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Saracens fitness Guru Edwards to join Springboks

CAPE TOWN SA Rugby announced Friday the appointment of Andy Edwards as the new Head of Athletic Performance for the Springboks. Rugby enthusiasts can book British and Irish Lions Tour Tickets on our website on exclusively discounted prices.

The experienced Saracens strength and conditioning coach will take up his new role with the Springboks on August 1. Edwards will travel to Cape Town as soon as possible considering the resumption of international travel to South Africa.

Saracens fitness Guru Edwards to join Springboks
Saracens fitness Guru Edwards to join Springboks

He replaces former Springboks coaching staff member Aled Walters, who recently returned to the UK after a successful two-year stint with the South African national team. Rassie Erasmus, Rugby Director, said Edwards will be a good fit for the Springboks in the role of specialists.

“Andy will bring with him a wealth of international knowledge from his working time with a range of world-class coaches and players in Saracens, achieving success in England and in Europe,” said Erasmus.

“He is highly recommended for what is an important role where you need someone with a proven track record and international experience. During his time with the Saracens, he also worked with many South Africans playing for the club, which will help him establish himself on paper.”

Edwards looks forward to the opportunity to work with the 2019 Rugby World Cup-winning Springbok team.

“From my conversations with Rassie and Jacques Nienaber, I know they put a great deal of emphasis on creating a family environment for the Springboks, and that is something that means a lot to me personally,” said Edwards.

Saracens fitness Guru Edwards to join Springboks
Saracens fitness Guru Edwards to join Springboks

My family and I are moving to Cape Town and we are looking forward to meeting everyone involved with the Springboks and experiencing the amazing and diverse South African culture.

From a personal point of view, I am very excited to work with a new group of coaches and players. There is a great challenge ahead in the coming years and I look forward to the journey with the team. I leave the Saracens with wonderful memories on and off the field together with lifelong friends. I and my partner Lorena will always appreciate our time here.

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The day Warren Gatland destroyed the British and Irish Lions

Nowadays, Warren Gatland is the face of the British and Irish Lions.

His stewardship of the Northern Hemisphere touring side has brought huge success to the team with a fantastic tour win in Australia and more recently – a drawn series against the All Blacks.

This new footage shows the Lions coach playing for Waikato back in 1993.

Gatland, who now coaches New Zealand based Waikato Chiefs, was a hooker back in his playing days and we can see from this video that he was no pushover either.

Waikato dominated the Lions on this day in a comprehensive 38-10 victory sparking scenes of pandemonium at the final whistle as we see scores fans rush onto the field.

The day Warren Gatland destroyed the British and Irish Lions
The day Warren Gatland destroyed the British and Irish Lions

Throughout this whole match, Gatland impressed with a strong showing in the scrum.

He also showed his exceptional work rate around the field as we see him clear ruck after ruck throughout the contest.

The crowning moment for Gatland came late in the second half as he pounced on the end of an offload to score a run in a try in the corner that sealed the British and Irish Lion’s fate that day.

Watch the incredible Warren Gatland footage below

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Consensus as Lions tour South Africa to proceed as originally scheduled

The highly-anticipated British & Irish Lions tour of South Africa is set to go ahead as originally scheduled in July and August next year.

In an exclusive from Telegraph Sport, it’s reported that official confirmation is expected next week, while ticket and travel packages for the highly-anticipated tour will soon go on sale.

Despite an uncertain time and talks that the tour could be pushed back to later in 2021 amid plans for a global season to be restructured for greater alignment between the southern and northern hemisphere, it now appears the Lions tour will go on as originally planned.

Over 30,000 rugby-mad supporters are expected to travel to South Africa for what is said to be the most lucrative rugby competition outside of the World Cup.

Consensus as Lions tour South Africa to proceed as originally scheduled
Consensus as Lions tour South Africa to proceed as originally scheduled

We had to make a call on this now as we were running out of time one source told The Telegraph. People need to move on tickets, flights and hotel bookings and it is so important to South Africa to have certainty now given the financial importance of the tour to them at a time when we are all struggling with the impact of Covid-19.

