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NSW, ACT rivalry flares in Super Rugby

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) A rapidly rising sense of confidence in Australian rugby is likely to be manifested in the Super Rugby semifinal between the New South Wales Waratahs and ACT Brumbies on Saturday. (MORE)

Brumbies unchanged for Super Rugby semi

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) The ACT Brumbies have named the same team that beat the defending champion Chiefs last weekend for Saturday's Super Rugby semifinal against the New South Wales Waratahs. (MORE)

McCaw back after injury for Crusaders

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) All Blacks captain Richie McCaw has been named at blindside flanker in the Crusaders' starting lineup for Saturday's Super Rugby semifinal against the Sharks. (MORE)

Speight named in Wallabies squad

SYDNEY (AP) Fiji-born winger Henry Speight was picked by Australia for the Rugby Championship next month even though he's available for only the last three of their six matches. (MORE)

Folau back for Super Rugby semifinal

SYDNEY (AP) Prolific tryscoring fullback Israel Folau will return to the New South Wales Waratahs' starting lineup for Saturday's Super Rugby semifinal against the ACT Brumbies, bringing the tournament favorites to full strength. (MORE)

Ex-All Blacks prop Skinner dies aged 86

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) Kevin Skinner, a famously rugged All Blacks prop who became part of New Zealand rugby folklore for his role in its first test series win over South Africa, has died. He was 86. (MORE)

Sharks beat Highlanders to reach semis

DURBAN, South Africa (AP) The Sharks dug deep for a 31-27 win over the Highlanders to make the Super Rugby semifinals on Saturday, finally subduing a tenacious New Zealand team which twice came from behind to lead and was ultimately denied in the final minutes. (MORE)

Springbok's Smit out of Autumn series

JOHANNESBURG (AP) Captain John Smit will miss South Africa's end-of-season Grand Slam rugby tour to Britain and Ireland after undergoing a back operation. (MORE)

Elsom confident ahead of Hong Kong test

HONG KONG (AP) Australia may have lost 10 straight matches to New Zealand to break a 63-year record, but captain Rocky Elsom still believes the All Blacks can be beaten in their final Bledisloe Cup game of the season next month. (MORE)

Mai out of Samoa's sevens squad

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) Uale Mai has withdrawn from Samoa's rugby sevens squad for next month's Commonwealth Games in New Delhi to take up a playing contract in Spain. (MORE)

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