Choose Rugby


Choose a club. Choose a team. Choose a family. Choose a f*cking big prop; choose jumpers, tactics, big mean forwards and lightning fast backs. Choose good health, low blows, and dental insurance. Choose fixed stares and intimidating hakas. Choose a starting line-up. Choose a top-end scrum machine on hire purchase in a range of f*cking colours. Choose ICU and wondering where the f*ck you've woken up on a Sunday morning. Choose sitting on that icecold bench watching mind-numbing, spirit-enriching live matches, stuffing f*
ucking cold pies into your mouth. Choose rotting away at the end of the night, pishing your last in a miserable outhouse, nothing less than a legend to the selfish, f*cked-up brats you trained to replace yourself. Choose your future. Choose Rugby.


Escolha Rugby. Escolha um clube. Escolha um time. Escolha uma familia. Escolha um prop do c*ralho; escolha segunda-linhas, táticas, grandes e crueis forwards, e rápidos backs. Escolha uma boa saúde, golpes baixos, e o plano dental. Escolha olhares fixos e hakas intimidantes.
Escolha um ponto de partida line-up. Escolha seus amigos. Escolha agasalho e kitbags combinando. Escolha uma máquina potente de scrum comprada ou de alugada em uma gama de cores do c*ralho. Escolha UTI e se perguntando onde diabos você acordou numa manhã de domingo. Escolha sentar naquele banco assistindo entorpecido mentalmente, com espírito enriquecedor aos jogos ao vivo, estufando de tortas frias do c*ralho em sua boca. Escolha apodrecer no final da noite, xingando seu passado em uma casinha miserável, nada mais do que uma lenda para os egoístas, pirralhos f*dido você treinou para substitui-lo. Escolha o seu futuro. Escolha Rugby.

Friday, 24 December 2010

Give the gift of rugby at Christmas!

Dê um mês de treino no SPAC como presente de Natal 

As a Christmas present, why not give someone a voucher for one month's training with Sao Paulo team SPAC Rugby

O vale-presente A VIDA É BELA, possui vários kits diferentes para você dar um presente criativo. Os kits são temáticos: gourmet, spas, aventura etc.
Dentro de cada kit, há uma série de opções de atividades e estabelecimentos que é possível utilizar o vale-presente. Basta escolher, agendar e usar.
The cost of the voucher is R$ 179. [WDR: About $110] 
O seu cheque presente dá direito a: Um mês de treino, duas vezes por semana com equipe e padrinho /madrinha acompanhando, terminando com...   

No kit EXTREME, o SPAC é uma das opções de presente, o ganhador poderá treinar um mês no SPAC, podendo ainda disputar um jogo.


Olympic re-inclusion will boost rugby worldwide

Dan Lyle talks to reporter Kevin Roberts about the ways Olympic inclusion will impact on the development of rugby in his country.

Imagine this scenario. Its August 2016 in Rio de Janiero and a hushed stadium awaits the medal presentation in the men’s rugby sevens, the first medals to be presented for rugby since the 1930s.
As the national flags are raised to their podium positions a familiar anthem echoes around the stadium. But it is not the anthem of New Zealand, or Australia, France or the combined Great Britain team. Instead, the world is held in union by The Star Spangled Banner, that perennial Olympic favourite getting a fresh airing in a new sport.
Far-fetched? Perhaps not. Every Olympic Games reminds us that when the United States decides something’s worth doing, they tend to do it rather well, and the decision to include rugby sevens in the Olympic schedule has the potential to strip the shackles from a sport largely restricted to colleges and unleash it on the world stage.

Rugby union’s re-admission to the Olympic family has been the cause for much rejoicing in many parts of the world where Olympic recognition is a trigger for funding that can help the sport build profile and recognition. But nowhere is the impact likely to be more dramatic than in the United States, where the nation’s obsession with all things Olympic means that the national sevens team will be take a turbo-charged ride to national prominence, fuelled by United States Olympic Committee (USOC) funding and significant television exposure.

The Olympic opportunity is massive and it is one that Dan Lyle, former captain of both the national team, the US Eagles, and Bath in England’s Premiership, is determined not to squander. Today Lyle is Tournament Director of USA Sevens, a commercial organisation which works with governing body USA Rugby Union to promote tournaments, run the commercial programme and publish a US rugby magazine and website. It is, Lyle says, a far-from-usual model compared to certain US sports. He points to US Soccer, where a specialised commercial division, United Soccer Marketing, takes care of business leaving the governing body to focus on development and governance issues.

