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VOLUME 1 September Issue, 2010 THE TACKLER Official ZRU Newsletter
VOLUME 1
September Issue, 2010
THE TACKLER
Official ZRU Newsletter
Special points of inter- est:  Briefly highlight your point of interest here.  Briefly
Special points of inter-
est:
 Briefly highlight your point of interest here.
 Briefly highlight your point of interest here.
 Briefly highlight your point of interest here.
 Briefly highlight your point of interest here.

Inside this issue:

 

Women On The Move

2

The Goshawks - A History

2

The Cote D’Ivoire Experience

3

Coaches Corner

3

Fan Focus

3

Advertise in The Tackler

4

Tafadzwa Mhende Tribute

4

Cheetahs Claim Fourth Title

The Lusaka Castle Sevens 2010 Tournament

was the fourth in a row for the National

Sevens team. In the last five years the

Cheetahs have won 27 games, lost 2 and

drawn 1.

This years victory over the South African Northern Regional team equaled the tournament record of 4 Cup Final wins by a single team.

Day 1 saw the Cheetahs face off against Namibia who showed little interest to compete for the win, eventually succumbing 21-0 to a sluggish Zimbabwe. A fresh faced Botswana failed to deliver as The Cheetahs fought for a 28-0 victory, again with very little resistance. The final match on Day 1 saw The Cheetahs pitted against the local press’ perennial tournament favorites, Mpumalanga Pumas. The Cheetahs went into the break 14-0 up but failed to accelerate when required, in order to close the game down. The physical Pumas, along with the bounce of the ball fought back to win 26-21 on the buzzer. Despite the loss, The Cheetahs remained at the top of their pool.

By Day 2 the body is sore and the legs are heavy, but despite this The Cheetahs brushed

the legs are heavy, but despite this The Cheetahs brushed Standing : J. Coles, G. Nechironga,

Standing : J. Coles, G. Nechironga, J. Leitao (C), N. Ndlovu, G. Nyamutsamba (Coach), D. Hondo,

G.

Mitchell, F. Chipendu, B. Hobson (Manager) Kneeling: J. Rowe, T. Mhende, S. Jones, T. Nemadire,

J.

Ndebele

aside a confident Zambia 35-0 in the Cup quarter finals. When teams lose consistently to an opponent it becomes a habit, and The Cheetahs have realized this with Zambia. Superior conditioning and a hard worth ethic

blended in with a proven sevens structure proved too much for our neighbors once again. The Kenya Select side which many fancied as dark horses stumbled against a swift Namibian side in the other quarter final, which meant they would (cont page 2)

Sables Make a Date for Africa Cup Finals

Having won the Final match Of the Africa

Cup Pool C against Madagascar 28-26 in Bulawayo on July 3rd, the Zimbabwe

Sables booked themselves a spot in the Africa Cup Finals in mid November later this year.

This will see them face off against the winners of Pools A and B, and the best

runner up. To date, only Morocco have qualified alongside The Sables. A team like Namibia will surely win their pool

and head north to compete, thus providing stiffer opposition for The Sables, yet testing their abilities and

growth as a team on the move.

The venue is yet to be confirmed

but it is likely to be held in North Africa.

Should Zimbabwe win the tournament they will jump as much as 8 places in World

Rankings considering all other teams are ranked higher than The Sables.

all other teams are ranked higher than The Sables. Preparations for this showpiece are likely to

Preparations for this showpiece are likely to take place next month with the hope that all players on The Sables books will make themselves available so as to select the strongest

available team to carry the Nations flag.

This is the first time this format has been used for the African countries and provides

bragging rights on the continent.

