December 4 down the years
ELVs head to the Super 14
Referees had a new set of rules to work with during the 2008 Super 14
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SANZAR announced that a number of ELVs would be trialled in the 2008 Super 14 competition. At the request of the International Rugby Board (IRB), SANZAR agreed to adopt the changes in order to simplify the game, keep the ball in play longer and create "a more free-flowing, faster and exciting style of play". Changes included requiring each backline to be five metres from the hindmost foot at the scrum; not allowing a ball that has been passed inside the 22m line to be kicked out on the full; modification of the tackled ball rules and the implementation of free kicks rather than penalties for most non-serious offences. The Super 14 was at the time the highest level of competition to adopt the experimental law variations, developed at Stellenbosch University in South Africa and trialled in several domestic competitions in the previous season.
Tri-Nations champions South Africa completed their season with a win over a depleted Argentina side in Buenos Aires. The South Africans ran out 39-7 winners, with Gaffie du Toit scoring two tries. Marius Joubert, Fourie Du Preez and Jacques Cronjé also scoring while Du Toit converted four and added two penalties. South Africa were never in trouble against the Pumas, leading 36-7 at the break with the home side's only score coming from a try on the stroke of half-time from Pablo Bouza.
Cardiff Arms Park was flooded after the River Taff burst its banks leaving the ground under 20 inches of water. A day earlier the ground had hosted Wales' Test loss to South Africa, which was threatened with abandonment when the quagmire engulfed the pitch markings and made it impossible to discern between the teams.
Recent Welsh captain Brian Price spoke publicly about the rejection of his appeal for reinstatement as an amateur. He was professionalised by the WRU two years earlier for accepting payment for a newspaper article. "I feel bitter," Price said. "If I could have seen into the future I would not have accepted the newspaper offer."
The Second Springboks completed the Irish leg of their tour with a 19-0 victory against Ulster in Belfast. It meant that the tourists had scored a staggering 57 points in Ireland without conceding a score.
St Mary's Hospital, fast becoming one of the best war-time sides in the country, defeated Birmingham University 15-3 at Teddington. The medics' midfield triangle of future England caps Keith Scott, Norman Bennett and "Nim" Hall (who dropped a clever goal) tore the University defence to shreds.
Welsh preparations for the Five Nations were thrown into chaos when the 'Probables' were unexpectedly but comprehensively defeated 19-3 in the second Welsh Trial, at Abertillery.