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ljkeane

Rugby: Building up to Japan

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3 hours ago, The Marquis de Leech said:

Really, the problem isn't relegation. It's really whether Italy should have been invited in in the first place.

In fairness I think the issue is trying to give non tier 1 sides a chance to really develop. Georgia do deserve a chance to play better competition more often. Having said that, yeah, I can't see the old five nations unions risking one of them dropping out and losing those traditional fixtures so doubt it'll happen.

Anyway, no real change to the state of play on this weekend's fixtures so it'll all come down to the game in Cardiff next week.

Wales, other than about 30 minutes of the game against England, haven't really looked that great this year. They don't give away soft points though and seem to mostly take their chances and they keep winning. Ireland haven't been at their best either, they still weren't as clinical as they'd like either today, but they started to look a bit better with the territorial domination they had. I think it's going to be a pretty tight game.

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13 minutes ago, ljkeane said:

In fairness I think the issue is trying to give non tier 1 sides a chance to really develop. Georgia do deserve a chance to play better competition more often. Having said that, yeah, I can't see the old five nations unions risking one of them dropping out and losing those traditional fixtures so doubt it'll happen.

Anyway, no real change to the state of play on this weekend's fixtures so it'll all come down to the game in Cardiff next week.

Wales, other than about 30 minutes of the game against England, haven't really looked that great this year. They don't give away soft points though and seem to mostly take their chances and they keep winning. Ireland haven't been at their best either, they still weren't as clinical as they'd like either today, but they started to look a bit better with the territorial domination they had. I think it's going to be a pretty tight game.

Yeah despite our current winning streak we haven't really played much great rugby over the past year. But we keep winning so I'll take it. 

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Ireland were a bit better today.  They should have scored more while they were so dominant, although both Ringrose and Healy had tries chalked off for the slightest of knock-ons as they grounded, but overall their handling in close quarters on a wet day let them down several times even if they did score two nice tries from a wrap-around (Sexton and Ringrose) and later a disguised inside pass (Stander to Earls).  

I’m looking forward to Wales vs Ireland next week.  It’s a short week before the next match, but the scoreline did allow Ireland to rest some players for the last 20 minutes today.  And hopefully Kearney will be back next week.

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7 hours ago, lessthanluke said:

Yeah despite our current winning streak we haven't really played much great rugby over the past year. But we keep winning so I'll take it. 

It's also the mark of a good side that you can play less-than-stellar rugby and still win. Hell, New Zealand's done it often enough.

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Well, an emphatic victory for Walesnin the end.

An absolutely deserved grand slam.

Ireland rather sub-par this season, got to wonder if they're sandbagging a little aheadnof the RWC. Would be good to go to Japan with 3 genuine contenders from the NH

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Very well played by Wales today and a well-deserved grand slam. 

Very poor by Ireland though.  They only played well in a single match (vs France) in the entire tournament and they now look out of any contention for the WC.   They need to take a serious look at why their form dropped so much from a year ago.  I hope they can turn it around.

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Yeah, well played Wales. Having been slightly critical of their overall performance last time I posted you have to say when they’ve needed to they’ve absolutely picked it up a level.

Disappointing from Ireland though, I expected it to be a lot closer. This really isn’t the performance they wanted from this Six Nations on the back of a really good 2018.

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On the plus side for Ireland it wasn’t anywhere near as bad as this collapse has been for England. Jesus Christ.

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Congrats to Wales. :cheers: Gatland's claim that they'd win the Grand Slam if they could beat France in Paris turned out correct.

A shame that Scotland couldn't quite pull off the win, but honestly, they'll take it. Best result for them at Twickenham in thirty years, and only the sixth time since the Second World War that Scotland has retained the Calcutta Cup (after 1965, 1966, 1971, 1972, and 1984).

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11 hours ago, The Marquis de Leech said:

Congrats to Wales. :cheers: Gatland's claim that they'd win the Grand Slam if they could beat France in Paris turned out correct.

I don't think it's been the highest quality tournament overall (although it has been entertaining), but Wales have been the most consistent (after the first half in Paris) so they are deserving winners.

