The Rugby Championship 2014i

The 2014 Rugby Championship, which ran 15 August to 5 October, is an annual competition involving the southern hemisphere’s top four rugby-playing nations – New Zealand, South Africa, Australia and Argentina. It was known as the Tri Nations from 1996 to 2012, before the Pumas were invited to join the party.


Wallaby scrum-half Nick Phipps says the Australia squad are not a bunch of sexists following the fallout caused by Kurtley Beale's offensive text message to a female team official.

The woman at the centre of the Kurtley Beale texting affair said she had been driven near suicide by the scandal, speaking for the first time on Monday as the head of Australian rugby union faced calls to resign over the controversy.


Michael Cheika, who was appointed Australia coach on Wednesday, is a maverick, forceful and sometimes volatile coach who has never shied away from accepting what others might consider a poisoned chalice. The 47-year-old has a fervent belief that there is a right and a wrong way to play rugby and is the only man to have coached teams to both Heineken Cup and Super Rugby titles.

Utility back Kurtley Beale has been fined A$45,000 for sending an offensive text, but escaped a ban after being cleared of sending a second "more offensive" photograph, the Australian Rugby Union said on Friday. However, Beale will miss Australia's spring tour of Europe despite being cleared for selection by a code of conduct tribunal.

No-nonsense coach Michael Cheika took over at the Wallabies on Wednesday, vowing to rally the shell-shocked side after the stunning walkout of previous manager Ewen McKenzie.

Michael Cheika confirmed on Monday he had been offered the chance to succeed Ewen McKenzie as Australia coach, but said there remained some details to be "ironed out" before a deal was struck.

Michael Cheika is firming up as favourite to replace Ewen McKenzie as Australia coach this week but it remains to be seen whether he would want to join an organisation that has shown itself to be so dysfunctional over the past two weeks.

A one-point, stoppage-time loss to New Zealand abruptly ended Ewen McKenzie's short and tumultuous stint as Australia coach on Saturday, leaving the Wallabies rudderless a week ahead of a European tour and only 11 months before the World Cup.

Former Australia coach Robbie Deans once described Adam Ashley-Cooper as the glue that held the Wallabies together and rarely has the versatile back's ability to bring coherence to the side been needed more than in his 100th test.

Off-field distractions are overshadowing the build-up to tomorrow's Bledisloe Cup clash in Brisbane with the Wallabies in a state of chaos and the All Blacks exiling a key playmaker.

New Zealand coach Steve Hansen has omitted fly-half Aaron Cruden from his matchday squad for Saturday’s third Bledisloe Cup test against Australia despite making five changes to the team that lost to South Africa two weeks ago.

Fly-half Quade Cooper was among the reserves named on Tuesday for the embattled Wallabies clash against the All Blacks in this weekend's Bledisloe Cup, with Adam Ashley-Cooper chosen for his 100th test.

Australia rugby boss Bill Pulver on Monday gave his support to besieged Wallabies coach Ewen McKenzie before this weekend's Bledisloe Cup test against the All Blacks.

Australia coach Ewen McKenzie denied having an affair with a staff member as a row over allegedly offensive texts sent by Kurtley Beale took an unexpected twist on Friday.

Troubled Wallabies back Kurtley Beale will miss next week's test against the All Blacks amid fresh allegations over "deeply offensive" text messages dating back to June, the Australian Rugby Union said on Thursday.

New Zealand coach Steve Hansen said that the late penalty awarded to South Africa which cost his team a 22-match unbeaten record was a fair decision.

Argentina dedicated their first Rugby Championship victory to former star Agustin Pichot while Australia fumed over laser-beaming Mendoza spectators.

Argentina defeated Australia 21-17 after trailing by 14 points during the first half to achieve a first Rugby Championship win on Saturday.

Pat Lambie kicked a penalty from his own half with a minute to go to deliver a breathless 27-25 win for South Africa over New Zealand on Saturday, the world champions’ first loss in two years.

Global rugby gladiators South Africa and New Zealand come face to face in Johannesburg Saturday with All Blacks skipper Richie McCaw and Springboks coach Heyneke Meyer craving victory.

Wallaby back Kurtley Beale is under investigation by the Australian Rugby Union over a bust-up with a team official on a flight and has been left out of the team to play Argentina on Saturday.

New Zealand defeated Argentina 34-13 in La Plata on Saturday to clinch a third consecutive Rugby Championship title. Ben Smith, Israel Dagg, Julian Savea and TJ Perenara scored the tries that gave the All Blacks a bonus point and an unassailable six-point advantage over South Africa, who earlier in the day defeated Australia 28-10 in Cape Town.

Second place in the world rankings and probably second place in the Rugby Championship are up for grabs when South Africa host Australia in Cape Town on Saturday.

Skipper Richie McCaw will equal a 43-year-old record on Saturday when New Zealand seek a bonus-point win over Argentina in La Plata to retain the Rugby Championship title.

The emergence of Jan Serfontein in an unfamiliar position has been one of the plus points for South Africa in a Rugby Championship campaign that has otherwise proven disappointing.

If All Blacks fly-half Aaron Cruden had a thumping headache on the morning he missed his flight to Argentina, it might be set for a prolonged return if his rival Beauden Barrett dominates in the final two matches of the Rugby Championship.

Fly-half Aaron Cruden missed the All Blacks’ flight to Argentina on Sunday after a drinking session the night before and will not play in the team’s Rugby Championship tour matches against the Pumas and South Africa.

Adam Ashley-Cooper has recovered from injury and Will Genia and Benn Robinson were recalled on Wednesday to the Wallabies squad for their Rugby Championship tour of South Africa and Argentina.

The Wallabies have lost just one game in 11 tests and are unbeaten at home this season but fans are losing interest and staying away.