DATE FIXTURE LOCATION STADIUM
Saturday 3 July 2021 Stormers v British & Irish Lions Cape Town Cape Town Stadium
Wednesday 7 July 2021 South Africa ‘Invitational’ v British & Irish Lions Port Elizabeth Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Saturday 10 July 2021 Sharks v British & Irish Lions Durban Kings Park
Wednesday 14 July 2021 South Africa ‘A’ v British & Irish Lions Mbombela Mbombela Stadium
Saturday 17 July 2021 Vodacom Bulls v British & Irish Lions Pretoria Loftus Versfeld
Saturday 24 July 2021 South Africa v British & Irish Lions Joburg FNB Stadium
Saturday 31 July 2021 South Africa v British & Irish Lions Cape Town Cape Town Stadium
Saturday 7 August 2021 South Africa v British & Irish Lions Joburg Emirates Airline Park

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Fifty Digital chose to activate Lions tour on social and digital media

The British and Irish Lions have designated the Fifty Digital agency to activate the rugby team’s digital and social presence on the 2021 tour of South Africa.  Rugby fans can book British and Irish Lions Tour Tickets on our website on exclusively discounted prices.

Fifty Digital chose to activate Lions tour on social and digital media
Fifty Digital chose to activate Lions tour on social and digital media

As part of the bond, Fifty Digital will help amplify the Lions brand on social and digital media, while offering content designed to reach new audiences. This will include creative content driven by real-time information, as well as working with partners to leverage the Tour for global impact.

The tour against the 2019 Rugby World Cup champions builds on the current momentum generated by the Lions’ success in Australia in 2013 and the series drawn with New Zealand in 2017.

South African

Shane Whelan, director of digital communication, marketing, and communications for the British and Irish Lions, said the deal will make the South African tour “the most engaging series in history and take our social and digital offering to the next level.”

Fifty Digital has before worked on social and digital content for the Rugby World Cup. World Rugby, the international governing body, appointed the agency to break traditional rugby stereotypes to reach and appeal to a new and younger audience.

Fifty Digital chose to activate Lions tour on social and digital media
Fifty Digital chose to activate Lions tour on social and digital media

The company was co-founded in 2015 by James Campbell, a former digital manager for the Formula One Williams and Mercedes teams, and Nick Jackman, who previously worked in partner services at Mercedes.

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Francois Louw: English will have a point to prove in Lions tour

Former Springbok flank Francois Louw says England’s players will want to prove a point during the British & Irish Lions tour in 2021.

Louw who recently retired from professional rugby after his contract with Bath expired was speaking on the SA Rugby podcast, reflecting on his 14-year career which ultimately culminated in the Springboks’ World Cup win in 2019.

The Springbok’s next big mission will be facing the British & Irish Lions in the three-Test series when they tour South Africa in 2021.

Francois Louw: English will have a point to prove in Lions tour
Francois Louw: English will have a point to prove in Lions tour

Having spent the last decade in Bath, Louw has a good knowledge of the British and Irish culture and said that the England players, in particular, will have a point to prove after the events at the World Cup.

I think it is an exciting prospect for a British or Irish player Louw explained. Obviously to represent your country is huge, it’s a pinnacle. But then over here there’s that little extra stick of making the Lions squad in which you are part of the best of the best. You are good enough to play for your country, but you are also good enough to play for a team that’s made up of a collective of countries and you are the best of that group.

So, it is a level up. It’s a big motivation for the guys over here. They all want to be involved in that. They all want to be selected to play a Test match with the Lions shirt on.

Francois Louw: English will have a point to prove in Lions tour
Francois Louw: English will have a point to prove in Lions tour

I am sure they will be relishing the opportunity to play in South Africa. A big bulk of the team is made up of English players and with us having beaten England in the final, I think they will have a point to prove.