Lyle’s own story is fascinating and the focus and commitment to success that he has demonstrated throughout his playing career is now being applied to the sports business. Brought up in a military family, he spent some of his childhood in Europe, gaining a familiarity with the world outside America which, he says, may have contributed to his willingness to build a sporting career beyond its shores.
He was a formidable College Football player but it is reported he struggled to make it with a professional side. He was invited to pre-season try-outs by teams including the Washington Redskins and there was a league minimum offer from the Minnesota Vikings, but Lyle decided to go his own way. He had started playing rugby to keep in shape after College Football and found an affinity with a game which suited his size and powerful athleticism. Lyle found rugby union also represented a fast-track opportunity to represent his country and tour the world.

Lyle won his first US Eagles cap as a flanker against Ireland in 1994 and went on to captain the side for the first of many occasions in the Pacific Rim tournament against Japan a couple of years later. This was at a time when rugby union was slowly adapting to its new professional era and his performance in an international against Canada was noted by representatives of Bath, a leading English club that was looking for talented second rows.
Packing any remaining National Football League dreams into a kitbag, Lyle set off for England for trials and, eventually, a low-wage contract which was the start of an enduring relationship with the club.

“The thing I liked about playing rugby in England was that it was based on meritocracy,” he says. “There were tough times when I, in some people’s eyes, was never going to be as good as a native Englishman. However meritocracy wins out - meaning if you play the best consistently, you generally get the starting nod.
“You have to back up every game with another strong performance, each time out. I overcame some of these challenges by being consistent, not just on the field, but in my preparations to get on the field. In short, I was the first to show up, and the last to leave. I led the Bath club in tackles, but also in the number of schools I visited in the community.

“I recently told a couple of guys that are going to Europe to play that you must be the best player you can be. But as an old coach of mine once said, also win all the things you can win - win the press conference, win the recovery period, do all the little things well and the big things will come.”

Lyle played during a time of transition for Bath as the internationals whose careers had more or less peaked around the time of the 1991 and 1994 World Cups were succeeded by a new raft of talent which kept Bath at, or close to, the top of the sport, not only in England, but in Europe. He played in the side which lifted the hugely prestigious Heineken (European) Cup in 1998, beating Brive on French soil in Bordeaux. Eventually Lyle became the club’s skipper, somewhat inevitably earning the Captain America tag which suited his 6 feet 5 inches frame.
Reflecting on his playing career in an interview with US sports broadcasting giant ESPN, Lyle said: “Playing on the US team from 1993 to 2003 was an incredible honour; a decade in the game saw many highs, playing for your country can never be topped, full stop.
“There were several full seasons at Bath where I did not feel I could be stopped and I relished in the personal and team accomplishments. Being mentioned in the top world newspapers, rugby magazines and online articles as consistently the world’s best Number Eight - as an American that was motivational to me. But more importantly, it proved to me that as a country we could be successful in rugby, not in the distant future, not someday, but now. We have an abundance of natural resources in our athletes, and the factories to produce them in our American scholastic and collegiate schools.”

Date :  06/12/2010  Monday 

Argentina to boost Tri Nations economy by $39m

The addition of Argentina to rugby union's Tri Nations competition from 2012 is set to increase the value of the tournament to $213.1 million.

According to a study commissioned by MasterCard to the Centre for the International Business of Sport (CIBS), the 2010 edition will contribute $174.3 million to the sport and leisure economy across the Southern Hemisphere.
Sydney will benefit from the largest single impact, from hosting Australia-New Zealand, pocketing $28 million, ahead of Johannesburg and Christchurch, with $19.6 million and $12 million respectively.

“The MasterCard study highlights that Rugby is clearly booming and providing a considerable economic boost to the Southern Hemisphere,” said Dr. Anna Semens, research fellow at CIBS and MasterCard’s advisor on the business of rugby.
“The continued growth of Rugby in the region, and its positive impact on business and local communities, is particularly exciting given that the Rugby World Cup is coming to New Zealand in 2011,” added Stuart Cameron, vice president, regional sponsorships, Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa, MasterCard Worldwide. 

A similar report on Europe’s Six Nations Championship released earlier this year estimated the value of the competition to its participating nations was $632.81 million.

