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Which Tyler

Rugby IV - Striking Hookers Are Back In Fashion

253 posts in this topic

Great to see more hookers getting the hang of how to actually strike for the ball; now, if we can convince the teams to then use it rather than stay put trying to milk a penalty...

 

And in more current news; Francis gets 8 weeks for making contact with the eye area of Cole - I was expecting around 10 (to match Ashton), so 8 weeks is around the right ballpark. It was about as mild as this offence gets; but we really need to stamp it out, and I've no problem whatsoever with low-end bans being measured in months.

Meanwhile, we get to (potentially) have a discussion about racism in rugby - always good for a laugh. Joe Marler was picked up on the ref's mike as calling Samson Lee "Gypsy Boy".

Now, IMO the words themselves aren't trigger words, and damaging ion and of themselves; so it's about context; and Marler's context was definitely to be respectful (see Kiwi.s it's not just the Haka that gets disrespected!). Past that, and Roma gypsies and Irish travellers are both protected ethnic minorities; which does bring this into the realms of racism, and unacceptable.

I can very easily believe that Joe, and many others (including myself) simply consider Irish traveller to be a lifestyle choice; not an ethnicity; but there you have it; under the (UK) Equality Act of 2010, they have that legal standing. Ignorance of this is understandable, but no excuse. He should collect a ban for this (and the forearm smash) if only because it ticks the boxes required, and is a great opportunity to both educate people, and show that such language is not to be tolerated. Had the equivalent words been used to antagonise a coloured or gay player, then there'd be no debate whatsoever about this, and it would be an outright ban; but the fact that there is debate, means we should use this chance to educate.

Edited by Which Tyler

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No ban for Marler for the strike or the Gypsy comment.

Edited by lessthanluke

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I'm not overly surprised he didn't get a ban for forearm on Evans, I suppose it's a penalty if it's picked but things like that happen numerous times a game in the ruck. I am quite surprised he didn't get anything for the Gypsy comment, he's probably pretty lucky that Lee was willing to accept his apology.

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I honestly don't think he should be penalized for calling him Gypsy Boy. That is very light in terms of insults.

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15 hours ago, lessthanluke said:

No ban for Marler for the strike or the Gypsy comment.

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5 minutes ago, Calibandar said:

I honestly don't think he should be penalized for calling him Gypsy Boy. That is very light in terms of insults.

It may be mild as these things go, but it's still racial abuse and illegal in the UK. Imagine he'd said "Oi, black boy!" to Faletau in a derogatory manner with the specific intent of angering them.

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Well I am indicating what I think of it, not so much what the rules say about it.

By my standards it's very light and not worth punishing for, that stuff happens all the time and just isn't that bad.

 

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Fair enough, my initial instinct agreed with you 100%

 

FWIW my personal opinion has changed by 180* over the last couple of days. Initially I felt it was a nothingness; I've said worse and had worse said about me; and certainly felt far worse things about the traveling community.
This event made me stop and think though, so I educated myself a bit more - did a little googling and discovered that they are protected by law; and that yes; there's a lot of... dislike of their community (including by myself)y; and that yes, it makes sense that they be protected.
Whether I consider them a race/ethnicity or just a lifestyle choice (former for Romani, latter for travelers) isn't really relevant, they get the same protection under law. Either way, they do seem to receive a fair bit of abuse, and indeed, discrimination.

Now none of that is going to stop me making judgements on their lifestyle, or being pissed off and extra-cautious when they make camp on the village green & neighbouring fields. It's unlikely to stop me making judgements on individuals based on the group as a whole - but that's on me; I will, however, try to keep such thoughts to myself. Who knows; in 40 years time maybe I'll stand a chance to not be that racist arsehole in the old folks' home, who just can't move with the times and accept that travelers have as much right to be where they want to as anyone else.

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Ok predictions for the last weekend of the Six Nations.

Wales v Italy: Wales haven't been good in attack this Six Nations and they were very poor in all facets for the majority of the England game but Italy were abject in Dublin, and they're missing their best back in Campagnaro. Wales by a lot.

