Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 20 April 2014

Do the 'Ron Ron,' Eddie before Argie crunch clash

Argentina prop Rodrigo Roncero has revealed the secret weapon behind his team's success.

Amid all the doom and despair currently hanging over the Ireland squad, it may be worth a try by Eddie O'Sullivan's squad.

"I respect all my superstitions before I take to the field," said Roncero. "I briefly jump two times, then I grab some grass and throw it into the air and finally I cross myself."

Roncero is careful, though, not to take his superstitions too far. "The problem is that you start to add new superstitions as you go and they could become too much to remember them all."

Meanwhile, no prizes for guessing the birthday wishes of three Georgia players while blowing out their candles during the team's 10-day break between matches.

Grigol Labadze celebrated his 34th birthday on Friday with his family, Rati Urushadze turned 32 on Saturday and centre Malkhaz Urjukashvili is 27 today

The trio are sure to be wishing for Georgia's first world cup victory when they take on Namibia on Wednesday.

"My birthday will be good if we win against Namibia, " Urjukashvili said. "That's the most important present."

Professional rugby players are generally a tough bunch but Portugal prop Rui Cordeiro proves they can show a sensitive side.

A vet by trade, a patriotic Cordeiro is reduced to tears whenever the Portuguese national anthem is played.

Second row Gonçalo Uva said: "Singing our national music represents four years of hard work to reach the World Cup.

"We aren't accustomed to playing in a stadium with 30,000 spectators. We feel like beasts and giants when a lot of people are watching."

Like the rest of their team-mates, England's starting front row finally seemed to find their rhythm in the morale-boosting win over Samoa on Saturday. And well they might.

Loosehead prop Andrew Sheridan plays the guitar and hooker George Chuter the saxophone, while tighthead prop Matt Stevens reached the final of a TV singing contest in 2006.