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England And Top 14 Star Mercer First Name In Razor-rog Barbarians Squad

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Image Credit- Barbarians Rugby - Simon Smith

England, Bath and Montpellier star Zach Mercer has been named in the Barbarians squad for November’s Killik Cup 2022 match against All Blacks XV taking place on Sunday 13 November 2022 in the world-class setting of Tottenham Hotspur Stadium – tickets are available now.

Hot on the heels of the news the electric no.8 will be returning to the Gallagher Premiership, joining Gloucester Rugby as he bids to up his chances of playing for England in the Rugby World Cup 2023, Mercer will pull on the famous Black and White in November.

It will be another opportunity for Mercer to show Eddie Jones exactly what he can bring to an international side, with the Rugby World Cup in France just a year away.

Mercer said: “I cannot wait to be pulling on that famous shirt in November. Playing for the Barbarians is something you dream of as a player – not just the matchday experience but the legendary players and coaches you work with, as well as the lifelong friendships you form.

“Of course my path has crossed with O’Gara in the Top 14 and he is a world-class coach. Being in a squad lead by him and Scott Robertson is going to be such an awesome experience. Both of them are up there with the best coaches in the world and I’m sure I will learn a lot from them and the whole group of players who they bring together – both on and off the pitch.”

Mercer has been on fire for Montpellier in the French Top 14, helping guide the southern French side to the win the national league championship. His bid to return to the England fold dramatically improved after signing a long-term deal with the Cherry and Whites.

On returning to England to play for Gloucester – West Country rivals of his old club Bath – Mercer said: “To be given the opportunity to come back and play in the Premiership with Gloucester is one that I couldn’t turn down. The loyal fans and atmosphere at Kingsholm is something I can’t wait to be part of.

“Alex Brown, Skivs [Head Coach George Skivington] and the whole coaching group are building a strong team and a great environment on the field, and I believe I can add a lot of value. I can’t wait.

“I have another season here with Montpellier and I’ll be giving all my focus to the club in trying secure back-to-back titles and European cup success.”

The two famous sides will compete for The Killik Cup. It is the next opportunity to see the Barbarians in action following a successful summer with emphatic back-to-back wins over England and Spain.

The All Blacks XV is a new element to the New Zealand Rugby set-up and development. The high-performance team representing New Zealand overseas represents a development opportunity for future All Blacks as well as a chance for current players to make their case for All Blacks selection or recall.

Killik & Co are delighted to be the match sponsor for the Barbarians annual Autumn International once again, marking over a decade of The Killik Cup.

Tickets are available from £40* for adults and £25* for children. Visit www.ticketmaster.co.uk/barbarians to get your tickets now.

For all hospitality premium packages, go to www.tottenhamhotspur.com for more information.

(* Booking Fees Apply)

ENDS

Match information

The Killik Cup – Barbarians v All Blacks XV 

Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

Sunday 13 November 2022, KO 2.00PM*

(*subject to change)

About Killik & Co

Killik & Co is an independently owned partnership that has been advising clients how to save, plan and invest for their families for over thirty years.

Originally founded by Paul Killik in 1989, today Killik & Co services clients from all over the UK, connecting them to global investment opportunities.  Its award-winning services include advised and managed investing, wealth planning, will writing and tax and trusts advice. Its app-based service, Silo, was launched in 2018 and allows users to effortlessly save and invest in a range of expertly selected funds.

www.killik.com


6 Nations

Stewart Joins Ireland Squad In Portugal As Wales Prep Intensifies

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Ulster hooker Tom Stewart has joined the Ireland squad in Quinta do Lago to provide additional cover following a hamstring issue picked up by Ronan Kelleher. Kelleher will be managed by the Ireland Medical team over the coming days.

The uncapped Stewart is a former Ireland U20 international who played twice for Emerging Ireland in the Autumn, starting in the victories over the Griquas and the Cheetahs. The Ireland coaching group also included him in the match day preparations for the Ireland ‘A’ game against the All Blacks XV in November.

Stewart’s addition brings the number of Emerging Ireland tourists in the Senior squad to five – Jack Crowley, Joe McCarthy, Jamie Osborne and Cian Prendergast.

The squad will continue to train at The Campus in Quinta do Lago this week before flying to Cardiff on Thursday ahead of the opening round of the 2023 Guinness Six Nations Championship.

Ireland Squad, 2023 Guinness Six Nations:

Backs (17)

Bundee Aki (Connacht/Galwegians) 41 caps
Ross Byrne (Leinster/UCD) 14 caps
Craig Casey (Munster/Shannon) 7 caps
Jack Crowley (Munster/Cork Constitution) 2 caps
Keith Earls (Munster/Young Munster) 98 caps
Jamison Gibson Park (Leinster) 23 caps
Mack Hansen (Connacht) 8 caps
Hugo Keenan (Leinster/UCD) 25 caps
Jordan Larmour (Leinster/St Marys College) 30 caps
James Lowe (Leinster) 15 caps
Stuart McCloskey (Ulster/Bangor) 9 caps
Conor Murray (Munster/Garryowen) 100 caps
Jimmy O’Brien (Leinster/Naas) 3 caps
Jamie Osborne (Leinster/Naas)*
Garry Ringrose (Leinster/UCD) 47 caps
Johnny Sexton (Leinster/St Mary’s College) 109 caps (c)
Jacob Stockdale (Ulster/Lurgan) 35 caps

Forwards (20)

