The Rugby Union Thread

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tbmtbm Frets: 516
edited October 2013 in Off Topic
My favourite things to talk about are guitars and rugby union so I figured with the NI's coming up I'd see who wants to talk eggball.

From my POV while the Ireland squad looks pretty familiar, the fact that Joe Schmidt is now calling the shots is huge. I loved how Leinster played under him and expectations here are really really high here. After ther Lions and before the end of the Rugby Championship I would have been resonably confidant of turning over the Aussies, not so now. 1 win from the 3 would not surprise me, though expect if we really show up then beating the Wallabies is not beyond us before our now annual battering from NZ.

How are England, Wales and Scotland looking?
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  • CabbageCatCabbageCat Frets: 5547
    edited October 2013
    tbm said:

    How are England, Wales and Scotland looking?
    That's what the autumn internationals are all about as far as I'm concerned. Rugby often has big swings in form over a year even with more-or-less the same squads. These matches are the yardstick for the real business next year.
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  • tbmtbm Frets: 516
    Yeah, it's a pretty interesting time. There are no easy 6Ns games anymore. If Scotland play like Glasgow are curretly doing they'll really start to fulfill that promise. And in Lancaster England have, I think, the best coach in the 6N. France and Wales are always unknows.

    Anyway, I love the NI beucase if the coaches are going to experiment, it'll be then.
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  • bertiebertie Frets: 1603
    edited October 2013
    not totally convinced Lancaster had made all the right decisions............was rather hoping he was going to field some young blood, looks like he's sent them all back to their clubs...............not sure about the Tomkins thing,  thought Burrell has been more on form, and as for Ashton.........yeah hes 'improved' but hes no way  up to national selection form.............   the only good news of all of it,  is Ben Morgan's back

    I guess the matches are all on Sky ?   Which Ive just got rid of cost of the BT thing...........    *doh!*
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  • JalapenoJalapeno Frets: 5406
    Ashton ? Again ? <wanders off shaking head & muttering .......>
    Imagine something sharp and witty here ......

    Feedback
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  • johnnyurqjohnnyurq Frets: 1366
    bertie;70742" said:
    not totally convinced Lancaster had made all the right decisions............was rather hoping he was going to field some young blood, looks like he's sent them all back to their clubs...............not sure about the Tomkins thing,  thought Burrell has been more on form, and as for Ashton.........yeah hes 'improved' but hes no way  up to national selection form.............   the only good news of all of it,  is Ben Morgan's back

    I guess the matches are all on Sky ?   Which Ive just got rid of cost of the BT thing...........    *doh!*
    If it is BT Youview @bertie they have added a ton of Sky channels very recently, off the top off my bonnet I cannot remember if Sky Sports is one or not though but maybe worth a sniff.

    We added 18 of the main Sky channelswe watch a lot like doccies etc and it wasn't too expensive, especially compared to Sky's prices.
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  • VimFuegoVimFuego Frets: 10256

    ashton is much improved on last year. Agree on burrell, he looks really good. Morgan is having a howler of a season, why wosshisface from Northampton or Ewers from Exeter weren't in is beyond me, both are having storming seasons. I'm still not convinced about big billy, he has a few good tricks, but he's not yet an international 8. Corbs getting injured is a big blow, he's a world class prop and both Mahler's and vuniplolas scrummaging look suspect.

    Was really impressed with that young prop at Northampton (can't recall his name) really took Stevens apart in the scrum, one to look at for the future I reckon.

    Should be an interesting couple of years for England, if Lancaster can get his selection right, there's talent all over the park playing in the premiership, with one or two likely candidates vying for each position. Very exciting potential.

    I'm not locked in here with you, you are locked in here with me.

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  • tbmtbm Frets: 516
    Yeah, dunno whats happened to Morgan. From one of the most destructive ball carriers you'd see, to 'meh' in about 6 months.

    Owen Farrell however, is looking like the real deal.

    What does the average Premiership rugby fan make of the whole H Cup business?
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  • VimFuegoVimFuego Frets: 10256

    I can kind of see where the English and French clubs are coming from, however I suspect this is more of a bargaining position than anything else, they just want more of the pie. I hope they can sort it all out.

     

    And yup, Farrell is looking good, mind you so is Cipriani, if he keeps playing as he is, it'll be difficult for Lancaster to overlook him. Flood is having a poor start to the season, should've been sent back to get some gametime, Burns is looking far better as a bench warmer IMO.

    I'm not locked in here with you, you are locked in here with me.

