Rugby makes headlines as Finn Russell identifies Wales star ‘deadly’ and Adam Jones stunned by phenomenon lost to Welsh rugby

Here are your headlines from the rugby morning on Wednesday January 12th.

Finn Russell wary of “deadly” Anscombe

Finn Russell believes keeping the ball clear of ‘deadly’ opponent Gareth Anscombe is essential to his side’s success – whether it’s on Saturday when Racing 92 takes on the Ospreys in the Champions Cup or in the next Six Nations when Country Wales and Scotland will face off in Cardiff.

The Ospreys host the French giants this weekend, while Wales face Scotland in the Six Nations second round on February 12.

Key to both clashes will likely be Wales’ opening half Anscombe, who has endured a grueling path to the rugby pitch after a string of nightmarish injuries and setbacks.

Now Scotland’s star man Russell believes the man who could be his February counterpart is someone to stop if his team (s) are successful.

READ MORE:A raft of English rugby clubs fight for Rhys Patchell as he plans to step away from his Wales career

“I didn’t bump into him much, he’s been hurt a few times,” Russell told the Scrum V podcast.

“He’s got a good kicking game, a good running game. He really runs to the death with the ball in hand.

“He can play 10, he can play 15, any broken ground he’s going to separate us from, so we have to make sure we’re on for that and limit the amount of ball he gets on the front foot. . “

Wales legend hails ‘rugby phenomenon’ who left Welsh rugby

Adam Jones believes Alex Dombrandt has the quality to become one of the best players in the world after the England No.8 signed a new long-term deal with the Harlequins.

The 24-year-old No.8 Croydon has struck a “long-term” deal with the Gallagher Premiership champions, at the club where he has become an England player who is expected to complete his two caps in the upcoming Six Nations.

Dombrandt joined the Harlequins from Cardiff Met University for the 2018/19 season and made 87 appearances, scoring over 200 points to become one of the most effective forwarders in the Premiership.

Former Harlequins and Wales scrum coach Jones said of the new contract: “That’s great news. He was obviously from Cardiff Met, hadn’t had time in academy , had played for the Wales Under-20s and the way he has come the last few years have been brilliant.

“It’s amazing that he became a leader, captain of the team when Stephan [Lewies] hasn’t played, which shows the respect he has and the kind of person he really is. He is so good, so well thought out and so respected that in three years he became the team captain.

“He’s a big boy, such a good guy, a brilliant and amazing player. Some of the things he can do he’s almost Welsh in the way he plays. He’s such a good player, he deserves it. We want to keep these boys here. He’s a local guy, supported Quins, so he’s a huge driver for him and a huge driver for us really. When you have someone who loves the club, he wants it all. to put.

“He’s only going to do bigger and better things. He’s only been a professional three or four years, has a lot to do. Imagine what he’s going to be in a few years, with a few years with England too, let’s hope. Knock on wood, he’ll be among the best in the world. He’s a bit of a freak, really. “

As for his debut, Jones added: “It was obvious watching the videos. You saw him play for Cardiff Met, you could see he was good at rugby and he also loved his time in Cardiff. . In the first two workouts. Sessions, we didn’t know much about him. He was one of those guys that when he was playing, you’d think, “***, how good is that kid?” good? ”One of these.

“I don’t think anyone has a divine right to play for their country. Alex has things to work on from Eddie Jones, from us, but what he brings is that X factor, pulling a rabbit out of the water. ‘a hat really. There aren’t many players in the history of the game who have that. The players I’ve played with, there aren’t many who weren’t doing much and then everything suddenly they score, Shane Williams maybe. Alex is a talent and it’s exciting for the club. “

Cardiff Rugby was recently forced to fight back and explain why they didn’t sign Dombrandt while he was a student in the city, saying they offered him a deal. It follows an eye-catching performance that prompted Welsh rugby legend Jonathan Davies to ask how the No.8 slipped through the net, with the back rower having played in each of the country’s Under-20 Six Nations matches. of Wales in 2017.

“It’s a club that I supported growing up,” said Dombrandt after announcing his new contract with Quins. “I used to come to see Quins when I was a kid, so staying at the club that is close to my heart, I’m very happy to do so.

“Coming from university and in the professional environment, I feel like I grew up on and off the pitch. For me, it’s just about being able to continue this growth, to improve myself every time. day and go from there.

