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Sharks axe head coach Sean Everitt after drubbing by Cardiff

The Sharks announced on Monday that head coach Sean Everitt has stepped down from his role, by mutual consent, with immediate effect following the side’s 35-0 drubbing by Cardiff on Sunday.
The Sharks’ CEO, Eduard Coetzee, was left reeling after his side’s humbling 35-0 defeat to Cardiff at Kings Park in Durban on Sunday.
“Our fans, our sponsors, our stakeholders, our owners do not deserve a performance such as that one. A lot of people put a lot of effort into this franchise and a display like tonight’s does not reward them for their input,” said Coetzee.
“Also, know that we will not leave it there, we will turn this around, we will get back on the horse. This was unlike the Sharks and everything possible will be done to rectify this and it will be done as soon as possible.”
He was true to his word as his attempt to rectify the situation at the underachieving Sharks took just over 24 hours, when the union announced the news of head coach Sean Everitt’s departure on Monday.
Visit Daily Maverick’s home page for more news, analysis and investigations
“This is a sad development for me and sometimes the results don’t always match the tireless effort that has been put in,” said Everitt in the Sharks’ press release.
“I have been a part of this union for close on 15 years and I’ve always had the best interests of this team at heart. I leave with no regrets.”
Everitt has been with the Durban-based union since 2008, when he was appointed as an assistant in a Currie Cup-winning year, and he has gone through the ranks, being involved in five Currie Cup finals.
He notably coached the unbeaten Sharks Under-19s to the SA Rugby Under-19 Championship title in 2018, and thereafter he assumed the role as head coach of the 2020 Super Rugby campaign, where they were top of the log when Covid-19 brought an abrupt end to the campaign.
Everitt navigated the team to two Currie Cup finals and in their first United Rugby Championship (URC) season in 2021/22, which saw them finishing fifth on the log before being knocked out of the competition in the quarterfinal stage by the Bulls.
“This decision has been made in the best interests of the team moving forward,” said Coetzee as the side languishes in 12th position on the URC log.
Neil Powell
Neil Powell, the director of rugby at the Sharks and former Blitzboks head ...

Ghana victory and Cameroon draw end a good day for Africa at global soccer spectacle

Ghana claimed their first win of the 2022 Soccer World Cup and Cameroon ended an eight-match World Cup-losing streak with a draw on a happy day for African football.
Ghana survived a furious late siege of their goal to revive their World Cup chances in a dramatic Group H clash on Monday, holding off South Korea to secure a 3-2 victory that was greeted with as much relief as it was celebration.
Meanwhile, Cameroon striker Vincent Aboubakar came off the bench to score one goal and set up another as the Indomitable Lions rescued a vital point in a 3-3 draw with Serbia on Monday that ended a run of eight successive World Cup losses for the African side.
The Group G fixture leaves both teams on a single point from their two games, still in contention for a last 16 place, although Cameroon must face Brazil in their final match on Friday, while Serbia take on Switzerland.
Ghana ride their luck
Ghana earned their first points of the tournament and can still reach the second round on the back of two goals from Mohammed Kudus and desperate defending in a roller-coaster match at the Education City Stadium.
Mohammed Salisu scored the opener and Kudus headed home as Ghana took a 2-0 halftime lead, only to allow South Korea to fight back with two goals in three minutes from Cho Gue-sung, who epitomised his side’s fighting spirit by attacking the ball to head home twice in quick succession.
Ghana snatched back the lead within seven minutes, however, taking advantage of their one chance in the second half for Kudus to deliver the winner.
“It was emotional with the ups and downs. South Korea did very well, pushed and pressed us,” said Ghana coach Otto Addo.
“We were struggling, we wanted to stop the crosses, but we didn’t put enough intensity into stopping the crosses. There was passionate defending and very good goalkeeping. in the end, we were a bit lucky.”
Visit Daily Maverick’s home page for more news, analysis and investigations
Mixed emotions
Ten minutes of stoppage time only served to heighten the drama, culminating in a contrast of emotions at the final whistle as an exhausted Ghana celebrated and the Koreans were left in tears.
They had fought back in spectacular style, making only one second-half error which ultimately proved costly.
Ghana’s first-half lead was down to two perfect crosses from the left delivered by the right-footed Jordan Ayew – both perfectly weighted ...