Those players become different when they have that lion shirt on. They are a good outfit and have always been. It’s a tough tour for them; they play a lot of midweek games. To have it in South Africa is exciting for the guys over here. Especially for the fans, everyone is talking about it. I believe it is going to provide an awesome spectacle.

ALSO READ: D-day looms for Dyantyi

The 35-year-old took part in three World Cups between 2011 and 2019 and opened up about what ultimately got the Springboks over the line in the latter tournament.

To line up and compare the three tournaments and look at the differences, is quite difficult, said Louw.

In 2010, we had two teams in the Vodacom Super Rugby final, yet New Zealand ended up winning the 2011 World Cup how does that work? It goes against what you think the momentum really should have been.

Francois Louw: English will have a point to prove in Lions tour
Francois Louw: English will have a point to prove in Lions tour

Looking at last year, what stood out for me was the process of alignment that Rassie Erasmus had instilled in us. There was a complete and utter belief that we could do this, albeit that we lost the opening Test against NZ.

The hope and belief determination, and attitude towards preparation were unwavering. That played a massive role in our victory in Japan.

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Former Springboks hooker handed eight-year ban for doping

Former South African international Mahlatse ‘Chiliboy’ Ralepelle received an eight-year ban on doping that could spell the end of his career. The prostitute’s ban was confirmed by the South African Institute for Drug-Free Sport SAIDS after it tested positive for a banned anabolic agent in January 2019. Rugby enthusiasts can book British and Irish Lions Tour Tickets on our website on exclusively discounted prices.

Ralepelle underwent a random checkup on the Sharks last year, where she tested positive for Zeranol. He also had two positive drug tests in 2010 and 2014. Ralepelle, who previously played for the Bulls and Toulouse French team, has 21 days to file an appeal against the sanction, detailed in a statement issued by SAIDS.

Former Springboks hooker handed eight-year ban for doping
Former Springboks hooker handed eight-year ban for doping

At 33, the ban will likely spell the end of his disgraced career.

“The Independent Doping Tribunal Panel issued its two-part decision this week on the doping charge against former rugby player Springbok and Sharks, Mahlatse” Chiliboy “Ralepelle,” the statement read.

“The player tested positive for the prohibited anabolic agent, Zeranol, during an out-of-competition test on January 17, 2019. The athlete contested the doping charge and had the opportunity to seek legal advice to present his case and version of events to the court panel.”

Chiliboy Ralepelle

The hearings were postponed several times and were held over a period of six months. The panel first reached a decision on the merits of the case in which they found the player guilty of a crime of doping. Ralepelle had previously tested positive on two separate occasions while playing abroad.

“Zeranol’s positive case was his third positive drug test during his playing career within a 10-year period, however, the player’s first positive case was ruled as a no-fault decision and then he was reprimanded.”

The panel had to refer to sports jurisprudence to determine the appropriate sanction, which, according to them, was the player’s second crime of doping.

Former Springboks hooker handed eight-year ban for doping
Former Springboks hooker handed eight-year ban for doping

“The Panel of the Independent Doping Court ruled that Mr. Ralepelle must comply with an eight-year ban on doping. The ban will expire on January 27, 2027. The player has 21 days to file an appeal against the penalty.”

Ralepelle won the last of his 25 international matches in a 25-10 loss to England in Cape Town in June 2018.

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Verdict in the doping case of former Springboks hooker Chiliboy Ralepelle impending

The verdict in the doping case of former Springboks hooker Mahlatse “Chiliboy” Ralepelle will be announced this week‚ SA Institute for Drug-Free Sport (Saids) chief executive Khalid Galant has confirmed.

The 32-year old Ralepelle‚ who had two positive drug tests in 2010 and 2014‚ was tested in a random check by Said’s last year at the Sharks and tested positive for the banned substance Zeranol.