11 hours ago, The Marquis de Leech said:

A shame that Scotland couldn't quite pull off the win, but honestly, they'll take it. Best result for them at Twickenham in thirty years, and only the sixth time since the Second World War that Scotland has retained the Calcutta Cup (after 1965, 1966, 1971, 1972, and 1984). 

I think if you'd offered anyone Scottish a tie at half-time they would have taken it. It's a pity they didn't manage the game a bit better in the last couple of minutes and gave England an opportunity to come back, but overall it was still a great second-half performance. Everything Finn Russell did in that half seemed to turn out perfectly. Scotland don't have the consistency to win the World Cup, but any other team will likely be nervous at playing them in the tournament just in case they manage to put in a similar performance.

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It looks like the ARU are going to sack Israel Folau after he posted his homophobic views online again. It's a shame for Australia as he's probably their best player but credit to them if they do take a stand.

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Peter Fitzsimmons has this theory that Folau did it because he wanted his ARU contract to be terminated so he could get a lucrative French or Japanese contract. Maybe Folau was stupid enough to think he could land on his feet after such an outrageous statement. While most of the world doesn't give a crap about anything an Australian rugby player might say about heaven and hell, I think most of the rugby world caught wind of it and I don't think any club is going to want to sign him up any time soon. Maybe in a year or so?

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Isn't he pretty deep in the Destiny Church/Cult? You'll know better than I, but I get the impression it's a cross between the Westboro Baptists, and Scientologists.

 

As for a lucrative contract in France, even Boudjellal has called him an unemployable moron.

Edited by Which Tyler

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Billy Vunipola defends him, what a bell end.  Apparently we should live our lives as god intended.  Hope he gets the sack as well.

 

 

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4 hours ago, BigFatCoward said:

Billy Vunipola defends him, what a bell end.  Apparently we should live our lives as god intended.  Hope he gets the sack as well.

 

 

Yeah, it's not great. The RFU and Saracens have distanced themselves from it but Vunipola didn't come out and explicitly say gay people are going to hell so I think he'll probably get away with some sort of punishment short of getting the sack.

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6 hours ago, ljkeane said:

Yeah, it's not great. The RFU and Saracens have distanced themselves from it but Vunipola didn't come out and explicitly say gay people are going to hell so I think he'll probably get away with some sort of punishment short of getting the sack.

He's been dropped by channel 4, but RFU and Sarries will just want him to shut up

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On 4/12/2019 at 1:45 PM, BigFatCoward said:

Billy Vunipola defends him, what a bell end.  Apparently we should live our lives as god intended.  Hope he gets the sack as well.

 

 

Was apparently booed onto the pitch against Bristol today, who (apparently) played "it's raining men" as the players left the pitch

Edited by Which Tyler

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Brutally physical performance from Saracens to win the Champions Cup final today. I did think going into the game Leinster were going to be able to match them, and they did for a while, but you could see them getting ground down as the game went on. Leinster did shoot themselves in the foot a bit by giving Sarries the chance to level it up before half time rather than just kicking it out but ultimately Saracens were just the better side.

 

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With the Rugby Championship functioning as the warm up games for the sides involved the run in to the World Cup has started.

Australia are having to do some late rejigging of their side after all the Folau fall out and for some other reasons. On the plus side I do like the balance of the team they went with, the back row looks better with Nasirani at 8 and picking more ball carriers in midfield is probably the right call. They also created enough try scoring opportunities that they probably should have won the game. On the downside they didn't take those chances which, combined with Tupou getting himself binned, cost them the game against a fairly heavily rotated Springbok side.

How good or not Argentina are going to be after the Jaguares made it to the Super Rugby final is a bit of a concern from an England point of view. The game against the All Blacks in Buenos Aires was a close one and the Pumas were never out of touch but it never really looked like they were going to overhaul New Zealand in the second half either. I was a little surprised their pack wasn't able to get much joy getting them over the gainline. The addition of Figallo does seem to have shored up the oddly poor for Argentinean rugby scrum the Jaguares have a bit.

From a New Zealand point of view a decent win with a few changes to the side but more importantly, although he wasn't perfect, good to see Sam Cane back involved.

 

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