Rudderless Sharks swim in murky water without Springboks

The Sharks’ have had an inconsistent and injury-ridden start to the United Rugby Championship season, which culminated in a 35-0 loss to Cardiff on Sunday. Their fins need to turn around soon.
On paper, the Springbok-laden Sharks have one of the strongest squads in the United Rugby Championship (URC). However, their on-field performances have not reflected that strength. They currently languish in 12th position on the URC log – although they do have two matches in hand.
At the start of 2021 the Sharks announced that US consortium MVM Holdings had bought a majority share in the union. The deal provided a huge cash injection for the franchise which translated into the purchase of marquee players such as Springbok captain Siya Kolisi as well as Stormers and Springbok hooker Bongi Mbonambi.
The side had a relatively successful first URC season, ending the round-robin stage in fifth place before losing in the quarterfinal to Bulls owing to a late Chris Smith drop-goal.
Through player development and astute signings such as star Springbok lock Eben Etzebeth, the Sharks were expected to build on the momentum of their inaugural URC season.
They also reaffirmed their back division with the shrewd purchases of Bok centres Rohan Janse van Rensburg and Francois Venter, among others.
Lions duo Carlo Sadie and Vincent Tshituka also joined the Durban-based franchise to add depth to the forwards department.
Despite all the aforementioned investment and preparation for the 2022/23 URC season, the Sharks have fallen flat in all but one of their opening six matches of the season.
They have a 50% win record and are the lowest-ranked South African side on the URC table.
Slow start
The Sharks have only played one match with their full assortment of Springbok stars available – against Glasgow Warriors in round five, winning emphatically 40-12. That match and the scrappy victories over lowly sides have painted over the cracks of the underachieving Sharks.
Nevertheless, the triumph over Glasgow at Kings Park showcased their potential at full strength.
Etzebeth, as spectators have become so accustomed to, was colossal in every facet of play, while Makazole Mapimpi, Ox Nche, Kolisi and Mbonambi also displayed their international quality.
There was a clear gap in quality between the South African and Scottish outfits.
However, as soon as the aforementioned Springboks are unavailable, the Sharks become almost unrecognisable from the one that clobbered Glasgow Warriors.
In their opening match of the season, they struggled to an unconvincing, closely fought 42-37 victory over bottom-of-the-table ...

England’s Bradbury breaks through to clinch Joburg Open

Dan Bradbury, a 23-year-old who entered the Joburg Open on a sponsors’ invite, completed a Cinderella story by sealing a wire-to-wire victory at Houghton Golf Club.
Dan Bradbury, a 23-year-old from England, arrived at last week’s Joburg Open ranked 1,397th in the world. He left Houghton Golf Club more than R3-million wealthier, and most importantly, exempt for the next two years on the DP World Tour.
Bradbury had no playing status on any recognised professional tours and just two previous DP World Tour starts to his name. He had turned professional in July and got into the tournament as a sponsor’s invite.
The Englishman had packed enough clothes to last him the week and travelled to the event with his mother.
Fast forward to Sunday afternoon, and Bradbury was holding the Joburg Open trophy as a winner on the DP World Tour, and collecting a cheque for €167,843.
Life changing
In just his third professional start, Bradbury carded rounds of 63, 66, 67 and 67 to finish three strokes clear of Finland’s Sami Välimäki at 21-under-par.
South Africa’s Christiaan Bezuidenhout and Daniel van Tonder finished a further shot behind in a tie for third place.
With the win, Bradbury gains full status on the DP World Tour, as well as a spot in the 2023 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool — where he will be joined by Välimäki and Bezuidenhout, who secured the other two qualifying spots on offer.
Bradbury also climbed 846 spots in the world rankings to 551st place. With his new status going forward, he plans to play as many events as he can.
“I love playing, I hate sitting at home and not doing anything,” he said.
Bradbury now earns a spot in the field at the 2022 South African Open beginning on Thursday.
“I’ve got the kids over here asking for my hat. I’ve only got one of each colour, so they’re struggling for that one. But we’ll be fine. We’ll get some laundry done tonight and see how we go.”
As it happened
Bradbury didn’t let his inexperience show once the event got underway on 24 November, firing a scintillating eight-under-par 63 to take the first-round lead.
The second round was delayed due to lightning in the area on Friday afternoon, with most players finishing their rounds on Saturday morning.
But Bradbury held steady, following up his first-round heroics with a five-under-par 66 to take a one-shot lead over South African starlet Casey Jarvis into the third round.
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Bratwurst and beer in a Bedouin tent – how Germany stayed alive at the World Cup