Ireland v Scotland: Ireland played well last week but Italy didn't provide much of a test and Scotland have been playing some good rugby. I was leaning towards going for a Scotland win but I think the loss of Jonny Gray, Scotland's best player for me, is a big blow and while they showed against France they can be effective without Russell it's still a loss to lose him as well. I think this could be the tightest game of the weekend but I'll go for Ireland with home advantage.

France v England: The key game of the weekend. If you'd offered me a Six Nations win without a Grand Slam before the tournament I'd definitely have taken it but if they miss out now it will feel like a bit of a let down. Honestly England should win fairly comfortably, France have looked ok defensively and they looked a bit better in attack with Trinh-Duc at 10 last week but they still haven't been great. Having said that in all the talk of missed England Grand Slam opportunities people have been forgetting that England ultimately missed out on one 2 years ago by losing a match they probably should have one at the death in Paris. So, yeah, overall I'm feeling a bit nervous because England have a tendency to bollocks theses occasions up but logically speaking you have to go for an England win.  

 

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Decent win for Ireland. They had some good continuity in the first half and took their chances well when they were a man up. Having said that Scotland shot themselves in the foot a bit, the yellows didn't help them and they were bizarrely determined to run from their own 22 in the last 20 minutes.

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Hmm, England have got a lead but they really haven't played too well. France, for the first time in a while, actually seem to have a fairly good game plan they're sticking to as well, which is a little worrying.

ETA: Whew, not the best performance but I'll take it. It's pretty good to see England winning a Grand Slam again, I definitely wouldn't have thought it would take this long back in 2003.

Overall not a bad start to the Eddie Jones era.

Edited by ljkeane

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It's been a fantastic six Nations and a great final day. Really loved watching all of these games. What a great sport this is.

As for today, I expected an Ireland win and it happened. There is just something about them that the Scots find hard to deal with even with O Brien, O Mahoney, Henderson, Kearney missing for Ireland. It was a great game of rugby though, ver good.

Wales thrashed Italy as we all expected I guess. some injuries on Italy's side don't matter much, they are nowhere near as good as the Welsh and I woudl ahve been fine with either Wales or England winnint this edition as both teams were about as good. France missed a couple of players as well like Piccamole.

Standout player for England this tournament? Hard to say actually given that a lot of guys did very well even when they were criticized before hand, such as Haskell and Robshaw. Danny Care and Ben Youngs have had good games. Farrell has been good throughout, same for Joseph. Noell and Watson as well, the latter especially. Farrell, Itoje, Kruis and Vunipola were probably the 4 that stood out the most to me.

Other guys that I thought were superb? George North, Dan Biggar, Jamie Roberts, Liam Williams, Stuart Hogg, The Gray brothers had their moments, Nel, Rory Best, Zebo.

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With the Six Nations over it feels like time for another massively premature Lions XV. So here's mine:

1. McGrath

2. Hartley

3. Nel

4. Wyn Jones (I know his surname's actually just Jones but who has double barrelled first name ffs): He probably wouldn't get in based just on his Six Nations performances (he may well have been carrying an injury to be fair) but he's got enough credit in the bank to still be worth his place. He'll have to step it up over the next year or so though given he's in a very competitive position.

5. Kruis: He's had a great Six Nations and his lineout skills in particular give him a real edge for me. Having said that at this point I think Kruis, Itoje, Launchbury, Henderson, Jonny Gray and Charteris could all easily end up starting the first test or not making the squad at all. It's very tight.

6. Faletau: Not a great year for performances from the 6's but I actually think Faletau has all the attributes to be an excellent 6 and playing him there gets both him an Vunipola in the back row.

7. Warburton: Another who doesn't really deserve his place on current form and I think it's a bit of a worry. Hardie's a good player but, let's be honest, if he'd stayed in New Zealand he'd be somewhere between 3rd and 5th choice. O'Brien might be a decent option if fit but at his best warburton is the best option so I think we're just going to have to hope he finds a bit more form.

8. Vunipola

9. Webb: Murray's a good player but I think Webb offers a bit more in attack, which we'll probably need. I wouldn't be too fussed either way.

