This column has started its first cycle of claim, counter-claim and bitter recrimination.

Piqued by Matt Powell’s jibes about the loss of his boyish good looks, Scotland centre Alex Grove has promised to use this column to hit back at the Sixways coach known as The Chin.

Powell upset the Worcester midfielder by mocking the fact he had lost a tooth in the Amlin Challenge Cup match with Madrid. As soon as he finds his dentures Grove has vowed a ‘stinging riposte’.


I’d like to end the rumour that I have signed for Birmingham & Solihull.

Backs coach Eugene Martin, clearly a good judge of second rows, used last week’s fans’ forum to try to cajole me into accepting an offer of 500 Rupees per match.

According to the current exchange rate, that’d be worth around £6.67. It’s clear Bees are still willing to pay players more than they are worth.


For all their financial constraints, however, Bees should console themselves with the fact that unlike De Montfort University’s rugby club they don’t have to worry themselves with any charitable fund-raising.

The students have been told they must raise £2,500 after the RFU found their initiation ceremonies prejudicial to the interests of the game. Apparently stripping, ‘dirty pints’ and being pelted with eggs and flour have no place in rugby.