Date: 10/009/2010  (Friday)

IRB revenues down 12% on projections

The International Rugby Board (IRB) has announced record investment levels in the worldwide development of rugby union despite gross revenues falling approximately 12 per cent on expected figures, according to the body's 2009 annual report. 

The impact of the economic climate most keenly felt in the sponsorship sector, the IRB said, however it continued its commitment to global distribution of development funding during 2009 via the £48 million Global Strategic Investment Programme.
The IRB’s Group financial results showed a net loss of £40 million in 2009, however the IRB said this was broadly anticipated as the majority of revenues for the Rugby World Cup are ordinarily received in the latter half of the four-year cycle.
"These are exciting times for Rugby around the world and despite a difficult global economic climate and a reduction in operational costs, the IRB remains committed to the development of the Game worldwide," said IRB Chairman Bernard Lapasset.

"Such levels of investment are made possible owing to the commercial success of Rugby World Cup, which is firmly established as one of the world’s biggest sporting events. Record reserves from the 2007 tournament in France will continue to underpin the delivery of key tournament, development and high performance programmes around the world within the four-year RWC cycle, all aimed at raising playing standards."
A cost reduction programme saw a reduction in operating costs of 5 per cent, and further 5 per cent in-line reductions are projected for its 2010 and 2011 budgets. 


Date : 04/06/2010  (Friday)

IRB 7s series info

The corporate punch of the IRB World Sevens tournament continues to grow, with TV figures for the 2003-2004 series surpassing previous records.

According to, coverage of the eight events - in Dubai, George, Wellington, Los Angeles, Hong Kong, Singapore, Bordeaux and London [WDR:  No Scotland?!?] - was screened in 126 territories worldwide, an increase of 58 per cent on 2002-2003.
Also growing was the number of hours broadcast, which at 264 hours, was up 29 per cent on the previous year.
The abbreviated form of the game continues to thrive in Asian markets, with the Asia-Pacific once again providing the bulk of coverage. 


The International Rugby Board (IRB) has announced another year of record TV broadcast figures for the popular IRB Sevens World Series.
The 2005/06 Series, won for the first time by Fiji, experienced 1147 hours of airtime over the eight tournaments, representing an 85 percent increase on the previous year.

The 2005/06 series comprised tournaments in Dubai, George (South Africa), Wellington (New Zealand), Los Angeles, Hong Kong, Singapore, Paris and London. [WDR:  No Scotland?!?] 

 It was televised by 32 international broadcasters (up 3 from 2004/05) in 11 different languages and reached 187 million homes (up an impressive 27 million from 2004/05) in 136 countries (up 3 from 2004/05), and had a potential cumulative audience reach of over 475 million (up 25 million from 2004/05). Live coverage more than doubled with 530 hours of action being broadcast.  

RFU turnover and hospitality figures, from 2004, 2006, & 2010


The English Rugby Football Union (RFU) posted a loss of £1.1 million for the year ending June 30 2010, down from a profit of £6.2 million the year before. The governing body blamed a fall in ticket income because of fewer international matches at Twickenham during the period.

Turnover was down £7.2 million year-on-year to £112 million and operating profit also decreased by £6 million to £25.8 million. Ticket income in 2009-10 declined to £21.3 million from £29.2 million.
“Although down on a strong 2008-09, the past year was in line with expectations,” said RFU Finance Director Nick Eastwood, adding that the decline in overall revenue was “mainly due to having three instead of four Investec Internationals and two instead of three RBS 6 Nations home games.”
Eastwood also said the RFU had continued its “substantial investment” in community rugby, which in total was £22.8 million during the year-long period.


The RFU’s turnover of £71.3million for 2003/04 was close to last year’s record turnover of £72.4million, but Twickenham only hosted three major international matches in 2003/04 as opposed to six the previous year because of the Rugby World Cup. 
The shortfall of match revenue from the usual autumn internationals, around £5.6million, and hosting only two RBS Six Nations games, resulting in a further £2.7million loss, was virtually compensated for by good performances in the RFU’s commercial and hospitality business.
The RFU’s operating profit of £13.5million was £2million higher than the 2001/02 figure and £4.9million down on 2002/03.

