News in Brief
Nonu's knee puts him out of June Tests
Ma'a Nonu will be racing the clock to be ready for the start of Tri-Nations
© Getty Images
- All Blacks centre Ma'a Nonu has been ruled out of New Zealand's June Tests after rupturing a posterior cruciate ligament in his left knee during the Hurricanes' season-ending defeat to the Waratahs in Sydney.
Nonu doesn't require surgery but will be unable to train fully for around six weeks, putting New Zealand's internationals against Ireland on June 12 in New Plymouth, and Wales on June 19 in Dunedin and June 26 in Hamilton out of reach and their Tri-Nations opener against South Africa on June 10 in doubt.
- London Irish and England scrum-half Peter Richards has been forced to retire from the game due to injury after a distinguished career.
A back injury limited the 32-year-old's appearances for the Exiles to 16 this season and he has not played since early February. He will retire on specialist medical advice with immediate effect. A feisty, aggressive and dynamic player, Richards made his senior international debut against Australia in 2006 and has since been awarded a further 12 caps, the most recent against New Zealand in 2008. He was part of the 2007 World Cup squad, playing in every game, including in final as a replacement flanker for Joe Worsley.
- The Melbourne Rebels have signed Brumbies fullback Julian Huxley for their first season in Super 15. Huxley made a dramatic return to the Brumbies team this season two years after being forced out of the game to receive treatment on a brain tumour, and the 30-year-old said he was looking forward to a fresh start in Melbourne.
"I now start a new chapter in my life," Huxley said. "It's very rare to get the opportunity to be a part of a start-up, to help build the foundations of a club. I'm extremely fortunate to have been given this chance."
Rebels boss Rod Macqueen said, "Julian has shown great form since his return and brings with him a fantastic attitude to life and the game we can all learn from. He will make a significant contribution to the Rebels."
- Munster's Nick Williams and Leinster's Stan Wright have both been cleared by an Irish Rugby Football Union Disciplinary Panel called following their Magners League semi-final clash last Saturday.
Williams who was cited under law 10.4 (B) for an alleged stamp on Leinster fly-half Jonathan Sexton and Wright was cited under law 10.4 (A) for an alleged punch on Munster flanker Alan Quinlan. The panel decided that while in both incidents an act of foul play did take place and the citings were justified, each of the incidents did not warrant a red card, so no sanction was imposed. Both players are free to play.
- IRB Junior World Rugby Trophy holders Romania made a winning start to the tournament in Moscow, beating 2008 champions Uruguay and joining Italy, Canada and Japan as winners on the opening day.
Romania secured a narrow 15-12 victory in a fiercely contested match, but it is Italy who top Pool A after an impressive 74 -0 defeat of Papua New Guinea, which included 12 tries, three from prop Carlo Fazzari. Canada head Pool B after beating Zimbabwe 22-6, albeit only by virture of a slightly better point differential than Japan, who beat hosts Russia 31-17 at the Slava Stadium.
- Newcastle Falcons have signed lock Glen Townson on a two-year deal from Championship side Doncaster. The 23-year-old, with is 6ft 6in and 18 stones, is a former captain of England Under-18s.