Articles

News & Opinions articles

Topical articles and commentary on rugby events around the world.

Innovate or die? Rugby's continued quest to stay relevant.

The pressure on English rugby, and the game in general, to adapt and ensure the long-term success of the sport is evident in two innovations that are set to debut next season. Writer Graham Jenkins looks at these innovations and their possible positive effect on the game and its continued evolution.

Is it time the Six Nations packed down behind the Nations Championship concept?

World Rugby’s plan for a ground-breaking annual Nations Championship uniting both hemispheres appeared to have little support when revealed last month but is it actually a concept we should all be embracing? Writer Graham Jenkins looks at the merits of the plan.

Super Rugby 2019 Performance Preview

The Gainline Analytics team have taken their Cohesion and TWI markers to the Super Rugby competition starting this weekend. Simon and Ben have analysed how each team and conference is likely perform and why?

The Hidden Side of the 6 Nations

Our friends at Gainline Analytics have had close look at the prospects of this year’s 6 nations tournament. It has been a moving feast in Northern Hemisphere Rugby especially at club level. Club and Test do not act in isolation however these effects take time to manifest. GAIN LINE Analytics research into teams show some very clear correlations over the long term around this aspect. They have taken a look at the prospects of this years 6 nations sides and the effect of their club setup and the draw might have on their prospects.

Is the sport lacking a global star?

In a break during training recently, writer Graham Jenkins took the opportunity to ask a group of his Under 12s whether they had sat down and watched any of the great rugby we had been treated to in recent weeks.

Is the ‘jackal’ a protected species? – Northern Hemisphere (part one)

What is the true value of a player who can compete for the ball with his hands on the ground, after a tackle has been made? The window for players to have a crack at the ball on the deck, looked to have shrunk in the phrasing of the Law 16 amendment. Analyst Nick Bishop looks at how in practice, consistent refereeing of the new laws has proved far from simple and its effect on the world game. In part 1 of 2, Nick reviews the interpreation and effect on northern hemisphere rugby.

Major League Rugby proves the land of opportunity

Latest edition of the US Major league kicks off next weekend, writer Graham Jenkins talks to ex Wasps and now San Diego Legions coach Rob Hoadley about the benefits of coaching overseas and in the US Major league.

Top players must be hungry for homework

Preparing the body for the physical demands of the elite game is just part of the challenge for the northern hemisphere’s finest with the mental preparation arguably just as pivotal in not only securing a victory but also prolonging a career at the top. Writer Graham Jenkins looks at what is expected of elite players outside the training pitch and gym as they prepare for big matches.

Does ‘retrospective refereeing’ do the game any good?

England’s narrow 12-6 victory over Wales attracted an impressive UK TV audience of 6.4m to underline the appeal of what is billed as ‘rugby’s greatest championship’. Writer Graham Jenkins examines how rugby failed to capitalise on its popularity at Twickenham where the officials and not the players stole the headlines.

Continuity the key to continued success for England

In a sporting landscape where the news of a coach losing their job often appears as common as a kick off, word of one being rewarded with a contract extension certainly commands attention. In his latest article, Graham Jenkins evaluates Eddie Jones’ England head coach contract extension and what the succession plan could be.