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It’s all about...


Women’s rugby

...and recovery in rugby


men’s rugby




Match reports: Saints Men’s union rugby team





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Sam Fulks reports on the LV Cup and how it should be taken seriously for the foreseeable future

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Sam Fulks reports on the Northampton Saints rugby match on the 9th of November

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Sam Fulks tells us which are the top five players of the season and why they are

Designed by Nicola White. Sub-edited by Sam Fulks, Siobhan Kinsella and Nicola White.

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Siobhan Kinsella reports on the history of the saints and how far they’ve come in 133 years

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Nikki White reports on the men’s union rugby team’s first match and their plan to do 24-hour touch rugby for charity

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Nikki White reports on the issue of sexism in rugby and what can be done to change this attitude

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Siobhan Kinsella interviews a local sport physiotherapy student Arthur Jr Chiwandire about rugby recuperation

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Lorenzo Fuller interviews John Liburd and talks about rugby is important to Northamptonshire

Nikki White reports on the difference between training in men’s and women’s rugby at university level

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All pictures are of University of Northampton men’s union rugby team



The LV Cup should be taken seriously for the forseeable future of rugby

Northampton Saints playing against Gloucester in the match on the 9th of the November for the LV Cup


he Anglo Welsh Cup, more commonly known as the LV Cup, had its inaugural set of fixtures for the 2013/14 season over remembrance weekend. The competition stuck firmly in the shadow of the more coveted prizes of the Aviva Premiership and the Heineken Cup is often the subject of much derision in the Rugby world and fans often scoff at its significance. However, supporters of the competition often claim it is a fantastic opportunity for the younger generation of rugby players coming up through their respective academies, to make their mark and gain vital match experience. With

the autumn internationals whisking most household names away from domestic action, the competition provides the chance for the young players to realise their potential and play in front of big crowds. At the Saints v Gloucester fixture at Franklins Gardens no less than 7 players made their debut for the Saints. Alex Day was one of these Saints players making his Franklins Garden’s debut, and he celebrated this achievement with two-second half tries. He was understandably in high spirits after the game, and expressed his delight at how his debut went, and his admiration for the muchderided tournament. Day commented: “The LV Cup is a great competition. Us young lads just want a chance, to play in front of the big crowds and show what we can

do. The LV cup gives us all the chance to do that. It’s a terrific competition, and I know all the lads enjoy it. “I’m really happy, we’ve got a lot of young players out there and it’s great we managed to get off to a winning start. I’m really happy with the two tries, I’ve been waiting for an opportunity in the first team, and to come in and grab two tries like that was obviously very pleasing, but the hard work starts again next week.” Even the likes of Alex Waller, who made his 100th cap against Gloucester, talked up the competition and the benefits it has on the future development on English rugby by allowing younger players to play. “It’s an opportunity for the young players to step up certainly. It might not be in the same league as the

Heineken cup but it does give the young players a chance to shine, progress and build on the performance they put in front of a huge crowd. It’s a valid competition, people may slate it but it’s good for the future progression in English rugby, and it’s a chance for some silverware”. Being an experienced first team player himself Alex Waller also believes the LV Cup is fantastic for keeping squad players match fit and ready for action throughout the season, as the wear and tear of the punishing schedule perhaps takes its toll on the first team regulars. He said: “If they are called upon, they’ve had experience playing with the first team; the competition is good for everyone.”

By Sam Fulks



Match report:

Northampton Saints V Gloucester: 9th November By Sam Fulks


wo late tries in the final ten minutes from debutant Alex Day saw the Saints cruise to a convincing 33-6 victory over Gloucester in their opening LV Cup match at Franklins Gardens.

With many household names away on international duty, both sides took the opportunity to field their younger players, as the game got off to a fast and frenetic pace, with everyone eager to take their chance and impress. New Zealander fly half Glenn Dickson making his debut kicked two early penalties, but the scores were soon leveled through the equally accurate boot of Gloucester’s Freddie Burns. However the visitors steady start began to quickly unravel before them, as one of their lock forwards was sin binned for a petulant trip on Saints scrum half Ryan Glynn. The Saints took full benefit of the one-man advantage and minutes later were celebrating their first try of the match as James Pisi dove on the ball after Dom Waldouck’s superb work to open up the Gloucester defence. Pisi helped himself to his second try just five minutes later with some wonderful footwork and pace, as the Samoan sped through the Gloucester defence. Dickson converted to make the score a healthy 18-6 to the Saints going in at half time. The second half was a more turgid affair, where try scoring opportunities were more difficult to come by. It became a battle of the forwards and Alex Waller making his 100th cap, put in a man of the match