Germany gave themselves hope of avoiding another embarrassing early World Cup exit when they snatched a 1-1 draw with Spain on Sunday.
Any job is easier when you use the right tools, and on Sunday a bruised Germany bounced off the World Cup ropes to come from behind in their Group E match with Spain to earn a priceless 1-1 draw and boost their chances of reaching the knockout phase.
An opening match defeat by Japan had hardly augured well for this clash in the Al Bayt Stadium.
Spain’s 6-0 rout of the Germans the last time they met added to the apprehension. And the grim backdrop of dissatisfied sponsors, and many Germans back home wishing their team had not even come to Qatar because of the host nation’s human rights record, can have done little to boost German morale.
But if this was a German team in crisis, you would never have known it and they set about their task with plenty of huff and not inconsiderable puff. Much industry, though precious little art.
Having survived until half-time goalless, the inevitable began to loom when they fell behind to a 62nd-minute Alvaro Morata flick.
Many in the arena expected Spain ease to the finish line as they stretched the Germans this way and that with incisive passing and tireless pressing.
But then German coach Hansi Flick played his masterstroke.
Sweeping aside years of alternative and introspective German attacking strategies centred on an obsession with “false nines”, he threw on a real number nine, a target man in the most German of attacking moulds.
Never mind that the 29-year-old Niclas Füllkrug had only made his Germany debut earlier this month in a friendly against Oman. With seven minutes left on the clock he smashed home a loose ball to revitalise the Germans and give them a point they thoroughly deserved.
Old-fashioned centre forward
Who knew? If you want goals, turn to an old-fashioned centre forward. It had worked in all four of Germany’s World Cup titles.
“He showed his determination to score. He gives the team a lot. not only the goal. He has his heart in the right place,” Flick told reporters.
Thoroughly reinvigorated from the introduction of Füllkrug, Germany looked a different side.
Read in Daily Maverick: “Ronaldo relishes ‘beautiful moment’ after breaking World Cup record”
Eight years of tinkering following the retirement of all-time World Cup scorer Miroslav Klose was instantly forgotten as Füllkrug led the line in the fashion of German ...

Griezmann the brains behind France’s convincing World Cup start

On the way to France exorcising the ghost of World Cup winners past by qualifying for the knockout phase in Qatar 2022, attacker Antoine Griezmann has been a shining light.
France have shaken off the curse of the defending champions at the Fifa World Cup by qualifying for the knockout phase with a game to spare.
After winning the World Cup in 1998, then being eliminated in the group stage four years later, France set in motion a trend of World Cup winners being eliminated in the first round of the following tournament since then.
However, in 2022, the 2018 world champions have halted that hoodoo, and it is largely due to Antoine Griezmann’s return to his best.
Griezmann has played as an attacking midfielder rather than a pure forward, brilliantly making the link between midfielders Aurelien Tchouameni and Adrien Rabiot and the attacking trio of Ousmane Dembele, Olivier Giroud and Kylian Mbappe.
“He covers a lot of space. He has the ability to defend and to make others play. It’s the Antoine we know, the Antoine who is in form,” centre back Raphael Varane told reporters after France beat Denmark 2-1 on Saturday to advance to the last 16 having scored six and conceded two goals.
Griezmann set up Mbappe for the 86th-minute winner with his 26th assist for the national team, but the Atletico Madrid player did much more than that at Stadium 974.
Read in Daily Maverick: “‘Essência do brasileiro’ – Richarlison shows why he’s one in 200 million for Brazil”
Griezmann played mainly deep, but also often close to lone striker Giroud or even on the flanks.
“I was impressed by him,” said Tchouameni. “He’s got a huge volume of play and everything is going smoothly between us. I’m impressed but not surprised. You can see him tackle at training every day.”
Visit Daily Maverick’s home page for more news, analysis and investigations
Like Dembele, Griezmann has played selflessly, leaving the limelight to Mbappe.
“I probably ask different things from him, but there is no sacrifice on his part,” said coach Didier Deschamps.
Read in Daily Maverick: “Saudi Arabia’s win over Argentina the statistically biggest World Cup shock – Nielsen Gracenote”
“He is so generous. He enjoys building up moves. He will score fewer goals, because there are other players up front, but he is so useful, intelligent. He provides the team with a good balance.
“I could have played him on the right flank of the attack instead of Ousmane ...

