The top 12 stories on Rugby.com.au: 6-1 | Latest Rugby News

2022 has thrown up plenty of storylines in the world of Rugby.

From last-minute finishes, controversy and world-class action, the past 12 months have thrown up plenty of exciting stories across the Rugby landscape.

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With this in mind, rugby.com.au breaks down the best stories from 2022, looking at the top six stories in 2022

PART ONE 12-7: Super W, Wallaroos return and the Wales miracle

6. Chaotic start

The first Test set the scene for a dramatic 2022 Test campaign as the Wallabies welcomed England to Perth.

Even before the kick-off, Dave Rennie’s men lost Quade Cooper in the warm-ups, thrusting Noah Lolesio into the starting line-up.

Tom Banks broke his arm, Darcy Swain was red carded, Allan Alaalatoa was concussed – and that was all before the referee called time on the first half.

In true Wallaby fashion, this only spurred them on as a second-half surge powered them over the line.

The injuries and inconstancies would catch up to them as England and Eddie Jones claimed the 2-1 series win

5. Amazing Aotearoa

Rugby World Cup 2021 has kick-driven Women’s International Rugby into another gear as the hallmark event was hosted in the Southern Hemisphere for the first time.

From Fijiana shining in their first appearance to multiple attendance records being set, the event set the benchmark heading forward and will hopefully see further nations adopt a professional model.

The benefits of this were seen in the final, one of the best regardless of gender, with the Black Ferns ending the 30-game winning streak of England in the final minutes.

It was the perfect display of Rugby and the perfect way to end a tournament embraced by the New Zealand public.

4. Bledisloe battle

Arguably the most dramatic Bledisloe clash in recent history.

The Wallabies looked to have pulled off an epic comeback when Nic White kicked a 77th-minute penalty to put them in front, recovering from an 18-point deficit to hit the front.

Lalakai Foketi’s turnover in the final minute appeared to have closed it out. But that’s where the drama starts.

Preparing to kick for touch, Bernard Foley was pinged for wasting time with a minute to go, giving the visitors one last chance as Jordie Barrett dived over in the corner.

For Wallabies fans that had gone through plenty of heartbreak in the two decades since their last Bledisloe victory, the series of events were gut-wrenching, dominating discussions to this day about whether Mathieu Raynal had made the right call.

3. Hooper steps away

Maybe the most important moment for the Wallabies happened off the field as Michael Hooper announced he was stepping away from the game for personal reasons.

The decision rocked Australian Rugby, coming out of nowhere before the first Test against Argentina.

Hooper’s vulnerability and openness when speaking about his issues could almost unimaginably have a longer-lasting effect on the wider sporting community than his Herculean efforts on the field, opening the dialogue for people to open up.

His absence also saw a number of stars step up and take center stage before he eventually returned for the Spring Tour

Fraser McReight showed why he is considered next in line whilst Pete Samu broke free of the ‘super sub’ tag and has emerged as a genuine star in that forward pack.

Along with this, James Slipper and Allan Alaalatoa stepped up as leaders, captaining the Wallabies in his absence.

2. Misfits deliver magic

The Men’s Sevens squad pulled off a historic feat when they claimed their first HSBC World Series title in 2022.

After coaching swaps and a reduction of full-time members to just six, the decks were certainly stacked against them heading into the Series.

However, John Manenti was able to galvanize the group of self-titled ‘Misfits’, remaining in the hunt thanks to consistent podium finishes.

They made their charge in London, claiming the title before a third-place finish in LA helped seal the deal.

This is followed by a breakthrough Hong Kong title, their first at the venue in almost 40 years, silencing any talks they had faced a ‘weakened’ competition with NZ and Fiji missing several events.

1.Triple Crown

The Women’s Sevens team cemented their status as one of the best sides in World Rugby as they swept the titles in 2021-22.

It started with the HSBC World Series, winning four of six events in dominant fashion.

This was backed up by a breakthrough Commonwealth Games gold, eliminating New Zealand in the Final before getting a measure of revenge against Fiji in the final, the team that ended their Olympic dreams almost 12 months earlier.

Completing the ‘Triple Crown’ was Rugby Sevens World Cup success, capping off a remarkable comeback for a program that struggled under the weight of backing up their Olympic title last year.

Charlotte Caslick further her claims towards the title of ‘greatest Sevens player ever ‘whilst the likes of Maddison Levi, Faith Nathan and Madison Ashby proved the future is bright for the program.

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