Northampton Saints playing against Gloucester for the LV Cup

“I’m really proud of the boys, the lads have all stepped up this week, we really dominated the game, and it’s a result that we can all as a club be very proud of.” Alex Waller. performance dominating the breakdowns at loosehead. His tireless work resulted in another scrum penalty, which Dickson duly converted. With the game petering out, the Saints rang the changes, and handed out multiple debuts to some of the clubs academy boys. The most notable of these changes was

The field the LV Cup match took place on 9th November England under-20 youngster Alex Day, who sparked the game back into life at scrum half. The first of his two tries on the most memorable of debuts was a wonderfully flowing team move that he finished clinically. The second was with only two minutes remaining as he remained alert to the ball as it spat its

way out of the scrum, to dive over for the bonus point. After the game, man of the match, Alex Waller spoke glowingly of the result and of the clubs academy players: “I’m really proud of the boys, the lads have all stepped up this week, we really dominated the game, and it’s a result that we can all as a club be very proud of..”



The five best players in the Northampton Saints V Gloucester game on the 9thBy Sam Fulks Sam Fulks rates the players from the Northampton Saints V Gloucester on the 9th of November. He rates them for their overall performance in the game, 1 being the best player and 5 being the worst.


3 Alex Waller, picture compliments of the Saints


Glenn Dickson, picture compliments of the Saints

Celebrated his 100th Saints cap with a fine man of the match performance that oozed both class and maturity. In an inexperienced front pack, Waller marshalled the Northampton scrum to fantastic effect winning successive penalties and was a key component in this convincing victory. Seemingly becoming better with every game, this was another typically strong showing from the forward



Put in a very controlled performance as he orchestrated the flow of the Saints play and was also very accurate with the boot. His early penalties gave Saints a platform in the game to go on and then dominate their rivals. Perhaps the biggest compliment that could be played to him on the night was that he outshone and outfought his opposing number 10. England fly half Freddie Burns.


4 Alex Day, picture compliments of the Saints

The young scrum half a debut to remember as he came off the bench to reinvigorate both the Saints performance and Franklins Garden’s crowd. Sparking the game into life at both the breakdown and the scrum, Day capped a wonderful debut with two tries in the last ten minutes. The first he was the benefactor of a flowing team move, the second was as a result of his own quick thinking as he pounced on the ball regurgitated out of the scrum. By any standards it was a fantastic debut.


Ken Pisi, picture compliments of the Saints Showed his killer instinct to a clinical effect in the first half scoring two tries that set the Saints on their way to victory. The first he pounced on a loose ball as it was grubbed kick through, and the second he showed some electric pace and footwork to dance his way through the Gloucester defence and finish the try superbly. He remained lively and involved throughout the second half.


or try this link: http://www. mXuQ8g&

Sam Fulks talks to two Northampton Saints players; Alex Day and Alex Waller about their performance during the home game against Gloucester on the 9th November

5 James Wilson, picture compliments of the Saints Set up the first try of the game with a superbly weighted kick and was genuinely effective in both halves of the pitch for the Saints. His constant running and tackling was a major factor in the Saints performance and victory.





History of the Saints and how far they’ve come

Northampton Saints playing against Gloucester in the match on the 9th of the November for the LV Cup


s we near the anniversary of the formation of the Saints, Total Rugby takes a look back at some of the most memorable moments and it’s past history to see how far the club has come.

The Saints is more then 130 years old and were formed in 1880 under the name Northampton St James. Run by Reverend Samuell Wathan Wigg, the club was originally a way for some of the local boys to channel their anger into something productive. They started out by playing in green and black stripes and the gold wasn’t added until 1905 when the Saints played the All Blacks, who were also known as The Originals. By this time, the Saints had already produced it’s first England player-Harry Weston from Yardley Gobion. Franklins Gardens has

been home to the Saints since the late 1880’s where it was then known as Melbourne Gardens. The name comes from hotelier, John Franklin, that bought the land in 1886 and soon converted it into one of England’s finest rugby grounds. This was cemented in 1927 when the main stand was added to the stadium. Post World War 1, the club continued to grow- adding players that would eventually go on to captain their country however hard times were soon to follow. However, after All Black’s player Wayne “Buck” Shelford was signed in 1991 and Ian McGeehan becoming head coach in 1993, the club began to claw its way back to the top. During the 1950’s had produced infamous players. Jess Butterfield was considered to be the best centre produced and Lewis Cannell was another centre whose natural talent was equalled only by his dedication to medicine. In 1995, the club turned