Safa’s Bennett Bailey recalls encounters with apartheid torturer Johannes ‘Spyker’ van Wyk

In an interview, Bennett Bailey, the son of working-class parents who raised him in the Cape Flats township of Heideveld and who classifies himself as a pensioner after his recent retirement from the Western Cape Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport, recalled his arrest in a country known as apartheid South Africa.
More than 40 years ago, as merciless state-sanctioned hunters were intimidating, detaining and torturing young activists in a desperate bid to stop a boycott that had brought many high schools in the Cape Peninsula to a standstill, there was one name people came to know and fear.
That was Johannes “Spyker” van Wyk, a name that activists – seniors and the very young, men and women – associated with a prime abuser of human rights and the murder of Imam Abdullah Haron, the Muslim cleric who died in detention in 1969. Van Wyk’s name came up in the Western Cape High Court last week during the inquest into the death of the imam in solitary confinement.
Mention of the security policeman probably brought back bitter, painful memories of cruelty inflicted, like an animal branded, on activists who confronted the apartheid state. Bennett Bailey, head of the South African Football Association (Safa) in Western Cape and recently elected a vice-president of football’s national controlling body, is one.
In an interview, Bailey, the son of working-class parents who raised him in the Cape Flats township of Heideveld and who classifies himself as a pensioner after his recent retirement from the Western Cape Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport, recalled his arrest in a country known as apartheid South Africa.
At that time, he was chairperson of the students’ representative council (SRC) at Arcadia High, a school in the township of Bonteheuwel, which was known for radically opposing apartheid and for learners and teachers being in class every year on 31 May – the old South Africa’s Republic Day.
“I was on the run in 1980. I first met ‘Spyker’ van Wyk when he came to arrest me at my sister’s house in Mitchells Plain. I was held incommunicado. That was my first spell in detention. I was not beaten but tortured psychologically,” said Bailey.
As tears slowly wet his cheeks, he said, “I was a child. One had to be mentally strong to survive solitary confinement because the only people one saw were the interrogators.”
For him, inner strength in detention came from singing freedom songs and recalling ...

Goal drought broken, but Africa still awaits first World Cup win

Ghana brought Africa its first goals at the Qatar 2022 World Cup during their 3-2 loss to Portugal on Thursday. However, the continent still awaits its first three points in Qatar.
Two strikes from Ghana on Thursday broke the African goal drought at the Fifa World Cup, but none of the continent’s five teams has been able to post a win in Qatar, in stark contrast to their Asian counterparts.
While both Japan and Saudi Arabia pulled off sensational upsets against former world champions, Africa has endured poor results and have only as many points as they have goals.
Cameroon, Ghana and Senegal lost their opening matches while Morocco and Tunisia managed goalless draws against more fancied opponents, riding a wave of inspirational support from thousands of their fans who filled the stadiums.
Both countries have large migrant communities in the Gulf state and they ensured a rollicking atmosphere as Morocco and Tunisia rose to the occasion.
Both played at a much higher tempo than they usually do, buoyed by the encouragement, but it now remains to be seen whether they will be able to deliver a performance of the same intensity in their second group games after only three days’ rest.
Tunisia drew 0-0 with Denmark on Tuesday in Group D, while Morocco held Croatia, runners-up at the last World Cup, to a goalless draw in their Group F clash on Wednesday.
Read in Daily Maverick: “Ronaldo relishes ‘beautiful moment’ after breaking World Cup record”
That was followed by narrow defeats for Cameroon and Ghana on Thursday.
Cameroon-born Breel Embolo scored against the country of his birth as Switzerland edged them 1-0 in Group G, the goal coming after the African side had dominated the first half and missed several good chances to take the lead.
Visit Daily Maverick’s home page for more news, analysis and investigations
Ghana were beaten 3-2 in Group H by Portugal but complained bitterly about the refereeing. However, coach Otto Addo also said: “(Africa’s) results have to improve and I hope we all improve.”
Banking on Senegal
All five African teams at the last World Cup in Russia failed to get past the first round and the continent’s football leaders have said their future priority is to make sides more competitive in the international arena.
The continent will be banking on Senegal to stop the rot on Friday after they put up a competent showing against the Netherlands in Monday’s Group A clash, only to concede two late ...