Revenue in the RFUs ‘Rugby Store’ rose by over 90 per cent to £7.7million, including sales of more than £1million in one calendar month in December 2003 – following England’s World Cup triumph - when £1.7million of goods were sold.
The RFU’s hospitality business enjoyed good sales compared to previous seasons with 4,200 packages sold for England v Ireland compared to 2,706 for the same fixture in 2002.
Other income included more than £600,000 for hosting the Rolling Stones concerts held in August and September 2003 and a similar amount from the England Rugby Supporters Club, whose 22,000 membership is rising by more than 800 per month.
All contributed to offsetting the RFUs loss of three major internationals last year.

Francis Baron, chief executive of the RFU, said: “The positive effects of winning the Rugby World Cup and the boost it has given to participation levels complement the statement I made last year that we have an excellent foundation from which we can fully exploit the commercial opportunities over the next few years. I fully expect that our new sponsorship deals will generate increases of around 20% plus per deal in the future.

Finance director, Nick Eastwood, said: “Our revenues and operating profit remain very high in a tough and competitive market. We have been able to ensure that our contribution to our member clubs and constituent bodies is around 40 per cent up on those made in 2002. Now that we have a full programme of major home internationals to look forward to our aim now is to produce stronger figures next year.

“We announced last August that the RFU was debt free [WDR: ie, it has NO bank charges] and we will be focussing a great deal of financial resources into the funding of the South Stand re-development which should be operational by the autumn of 2007.” 


Failure in the Six Nations rugby has cost the England Rugby Football Union £1m in lost revenue, its chief executive has claimed.

RFU CEO Francis Baron said the World Cup holder’s inability to win more than two games cost them the cash in sponsorship and TV payments.
Baron said: “We budgeted to win the Grand Slam. The difference between that - receiving 5.5 percent of the TV and sponsorship pool - and coming fourth, where the share is just two percent, was £1m.”
However, the RFU may be able to boost income from its Twickenham stadium, with delays on construction of the new Wembley Stadium potentially pushing more music concerts to the traditional rugby venue.  

Varied kick-off times announced to increase Rugby World Cup exposure

Organisers of the 2011 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand said today that 40 per cent of matches will have late kick-offs in a move to maximise the tournament's global television audiences. Under the plans, 19 of the 48 matches will begin at 8pm (0900GMT) or later, so they will take place between 8am and 10am in Britain, France, Italy and South Africa. 

Rugby New Zealand 2011 chief executive Martin Snedden said kick-off times had been pushed back as late as possible to avoid matches being played in the early hours of the morning in major rugby markets.
"We have achieved a good balance." he said. "If New Zealand is to make the most of the platform RWC 2011 gives us to showcase our country to the world, then we need to ensure we maximise the global television audience for key matches."
The quarter-finals will be 6pm-8.30pm double-headers, while both the semis and the final will start at 9pm. New Zealand will switch to daylight saving time midway through the tournament, meaning the 9pm kick-off time equates to 9am-10am in Europe and South Africa. 

Magners League financing and attendance info

From the Daily Mail, 28 March 2006  

Article Excerpt

IRISH cider company Magners have stepped in with a lifesaving sponsorship deal for the ailing Celtic League.

Sportsmail can exclusively reveal Magners, which is owned by Bulmers, will pay a six-figure sum each season until 2009.  [WDR: The deal was later extended to May 2011]

In doing so, they have ended the five-year search for a title sponsor, while sending out a message that the competition is here to stay.

A source confirmed: 'An official announcement will be made later in the season, but it is 99-percent done.' The news will be a huge boost to the Scottish Rugby Union's attempts to keep the professional game afloat.

Only last Friday, a record low crowd of 702 watched Borders take on Connacht at Netherdale. At Glasgow, the average gate has dropped to around 1,400.

However, the Magners move should give the league some breathing space.

A key component of the deal involves more marketing, as the competition has struggled for exposure since replacing the Welsh/Scottish League in 2001.

The recent renaissance of Scottish international rugby is believed to have played a part in convincing Magners.

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Brazil represented at IRB event in London

Brazil was ranked among the top six national unions in use of the "RugbyReady" training program in 2010.

The Brazil Rugby Confederation's (CBRu) Director of Refereeing, and IRB certified trainer, Xavier Torres Veiga, was in London at the start of December. He was there to represent Brazil at a symposium dealing with reforms to the IRB's successful "RugbyReady" program.

Amongst those present were representatives from the six countries which made most use of "RugbyReady", namely England, Scotland, USA, Argentina, Brazil, and Wales. [WDR note: I'm unsure if the countries are ranked by order of RR presentations; they are not listed alphabetically.]