10. Sexton

11. North

12. Roberts: Another position which is a bit of a concern, I'd really like to see Roberts distributing the ball more. Henshaw isn't too far off and hopefully one of Slade or Tuilagi will cement a place at 12 for England to provide some more competition.

13. Joseph

14. Watson

15. Hogg: Definitely the best attacking fullback but his defensive positioning can be a bit hit or miss which might give Brown or Liam Williams a chance.

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28-6 to the French Marines in the end, poor show Royal Navy.

 

In other news, Hoggy has been voted player of the tournament. He was always going to be in the running and it's not undeserved but I am a tad surprised he got it over North or an English player 

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So we're coming to the end of the domestic/European season in the Northern Hemisphere.

The European Cup final is on Saturday and hopefully Saracens can pull off as it'd be nice to have an English winner for the first time since 2007. Saracens have been the best side in the tournament but Racing have a strong side so it's going to be tight.

In the domestic leagues it's been a pretty good year for the Irish provinces with 3 sides in the play offs for the Pro 12. On the other hand not great for Wales with only one side making the Champions Cup for next year. The Premiership play offs look as strong as they have for a long time, Saracens, Exeter and Wasps are all very good sides, Leicester probably aren't quite on the same level but they're still dangerous. It should be pretty good.

Finally the Under 20 World Cup isn't too far off. It's being held in Manchester so I was thinking about going to some games but England being dire in the Under 20 Six Nations has sapped my enthusiasm somewhat. Hopefully getting rid of Callard as coach, who seems to be pretty useless, and bringing in Haag will have a positive impact. They've announced their squad for the tournament anyway. Including Mallinder, Brophy-Clews and Williams who've been playing a lot of Premiership rugby should improve the backs at least. No Underhill in the pack though, which'd suggest he's likely to end up going on one of the senior tours.   

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So Sarries are European champions. Not the most exciting final but Saracens played excellent wet weather rugby and just squeezed Racing out of the game. Deserved win overall as they have clearly been the best side in Europe this year.

Pretty good year all round for English rugby with England winning their first Grand Slam since 2003 and now an English club winning the European Cup for the first time since 2007.

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Glad I didn't watch the final. Seeing Owen Farrell's face for all those penalties would have been truly horrific.

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Mike Ford has left Bath: http://www.bathrugby.com/news/mike-ford-leaves-bath-rugby/

 

Rumours that the split dressing room we already thought we knew were just the tip of the iceberg. Rumours of an affair between MFord and... a junior member of the backroom staff. Rumours that George is decidedly unhappy about the former, and that Mrs Ford has basically disappeared from view behind the scenes for a good couple of months. Either way; end-of-season review papers were due in on Friday 13th and the coach is fired Monday 16th - that bit of maths is pretty easy to do, even without rumour.

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On 16/05/2016 at 7:55 PM, Which Tyler said:

Not particularly surprising given how insipid their season has been but it sounds like Mike Ford has made very sure nobody's going to miss him.

The talk seems to be Heyneke Meyer as the guy who's going to come in. I'm not entirely convinced he's the best man for the job but at least it'll be fun watching get really, really worked up whenever Bath play shit. If they have another season like this year he'll probably give himself a heart attack.

On 18/05/2016 at 9:18 PM, Slick Mongoose said:

Well, it's that time of year again......:(

 

C'mon Bris.

It'll take a bit of an effort for them to lose from here with the home leg to come. The way they managed to lose last year was fairly spectacular by while Doncaster are a decent side they aren't as good as Worcester were last year. Bristol look a bit more hard nosed this year as well. It's hard to see them not being back in the Premiership next year.

England have announced their squads for the Australia tour and the Saxons tour to South Africa.

I'm a little disappointed Kvesic and Robson haven't made the senior tour. It does look like it's going to be a continuation of the Six Nations tactics, at least in the forwards, possibly with the addition of a bit more bosh in midfield in the form of Te'o or Tuilagi if he's fit. It's not looking for Kvesic's chances of ever making the England side really. Oh well.

On the plus side the Saxons squad looks pretty decent which is a good sign for the depth of English rugby.

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