“I have an email and I am going to be issuing a statement this week after the athlete has been informed.

“Yes‚ the decision on the outcome of the Chilliboy Ralepelle case will be this week‚,” Galant told SowetanLIVE.

Verdict in the doping case of former Springboks hooker Chiliboy Ralepelle impending
Verdict in the doping case of former Springboks hooker Chiliboy Ralepelle impending

If found guilty of yet another doping offense ‚ the career of Ralepelle‚ who has maintained his innocence throughout‚ may be over as he may be banned from the sport for several years.

Galant also gave an update on the case involving Springboks and Lions winger Aphiwe Dyantyi.

“That case hasn’t been heard yet‚ we are probably going to do a virtual hearing within the next two months.

“We just have to put together the rules and regulations for the virtual hearing.

“We have to develop a procedure and protocol for a virtual hearing and then the athlete‚ his counsel and the arbitrating panel have to agree because this virtual hearing is a new thing.

“We can’t just say we are going to have a virtual hearing‚ we have to give the parties the right to accept it or decline it and make sure that witnesses are not compromised‚,” said Galant on the Dyantyi case.

“Initially we were supposed to have the hearing in early to mid-April but he had to have a couple of supplements analyzed.

“Unfortunately with the lockdown‚ labs who analyze the supplements were closed‚ but I believe they have opened and we should be receiving the results of the supplements soon.

“The athlete sent a few supplements that he claimed could have been the source.”

Dyantyi was charged last year after testing positive for “multiple anabolic steroids and metabolites” while he was part of Springbok camps in the lead-up to the Rugby Championship.

Verdict in the doping case of former Springboks hooker Chiliboy Ralepelle impending

Galant added that they are working on a few cases where athletes tested positive before the lockdown.

“We have a few positive cases where the athletes were tested before the lockdown and we are processing that.

“Everything was not that quiet during the lockdown‚ those athletes have requested B-Samples but I can’t say who their names are or their sports.

“By the end of July‚, I will not necessarily be able to tell you their names but their sports.” and the substances.”

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Irish Lions tour of SA to go ahead as originally scheduled – report

  • The British & Irish Lions’ tour of South Africa next year looks likely to go ahead as scheduled.
  • There were fears the dates could be pushed back to a later stage due to plans for a global season.
  • There are eight matches scheduled between 3 July and 7 August 2021.
Irish Lions tour of SA to go ahead as originally scheduled – report

The British & Irish Lions’ 2021 tour of South Africa looks likely to go ahead as scheduled.

British newspaper The Telegraph reported over the weekend that official confirmation was expected in due course, while ticket and travel packages will soon go on sale.

There had been rumours that the tour dates would be pushed back to a later stage amid plans for a global season, but the publication insists that the tour will still take place from 3 July to 7 August next year.

“We had to make a call on this now as we were running out of time,” a source told The Telegraph.

“People need to move on tickets, flights, and hotel bookings and it is so important to South Africa to have certainty now given the financial importance of the tour to them at a time when we are all struggling with the impact of Covid-19.”

The Lions last toured South Africa in 2009 when the Springboks ran out 2-1 series victors.

Irish Lions tour of SA to go ahead as originally scheduled - report
Irish Lions tour of SA to go ahead as originally scheduled – report

British & Irish Lions tour schedule 2021:

3 July: v Stormers, Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town
7 July: v SA Invitational, Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth
10 July: v Sharks, Kings Park, Durban
14 July: v South Africa ‘A’, Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit
17 July: v Bulls, Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
24 July: v Springboks (1st Test), FNB Stadium, Johannesburg
31 July: v Springboks (2nd Test), Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town
7 August: v Springboks (3rd Test), Ellis Park, Johannesburg

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Springbok winger Makazole Mapimpi will join red hurricanes on the Japanese side

The winger of the Springbok Makazole Mapimpi will join the Japanese NTT Docomo Red Hurricanes team for the upcoming season from September 2020 to April 2021. Rugby fans can book British and Irish Lions Tour Tickets on our website on exclusively discounted prices.