Ocean View teen gears up to represent SA at African badminton tournament in Mauritius

Micheala Ohlson is the fourth player from Ocean View to get national colours in badminton.
Teenager Micheala Ohlson, from Ocean View, has been selected to play for South Africa at the All Africa Under-19 tournament in Mauritius next month
The 18-year-old has been playing badminton since she was ten years old. She now lives in Lavender Hill, but she grew up in Ocean View, where there is an active badminton club. Ohlson said she would often watch her older cousin play badminton in Ocean View hall, where there are three badminton courts.
“When I saw her play, it inspired me. I thought to myself: ‘This is what I want to do.’”
She said she would also see her neighbour Francois Wessels carrying rackets and shuttles and would ask to borrow these to hit around in the street. Wessels is now her coach.
“The moment I took a racket and held it in my hands, I could feel the excitement of the sport,” said Ohlson.
Ohlson said although she also played cricket, “I didn’t feel the game like badminton.”
Wessels started taking her to the hall in Ocean View and later to the John Tyres hall in Kenilworth, where the Ocean View team also practises.
“There would be players who already had their SA colours. I would sit and watch how they played their hearts out, diving for the shuttle and shouting for joy when they won.
“The other players went to other provinces and countries, and I thought to myself: ‘I also want to go there.’ So I trained hard and eventually reached their level,” said Ohlson.
She said she goes to gym every day and practices badminton in Kenilworth every Saturday for three hours.
Visit Daily Maverick’s home page for more news, analysis and investigations
Ohlson is the oldest of five children and has been living with her aunt Tougieda Stemmet in Lavender Hill since her mother died in 2019. Her father died in 2014.
She said she initially battled to strike a balance between school and practising but said her aunt helped her set up a system to set aside enough time for both.
She also sometimes coaches younger players at the badminton courts in Kenilworth. All her siblings play badminton and her younger sister, Michelle Adendorff, received provincial colours for U-17 badminton. “My aunt always pushes us to do better in life and reminds us that there is a better life out there if we work hard.”
Stemmet, who worked as a ...

‘Essência do brasileiro’ – Richarlison shows why he’s one in 200 million for Brazil

Brazil’s Richarlison scored the goal of the tournament so far, underlining why coach Tite opted for the Tottenham man over the likes of Liverpool’s Roberto Firmino.
‘You’re going to leave Pombo here alone,” Tite laughed. Brazil’s coach had just finished his media duties for the evening, the espresso cup in his hand drained. “I’m not going to be able to hug Richarlison?” he said, disappointed. Brazil’s match winner was tied up in an anti-doping control, waiting for the call of nature.
“I’m trying to pee, it’s tough,” Richarlison said, although he didn’t let the time go to waste.
“I was able to call Ney and see how he is,” Richarlison revealed. Neymar had buried his head in his yellow and green jersey to hide the tears after spraining his right ankle, “tricking” Tite by playing through the pain barrier for another 11 minutes against Serbia. “I told him to put some ice on it,” Richarlison said as if he were a member of Brazil’s medical staff.
Despite Tite’s confidence that Neymar will continue playing in the World Cup, past injuries in this competition are a haunting theme of his career and will be keeping him up at night.
Richarlison promised to swing by his room at the Westin before bed. “When I get to the hotel I’m going to go see how he’s doing,” he said. Richarlison probably won’t sleep, the buzz from scoring the goal of the tournament unlikely to fade on the short bus ride from Lusail.
“I think it was a beautiful goal,” he said. “I’ve already scored a goal like that for Fluminense and Everton. Today I had the opportunity to score an acrobatic goal, possibly one of the nicest goals of my career. It was a tough match, so I think it was one of the nicest of my career.”
Scissor kicks are a Richarlison trademark, after all. He even scored one at a training camp in Turin last week.
“It’s the result of practice,” Fred said in the mixed zone. “It’s not easy to get there and score. It’s the result of his training and the whole group.”
Practice makes perfect. At half-time against Serbia, the score still 0-0, Richarlison gathered his teammates around him and said something needed to change. “I told them I need a ball and it arrived, I was ready and I managed to score.”
Read in Daily Maverick: “Ronaldo relishes ‘beautiful moment’ after breaking World Cup record”
The first one ...

