Sunday, September 8, 2013

Pro 12 Americas Exports - Round One Wrap

USA born Tommy Seymour scored to give Glasgow a home win on Friday

The first round of the Celtic-Italian league, or the RaboDirect Pro 12 was played on Friday and Saturday  with six matches played. There were players in action from the Americas representing teams from either Italy or the Celtic Nations. The 2013-2014 season will be an important one for a number of players who are in consideration for places in the Argentine, Canadian or US squad for Rugby World Cup 2015. 

Dragons 15-8 Ulster
A shock first round win for the Newport-Gwent Dragons will keep the region very happy. Should the WRU go ahead with the threat of downsizing then the Dragons would all but certainly be the team to be cut. Both sides had a prop from the Americas with Francisco Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro playing his first match in the Pro 12 after having moved from Stade Français. The USA´s Callum Black started for Ulster. Black remains a very real chance of playing for the USA at Rugby World Cup 2015 as deaspite Ireland wanting him as a back-up option he is still uncapped. 

Scarlets 19-42 Leinster
Leinster showed that it is again likely to be a title contender as the Irish province was far too strong for the Scarlets in Llanelli on Friday. Neither side has players from the Americas this season. 

Glasgow 22-15 Cardiff
Scottish side the Glasgow Warriors started well with a home victory over the Cardiff Blues. On the bench for the Warriors was USA born Tommy Seymour. The Scottish international scored the game´s only try. Pumas centre Gabriel Ascarate did not feature nor did Canada´s DTH van der Merwe. 

Connacht 25-16 Zebre
Connacht has made it known that it wishes to perform at a higher level than that of the past. It continues to, nonetheless, act as a feeder team to Ireland´s three other provinces. Italian side Zebre is into its second season and still yet to win a match. A number of Argentine players took the field for Zebre in this weekends match. An Argentine 10-12 combination of Luciano Orquera and Gonzalo Garcia was joined by another Italian international from as Matias Aguero started at loosehead prop.

Treviso 19-24 Ospreys
Benetton Treviso has been a steady performer in the RaboDirect Pro 12 but remains a mid-lower table performer. The Italian side fielded a strong lineup against arguably the strongest Welsh region, the Ospreys, but was not able to win on Saturday. Both sides had players from the Americas. Starting for Treviso in the back-row was Robert Barbieri from Toronto. Argentina´s Alberto di Bernardo played fly half while Ignazcio Fernández Rouyet was a replacement. All three are capped by Italy. Meanwhile Canadian winger Jeff Hassler was on the Ospreys´ bench.

Munster 34-23 Edinburgh
Munster is looking to return to its status as one of the leading Celtic sides while Edinburgh is interested in performing closer to the level of the Glasgow Warriors in recent seasons. The round one match indicated that Munster is likely to do well unlike Edinburgh. Neither side has players from the Americas this season.

Pro 12 Standings
1 Leinster 5
2 Munster 5
3 Connacht 4
4 Glasgow 4
5 Dragons 4
6 Ospreys 4
7 Treviso 1
8 Ulster 1
9 Cardiff 1
10 Zebre 0
11 Edinburgh 0
12 Scarlets 0

Dragons v Ulster

Scarlets v Leinster

Glasgow v Cardiff

Treviso v Ospreys

Munster v Edinburgh

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