professional and was taken over by businessman Keith Barwell, who has affectionately been known as “Uncle Keith” ever since. In 1999, the club came runners-up in the Allied Dunbar Premiership and earned it’s first ever place in the Heineken European Cup. They beat Munster 9-8 in 2000 in the European Cup Final and won their first ever major trophy. World Cup glory also came the Saints way with the quartet of Grayson, Matt Dawson, Steve Thompson and Ben Cohen all coming back with the winner’s medals around their necks and showing them off on an opentop tour of Northampton. The Saints reached the 2006-2007 Heineken Cup final and made it to the semi-final by beating Barritz Olympique 6-7. Unfortunately they were then beaten 13-30 by London Wasps to be knocked out of the competition. Unfortunately this was then

followed by relegation to National League One. In March 2010, the Saints won the LV Cup, beating Gloucester Rugby 30-24 and earning them a place in the following seasons Heineken Cup. The glory lifting the Heineken Cup was cruelly taken away by Leinster in the final the Millennium Stadium. They also finished second in the Guinness Premiership division after loading to Saracens 19-21 in the semifinals. In this seasons LV Cup, the Saints are currently top of their pool with 9 points after dominating Gloucester at Franklins Gardens on 16th November (check out our match report on page 4). The Saints have stunned the world of rugby by winning an away game at Saracens to reach their first ever Aviva Premiership Rugby Final.

By Siobhan Kinsella



University of Northampton men’s rugby team to do 24 hours of touch rugby to raise money for charity

Match report: University of Northampton V University of Leicester

By Nicola White

By Nicola White

Men’s rugby union tackling in rugby to get the ball


he University of Northampton men’s rugby union team plan to do 24 hours of consistent touch rugby in order to raise money for charity.

Taking place on the April 26th next year the University of Northampton’s men’s rugby team, the Bears, plan to do 24-hour touch rugby in order to raise money for the Royal Centre for Defence Medicine. Richard Bosworth the President of the Bears commented: “It was last years initiative but we didn’t get a chance to see it through because of the exam period.” On the website the men’s rugby team explain why they chose to support the Royal Centre for Defence

Medicine and not any other charity: “We have been shown what the RCDM charity does and we really want to support it in ensuring the soldiers and their families get the best treatment when they’re wounded.” So far the rugby team has managed to get 38 donations totaling to 32% or £657.44 out of their overall £2,000 target. Martin Connolly explained how they plan for the team to last 24 hours doing touch rugby: “The way we have planned it is sort of like shift work. We will split the players into groups that do 2 or 3 hours each, depending on how many people are available to do it.” If you wish to donate to this cause the website is: http://www.justgiving. com/bears24hours

Both men rugby union’s in a hurdle as kick off starts


espite the gloomy weather for the 15’s first match of the season the rugby teams from the University of Northampton and University of Leicester played on. Opening the match with one try and two conversions the University of Northampton’s rugby team, the Bears, got off to a great start. Yet the University of Leicester’s rugby team, Team Leicester, made a come back before the second half with two trys and continued that pattern with scoring another two trys in the second half, obtaining a total of four trys and two players from the Bears sustained injuries; a broken finger and dislocated

shoulder. As the sun was coming up, the whistle was blown and a final score of 7- 27 to Team Leicester was announced. Although the Bears walked away disappointed Robbie Wright, a player for the Bears but spectator for the match commented: “I thought it was good, but the team we’ve played have been dropped down in the league. They are meant to be the best team in our league and we kept up with it pretty well in the first half but it was fitness that let us down in the end, so it was positive.”

CLICK TO LISTEN TO THE AUDIO or try this link: https://soundcloud. com/totalrugbymagazine/universityof-northampton



Is women’s rugby underrated Women’s rugby is known not to be as popular men’s rugby, yet in the 21st century this sexism surrounding rugby should have changed. Nikki White went to find out why things hadn’t changed and the difference of opinion surrounding this issue…

Listen to Nikki White’s soundcloud podcast by clicking the picture above or this link:

Men’s rugby team playing rugby in a match

Martin Connolly (left) and Richard Bosworth (right) Two boys from the men’s rugby team practicing skills

Men’s rugby team practise their throwing skills

Men’s rugby team stretching their muscles

he less publicised. Megan Jones, captain of the University of women’s rugby team, feels Northampton’s women’s rugby is underrated rugby teams say that compared to men’s rugby because the popularity isn’t even after all this there anymore. time sexism still Megan commented on her experience: “We experience exists between men’s being less important than and women’s rugby men’s rugby a lot within the University. During Union because the latter is

Northampton’s freshers fair, men’s rugby was overwhelmed with people signing up to the team but our team didn’t have that same popularity.” Yet, Kerry Allen, treasurer for the women’s rugby team, believes that it’s traced to secondary schools because they don’t employ women’s rugby because the nature of the sport is aggressive and not very feminine.