www.zimbabwerugby.com

Official ZRU Newsletter Cheetahs Claim Fourth Title cont (cont from page 1) have a chance
Official ZRU Newsletter
Cheetahs Claim Fourth Title cont
(cont from page 1)
have
a chance to
redeem themselves . Fortunately this was
not the case as The Cheetahs showed big
match temperament to push aside the off
the ball nuisances and focus on winning.
Gardner Nechirongas long range try
turned the game in The Cheetahs favour as
they closed the game down to win 24-7.
last second try by Njabulo Ndlovu to win
19-10. Strength of character was shown by
the team as they fought smartly to come
from behind.
Caption describing picture or
graphic.
The Cup Final meant The Cheetahs had to
face off against a very impressive Northern
region team. This select side from South
Africa was made up of the top players from
Valke, Pumas, Lions, Bulls, Limpopo Blue
Bulls, Lowveld and Leopards. They had
brushed aside everyone at the tournament
with pace, skill and power. The start was
perfect for the Northern region side as
they went into the break 10-0 up and
confident. However, The Cheetahs new the
situation, stuck to the game plan and
eventually romped home winners with a
Sadly the game was marred by a nasty leg
injury to The Cheetahs scrumhalf, Taffy
Mhende. The game was in favour of The
Cheetahs as the heavier Northern Region
team were showing signs of fatigue and
cracks in the defences wall. This break gave
them the rest they needed. The
professional approach of The Cheetahs to
put aside the tragedy of their team mate
signaled a clear focus and desire to win the
match.
The tournament also saw the development
team The Goshawks competing. Much was
expected of this side as many of them will
be vying for National Honours in time to
come. Unfittingly they did not click and
took four games too long to start playing
the brand of sevens that’s required to
compete at that level. Players like
Tafadzwa Chitokwindo, Paul Jessub, Justin
Becker, Jan Ferreira and Lloyd Machanjaira
did themselves proud with good
performances.
With a try saving tackle by Justin Coles in
the corner, The Cheetahs were able to turn
possession over, march downfield , apply
pressure with ball in hand and work rate
before sealing the victory.
Applauds must go to the slightly built
Matabeleland side that struggled at first
before winning when they needed to, to
take home the Bowl Trophy after beating
the Zambian development team (Lechwe)
in the Bowl Final.
In all, another good weekend in Zambia for
Zimbabwe Rugby.
In all, another good weekend in Zambia for Zimbabwe Rugby. “The likes of Kenya, Namibia and

“The likes of Kenya, Namibia and Blue Bulls to attend local tournament”

Women on The Move

Blue Bulls to attend local tournament” Women on The Move With an eye on the 2016

With an eye on the 2016 Olympics the Pangolins are working hard at getting game time and exposure. This year sees their International calendar grow with added games in Zambia, a visit to the Blue Bulls Sevens tournament and the hosting of their very own International Tournament in Harare at the end of October.

This tournament will include the likes of Zambia, Botswana, Uganda, Swaziland, Namibia, Kenya, Blue Bulls and the Limpopo Blue Bulls.

Be sure to follow The Tackler to keep you updated on the happenings of this tournament.

The Goshawks - A History

The Goshawks principle stemmed from a British Barbarians model, providing players with an opportunity to showcase their talent on the International stage.

It was set up by the then Rhodesian Rugby Football Board in the 1960’s and players selected for The Goshawks came from the National Team as well as select International Players such as John Robbie (Ireland), Kevin De Klerk, Salty Du Rand and Gysie Pienaar (Springboks) to name a few.

The tradition of the Goshawks, much like The Barbarians, was to wear your respective club socks while playing. A unified team with amateur beginnings at heart.

The Goshawks are still in participation today, as recently as the Castle Sevens Tournament in Lusaka, Zambia. They form the development arm of the National Sevens team and provide up and coming players with regional and international exposure.

and coming players with regional and international exposure. Page 2 The Goshawks captained by J. Engelbrecht
and coming players with regional and international exposure. Page 2 The Goshawks captained by J. Engelbrecht

Page 2

The Goshawks captained by J. Engelbrecht and under the Presidency of K.T. Wood

VOLUME 1
VOLUME 1

The Cote D’Ivoire Experience

With very little time to prepare, Coach Brighton Chivandire and his charges were facing a tough assignment. The job involved putting a squad together of 30 players two weeks out from the U19 World Cup Qualifiers. The unavailability of some players who were still in school made the task even more difficult. Nonetheless, the management team buckled up to face the job at hand.

Playing rugby in Central Africa is never easy, let alone in what would be considered harsh conditions. The team under the captaincy of Bristol based Marco Mama had players that had months before been to the Junior World Trophy in Moscow. A strong leadership core proved successful in keeping the focus, intensity and attitude right for the challenge.

The Young Sables as they are affectionately known, bulldozed their way to the final to take on Namibia who were no match for the Zimbabweans.

As a result of this victory, this team that qualified as U19’s have booked their placed at the U20 Junior World Trophy in USA next year.

Should Zimbabwe finish in the top four at this tournament they will automatically book a place in the following years tournament. Should they fail, the process of re-qualifying as U19’s starts again.

With talent, coaching and management staff like this, Zimbabwe Rugby’s youth are paving their way forward for senior National representation.

A bright future awaits the Young Sables.

representation. A bright future awaits the Young Sables. Captain Marco Mama leads from the front Coaches

Captain Marco Mama leads from the front

Coaches Corner

This month we speak with Sables Coach Brendan Dawson:

How are the preparations going for the Africa Cup Finals? It’s tough at the moment with all the other rugby being played, but the squad will resume training shortly. Preparing for this tournament will be vital to our success and the players need to be working on their conditioning.