The hurricanes, which are trained by South African Johan Ackermann, had initially attempted to land Mapimpi during the transfer window in a permanent deal in a movement of large sums of money with a net worth of more than R9 million.

Springbok winger Makazole Mapimpi will join red hurricanes on the Japanese side
Springbok winger Makazole Mapimpi will join red hurricanes on the Japanese side

However, the winner of the Rugby World Cup signed a contract extension until 2023 allowing him to take a gap year in Japan while increasing his earning potential. It also sees him retain a spot in the Cell C Sharks and keeps him in the crosshairs of selectors for the 2021 British and Irish Lions tour.

The 29-year-old said the original Japanese offer was for one year, but that he couldn’t leave for a year without knowing what would happen to his future thereafter.

“I’m not saying that I don’t trust myself to make or find a new home, but I can’t leave a place where I was well cared for just because I see bigger deals elsewhere,” Mapimpi told local publication Sport24.

Makazole Mapimpi

Mapimpi credits Sharks CEO Eduard Coetzee for a favorable outcome in the negotiations for both the club and the player at a time when South African rugby seemed to be in a vulnerable position to retain their best talent, especially the RWC winners.

“I had to sit down and talk to the relevant people and they gave me the opportunity to quickly go there and earn some money for myself.”

Springbok winger Makazole Mapimpi will join red hurricanes on the Japanese side
Springbok winger Makazole Mapimpi will join red hurricanes on the Japanese side

Mapimpi, like several South African players abroad, hopes to play on the Lions’ upcoming tour next year, describing him as their most epic goal.

“Obviously, it will be up to the coaches, but I feel like I could still get to the Bok team for the British and Irish Lions tour.”

Mapimpi, the first South African to score a try in a RWC final, made his Super Rugby debut in 2017 and has accumulated a total of 100 points in 46 appearances.

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British and Irish Lions Tour – Damian Willemse reveals about gender violence

Springbok and Stormers, Damian Willemse, say rugby players should use their platform to ensure that gender-based violence in South Africa is addressed.

Willemse and his fellow Boks Siya Kolisi and Herschel Jantjies As well as Blitzboks and Imbokodo captains Siviwe Soyizwapi and Zintle Mpupha, delivered food packages to a group of Peakview High School students in Athlone, Cape Town, yesterday as part of the #StrongerTogether for R32- 12 campaign.

“Gender violence is very common in South Africa, and it is our responsibility as men to talk about it, said Willemse. It is something that we have to look at; it is our responsibility to make sure that our women are safe. We as rugby players have a platform to make a difference and we need to use it.”

British and Irish Lions Tour – Damian Willemse reveals about gender violence
British and Irish Lions Tour – Damian Willemse reveals about gender violence

Players urged schools to join the #StrongerTogether for R32-12 campaign, which helps alleviate hunger. Food Forward SA is another charity that benefits from the campaign, where raffle tickets are sold for R32.12.

Players give away some of their prized possessions from last year’s Rugby World Cup in Japan. The school that sells the most tickets will be visited with the Webb Ellis Cup.

Siya Kolisi

The Bok Kolisi patron had some inspirational words for the students before the food packages were delivered to the 67 matrices.

“I am always excited to visit a school, even more during this difficult time,” said Kolisi. Kolisi is giving away a matching jersey he wore in one of the RWC group matches.

British and Irish Lions Tour – Damian Willemse reveals about gender violence
British and Irish Lions Tour – Damian Willemse reveals about gender violence

We know that their very important school year was severely disrupted by the coronavirus and that their communities are suffering. However, it is important that you show determination to finish your academic year. I want to urge you to work much harder.

“Our World Cup victory last year was the result of a lot of hard work. So you should approach your studies and exams with the same determination. You are the leaders of tomorrow and, although it is difficult at this time, persevere and give your best.”

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