Tuesday Sep 1, 2009 in Elite Level Rugby Overseas Pros
USA players overseas:
Todd Clever came on as a sub at No. 8 for the Xerox Lions and provided a solid contribution as the Lions beat the Blue Bulls 20-13 in Currie Cup play.
His biggest moment, though, was a non-moment, as Clever was the first in a 3-on-1 that would have made it 25-3. Instead Herkie Kruger sent a skip pass by Clever and the ball was dropped. Clever would have been in perfect position to either fend-off and score, or pass to his support.
In Curie Cup DI Chad Erskine came off the bench and helped the Eastern Province Mighty Elephants to win 37-28 over the Border Bulldogs.
Chris Wyles scored a try for Saracens in their 55-7 preseason win over Northampton. Wyles capped off a quick backline movement, getting the final pass on his shoulder. But despite some close attention from his defender, he caught the ball and made it over the line. Hayden Smith did not play.
Tim Usasz started at scrumhalf for Nottingham with a 27-22 win over Northampton a day after Saracens did the honors.
Robbie Shaw, chastened after his preseason yellow card for use of the boot, had the week off as Bristol did not play.
Mike MacDonald remains idle as his visa application (along with that of prop Fosi Palamo) has been held up for unspecified reasons. Leeds could well started the Premiership season without him, and have brought in Alex Moreno on loan from Calvisano to fill in at the front row. MacDonald has been replaced by Marco Wentzel as team captain, but that is a common thing in England to change captains every season.
Takudzwa Ngwenya started at wing for Biarritz as they lost 22-17 to Bourgoin to sit 1-2 in the French Top 14.
At Castres, Salesi Sika has not played for the club yet, and the club as a whole did not play this weekend due to concerns about the H1N1 flu, which is making its way through France.
In Pro D2 Lannemezan, for whom Inaki Basauri plays, opened their season with a 39-10 loss to Grenoble.
Scott LaValla started at second row for Trinity in this LaValla’s third season at Dublin University. But Trinity fell 19-14 to Old Belvedere.
Hanno Dirksen, who may well end up being courted to play for Wales rather than the USA, is on the Swansea club roster as he works with the Ospreys Academy. Dirksen did not play in Swansea’s 35-29 Welsh Premiership opener against Cardiff.
- Alex Goff