Day, the University of

Kerry said: “Secondary schools normally don’t have women’s rugby as an available sport so instead young women may have to make do with either hockey or netball, dependant on the secondary school.” Asking the men’s rugby team, Richard Bosworth, president of the men’s rugby team, and Martin Connolly, first team captain for the



or is men’s rugby overrated? Women’s team jogging and warming up for training

Women’s rugby team playing rugby on Monday night

Women’s rugby team doing stretches before training

PROFILE: Megan Jones Team listens to coach’s opinion on their performance

“It’s like there is a glass ceiling in rugby for women.” - Anonymous, women’s rugby team.

men’s rugby team, about this issue they agreed that women’s rugby is down-played, but expressed that it wasn’t just at University level, it was on an international scale. Richard commented: “I don’t think women’s rugby is shown enough. It could be that they don’t have as many players and not with as much skill when compared to men’s rugby, but they play a good standard.” Martin talked about how men’s rugby is overrated by the media: “Men’s rugby is more publicised, there’s more of it shown on TV screens and with more interaction using the results of the match.”

The increased publication of women’s rugby isn’t on the same scale as men’s rugby and this effects rugby at all levels, not just university. Yet this sexism shouldn’t exist in the 21st century. Megan talks about how things could be changed in the future: “There is more funding in women’s rugby and schools are trying to employ more female coaches in primary and secondary schools. We are also trying to change the presentation of our University rugby team to attract more women by appearing more feminine in more situations other than training.”

By Nicola White

As captain of the Women’s rugby union team at the University of Northampton, Megan Jones, spends her Monday and Thursday nights supervising the training her team is doing and the rest of her time organising with the coach what the team should be focusing on their training next. Born on the 18th of March in Lincoln, Megan Jones plays volleyball with the union team in her spare time and goes on regular rugby socials.



Does women’s and men’s weekly training programme differ in rugby?

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Next upcoming matches: Women’s:


4/12/13 Northampton V Anglia Ruskin (W1) AWAY GAME

22/1/14 Northampton (M2) V Leicester (M3) AWAY GAME

22/1/14 Northampton V Befordshire (W2) HOME GAME

22/1/14 Northampton V Derby (M1) AWAY GAME

29/1/14 Northampton V De Montfort (W1) AWAY GAME

29/1/14 Northampton (M2) V Nottingham Trent (M4) AWAY GAME


omens and mens rugby training programme at University level doesn’t differ even though women are categorised as capable of less. Rugby isn’t stereotypically and wrongly considered a women’s sport because to be less capable then men. From sprint training to weight training men are known to be biologically more capable of doing more exercise, but it doesn’t mean that their training in rugby differs from women’s. Talking to both captain of the women’s rugby team, Megan Jones, and first team captain of the men’s rugby team, Martin Connolly, they both use a six-week introduction-training programme given to them by the Student’s Union. Martin comments that for men’s rugby training it’s better to have a contact heavy session earlier in the week: “For men’s rugby we do alternative Sunday and Monday sessions. The Sunday

session is based on heavier contact because it’s wise not to do something too physical and strenuous close to a game, but each session depends on last week’s performance and what needs to be refined.” A heavier contact session on Sunday means that players on the men’s rugby team have time to recuperate for their matches. The matches always take place on Wednesday’s; this is the same for the women’s rugby team. Megan talks about how women’s rugby training, similar to men’s, focuses on the weaknesses of the team and works on them in their alternate Monday and Thursday training sessions: “We get funding for more specialised training, which after the first six weeks depends on the game and what the team would benefits most from training on albeit defence or attack.” This similarity in training suggests that in fact it doesn’t matter the capabilities of the different sexes, it all matters on the match played before hand or the mistakes made in last weeks training session.

By Nicola White



Why is physiotherapy so vital in rehabilitating rugby players?

By Siobhan Kinsella

CLICK HERE TO LISTEN TO THE AUDIO or try this link: interview-with-arthur-jr

Remember physiotherapy is important because... A photograph of Arthur Jr Chiwandire What type of injuries do you cover in your course?

