One Percenters: Horwill to attend Cambridge University, Johnson-Holmes on the hunt for a schnitty

by Beth Newman, Emma Greenwood and Iain Payten

Former Wallabies captain James Horwill has enrolled at illustrious institution Cambridge University and is set to be part of the annual Varsity match this season.

Horwill retired from professional rugby at the end of the 2019-20 season, after captaining Harlequins in the English Premiership in recent seasons, but he'll be pulling the boots back on very soon.

The 34-year-old is beginning an executive MBA with the famous English university  and is keen to line up against Oxford University in December's annual Varsity match between the two centuries-old rivals.

Horwill will be following in the footsteps of the late Dan Vickerman, one of his former Test teammates, and Wales centre Jamie Roberts in attending Cambridge University.

The former Queensland Reds skipper said Roberts, especially, was a big reason for him taking the plunge to return to study.

"I speak to Jamie quite regularly and he certainly was a big influence in it," he said to the BBC.

"I must admit he probably planted the seed quite early. I'd been up here a couple times with him when he was involved, and been around a couple events up at Cambridge."

Sorovi's on-field family reunion not to be

Brothers Moses Sorovi (Brisbane City) and George Morseu (Canberra Vikings) catch up after the match. Photo: Vikings mediaIt was set to be one of the feelgood stories of the NRC season but Moses Sorovi and George Morseu did not get a chance to re-enact the boyhood battles that were

played out in the tiny community of Yam Island in the Torres Strait when their teams met in Canberra on Saturday.

The siblings were set to do battle for the first time after older brother Morseu was named to come off the bench for the Vikings.

But with the game in the balance until the final stages, the flyer did not make it on to the field to tussle with Sorovi, although his team did end up with bragging rights after a late penalty handed them a one-point win.

Their childhood battles were barefoot touch games on a sun-baked basketball court on Yam Island before Morseu headed to Brisbane to boarding school.

Sorovi followed several years later but his brother remained a guiding force, working as a boarding master at St Peters Lutheran College where Sorovi started his march to the Reds as a member of the 1st XV.

While they avoided an on-field clash, the pair was quick to catch up in Canberra and could meet again in the NRC finals later this season.

Spot McQueen in iconic ad


Listeners of’s new podcast “Keep ‘em Nude” will have heard how Rod Macqueen, the coach of the Wallabies’ 1999 Rugby World Cup winning team, gained a foundation in sport and coaching through surf boat rowing on Sydney’s northern beaches.

Macqueen was a successful rower at Collaroy and he tells the podcast how the wild nature of surf boat rowing, and the often unequal conditions, gave him great lessons in "not making excuses”.

The podcast also reveals that Macqueen, while a young rower for Collaroy, featured in a one of the famous Toohey’s "How Do you Feel?” ads in the 1980s. He is in the race action wearing the famous red cap of Collaroy, and in the staged celebration scenes, too.

Here is the full ad. See if you can pick the young Macqueen.

(And don’t forget to listen to “Keep ‘em Nude” as well).

Vui the latest in trio of Brumbies signings

The Brumbies have been announcing signings thick and fast this week, with NSW prop Shambeckler Vui their latest acquisition.

Vui has spent two seasons with the Waratahs but has failed to cement a regular Super Rugby spot in that time with injuries hindering him.

It's a surprise move for the youngster with the Waratahs losing first-choice tighthead Sekope Kepu to London Irish at the end of the season.

Vui joins Super Rugby journeyman Cadeyrn Neville, Sydney Uni captain Guy Porter and Canberra-born Force prop Harry Lloyd in linking up with the Brumbies for next season.

Neville has had stints at both the Rebels and Reds but has spent the past three seasons playing for Japanese side the Toyota Industries Shuttles.

The Waratahs had their own contract news as well with centre Lalakai Foketi signing on for two more years earlier this week.

White mo Nic or Arthur?

😂Nic White reveals his mo inspo. #RWC2019

A post shared by (@rugbycomau) on

Wallabies halfback Nic White has been in the spotlight this week, with many admirers of his impressive moustache.

White has been sporting the mo for months and when asked on Saturday what is inspiration is, he revealed it has some foundations in English show Peaky Blinders.

"I've had it for a little while now,  don't know really...Peaky blinders is a big TV show in the Uk, just consider myself a bit of an Arthur Shelby."

For those who haven't seen the show, set in the 1920s, Shelby is the ringleader of a group called the Peaky Blinders and member of a fictional British crime family.

Johnson-Holmes on the hunt for a Lord Dudley schnitty

Harry Johnson-Holmes has bolted into the Wallabies team for this weekend. Photo: WalmsleyForget the endless physical training, heat and exhaustion Wallabies players battled during their recent camp in New Caledonia, the worst thing according to prop Harry Johnson-Holmes was the lack of a good schnitty.

While his squadmates headed to Japan to hone their preparations for the World Cup last Monday, it was back to training for Johnson-Holmes, this time with the NSW Country Eagles.

The front-rower showed the benefits of his recent time in camp with an 80-minute performance in the Eagles' last-gasp draw with the Fijian Drua.

But his recent fitness regimen won't keep him away from schnitzel night at the pub.

"I don't know what time we finish training (on a Tuesday) but I imagine there'll be a couple of schnitzels waiting for me at the Lord Dudley, so we'll see how we go," said Johnson-Holmes, who was famously called away from his pub grub to hop a flight to South Africa for his Test debut during the Rugby Championship.

And he has missed his staple meal.

"The weird thing about New Caledonia is they don't have any schnitzels. I couldn't find any to be honest and they're very expensive there - there's a bit of inflation going on there in the economy in Noumea.

"Not happy at all. But I'll be very happy to get back and have my first schnitzel of my return."

Rodda recalls Simmo's great escape

Rob Simmons scored an early intercept try against Argentina in the Wallabies' 2015 Rugby World Cup semi-final. Photo: Getty ImagesWallabies lock Izack Rodda admits he really only remembers watching one Rugby World Cup growing up - the 2015 tournament.

And of all the memories that stick out for the 22-year-old second rower, it is no surprise that a second row score is one of those most close to his heart.

Recalling that tournament, Rodda pulled out Rob Simmons' semi-final intercept try as the highlight he remembers watching from the tournament.

"I watched the last World Cup and the only memory I have is when Simmo got that intercept try which was pretty cool, pretty quick one, so it was pretty good," he said.

Asked if he'd like to add to the second rowers' World Cup reel, Rodda didn't hesitate.

"I'd love to stretch the legs out if I got the opportunity," he said.

England stopped in their tracks

The Wallabies weren't the only World Cup side affected by Typhoon Faxai this week.

Australia had their flight to Tokyo delayed by 16 hours because of the typhoon but eventually got off the ground on Monday afternoon to land in Japan on Monday night.

England weren't quite as lucky - Eddie Jones's men made it to Tokyo but once they were in Narita Airport, that's where they stayed for five hours until they were able to make it into Tokyo.

The damage from the storm left the streets around Narita Airport gridlocked and the team wasn't even able to get on the tarmac to start with due to a shortage of buses.

Eventually, though, they made it out and then to Miyazaki where they have been based ahead of their Sapporo opener against Tonga next Sunday.