“We’re trying to create something really special at Quins and obviously winning the Premiership last season was amazing, but we don’t want to sit on what we did last year. I think we’re in a very good position. position right now. “

28-0 Ospreys and Scarlets losses stand

The Ospreys and Scarlets recorded 28-0 defeats in the Covid-hit Champions Cup first round, competition organizers have confirmed.

The Ospreys were to play at Racing 92 and the Scarlets were to travel to Bristol, but both games had to be called off.

Organizers said the situations of the two clubs differed from the second round matches which were affected by French travel rules.

Some, including Scarlets chief Simon Muderack, had called for the meetings to be postponed, but the EPCR upheld its decision.

A statement from the EPCR said: “A distinction must be drawn between the decisions regarding the seven second round matches in question and the other matches in the tournament which have been previously called off due to outbreaks of Covid-19 or forced isolations affecting the availability of players.

“These previously canceled matches could in no way have been played as planned, as the clubs involved in the matches on the second matchday in question were all authorized and available to play the matches.”

Tompkins reveals his World Cup ambition

Welsh center Nick Tompkins is already aiming for the 2023 Rugby World Cup as he prepares for a potentially crucial role in the Six Nations midfielder.

The 26-year-old has 16 Welsh caps under his belt but hopes to use this year’s Six Nations to really claim one of those center berths, both of which are very much up for grabs at the moment.

The Saracen Man aims to progress for both club and country, with the 2023 Global Centerpiece being the ultimate goal.

“With the World Cup not far away, it is important that I establish myself on the side of the Saracens and play well enough to stay there week after week. Playing well for my club will be the key to any success that I have. I could know internationally, ”Tompkins told the Saracens website.

“The Six Nations are going to be really exciting if I get the call. I can’t wait to see where Wales stand when they defend their title.

“I arrived quite late in international rugby. It’s because it took me so long to break into the Saracen side.

“I guess I’m a good example of someone who finally got there through persistence. I had to win my spurs and I learned so much being in the middle of the Saracens.

“If I had been launched much earlier, maybe I wouldn’t have been ready for international rugby. Maybe I missed my opportunity.

“Now I have a chance to make a World Cup and that’s something I would really love to be a part of. It would be something I could look back on for the rest of my life. “

Genge denounces ‘disgusting’ abuse charges

Leicester Tigers captain Ellis Genge hit back at critics who claimed he tried to swindle Francois Hougaard of the Wasps last weekend, calling the act “disgusting” and the accusations “ridiculous”.

Genge was not disciplined after receiving a yellow card in the Gallagher Premiership game, allaying concerns he might have missed the start of England’s Six Nations campaign.

But the incident, which saw him stick his right hand in the South African’s face before appearing to pull his hair, sparked much debate in the days that followed.

Genge admitted he apologized to Tigers boss Steve Borthwick and his teammates, but was confident he would not be quoted after the game.

However, he expressed frustration at his reputation as a “bad boy” and tried to set the record straight.

“Look, for some reason I have this weird perception that I have bad discipline and stuff, I’m spicy online but it’s going in an ear and [out] the other, so yes I feel like I’m probably letting myself down [with the yellow card]”, said the England international at a press conference.

“I’m usually the one receiving the reaction rather than giving the reaction, so it was a learning curve for me to be across the room where I lost my mind in a fraction of a second.

“I saw a lot of people say that I tried to rip him off, it’s absolutely ridiculous. I wouldn’t even dream of something like that, it’s disgusting. But yeah, I lost my mind. , I gave him a little nudge in the face. I’ll take a lesson from that and I told the boys that and I said sorry to Steve. Of course, I was disappointed. “

Genge’s elimination of sin came in a game that ended in a loss for the Tigers, their first in 16 games this season.

The Leicester skipper admitted his 10 minutes on the sidelines could have played a part in the loss and revealed what he said to his head coach and teammates following the loss to Wasps.

“Of course, it potentially cost us the game with 14 fewer men in that time. I think mine is an isolated incident where I lose my mind for a split second on the back of someone doing something to me while Tommy is [Reffell] was working his b ***** ks to come back and do a test tackle, so there’s a big difference between the two.

“I apologized to the boys for letting them down… It’s something I can’t promise I won’t do again but it’s one of those, you lose your mind in the heat of the action. I don’t have a bad discipline record. I have never received a red card in a professional game and have had about four yellows in my professional career. “

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