England's beach blat
The Tindall Stag-Do is over, but the mess is still being cleaned up.
Land Rover, supporters of both England rugby and the Rugby World Cup, hosted a day with the England side at Muriwai beach, blatting around on the sand filming the players in the sponsor's product for use in advertising. Eleven players hooned about in high-performance Rovers, a few days before facing Scotland.
Now the Daily Mail reports that the sponsors were annoyed by England players being "arrogant and rude" to Land Rover personnel, "treating their vehicles with no care and breaking the speed limit on the beach".
"Part of the footage is said to be unusable because of the England team's couldn't-care-less attitude," says the Mail.
Land Rover has had a grizzle to the IRB and the RFU is expecting an official letter of complaint.
Shand on a mission
Sighted: All Black manager Darren Shand in the wrong hotel.
As the media assembled to hear Robbie Deans speak in the foyer of the Spencer on Byron, where the Wallabies are staying in Takapuna, the All Black manager dashed in and picked up a mysterious parcel from reception. When he realised the assembled hacks had spotted him, Shand suddenly wore a "whoops" expression.
What could have been in the parcel? Did Cory Jane's other Jandal finally get handed in? Was it an envelope full of unmarked Aussie dollars?
Chin up, Kenny
Sighted: We reported earlier in the week that Welsh frontrower Ken Owens was not too flash at chin-ups when spotted at Les Mills - the big Red Dragon was seen huffing his way through two of them.
One of CupShorts' buff gym-bunny contributors shares reassuring news about the chin-up-ability of the Men in Black. "Mate, Tony Woodcock and Brad Thorn did a dozen each," says our man. "With barely any sweat."
The world record: South Korea's Lee Chin-Yong hit 612 chin-ups in 1994. He was 70. That's even older than Thorn.
Diet secrets revealed
Another pie-loving prop in Welsh colours, Adam Jones, tells the Daily Mail about the secret diet that took him from 127kg to a svelte 120.5kg. The secret: "reducing his huge intake of chips, chocolates and beer".
"None of the younger ones drink, which is a big thing," Jones says. "So the rest of us think, 'We'd better not drink either."'
War and peace
A French journo was overheard at Les Bleus' press call explaining why his countrymen hit the high notes against England after weeks of internal strife: "They are only at peace if they are at war."
About those legions
CupShorts' ancient history correspondent corrects us on the subject of centurions. "In the Roman legions [a centurion] was, in fact, in charge of only 80 men, sometimes two or three more."
Cheers for that.
SBW gets the needle
Our convict-descended friends have taken this whole transtasman rivalry thing too far. Not content with stealing Phar Lap, bowling underarm and pilfering pavlova, Sydney's Daily Telegraph has printed a cutout-and-keep Sonny Bill Williams voodoo doll.
When given a little free time, the All Blacks are becoming adept at exiting the team hotel without having to go into the lobby.
The eagerness of fans to catch a glimpse of their heroes is occasionally becoming difficult to handle, with one player saying up to 150 supporters were waiting in the team's hotel lobby in Wellington in the last two days before the Canada pool game.
More anagram fun:
Piri Weepu: I rip ewe up
Stephen Donald: She old pedant
Aaron Cruden: Nor a Dan cure