Tite’s courage pays off as Brazil forwards deliver, sending a clear message to World Cup rivals

Blessed with the strongest attack force at the Qatar 2022 World Cup, there were questions around how Brazil coach Tite would play his cards and who he would leave out for a balanced side. Instead he unleashed all his team’s attacking force for a 2-0 win over Serbia.
When Brazil manager Tite announced he was taking nine forwards to the World Cup, many questioned if that was too many and wondered if he would really dare to abandon his traditionally defensive approach to unleash so much attacking talent.
The answer came in an impressive 2-0 victory over a strong and organised Serbia team who did not make it easy for Brazil and frustrated them in a goalless first half.
Tite’s decision to start Vinicius Jnr alongside Neymar, Richarlison and Raphinha should not have been a surprise since the Brazil coach has been much more inclined recently to unleash his talented young forwards together.
Thinking that he would leave Vinicius on the bench was an assumption of those looking at the 61-year-old manager’s past rather than his present.
Read in Daily Maverick: “Ronaldo relishes ‘beautiful moment’ after breaking World Cup record”
Tite is a bright coach. He was the last South American to lead a Copa Libertadores champion to the Fifa club championship, winning 1-0 with Corinthians against Chelsea in 2012.
But his accomplishments then were achieved with more caution than daring. His 2022 version seems to acknowledge the talent he has at his disposal.
World class
The 22-year-old Vinicius scored Real Madrid’s winner in the Champions League final against Liverpool and finished eighth in the Ballon d’Or ballot last month, elevating him to world-class level in his fifth season with the La Liga side.
Leaving him out of the team would have been madness.
Though Richarlison scored a brace, Vinicius was arguably the best player on the pitch, creating most of Brazil’s chances.
Tite has evolved while his team progressed over the past four years, moulding his squad to find new ways to adapt his system to his players.
But it was the emergence of a new generation of talented youngsters in the last two years that finally made Tite leave his background as a defensive coach behind, embracing their youth and giving them the freedom to flourish together.
The result is a team faithful to Brazil’s traditions in the beautiful game.
Tite does not only want to win. He wants to win playing a style of football that for many years seemed to get ...

Boks to the wall — How Rassie’s ruse could boost and hamper SA at Twickenham

The narrative has been building since the Springboks set foot in Dublin three weeks ago. The rugby world is against the Boks – and by extension, the South African rugby community.
The players and coaches can’t expect a fair shake from biased referees and World Rugby officials. If these Autumn Internationals are rugby’s answer to the Hunger Games, then the Boks are journeying all the way from District 12, and the odds are not in their favour.
Have you been sucked in yet by this story? Are you shaking your head in disgust, or are you nodding furiously in agreement? Then read on.
Polarising a nuanced debate
In this movie, the top European teams are cast as the haves and the Boks as the have-nots. If Siya Kolisi stops in the middle of Saturday’s game to kiss three fingers and raise them to the sky — a la Katniss Everdeen, the reluctant champion of the downtrodden — all the South Africans in the Twickenham crowd, and all the so-called second-class citizens of the rugby world, will raise three fingers in solidarity. Because in the denouement of this fantasy series, the Boks must succeed, and England, World Rugby and the establishment must be defeated.
This narrative has been tailored for social media, where measured and nuanced views are buried under heaps of polarised takes. In this space, there are only ever angels and demons. If you’re not for View A, then you’re a supporter of View B.
Unfortunately, the traditional media has reflected a similar polarisation of views in recent times. Countless column inches have been dedicated to the latest Rassie Erasmus Twitter episode. No one has stopped to consider who benefits from a contrived and — let’s face it — largely unbelievable idea that the Boks are the most disliked and disrespected team on the planet; namely the Boks themselves.
Think about it. Nobody — including former South African coaches and players — gave the Boks a chance of beating the All Blacks in Wellington in 2018. Erasmus’s side went on to score 36 points in a record-breaking win. They were written off ahead of the 2019 World Cup, and by the world’s media ahead of the final against England in Yokohama. They went on to claim a record-breaking 32-12 victory. Despite their status as world champions, they went into the 2021 series against the British & Irish Lions as underdogs — due in part to their ...

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