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Articles by Sandra McDonnell

About Sandra McDonnell

As an Englishwoman married to a Scot, Sandra experiences some tension at home during Six Nations tournaments. Her enthusiasm for rugby was acquired through early visits to Fylde club matches with her father and her proud boast is that she has missed only two England home games at Twickenham since 1995. Sandra has three grown-up children, none of whom follow rugby. More Posts

Time to examine the entrails

Well, the England rugby team plugged a hole and managed to end their five-match losing stretch in a water-logged Newlands stadium in Cape Town yesterday with a necessarily-laboured 25-10 victory over the South Africa despite deservedly losing the series 1-2. This leaves the callow Springboks squad, [...]

June 24, 2018 // 0 Comments

Something’s got to give … or get better

With the rest of the family – settled in for a weekend-fest of the football World Cup only emerging from the drawing-room for meals or comfort breaks – I was able to follow the fortunes of England rugby at my leisure in the study/snug. It may have escaped your notice but the England [...]

June 18, 2018 // 0 Comments

It’s not over yet, but it could be …

First things first – a hearty salute to Scotland, who impressively defeated Canada 48-10 in Edmonton in the wee hours of Sunday morning. Meanwhile the traditional travails of France, England and Ireland upon their annual summer pilgrimages to the Southern Hemisphere continue in what is now [...]

June 12, 2018 // 0 Comments

Be careful what you wish for

I have posted previously upon the parlous state of rugby union’s finances, e.g. the negligible ‘profitability’ of English Premiership clubs and the fact that too little of the RFU’s healthy revenues is shared out to grassroots clubs and far-flung former bastions of the [...]

April 13, 2018 // 0 Comments

Rugby: sports fans and current issues

On Monday this week Harlequins’ director of rugby John Kingston parted company ‘by mutual agreement’ with the club following Quins’ abject performance against London Irish last weekend. See here for the story as covered by Robert Kitson upon the website of – THE GUARDIAN Upon hearing the [...]

April 11, 2018 // 0 Comments

It may get worse before it gets better

Life is tough in England’s rugby Premiership – I call in evidence the fact that, based upon most recently-published results, just one club made a profit – despite some arguing with not a little justification that the major teams not only operate a cartel via the [...]

March 24, 2018 // 0 Comments

Marvin got it so right

[Today I am straying beyond the safe and narrow path of my rugby union remit of the Rust and into unchartered and perhaps random and unconnected waters – and so I begin by begging my readers to bear with me on the journey.] Marvin Gaye, shot dead by his own father on 1st April 1984, the day [...]

March 4, 2018 // 0 Comments

Manchester abuse does not bode well for rugby union

As I type this I am not aware  whether the unsavoury incident in Manchester last Sunday morning, in which England rugby’s head coach Eddie Jones was verbally abused by four men on his way to watch a soccer match at Old Trafford, involved four of my own countrymen, but it does draw attention [...]

March 2, 2018 // 0 Comments

With Braveheart on our lips

Like many Scots, this weekend’s Calcutta Cup clash at Murrayfield against the ‘Auld Enemy’ fills me with a mix of over-excited anticipation and just a dash of dread. The irrelevancies of everyday life seem to have paled into insignificance as those of us old enough to do so recall [...]

February 21, 2018 // 0 Comments

A successful man-management lesson? Possibly …

Yesterday Quins prop Joe Marler was widely quoted in the press talking about how things have been since he re-joined the England training squad towards the end of his six-week ban after being re-carded for ‘clearing out’ TJ Ioane at a ruck with a deliberate shoulder-shot to the head, allegedly [...]

February 16, 2018 // 0 Comments

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