World Cup - Team Guide: Romania

Thu, 08 Sep 17:10:00 2011

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Romania's Ovidiu Tonita pours water on himself during group C Rugby World Cup match against Italy in Marseille - 0

ROMANIA

Colours: Yellow shirt, blue shorts.

Nickname: Oaks.

World ranking: 17.

Coach: Romeo Gontineac.

The former Romania centre became the Oaks’ head coach last year after a distinguished playing career which included stints in South Africa and France, as well as his home country. Played in four World Cups and holds Romania’s appearance record for the competition.

Squad:

BACKS Born Caps Tries Cons Pens DGs Pts

Vali Calafeteanu 25/1/85 35 7 14 13 1 105

Ionel Cazan 25/11/88 6 1 0 0 0 5

Stefan Ciuntu 10/4/86 24 10 0 0 0 50

Ionut Dimofte 30/9/84 52 12 1 3 0 71

Dan Dumbrava 6/8/81 55 3 68 57 1 325

Iulian Dumitras 22/6/82 30 10 4 1 0 61

Adrian Apostol   11/3/90 1 0 0 0 0 0

Csaba Gal 7/3/85 34 2 1 0 0 12

Constantin Gheara 2/9/81 6 1 0 0 0 5

Madalin Lemnaru 26/3/89 7 3 0 0 0 15

Catalin Nicolae 22/7/80 17 2 0 0 0 10

Lucian Sirbu 16/10/76 67 9 0 0 0 45

Florin Surugiu 10/12/84 9 2 0 0 0 10

Florin Vlaicu 26/7/86 40 4 51 31 2 221

FORWARDS

Stelian Burcea 7/10/83 27 2 0 0 0 10

Daniel Carpo 26/11/84 27 5 0 0 0 25

Nicolae Dragos Dima 30/7/79 35 2 0 0 0 10

Silviu Florea 19/4/77 25 0 0 0 0 0

Daniel Ianus 11/4/87 8 3 0 0 0 15

Paulica Ion 10/1/83 40 1 0 0 0 5

Mihai Lazar 3/11/86 12 0 0 0 0 0

Mihai Macovei 29/10/86 20 1 0 0 0 5

Nicolae Nere 12/6/81 17 1 0 0 0 5

Cristian Petre 22/3/79 77 5 0 0 0 25

Valentin Popirlan 6/4/87 4 1 0 0 0 5

Cosmin Ratiu 18/7/79 28 2 0 0 0 10

Marius Tincu 7/4/78 42 14 0 0 0 70

Ovidiu Tonita 6/8/80 55 11 0 0 0 55

Valentin Ursache 12/8/85 33 3 0 0 0 15

Bogdan Zebega 21/2/84 30 3 0 0 0 15

Key player: Ovidiu Tonita.

Has long been regarded as Romania’s only true world-class player and it’s easy to see why, as the giant flanker has served Biarritz and Perpignan with distinction in France’s Top 14 competition for nearly a decade.

2010-11 form:

13/11/10 v Uruguay (Montevideo) D 21-21

27/11/10 v Uruguay (Bucharest) W 39-12

5/2/11 v Portugal (Lisbon) L 17-24

26/2/11 v Russia (Bucharest) W 33-3

12/3/11 v Georgia (Tbilisi) L 11-18

19/3/11 v Spain (Bucharest) W 64-8

10/6/11 v Namibia (Bucharest) W 13-11

20/8/11 v Ukraine (Kiev) W 41-16

World Cup pedigree:

Group stage: 1987, 1991, 1995, 1999, 2003, 2007.

Record: P20, W5, D0, L15.

Most appearances: Romeo Gontineac 14.

Most points: Petre Mitu 25.

Most tries: Marius Tincu 3.

High:

The thrilling 17-15 win over Fiji at Brive – achieved via three tries to none – in the 1991 tournament, when they came the closest to qualifying for the quarter-finals. A 19-11 loss to Canada proved their undoing.

Low:

The 34-3 humbling by fellow minnows Canada in their 1995 opener at Port Elizabeth. It heralded Romania’s worst World Cup with last place in their pool following three defeats from three games, in which they leaked 97 points. South Africa (21-8) and Australia (42-3) were the other beneficiaries.

Hero: Marius Tincu.

Scored three tries in four games at the 2007 finals – against Italy, Portugal and New Zealand – not a bad tally for a hooker. It also made him the Oaks’ record World Cup tryscorer.

Villain: Alexandru Manta.

His 52nd minute sin-binning in the 2007 pool match against Italy in Marseille was vital, as the Azzurri scored 10 points in his absence to run out 24-18 winners.

2011 prospects:

Not the power they used to be in the days of Communism and could well finish last in their group for only the second time, with Georgia now ranked higher and Oaks skipper Sorin Socol at odds with coach Romeo Gontineac.

Group matches:

10/9/11 v Scotland (Invercargill)

17/9/11 v Argentina (Invercargill)

24/9/11 v England (Dunedin)

28/9/11 v Georgia (Palmerston North)

Eurosport

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