One Percenters: Wallabies take pre-World Cup camp offshore

by Beth Newman and Emma Greenwood

The Wallabies are set to head to Noumea ahead of the Rugby World Cup but their trip to the popular holiday destination will be anything but R&R.

Australia will spend 10 days in New Caledonia between the second Bledisloe Test and their final pre-World Cup match against Samoa on September 7.

While Noumea is a popular holiday destination, it will be anything but relaxing for the Wallabies, who will be undergoing some Survivor-like physical challenges in their time offshore.

They won’t be training in the lap of luxury either, using no-frills local training ground, gym and pool.

The Aussies were looking for a tropical climate to train in ahead of the World Cup and opted for the former French colony as a more cost effective option than some destinations considered in Australia, including Darwin and North Queensland.

The idea of the camp will be similar to that of their 2015 trip to the USA, with players expected to be physically tested, but it’s a far cry from the setup at Notre Dame where they were based then.

The Wallabies are one of a number of teams looking for international destinations to prepare for the tournament with pool opponents Wales heading to Switzerland to train and Argentina stopping in Sydney.

All Blacks given special welcome in WA

Bledisloe week is officially underway with both the Wallabies and All Blacks landing in Perth on Sunday.

New Zealand arrived in WA on Sunday to a special Indigenous welcome, marking the beginning of a big lead-in.

The Wallabies were straight into the Perth community as well, heading to a fan day at McGillivray Oval on Sunday afternoon.

QRU hit by hackers on finals day

The Queensland Rugby Union does a fine job keeping people in touch with grassroots competition by live streaming Premier Rugby matches on its website and Facebook page.

But it had an issue yesterday when its site was hacked by a group calling itself VandaTheGod.

Reds IT officials were called in on Sunday to attempt to unlock the site hijacked by the anti-government group which posted a picture of a masked person holding a sign urging people to "join the revolution”.

With the website still down late on Sunday, fans were unable to watch the Premier Rugby stream through the site but were still able to access the first week of finals on Facebook. 

McCaffrey giving back in Tonga

Brumbies no. 8 Locky McCaffrey is already a fan favourite for his on-field exploits but his off-field efforts might win him a few more.

McCaffrey is currently in Tonga visiting communities as part of his charity "Youth in Union", a program that donates kit to kids in the Pacific Islands.

The 29-year-old has been running coaching clinics and visits as part of the trip, journeys that McCaffrey makes an annual habit of.

Leckie calls time on reffing career

NSW referee James Leckie has retired after a long tenure officiating top level rugby.

Leckie refereed over 130 Shute Shield matches and is a regular in the TMO box in Super Rugby.

The whistle blower will continue to work as a TMO but he will be missed around Sydney's club grounds.

Gold Blooded tour on home stretch

The Gold Blooded Tour is into its final week, the end of 61 days of travelling around this country. 

The tour spent the lat week in Sydney, with the group visiting clubs in the wider city area.

Wally also had some time to spend with some of his wallaby mates at Taronga Zoo, before taking off for the west coast.

Aside from Perth, the tour will head to Bunbury and other major centres before concluding in the WA capital.