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  • digitalscreamdigitalscream Frets: 19507
    edited October 2013
    Huh...just noticed that England are well clear of the other northern countries in the IRB world rankings, and actually 1.5 points ahead of Australia. When the hell did that happen? Puts an interesting spin on Saturday, in terms of proving that they deserve to be there.
    <space for hire>
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  • scrumhalfscrumhalf Frets: 7840
    Rankings, schmankings. Counts for nothing. We should beat Argentina and Australia, but I have a horrible feeling that the All Blacks will be out for revenge and may royally stuff us.

    Even though I hope we do well in the AI's I just can't warm to Lancaster. He's clearly got "his" players, although to be fair he's picked Yarde this time around.

    What England has is a selection of reasonable players, I don't think we have a standout first XV or first XXIII like we did 10 years ago. You could arguably pick a couple of totally different XVs.
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  • digitalscreamdigitalscream Frets: 19507
    edited October 2013
    scrumhalf said:
    Rankings, schmankings. Counts for nothing. 
    True to a certain degree, but they are an indicator of how things are going. To get back to the #1 spot (and, of course, beat the All Blacks at some point) before the WC would definitely be a boost in terms of morale.
    <space for hire>
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  • hywelghywelg Frets: 3423
    edited October 2013
    One thing I can be confident about, despite Wales being the dominant nation in the Lions and having so many key players in that squad, we usually lose all Autumn Internationals. Not sure why, but it has to do with preparation and the state of Wales club rugby I'm sure.
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  • tbmtbm Frets: 516
    VimFuego said:

    I can kind of see where the English and French clubs are coming from, however I suspect this is more of a bargaining position than anything else, they just want more of the pie. I hope they can sort it all out.

    It looks like they might now. It was interesting to see the Celts and Italians pretty much give in to all demands last week, but the Rugby Champions Cup (I'm still amazed they couldn't come up with a better name) seems to be still on the table. The simple fact that French and Premiership clubs are generally run as businesses means they were never going to stand for how the funds were being divided, regardless of how it would benefit the game in the less wealthy rugby nations. Still, you'd have the think that being uina competition like The Amlin would probably do more for Zebre and Connaght then getting annual pastings from Leicester and Toulouse.
    hywelg said:
    One thing I can be confident about, despite Wales being the dominant nation in the Lions and having so many key players in that squad, we usually lose all Autumn Internationals. Not sure why, but it has to do with preparation and the state of Wales club rugby I'm sure.
    Last year was a one off. Gats is back now. I reckon you will final do the Aussies too.

    I see Sexton looks likely to be called back to Racing Metro for a game this weekend. He's going to do himself an injury, i just bloody know it!
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  • bertiebertie Frets: 1603
    johnnyurq said:
    If it is BT Youview @bertie they have added a ton of Sky channels very recently, off the top off my bonnet I cannot remember if Sky Sports is one or not though but maybe worth a sniff.


    Im Virgin,  so get BT for free...........Sky sports is a separate package (with Films) that was costing me near on £40 a month, just to watch rugby !!!
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  • johnnyurqjohnnyurq Frets: 1366
    Bummer and sorry Bertie I misunderstood and thought you were with BT instead of just having BT Sport, my bad.

    We dumped almost all of Sky and hope to lose the rest soon and are saving a tone of money with BT's Youview and have mostly all the Sky channels we like at a fraction of the cost, so win win.
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  • bertiebertie Frets: 1603
    England team: Mike Brown (Harlequins), Chris Ashton (Saracens), Joel Tomkins (Saracens), Billy Twelvetrees (Gloucester), Marland Yarde (London Irish), Owen Farrell (Saracens), Lee Dickson (Northampton); Mako Vunipola (Saracens), Tom Youngs (Leicester), Dan Cole (Leicester), Joe Launchbury (Wasps), Courtney Lawes (Northampton), Tom Wood (Northampton), Chris Robshaw (captain, Harlequins), Billy Vunipola (Saracens).
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  • Oooo...I'm interested to see how Yarde does. Haven't really seen much rugby in the last 12 months or so; having watched some of his highlights it seems that he's rarely the quickest player on the pitch, but he's got this knack of slipping the first tackle then completely dodging the second and breaking from there. If he can do that against Australia, their backs could be in for a rotten afternoon...especially if he starts wandering across the pitch to support 36.
    <space for hire>
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  • bertiebertie Frets: 1603
    would loved to have seen Tuilagi outside 36..................
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  • 36 was pretty poor today as well as Tompkins, some pretty poor reffing from Clancy. Results all that matters though, well done England.
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  • JalapenoJalapeno Frets: 5406
    Workmanlike.

    Should have been a mile clear at halftime but for those 3 missed penalties.

    Mike Brown was superb, as was Billy Vuinapola

    Argentina next week will be brutal up front, not a literal pushover like the Aussies.
    Imagine something sharp and witty here ......

