Your rugby headlines for Saturday, November 27.

Biggar outshines Sheedy

Dan Biggar got the better of Wales team-mate Callum Sheedy in their head to head battle on Friday night.

Biggar's Northampton beat Bristol 36-20 away from home to pile more misery on Pat Lam's side, who are enduring a poor season.

Biggar was given an 8/10 match rating by the Northampton Chronicle, with the verdict reading: "Aside from a couple of missed kicks from tricky positions and one from hand that put Saints in a bit of trouble, this was another hugely accomplished showing from a crucial cog in the wheel." He scored 16 points in the match from the boot.

Sheedy, meanwhile, was only given 5/10 by BristolLive, who wrote: "Back from a mixed Autumn with Wales, Sheedy finished with 10 points from two conversions and two penalties, finishing with a 100 percent record off the kicking tee.

"In the loose, he moved the ball well and looked to snipe himself on a couple of occasions but just had no platform to work from with the scrum in disarray."

The result means Northampton now occupy a play-off spot in fourth, while Bristol are struggling in 11th, above only Worcester and Bath.

Ospreys coach unhappy

Ospreys coach Toby Booth was bitterly disappointed with his team's performance as they were blown away 46-18 by Connacht in Ireland last night.

You can read the report from the match here.

Booth said: "It's very disappointing, the nature of the performance and the result, which got blown out a bit at the end as we had to chance things in pretty horrific conditions.

"But we lost the game in the first 20 minutes when we lost too many collisions and were too easy to break down.

"All that matters now is Ulster. We just have to dust ourselves down and get back to work."

Scarlets and Cardiff denied by CAA

The Scarlets are waiting on paperwork to allow them to return from South Africa.

The west Wales region and Cardiff are both stuck in South Africa and are expected to be there until at least Sunday, when direct flights from the country to the UK will be sanctioned again.

Passengers entering the UK from South Africa after 4am on Sunday morning will have to go straight into a 10-day hotel quarantine.

The teams had sourced charter flights home from the country on Friday afternoon but were refused clearance by the Civil Aviation Authority as the UK and EU closed their borders to South Africa.

Appearing on S4C, Scarlets chairman Simon Muderack said: "They're still in Durban and we've been working constantly over the past 24 hours to try and figure out a way to get them back.

"We made the decision almost immediately based upon people rather than rugby.

"Clearly, the fixtures have already been postponed but flights out of South Africa have also been cancelled. We're working through options around charter planes.

"We still need some formal paperwork to be in place before we can actually execute on those plans but we're hopeful that over the next day or so, hopefully shorter than that, we can start the process of repatriating the team and the staff.

When asked if players and staff could return home before the Sunday deadline, Muderack said: "I think that's going to be pretty tight.

"Priority number one is to get the process underway and then we'll have to deal with the consequences, or the options, that may exist surrounding that deadline."

Thomas defends artificial surface

Former Wales international and current Worcester Warriors head coach Jonathan Thomas has been defending the club's artificial surface.

The use of fake pitches has been hitting the headlines again this season, with Joe Marler calling for them to be banned and Jack Nowell posting pictures of burns he has suffered.

Worcester's Sixways is one of the stadiums in the Gallagher Premiership that boasts a 3G pitch.

Thomas understands the concerns but also reminded that games have been reduced to 'mud fests' in the past.

“It’s like anything in life, it’s whatever you get used to and if you were to ask our younger players who have not known any different, our 18-to-23-year-olds have never trained on anything other than the 3G pitch," he is quoted as saying on RugbyPass.

"Conversely the ones who usually have a little whinge about it are the senior players who have been used to training on grass and softer pitches their whole lives. The biggest thing we have been told is there is no right or wrong. The biggest thing is consistency and where you get potential injuries is the inconsistency (in the use) of the surfaces, not the surface itself.

“We train full-time on our 3G pitch, which gives us consistency and allows the players’ bodies to adapt to that surface. Our particular surface is coconut so it means we water it and the players don’t perhaps experience the same burns as maybe other pitches, but it is what it is.

“When perhaps 20 years ago you were watching mud fests, the positive of 3G pitches in a sport which is about entertainment, in the middle of winter it is giving a better entertaining game because of the consistency of the pitches. But I do also appreciate that for players and teams that don’t play on them every week it is a challenge when they play on an artificial surface because they are not used to it.”