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Jul 4, 2015

Cricket-Clarke still fired by hunger for Ashes success

SYDNEY, July 4 (Reuters) – Michael Clarke could not have looked less like the “pup” of his nickname as he prepared to depart Australian shores for his seventh and final Ashes series.

It may have been the early hour of the May morning, the hangover from a summer battling with injury or the emotional scars from the death of Phillip Hughes but Clarke looked every day of his 34 years as he spoke to reporters at Sydney Airport.

Jul 3, 2015

Time running out for Australia’s ‘brand’ O’Connor

SYDNEY (Reuters) – In October 2010, James O’Connor scythed through the tackles of Mils Muliaina, Keven Mealamu and Richie McCaw to score a last-minute try which he nervelessly converted to give Australia a first win over the All Blacks in 11 tests.

O’Connor was just 20 and with Quade Cooper and Kurtley Beale formed a trio of young, confident, exciting backs who offered Australia hope of a return to the days around the turn of the century when they had the best team in the world.A once-in-a-generation talent who could play across the backline, O’Connor’s skill-set and looks — he was dubbed “Bieber” after the Canadian pop singer — promised to make him a genuine giant of the global game.

Jul 3, 2015

Rugby-Time running out for Australia’s ‘brand’ O’Connor

SYDNEY, July 3 (Reuters) – In October 2010, James O’Connor scythed through the tackles of Mils Muliaina, Keven Mealamu and Richie McCaw to score a last-minute try which he nervelessly converted to give Australia a first win over the All Blacks in 11 tests.

O’Connor was just 20 and with Quade Cooper and Kurtley Beale formed a trio of young, confident, exciting backs who offered Australia hope of a return to the days around the turn of the century when they had the best team in the world.

Jun 27, 2015

Rugby-Philosophical Cheika checks out after Waratahs defeat

SYDNEY, June 27 (Reuters) – There was a dig at a crucial refereeing decision but it was a philosophical, not fuming, Michael Cheika who signed off as New South Wales Waratahs coach after a semi-final defeat to the Otago Highlanders on Saturday.

Cheika’s temper has got him into trouble throughout his coaching career and many expected him to go off raging into the night after his final match in charge of the team he led to a maiden Super Rugby title last year.

Jun 27, 2015

Rugby-Joseph hails pack after Highlanders reach final

SYDNEY, June 27 (Reuters) – Otago Highlanders coach Jamie Joseph paid special tribute to his unsung pack after the Dunedin-based side stunned the New South Wales Waratahs on Saturday to set up an all-New Zealand Super Rugby final against the Wellington Hurricanes.

The 35-17 win was secured with four tries from his much-vaunted backline as well as a match-turning penalty try but Joseph felt the way his forwards matched the physicality of the international-laden Waratahs pack had been key to the victory.

Jun 27, 2015

Highlanders take down champion Waratahs to reach final

SYDNEY (Reuters) – The Otago Highlanders took their chances ruthlessly to dethrone the New South Wales Waratahs with a 35-17 victory on Saturday that set up the first all-New Zealand Super Rugby final since 2006.

Tries from Aaron Smith and Richard Buckman in the first half combined with a Waisake Naholo effort, a penalty try and a late Patrick Osborne score after the break sent the Highlanders to Wellington to face the Hurricanes next Saturday.

Jun 27, 2015

Rugby-Highlanders take down champion Waratahs to reach final

SYDNEY, June 26 (Reuters) – The Otago Highlanders took their chances ruthlessly to dethrone the New South Wales Waratahs with a 35-17 victory on Saturday that set up the first all-New Zealand Super Rugby final since 2006.

Tries from Aaron Smith and Richard Buckman in the first half combined with a Waisake Naholo effort, a penalty try and a late Patrick Osborne score after the break sent the Highlanders to Wellington to face the Hurricanes next Saturday.

Jun 25, 2015

Waratahs aiming to bring Highlanders down to earth

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Tries aplenty can be expected when the New South Wales Waratahs duke it out with the similarly attack-minded Otago Highlanders for a place in the Super Rugby final on Saturday.

The Waratahs rode to their maiden title on the back of the most potent attack in the competition last year and will back their scoring prowess in Saturday’s semi-final, even if they have not hit quite the same heights this season.

Jun 25, 2015

Rugby-Waratahs aiming to bring Highlanders down to earth

SYDNEY, June 25 (Reuters) – Tries aplenty can be expected when the New South Wales Waratahs duke it out with the similarly attack-minded Otago Highlanders for a place in the Super Rugby final on Saturday.

The Waratahs rode to their maiden title on the back of the most potent attack in the competition last year and will back their scoring prowess in Saturday’s semi-final, even if they have not hit quite the same heights this season.

Jun 24, 2015

Waratahs back defence to contain potent Highlanders

SYDNEY (Reuters) – The New South Wales Waratahs have become used to letting other teams worry about how to stop their high octane attack over the last three years but in Saturday’s Super Rugby semi-final the boot will be on the other foot.

The Otago Highlanders have hit form at just the right time and will arrive in Sydney charged with confidence after edging the Waikato Chiefs in a wildcard encounter in Dunedin last weekend.

    • About Nick

      "Nick recently moved into his new role in Sydney after five years in China, where he covered the run-up to the Beijing Olympics and the growth of the world's most populous country as a sporting superpower. In more than a decade at Reuters, Nick has reported on a wide variety of events, from the sedate confines of the All England Club to the rarified atmosphere of Everest Base Camp for the ascent of the Olympic flame."
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