Rugby Women’s Sevens Player of the Year
Sarah Goss (Manawatu)
Richard Crawshaw Memorial Sevens Player of the Year
DJ Forbes (Counties Manukau)
Sky Television Fans Try of the Year
Malakai Fekitoa; Sharks v Highlanders
ITM Cup Player of the Year
Seta Tamanivalu (Taranaki)
Investec Super Rugby Player of the Year
Jerome Kaino (Auckland)
Tom French Memorial Maori Player of the Year
Aaron Smith (Ngati Kahungunu)
New Zealand Rugby Women’s Player of the Year
Rawinia Everitt (Counties Manukau)
New Zealand Rugby Coach of the Year
adidas Team of the Year
Steinlager Salver for an Outstanding Contribution to New Zealand Rugby
Dick Littlejohn (Bay of Plenty)
Kelvin R Tremain Player of the Year
Brodie Retallick (Waikato)
New Zealand Rugby today thanked High Performance Sport New Zealand for expanding its support for the sevens Olympic programme.
High Performance Sport New Zealand (HPSNZ) has granted an additional $100,000 in each of 2015 and 2016 to help meet the costs of the New Zealand Women’s Sevens campaign to win gold at the Rio de Janiero Olympics in 2016.
This increases HPSNZ’s funding for the team to $1m for each of 2015 and 2016. In addition, the women’s sevens programme has been elevated to Tier Two status, underlining its medal prospects. This puts it on the same level as the All Blacks Sevens.
HPSNZ also confirmed existing funding for the men’s campaign, amounting to $1.2m in each of 2015 and 2016.
New Zealand Rugby General Manager Rugby Neil Sorensen said the additional funding would improve the team’s chances of success in Rio.
“We are very pleased with the confidence shown by High Performance Sport New Zealand in our women’s programme as well as their continuing support for the men’s team.
“We have a strategic goal of winning two gold medals in Rio. We are determined that both teams are in the best possible shape come July 2016. New Zealand Rugby is increasing its own investment in the sevens programme and this extra investment will mean we can do more to improve our chances of being on top of the podium in Rio.”
Rugby returns to sport’s biggest stage for the first time since 1924 in Rio. This will also be the first time both men’s and women’s sevens have taken part in an Olympic Games.
“On current form both our teams are medal prospects, but we take nothing for granted and know just how challenging it will be to win in Rio,” said Sorensen. “We are well aware other countries are increasing their investment in the game. Recent results in the men’s series in particular show just how intense it is getting at the top level of sevens.
“We have comprehensive plans in place, backed by a talented management group working with both teams and with High Performance Sport New Zealand’s support, we aim to be in the best possible position in 2016 to deliver on the faith they have shown in us.”