The Game for Those with Odd-Shaped Balls (the Rugby thread)

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  • Bad news for England (and the player), good news for Wales: https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/47217407.

    Too true. He's been immense, in every way, for the last couple of years. No wonder Joe Marler quit. He realised that he was very much second-best. I suppose the evil Ellis Genge will get a game or Exeter's Ben Moon or Alex Hepburn. Personally, I reckon Genge could give too many penalties away so I'd start with Ben Moon.

    Anyway, we didn't miss Maro Itoje against France (and the penalties he is prone to concede). With Lawes, Kruis and Launchbury in form and a couple of decent #6s, he might have to work hard to get back in!
  • That was a tough game!
  • So now its 12 wins on the trot :grin:

    And, as I said up-thread, Liam Williams is a genius, now recognised "officially" by him getting Man of the Match.
  • A well-deserved win by Wales. I feel it hinged on the last play of the first half: had England scored, even three points, they would been a clear score ahead. As it was Wales went in at half-time with a moral victory under their belts which set up the second half. As TheOrganist says, Liam Williams was immense, Navidi was superb, -and I think Dan Biggar is likely to start against Ireland, if not the Scots.
  • Ouch! Not easy viewing during the second half but still, we came away with the win.

    Not the usual Welsh flair or inventiveness maybe, but we seem to have learned (finally!) how to "win ugly".

    Still, I rather suspect we'll need prayers next weekend, taking on Ireland the day before the feast of St Patrick (although he, as any fule no, was a Welshman) :grimace:
  • Baptist TrainfanBaptist Trainfan Shipmate
    edited March 11
    To me, the Wales-Scotland match was a bit like the Wales-France game, but the other way round. Seeing that England are biting at their heels, it's a real shame that Wales couldn't get more tries and hence a bonus point. Although the Wales defence was indeed excellent, Scotland were unfortunate not to pull victory out of the second half.
  • sionisaissionisais Shipmate
    Wales were (just) worth the win, thanks to outstanding defence, but as Gatland said, too many were thinking about next week, and that is going to be quite a battle. The Irish have an outside chance of the title, so they will be going all out and even in the absence of Robbie Henshaw they are going to make bigger dents in the Welsh midfield than Scotland did.
    I have yet to see who will be refereeing the game: that could make a difference, especially at the scrum.
  • The gamesmanship and verbal powerplay continue: http://tinyurl.com/y6qxd9cf
  • sionisaissionisais Shipmate
    The gamesmanship and verbal powerplay continue: http://tinyurl.com/y6qxd9cf

    WTF is it with Antipodean coaches? EJ, Gatland and now Joe Schmidt. You would have thought that they were busy enough and smart enough to know that in a home match the home team will exercise home advantage in everyway it can. Someone will soon be asking for tickets sales to be organised so that as many away team supporters can attend.

    Mummy, it's not fair.
  • The weather is going to be foul. I think that advantages both teams equally in this case.
  • Amazing first try by Wales. And Ireland are going to wish they hadn't asked for the roof to be open. Still, it's a game of two halves ...
  • Yup. Games of two halves, and Wales with the upper hand in both.

    I fear that Eddie Jones's future as a pundit may have taken a step backwards ... :lol:
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Crikey!

    I've just read the match report for the Calcutta Cup - poor wee Scotland! How often do you see a draw in a rugger match???

    To borrow a phrase from the game with spherical balls, we was robbed.
  • ZappaZappa Ecclesiantics Host
    In a reminder of perspective, it was good to see that one of the main NZ provincial matches (canterbury v Otago, aka Crusaders v Highlanders) was cancelled yesterday, following the Christchurch attocity :cry:. Christchurch is the "capital" of Canterbury.

    Sometimes perspective matters. A cricket test was also cancelled.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    edited March 17
    Right and proper.

    Am I right in thinking that there was a visiting cricket team who were supposed to be going to one of the mosques but had a change of plan? And if so, might they have been the target (for more publicity impact)?
  • ZappaZappa Ecclesiantics Host
    Yup - Bangladesh. Their escape was miraculous ... a delayed media conference held them up.
  • sionisaissionisais Shipmate
    Yup. Games of two halves, and Wales with the upper hand in both.

    I fear that Eddie Jones's future as a pundit may have taken a step backwards ... :lol:

    Wales really had an iron grip on that game and they will be disappointed to have conceded that late try, but their play beforehand won oit by a distance. The score at half-time in Paris seems a long way ago! Congratulations Wales!
  • Wales delayed that final scrum until the last possible moment and then, thinking it was all over, lost focus. The try should not have been conceded!
  • sionisaissionisais Shipmate
    Wales delayed that final scrum until the last possible moment and then, thinking it was all over, lost focus. The try should not have been conceded!

    True, and Scotland blew it too. Had they forced the try in the corner, they could have made the conversion very difficult!
  • That was after the game.
  • sionisaissionisais Shipmate
    That was after the game.

    My mistake, but I wouldn't expect a couple of my teammates to go off on their own after the match.
  • Eddie Jones has confirmed that Owen Farrell is his choice of team captain for England at the World Cup. Quite apart from him referring to Farrell's youth at the press conference announcing it (Farrell is 27, for goodness sake) he has only having captained the national side once - this year's Calcutta Cup match when it was lack of decision on the field that contributed to the astonishing result.

    I can't see this ending well.
  • sionisaissionisais Shipmate
    Eddie Jones has confirmed that Owen Farrell is his choice of team captain for England at the World Cup. Quite apart from him referring to Farrell's youth at the press conference announcing it (Farrell is 27, for goodness sake) he has only having captained the national side once - this year's Calcutta Cup match when it was lack of decision on the field that contributed to the astonishing result.

    I can't see this ending well.

    I would have thought there are half a dozen better choices, Kruis and Launchbury for a start. Jamie George would be a good one too.

    If Farrell is still "young" at 27 he is way too young. Maro Itoje is 22 or 23 and is way more mature, even if he does give penalties away. At least he's not petulant.
  • TheOrganistTheOrganist Shipmate
    edited April 3
    Now Will Carling has come out saying that Farrell "will develop" but "needs support" - but at a World Cup :astonished:
  • sionisaissionisais Shipmate
    Now Will Carling has come out saying that Farrell "will develop" but "needs support" - but at a World Cup :astonished:

    Was it Will Carling who complained about the RFU committee being "Old farts in blazers"? I think he must have acquired a blazer. Any captain worth his salt should be capable of doing his day-job and leading the team, with no question. Johnson was exceptional, as he was enforcer-in-chief too (Mark Wilson seems to be the "team nail" now and for that reason if no other should be an automatic choice).

    I wouldn't give the job to any of the three mentioned.
  • Apart from anything else Farrell is unlikely to stay on for entire games if he keeps shoulder-charging instead of tackling.
  • TheOrganistTheOrganist Shipmate
    Referees have got fed up with him too. If he wants to know how to question something he should watch Alan WJ. Farrell also has a nasty temper.
  • TukaiTukai Shipmate
    Those from the Northern hemisphere looking forward to the Rugby World Cup may take some comfort from the fact that the Australian team is about to sack its best player (Israel Folau), with the rest of the team splitting into factions about the way he is being treated by Rugby Australia. In brief, RA is trying to sack him over his posts on social media which damn all homosexuals to hell.

    Apart from its interest for rugby followers, the case raises so many issues about employment law and "discrimination" , that I have started a thread on Purgatory about the case.
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