In my course we deal with muscle, bone and some minor skin injuries but mostly we deal with the muscles.

In rugby, what’s the most common type muscle to be injured?

Most injuries that occur in rugby nowadays are hamstring strains. This happens when rugby players stretch the muscle fibres in the hamstrings to far which causes a tear. Depending on how big the tear is, it’s graded from 1-3 with 3 being the highest. It’s not just rugby players, it’s frequent in all sports where there’s running or use of the legs and it can be very painful when it happens.

How important is rehab in sports physiotherapy? It’s the bread and butter for all sports therapist. Because sports therapists job in rehab is to help athletes to get back to full

fitness and depending if it’s long-term or short-term that the athlete is out for in that time, that’s when they’re getting back to full fitness. If they break their leg, for example, they have to learn how to use the muscle and bone again so it’s a very important process.

Professional rugby players are known to come out with injuries that are equivalent to a 50mph car crash but still have to play in the next match. What type of support do physiotherapists give to these players?

Physiotherapists help players recover from the game they’ve just played by giving them, for example, a sports massage to help the muscles be elastic and not tight. They’re also told to take ice baths as it’s good for the muscles.

• It helps the players rehabilitate their injuries properly so that they can keep playing while they still have injuries • Rugby players sometimes come out of a match with similar injuries to a 50mph car crash • Physiotherapy helps restore body movements so players don’t become over encumbered with their injury • Physiotherapy helps people cope with arthritis, not just rugby players, so it’s key to certain people living their life as normal



Why is rugby so important in Northamptonshire? By Lorenzo Fuller, edited by Siobhan Kinsella

CLICK HERE TO LISTEN TO THE AUDIO or try this link: totalrugbymagazine/interview-with-john-liburd


orthamptonshire is already known for its football, cricket and rugby teams, as well as Silverstone Racing Circuit, so it comes as no real surprise that sport plays a big part in young people’s lives in the county.

So much so that now over 100 young people, aged between 13-20, are receiving rugby coaching from the Northampton Saints. Johnathan Liburd, 21, a player in the Saints Youth Team, tells us what is like coming up in the club: “Training is very demanding and if you’re planning on going into rugby at any stage, that is the first thing you should be focusing on.” The young Northamptonian plays for the club whilst attending Bedfordshire University, and he was able to meet up with us to explain what his experience in the club was like. “The first time I played I got the only injury I’ve had and it’s probably the most annoying injury too - a broken nose. It was annoying because my mum hit the roof. I missed two training sessions as I tried to reason with her that I was alright, that these things were going to happen and that she shouldn’t worry. She only let me back after I agreed to let her speak to the coach, who she then gave a long lecture to about keeping her baby safe. Some of the bigger names in the team were training nearby at the time. I

could of died of shame.” What seems to be worse than the broken bones and over protective mothers is the strict eating regime. Liburd commented: “I have to eat every two hours and even then I can only eat certain meats and vegetables, which have been cooked in certain ways.” Craig Taylor, 28, a health and fitness coach who currently works with Kettering Council and used to play rugby during his university days, said: “Northampton is leading the way in terms of young people and sport. In years to come we’re hoping that the whole country will begin to adopt our way of thinking, especially in terms of keeping kids fit and healthy by introducing them to sport from a young age. I did it, as did my brothers, and we’ve had little to no health problems over the years.” Taylor, who earlier this year played a 24-hour football match for charity, went on to add: “They need to teach young people how to cook healthily. When it comes to food young people haven’t even got a choice about healthy eating because the local takeaway is the only option. To have the same health benefits as an athlete, they need to star eating like one and teaching kids how to cook healthy meals is a good start.” Rugby is Northampton’s bread and butter, a strict diet keeps the Saints players in good shape and format for training and matches.

FACT FILE: Why is it important for rugby players to eat healthy?

Images of peppers and spring onions taken by Lorenzo

The players need to keep up a level of fitness in order to be able to play games and keep up with the action • If a player is in recovery from a rugby injury, normally a specialised diet is suggested to shorten the recovery time needed for the injury to heal • Keeping a rugby player on a well planned diet helps players get all the protein, iron, nutrients and vitamins they need to maintain their hectic lifestyle • Eating five a day is very important, rugby players rely on their upper and lower body strength on the pitch to tackle other members of the opposing team for the ball • A zero fat or low fat diet is very harmful for your health so for rugby players it’s vital that they don’t have

these types of diets

By Nicola White

Total Rugby Magazine  
Total Rugby Magazine