Which players do you see playing a key role in this tournament? Players like Jacques Leitao, Vakai Hove and Njabulo Ndlovu will play a big role. We are looking at a few of the U20 players to draft in as well with an eye to the future.

Have you enjoyed the season thus far? This season has been challenging, but with it comes an excitement for the 2011 calendar. We would like to show the Zimbabwe public what The Sables can do. More test matches means more exposure and quality game time.

How is your Academy coming along? Very well. In 6-8 weeks we’ll roll out the development program for primary schools in the Bulawayo townships.

A message for The Fans. Come out and support. The public needs to believe in the team to assist it’s growth.

needs to believe in the team to assist it’s growth. Page 3 “More test matches means
needs to believe in the team to assist it’s growth. Page 3 “More test matches means

Page 3

to believe in the team to assist it’s growth. Page 3 “More test matches means more
to believe in the team to assist it’s growth. Page 3 “More test matches means more

“More test matches means more exposure and quality game time”

Fan Focus

If you enjoy the game of rugby in Zimbabwe be it at schools, clubs or national level then consider yourself a Fan. The Zimbabwe Rugby Community is a passionate one and the players that take to the field every weekend appreciate your enthusiasm and support.

Zimbabwe Rugby hopes to showcase this talent on a regular basis and trusts that you The Fan enjoy the whole experience. Be sure to follow this column each week as we seek to grow the game and it’s following throughout Zimbabwe.

Each month will see our ‘Caption Photograph’ winner walk away with a prize. Be sure to be seen at the games!

THE TACKLER
THE TACKLER

Advertise in The Tackler

THE TACKLER Advertise in The Tackler This online publication is a great way for you and

This online publication is a great way for you and your company to be seen. With over a thousand readers country wide expected with our first release, and a regional come global viewership in the hundreds we expect our Newsletter to reach far and wide. Any laptop, home PC and business with internet connection can have access to our Newsletter.

The Tackler will be released online via e-mail, facebook and the website every month with news, views and reviews of Zimbabwe Rugby.

Should you wish to place an advert please contact:

Grant : rugby2@mweb.co.zw

to place an advert please contact: Grant : rugby2@mweb.co.zw “Thousands of readers country wide expected to

“Thousands of readers country wide expected to read first release”

of readers country wide expected to read first release” We’re on the web! Visit us at

We’re on the web!

Visit us at www.zimbabwerugby.com

We’re on the web! Visit us at www.zimbabwerugby.com www.facebook.com/zim7s A Tribute to Tafadzwa Mhende Last

www.facebook.com/zim7s

A Tribute to Tafadzwa Mhende

Last weekend at the Castle Sevens Tournament in Lusaka, Zambia, Tafadzwa Mhende sustained a traumatic injury to his leg. With only 2 ½ minutes left in the Cup Final of the tournament. Taffy collided with a player from the Northern Region team and broke his leg. It took some 15 minutes to stabilise Taffy and move him to an ambulance. The care and attention he received on the field from the ambulance crew, a local trauma technician and the Zimbabwean physio Margie Gibson was outstanding. Further treatment received at Victoria Hospital under the direction of local surgeon, Emmanuel Mwasa, was also first class. Taffy had surgery performed on his leg on Tuesday afternoon and we all wish him a speedy recovery and return.

Tafadzwa, ‘Taffy’, ‘Nai Jimbo’, ‘Mujaji’ Mhende is a special individual who shows strength of character way above his physical stature. The tournament saw him time and again as the last line of defence and he never missed a tackle. His bravery and dedication to the Zimbabwe Sevens Team, the Cheetahs, is something that legends are built of. His constant endeavours for Zimbabwe Rugby, and for the Cheetahs, and his demeanour in dealing with this injury has inspired all his colleagues. Whilst the surgeon was working to stabilise his injury, all Taffy wanted to know was what the

stabilise his injury, all Taffy wanted to know was what the Page 4 final score was!

Page 4

final score was! Fittingly the win in the final at the Castle Sevens was dedicated to Taffy by his fellow Cheetahs.

We also pay tribute to the support and assistance The Cheetahs sponsor, SPAR, who ensured that these first vital steps of Taffy’s recovery were possible. The Cheetahs also pay gratitude to the President of the Zimbabwe Rugby Union, Themba Sibanda, for all of his support and assistance during this time.

Taffy has since returned from Zambia in good health, and will be starting his rehabilitation program with immediate effect.

The Zimbabwe Rugby Union wishes Taffy a speedy recovery and looks forward to his return to the playing field.

Get Well Soon!

Zimbabwe Rugby Union wishes Taffy a speedy recovery and looks forward to his return to the