Ryan Baird (Leinster/Dublin University) 8 caps
Finlay Bealham (Connacht/Buccaneers) 27 caps
Tadhg Beirne (Munster/Lansdowne) 36 caps
Jack Conan (Leinster/Old Belvedere) 33 caps
Gavin Coombes (Munster/Young Munster) 2 caps
Caelan Doris (Leinster/St Mary’s College) 23 caps
Tadhg Furlong (Leinster/Clontarf) 63 caps
Cian Healy (Leinster/Clontarf) 121 caps
Iain Henderson (Ulster/Academy) 68 caps
Rob Herring (Ulster/Ballynahinch) 31 caps
Ronan Kelleher (Leinster/Lansdowne) 18 caps
Dave Kilcoyne (Munster/UL Bohemians) 48 caps
Joe McCarthy (Leinster/Dublin University) 1 cap
Peter O’Mahony (Munster/Cork Constitution) 89 caps
Tom O’Toole (Ulster/Ballynahinch) 4 caps
Andrew Porter (Leinster/UCD) 48 caps
Cian Prendergast (Connacht/Corinthians) 1 cap
James Ryan (Leinster/UCD) 48 caps
Dan Sheehan (Leinster/Lansdowne) 13 caps
Tom Stewart (Ulster/Ballynahinch)*
Josh van der Flier (Leinster/UCD) 45 caps

*denotes uncapped player

2023 Guinness Six Nations Fixtures

Wales v IRELAND
Saturday 4th February 2023, KO 14:15 (IST)
VIRGIN / BBC / RTE Radio / BBC Radio

IRELAND v France
Saturday 11th February 2023, KO 14:15 (IST)
RTE TV / ITV / RTE Radio / BBC Radi0

Italy v IRELAND
Saturday 25th February 2023, KO 14:15 (IST)
RTE TV / ITV / RTE Radio / BBC Radio

Scotland v IRELAND
Sunday 12th March 2023, KO 15:00 (IST)
RTE TV / BBC / RTE Radio / BBC Radi0

IRELAND v England
Saturday 18th March 2023, KO 17:00 (IST)
VIRGIN / ITV / RTE Radio / BBC Radio

Images & Content from Irish Rugby & Images © Inpho Photography


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Savea back at the helm of the Hurricanes

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All Blacks loose forward Ardie Savea will captain the Hurricanes again for the 2023 DHL Super Rugby Pacific season.

Savea, who will have his 11th season in the side, will mark his first appearance in the competition by playing his 120th game.

The Hurricanes’ season opens against the Reds in round one.

Savea said: “I’m looking forward to the season, especially getting out to the communities, when we play in Levin against the Crusaders for our pre-season game and Palmerston North against the Western Force on Sunday, April 2.

“We’ve just moved into our new facility, and there’s something awesome about change; it’s brought in a lot of energy. It’s refreshing to come in and be in a new space alongside other professional teams. Hopefully, being here can help us move forward and prepare well for our games.”

The facility is part of the New Zealand Campus of Innovation and Sport at what was the Central Institute of Technology at Trentham and houses, several Wellington-based teams.

Coach Jason Holland was delighted to be able to call on Savea’s leadership ability again.

“Ardie is a special leader. He’s the sort of guy you want to follow in whatever he does. He’s worked hard at his leadership around all the small details, around how to get the best out of the people around him.

“He’s been good at driving us as a group, players and management, about being well-planned and clear in our roles in what we’re leading.

“Ards has a great relationship with all the boys and cares about them and the team and that shows in the way he leads.”

Content & Images from – New Zealand Rugby


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Marshall primed for Crusaders coaching opportunity

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James Marshall couldn’t escape rugby’s draw after retiring from playing and failed in his promised avoidance of the coaching ranks.

The former Super Rugby title winner with the Hurricanes has fitted into coaching so well that he will spend 2023 as backs coach for the Crusaders in Super Rugby Pacific.

Auckland-born Marshall started his rugby career with Tasman, but when missing a place in the Super Rugby structure, in a team or wider training group, he had a chance as a 20-year-old to play in Italy with Zebre.

It proved a stimulating experience in coping with playing a different style of rugby at a different level.

He returned to New Zealand six months later for another three seasons with Tasman before getting a chance in the Hurricanes’ wider squad. He had spent four years trying to get a place in the Crusaders.

“I could never crack it as a player but I’m here now as a coach,” he said.

“It is surreal to be here now. When I finished rugby, I promised my wife I wouldn’t get into coaching. We had moved around so many times during my career, even when I was playing for the Hurricanes moving to Taranaki every six months.

“We worked it out there were well over 20 houses we lived in throughout my career so when I got to the end of it I did say I wouldn’t be chasing the coaching dream, and I wouldn’t be moving the family around any more.”

However, back in Nelson, he got the chance to work with Andrew Goodman and Shane Christie, which gave him coaching work where he had decided to settle.

“Then a couple of years later,, I get a call from Razor [Scott Robertson] and it really throws a spanner in the works for my wife and when I got the opportunity, it was a no brainer. It’s such a good opportunity for me to learn and see where coaching can now take me.”

He contacted David Havili to see if he felt Marshall could do the job asked of him as backs coach and to see if he would have the backing of the players.

Havili got back in touch to say how much he thought Marshall could add to the environment. He also contacted some of his Hurricanes contacts and admitted being surprised at how supportive they were.

The Crusaders were one of the most successful sides in the sport’s history, and looking from the outside while playing, he had always wondered what went on and how they did it.

“It’s been impressive. It’s a well-run ship. Razor does a great job. Scotty Hansen, the detail he has on the rugby programme. Tamati Ellison, some of his coaching, it’s all world-class.

“It’s been awesome for me as a young coach to witness these guys at work and try and learn as much as I can off them.

“There’s also the players. It’s a pretty impressive squad when you look at it on paper and the chance to work with some world-class athletes and try and teach them as much as I can, but also try and learn from them,” he said.

Content & Images from – New Zealand Rugby


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