Holding no punches
December 24, 2012
It's that time of year again and in what is now surely a tradition to rival the turkey, the tree and all the trimmings, we're delighted to herald the return the ESPNscrum Festive Countdown for your amusement.
Once again, we'll be counting down the days until the big one with an assortment of trivia and novelties to brighten your day - sadly, chocolate not included. Check out our latest offering below and be sure to check back tomorrow for your latest dose of festive fun!
Seeing Red ...
Gloucester lock Jim Hamilton recently announced that he will be leaving the Aviva Premiership and there will be a few opponents breathing a little easier. Here the giant Scot comes to blows with London Irish's David Paice during the Exiles' crushing 52-18 victory at the Madejski Stadium last May. The pair are sinbinned by referee Dave Pearson for exchanging punches before they traded blows again on the way to the touchline, sparking a mass confrontation. The pair were both banned for seven weeks for the incident.
"French rugby is racist. It reflects a France which is very inward-looking and conservative."
Who was the top try scorer in international rugby this year? Find out here
And something you may have missed...
ESPNscrum endeavours to bring you an intoxicating mix of news, views and analysis and one or two of these gems may have passed you by over the last 12 months - but don't worry, we've dusted them off for your pleasure.
Leading the Lions
We've also trawled the archives for some of the best shots of year for your visual pleasure. Here New Zealand's Mark Jackman scores a try and takes out a camerman at the London Sevens.
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"If I miss the first kick of the match, it shouldn't have any impact on the second. They are different entities." Tom Hamilton talks to Northampton Saints' Stephen Myler
It's time for those running Welsh rugby to stop trying to prevent its players heading to France and to start planning a future without them, writes Martin Williamson
Paul Eddison explains how the French sold English clubs down the river and why their domestic game will go from strength to strength
'Nothing can prepare you for the noise of the Millennium Stadium though, you just can't hear anything." Tom Hamilton talks to Cory Allen