Rugby News looks back on some of the stories which made headlines during the week that was March 12-18.
HOBBS LAID TO REST
The funeral for former All Blacks captain and New Zealand Rugby Union chairman Jock Hobbs takes place in Wellington.
Hobbs passed away last Tuesday in Wellington Hospital after a long battle with leukaemia.
The debt-riddled Otago Rugby Union is saved after the Dunedin City Council wipes its debt of $400,000 and the New Zealand Rugby Union agrees to lend it $500,000.
The ORU last month revealed that it had 180 creditors and was unable to service debt of $2.35 million.
CRUDEN AND JANE RE-SIGN
Rugby World Cup-winning All Blacks Cory Jane and Aaron Cruden re-sign with the New Zealand Rugby Union for a further two years.
Their new deals will see them remain contracted to the Hurricanes and Chiefs respectively until the end of 2014.
WALES CLINCH GRAND SLAM
Wales beats France 16-9 at Cardiff’s Millennium Stadium to secure a Six Nations Grand Slam.
Wing Alex Cuthbert scores the only try of an enthralling battle to help the home side to their third Slam in eight years.
All Blacks prop Tony Woodcock plays his first game of 2012.
The bookend, who was allowed to sit out the first four weeks of Super Rugby, gets through 80 minutes for the Blues development XV during its Pacific Rugby Cup clash against the Fiji Warriors.
ONE NEW CAP
New Zealand Sevens coach Gordon Tietjens names one new cap, Aucklander Lolagi Visinia, in his squad for the Hong Kong and Japan legs of the IRB Sevens World Series circuit.
Waikato’s Joe Webber is also called into the side as injury cover for Toby Arnold.
BULLS FAN APOLOGISES
The Bulls fan who allegedly hit Keven Mealamu with a water bottle apologises for his actions, but says he did not do so on purpose.
Johannes Nel, a 54-year-old boilermaker, claims he was trying to throw a water bottle to wing Bjorn Basson, but accidently hit Mealamu instead.« Back to Articles
With the series level, expect both teams to put it all on the line as they seek to win the deciding test in Sydney on Saturday night.