The agenda consisted of discussions of the present "delivery system" of RugbyReady, with case studies and feedback (both positive and negative) from the Unions, as well as suggestions to improve the program.  Two working parties were created, in order to suggest revisions for the program. 

A suggestion from the CBRu was to use different levels in RugbyReady [WDR: instead of the current 'one size fits all' approach]. When the meeting was informed that in Brazil, all rugby players are required to study (and gain certificates for) both RugbyReady and RugbyLaws before they are allowed to play the sport, all the delegates showed approval. Nick Scott of England's RFU indicated that they are thinking of enforcing the same mandatory study element in England.

The CBRu wants RugbyReady to have greater take-up rates worldwide. To strengthen this aim, Brazil suggested that the program's introduction could 'promote' the core values of rugby union, something which is also already well covered in Brazil by the separate Beginner's Guide (using material translated into Brazilian Portuguese), but which could be covered in the RugbyReady program instead.  This suggestion was accepted by the meeting. We do not want to lose sight of the view that RugbyReady is a program of "best practices", and as such ought to be subject to continual work and improvement.

The meeting also dealt with the topic of injuries to players/participants, which only reinforced the
approach taken in Brazil, namely that safety must always be the primary consideration. 

Going forward, in 2011 we need to continue the work of spreading the RugbyReady program.

Source :     22/12/2010 

Sunday, 19 December 2010

Trophy awarded to Brasilian Super 8 Champions

Sao Jose Rugby Club were the 2010 winners of Brasil's national club championship, the Super 8.
The city of Sao Jose dos Campos, population 600 000 , is in the east of Sao Paulo state.

Notice the lack of media awareness, as shown by the almost total absence of sponsors' logos in the picture.

(Facebook site of the Brasilian Rugby Confederation)

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

What has the IRB ever done for Brazil?

Spotlight on: Rugby development in Brazil

The Brazilian Rugby Union has wasted no time in beginning its preparations for the first Olympic Rugby Sevens tournament, which will be staged in the South American country in 2016. The International Olympic Committee’s vote to include Sevens in the Olympic Games came just one week after Rio de Janeiro was selected as the 2016 Host City.

Following the vote in October 2009, the Brazilian National Olympic Committee has set aside funding to support the development of Women’s Sevens in Brazil. The funding comes as a direct result of Rugby’s re-inclusion in the Games and reflects the growing stature of the Brazilian Women’s Sevens team, which ranked an impressive 10th at the Rugby World Cup Sevens 2009 in Dubai. Brazil are also six-time South American Women’s Sevens champions and their success over recent years has helped to grow the profile of Rugby in Brazil.

Team member Emily Barker said: “After the 2009 South American Championships, everybody suddenly realised that the Brazilian Women’s team are really good and we are now starting to get a lot more TV coverage and people know now about us.” Not to be outdone, their male counterparts have also been making rapid progress. In 2010, Brazil’s Men’s Sevens team beat the USA for the first time ever and also conquered Uruguay for the first time in 50 years.

Both the Men’s and Women’s Sevens teams have benefitted in recent years from specialist coaching from some of the top Argentinean coaches. The programme is also a focus area for the IRB, with South America Regional General Manager Hernan Rocou Oliva working closely with the CRBu.

The Union’s main strategic goal is to increase awareness of Rugby in Brazil, with the Pan American Games in 2011, World Cup Sevens 2013 and Rio 2016 Olympic Games identified as specific targets. This effort will be supported by significant funding from the IRB’s Major Markets fund, which aims to assist targeted development and spread the Game in all its forms.

IRB reaffirms commitment
   Funding aids global expansion
The Global Strategic Investment Programme continues to help fund Rugby’s phenomenal growth. Development highlights in 2009 included the funding of a High Performance Centre in Samoa following last year’s Tsunami, a new artificial pitch in Tbilisi, Georgia, continued High Performance funding in Argentina and the establishment of a Major Markets fund to invest specifically in Brazil, Russia, India, China and Mexico. 


Dear IRB, please keep the cash coming this way, so that the Brazil Womens national team no longer has to take their clothes off and pose for money-raising calendars... wait, let me think this one through...  

...OK, we'll take the cash, and put clothing on the finely-honed bodies of the men's Keep Walking team instead, everybody wins!