Rugby appears caught in a paradoxical universe of wanting to place paramount importance on player safety - and being seemingly incapable of adopting common sense when ruling on accidental collisions. Everyone involved in the game -- from administrators to players, referees, fans -- recognises the need to protect and police contact with the head.
Caley Jags head coach Billy Dodds had mixed emotions after their Premiership hopes ended at the final stage with a punishing loss at St Johnstone. The Highlanders’ bid to reach the Premiership were finished cruelly by a 4-0 defeat against Saints, who remain in the top-flight. The 6-2 aggregate scoreline was harsh given what ICT put into it after a goalless first half at McDiarmid Park and Inverness boss Dodds was choked with emotion afterwards.
The Blues have wrapped up top seeding and home advantage for the Super Rugby Pacific finals, after their dramatic win in Canberra moved them six points clear at the top of the standings. Elsewhere there were wins for the Crusaders, Reds, Chiefs, Hurricanes and Waratahs, who picked up the upset of the weekend defeating the Highlanders in Dunedin.
PICTURES: Castle visitor experience in Highland capital aims to amaze say designers Mather & Co as initial concept designs revealed
Portraits of Highlanders telling their own stories, glowing standing stones and moments from history are set to be part of the experience at Inverness Castle following its transformation into a world-class visitor attraction for the Highlands. With work now under way on the multi-million pound project, the initial concept designs for the gardens and South Tower have been revealed.
Zimbabwe's Premier Soccer League (PSL) has suspended all matches until further notice following pitch invasions, violence and vandalism at a game between Highlanders and Dynamos on Sunday. The biggest fixture in Zimbabwean football was abandoned as the scenes at Barbourfields Stadium in Bulawayo included a supporter attacking a referee, perimeter fences being pushed over and the net of one of the goals being torn by Dynamos fans, who also vandalised the posts.
There’s been far too much made of the pitch invasion by Dundee United fans at Ross County on Saturday. I really don’t see what the big deal is. As long as nobody is doing anything dangerous, we’re at risk of taking joy out of the game.
THE teams took part in their annual Ice Factor event, which was postponed in December due to Covid restrictions, on May 6. The show was a chance for skaters of all ages to perform and raise money for transport and hotels for their competitions. Four teams – Highland Pups, Aurora, Northern Lights and Highlanders – train weekly at the ice centre to perfect their skills and compete around the UK.
As the Wallabies edge towards their 2022 Test season, captain Michael Hooper says he's been buoyed by Australia's trans-Tasman results during Super Rugby Pacific in recent weeks but also remains grounded ahead of the England series in July. Three weeks into the trans-Tasman portion of Super Rugby Pacific, Australia's cohort has already enjoyed more success against New Zealand teams than it did across 25 games in Super Rugby Trans-Tasman last year.
Red-hot Caley Thistle forward Logan Chalmers has won the Championship player of the month prize for April. The 22-year-old, who is on loan from Premiership side Dundee United until the end of the season, has been a key figure in helping the Highlanders push for promotion. He scored goals against Ayr United, Kilmarnock and Queen of the South last month, which followed a late match-turning double in March to seal a dramatic 3-2 win at Raith Rovers.
Billy Dodds sounds warning after Caley Thistle post ‘great result’ with play-off win at Partick Thistle
Caley Thistle head coach Billy Dodds wants his players to prepare for a determined Partick Thistle to come flying at them on Friday night. After his Highlanders struck back from a goal down to win 2-1 against the Glasgow Jags in the Premiership play-off quarter-final first leg, it boils down to what happens in Friday’s part two.
Scotland's national walking charity is encouraging members of the public to get involved in a month-long campaign to celebrate the country’s love for walking. Launched for National Walking Month, Paths for All is working with seven diverse influencers on a social media campaign in the hope of inspiring everyday walking with members of the public being encouraged to share images and videos of their favourite places to walk.
Highlanders are being given their last opportunity to scale one the region’s most iconic landmarks as part of a charity abseil in aid of The Archie Foundation. The sponsored event, which will take place at the stunning Dunrobin Castle in Golspie on May 7, will see participants descend more than 40 metres from the castle’s highest tower.
Brumbies 28 beat Highlanders 17 to claim first Kiwi scalp of Super Round Waratahs 27 Chiefs 51; Reds 17 Hurricanes 30; Rebels 17 Crusaders 41 The Brumbies restored some pride in Australian rugby by claiming the first Kiwi scalp of Super Round with a hard-fought 28-17 victory over the Highlanders, after NSW and Queensland both fell short in the opening two days of action at AAMI Park.
Dragons announce signing of 'outstanding' New Zealander as Super Rugby star becomes latest new recruit
Three-quarter Sio Tomkinson is coming on board from the Highlanders The Dragons have signed Kiwi Super Rugby star Sio Tomkinson from the Highlanders. The 25-year-old outside centre - who also covers the wing – will come on board ahead of next season. Born in Dunedin, he represented New Zealand at Schools and U20s level, starting his senior career with Otago before progressing to the Highlanders, making his Super Rugby debut in 2017 and going on to make more than 40 appearances in the competition.
All Blacks lock and Crusaders captain Scott Barrett will miss the next month of Super Rugby Pacific, after he was suspended for four weeks on a day when two of his New Zealand colleagues also entered guilty pleas. Hurricanes hooker Asafo Aumua and Highlanders lock Josh Dickson were both suspended for three weeks on Monday night, despite the six-Test rake suffering no on-field sanction during the Hurricanes' 22-21 win over the Highlanders in Dunedin.
Households who don’t fill in the census by May 1 are being warned they may face prosecution, which could lead to a criminal record and a fine of up to £1000. With only weeks left to submit responses, National Records of Scotland Chief Executive Paul Lowe warns that people who have yet to complete theirs may be subject to prosecution.
Extra funding for Spirit of the Highlands and Islands project will help Highlanders share their stories
New funding has been secured for the Spirit of the Highlands and Islands project to create innovative and interactive digital content showcasing people’s stories of the region. The £750,000 grant comes from the Natural and Cultural Heritage Fund (NCHF), led by NatureScot and part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
Former Caley Thistle star Russell Duncan hopes the Inverness side can clinch promotion back to the Premiership – to line up mouthwatering Highland derbies once again. The 41-year-old ex-midfielder was a central figure in more ways than one, helping the Highlanders reach the top table in 2004 and return there in 2010.