    Feedback
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  • Good win for your boys today!
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  • scrumhalfscrumhalf Frets: 7840
    At half time I thought that they would be comprhensively thrashed by the Kiwis if they played like that. Maybe just a common or garden thumping.

    Ashton - not on his current form. Tomkins - no. Just no. Farrell, never rated him, wuld he be in the mix of Daddy wasn't on the coaching team?
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  • koneguitaristkoneguitarist Frets: 3542
    edited November 2013
    Not a fan of Farrell myself, but he, plus Brown and yarde were pick of the backs. Mako Vunipolar is not a top scrummager and will be found out, they need carbs back ASAP.
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  • tbmtbm Frets: 516
    It was a team picked looking to 2015. Really low age profile and a decent win, but jaysus the Aussies were TERRIBLE in the second half. I do think England lack a bit of creativity in the backline. Farrell is really coming on though, varying his game.

    Did you hear that stuff about Gatland only picking Andy Farrell over Shaun thingy on the Lions tour to get an idea of Englands moves before the RWC in 2015? Obviously bo--cks, but you wouldn't know what a man with the TEMERITY to drop BOD would do ;p....
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  • koneguitaristkoneguitarist Frets: 3542
    edited November 2013
    tbm said:
    It was a team picked looking to 2015. Really low age profile and a decent win, but jaysus the Aussies were TERRIBLE in the second half. I do think England lack a bit of creativity in the backline. Farrell is really coming on though, varying his game.

    Did you hear that stuff about Gatland only picking Andy Farrell over Shaun thingy on the Lions tour to get an idea of Englands moves before the RWC in 2015? Obviously bo--cks, but you wouldn't know what a man with the TEMERITY to drop BOD would do ;p....
     
     
     
     
    that was only a bit of a joke, as there were hardly any English on there anyway, Farrell would have learnt far more about the Welsh. As for dropping bod, right man played and the proof was in the scoreline. Pity Bod was a good player in his day............years ago.

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  • RockerRocker Frets: 4081
     Pity Bod was a good player in his day............years ago.

    He still is my friend.
    Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. [Albert Einstein]

    Nil Satis Nisi Optimum

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  • tbmtbm Frets: 516
    As for dropping bod, right man played and the proof was in the scoreline. Pity Bod was a good player in his day............years ago.

    So they won because BOD wasn't playing? Interesting viewpoint. I think they won becuase the Aussies didn't have a pack.

    Anyway, Gatland was here doing the media rounds a few weeks back promoting the Lions DVD (I think) and he was obviously asked question about it. He did quite well too I thought. He has history with the IRFU so there was some conspiriscy theories flying around but he dealt with things pretty well.


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  • tbm said:
    As for dropping bod, right man played and the proof was in the scoreline. Pity Bod was a good player in his day............years ago.

    So they won because BOD wasn't playing? Interesting viewpoint. I think they won becuase the Aussies didn't have a pack.

    Anyway, Gatland was here doing the media rounds a few weeks back promoting the Lions DVD (I think) and he was obviously asked question about it. He did quite well too I thought. He has history with the IRFU so there was some conspiriscy theories flying around but he dealt with things pretty well.
     
    No they won because the best team was out on the pitch, not because one man was changed. Maybe they would have won with Bod, maybe not who knows now, but Gatland was vindicated in his selection. Bod is past it, still a handy player but everybody gets to a stage where body starts to take longer to recover and the injuries start to pile up.
    Bod should have retired before lions , that way his reputation would have been saved.
    Now he has been dropped, yellow carded which should have been red carded against Italy, and he is trying to hang on for another year, blocking replacements coming through for Ireland.



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  • tbmtbm Frets: 516
    tbm said:
    Bod should have retired before lions , that way his reputation would have been saved.
    Now he has been dropped, yellow carded which should have been red carded against Italy, and he is trying to hang on for another year, blocking replacements coming through for Ireland.
    We'll agree to disagree on this.

    Anyway, check out this amazing analysis of the 'unseen' work on the Lions tour. It really outs Gatlands smart and not so smart selections - http://dementedmole.com/2013/10/30/ruck-marks/
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  • I was surprised at how badly we played at times during the lions tour. I think the balance of the squad was not that great with too many Welsh and Irish and not enough scots or English. Great to get a series win, which is never easy, but hardly a vintage Aussie squad ! I thought as usual some players relied on their reputations and some enhanced them. Standouts for me was AWJ, Jon Davies and Leigh halfpenny for theWelsh, and Corbs and the Youngs brothers for English. O'Connell was usual aggressive workhorse, and was missed after injury, Sexton impressed me, and also Tommy Bowe was usual Quality player. But it will be interesting how all these guys perform over next six nations. Some should have retired is all I would say.
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