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Rugby discussion

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by Maldini » 17 Sep 2017, 08:48

Can the title be altered to Rugby Union discussion?

Very misleading.


I came on to talk about proper rugby and the thread is about a load of public schoolboys kicking the ball and playing 'all pile on' for eighty minutes. ;)

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by unc.si. » 25 Nov 2017, 23:05

Went to the pub for curry and rugby. Was supposed to be watching England Samoa but ended up watching Scotland stuff the Aussies 😄

Stayed to watch a fairly stuttering All Blacks performance against Wales.

The match did have probably one of the greatest individual defensive performances I’ve ever seen though. Stand up Sam Cane. Huge performance. If he wasn’t on the pitch I reckon Wales would have won

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 06 Oct 2018, 13:00

There's a huge game in the southern hemisphere's Rugby Championship in Pretoria this afternoon where South Africa take on the New Zealand, and for once it'll be the All Blacks looking for revenge.

South Africa are playing with a lot of confidence and after their two recent wins, their confidence levels will be even higher. So as the World Cup gets ever closer have the Sll Blacks lost any of their former untouchable aura?

Can South Africa really build on their momentous 34-36 victory in Wellington last month?

South Africa have drafted back row Francois Louw back into the team after an emergency call-up as one of three changes to face New Zealand.

Louw, 33, had gone back to play for Bath in the Premiership after featuring for the Springboks in their opening four matches of this year’s Rugby Championship.

Yet he has been recalled for the last game of the competition against the world champions after Warren Whiteley suffered a training-ground injury.

The other changes :-  Steven Kitshoff in for veteran Tendai Mtawarira at loosehead and Damian de Allende has overcome a shoulder injury and returns to centre in place of Andre Esterhuizen.

Crucially for New Zealand who have already clinched the championship title, Captain Kieran Read returns as coach Steve Hansen names his strongest available side.

There are three other changes from last Saturday's starting side with first-choice Aaron Smith returning at scrum-half, veteran Owen Franks back in the front row and Jack Goodhue getting the nod over Ryan Crotty at centre.

Crotty, TJ Perenara and Ofa Tuungafasi drop to the bench.

South Africa have proved that they do actually possess the firepower to beat the world champions, however for me the All Blacks must still be huge favourites, and even on South African soil, history is unlikely to repeat itself. 

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 06 Oct 2018, 17:55

RSA 30 NZ 18

8 mins left in Pretoria


All Blacks pressing, going to be very close

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 06 Oct 2018, 18:03

Amazing RSA 30 NZ 32

Came back from 30 - 13 late on with three tries

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 10 Nov 2018, 23:21

Were England robbed at Twickenham today?


The call went against Courtney Lawes for offside as he blocked a kick by TJ Perenara on the 10-metre line. At best, it looked a tight decision, too tight for the circumstances, and England had every right to feel aggrieved. The attacking team should surely have the benefit of any doubt. World Rugby had issued a directive only two days earlier instructing the referee to take the initiative on big decisions and use the TMO for guidance. Jerome Garces abrogated that responsibility. Matches should not be decided like this, on marginal interpretations. It was a gaffe.

I noted the TMO who made the call in the England New Zealand game was none other than our old South African friend Marius Jonker.

Is it just possibly the case that he could have been swayed just a tiny bit by an overwhelming feeling of real bitterness, especially considering how his own country's team lost out to a last minute controversy last week, and how they were so upset by a late TMO's decision going against them then?


The answer to that might rhyme with TESS


https://www.telegraph.co.uk/rugby-union ... ery-right/

Former World Cup final referee Jonothan Kaplan agrees..

If England were fortunate to be on the right side of a TMO decision last weekend they were desperately unlucky to have Sam Underhill’s match-winning try chalked off at Twickenham this time.

I was surprised TMO Marius Jonker penalised Courtney Lawes for offside ahead of his charge-down, and although I concede it is a close call I do not agree with his decision.

When looking at the incident we first need to work out whether there was an offside line. In previous years, as no English player was bound, there wouldn’t have been. But that law was changed in the wake of England’s ‘no ruck’ game with Italy, and law 14.10 states that any player over the ball constitutes an offside line.

What that means is that Lawes had to get onside and then be behind the hindmost body part of the tackle as there is no ruck.

Lawes clearly retires behind and in line with the rest of his team-mates before he strays marginally in front of them. However, the crux of the matter is whether the ball is out or not. If you watch the footage again you will see scrum-half TJ Perenara had his hands on the ball for some time before lifting it. That is crucial. To my mind, if the ball is no longer in the ruck and is not covered at all by other players - something I assessed by asking myself whether a bird could s*** on it from above - then it is out and available for all to play. Further illustrating the point, by touching it Perenara ensured it was fair game for anyone else to make a move, not least Lawes. The offside line is not relevant now, which to my mind makes this a fair try.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/rugby-u...g ... -overturn/

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by forestfan » 10 Nov 2018, 23:51

Surely not clear-cut enough to make that call. They have to go in favour of the attacking side in that scenario.

Still, idiotic play from England after that, throwing it out wide when Farrell was in position for a winning drop goal. Add to that earlier reluctance to get three points on the board, and Jamie George’s line-out throwing which suggested he had been replaced by his lookalike, GoT’s Samwell Tarly... I know, we’d have probably taken 1 out of 2 from the last couple of weeks, given injuries and recent form, but this was a real missed opportunity.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 11 Nov 2018, 00:22

Good post Forest agree entirely on the missed chances, going wide instead of a drop and turning down points was criminal.

Apparently Dylan Hartley had been struggling with a finger injury all week and had to be replaced at half time.

Deciding in consultation with your targets and then calling the type of throw and throwing prescisely and accurately and with the right pace and projectory so that it coordinates exactly with your best line-out specialists being lifted is a huge part of the hookers game.

George may be better in the loose and the flashier more dynamic hooker although Hartley is no mean performer in that facet either, but there is no comparison when it comes to throwing in at the line-out.

The set-piece and especially the line-out is such a crucial part of the game, that it is the ability to throw to order at the line-out that has kept Dylan Hartley as England's number two (hooker) ahead of Jamie George for so long.

The Lions may have taken George but England have always valued Hartley's ability to throw at the line out more accurately

Hartley going off (enforced early absence) was a massive turning piont

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by forestfan » 11 Nov 2018, 09:19

If you’re struggling and consistently getting your line-out throws picked off then you go short, go safe, surely. He kept targeting Itoje when his opposite number was disrupting every single one.

They seemed to think they needed to do something different to beat the All Blacks, rather than just keep it simple and accumulate points, as you would against anyone else.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 11 Nov 2018, 09:56

He's just not as accurate, there are major disadvantages to just going short.

Firstly it can be a predictable plan that's just indicative of a poor thrower and easily defended against, it has to be a surprise move, so you would only do it as part of a variation as it would become predictable, but far more importantly, doing it more than that stops any planned moves off the middle of the line-out which are coordinated with the ball quickly being spun out to an attacking back line to execute their moves with the opposition forwards largely taken out of the game, as they are all still near the line-out. These are precisely those moves which have been practiced in training all week and are therefore preplanned and well rehearsed.

An accurate thrower who can throw long straight and accurately, consistently hitting his targets is a huge weapon, Hartley does that more than most, George isn't as good but had a bad day too.

If you are even slightly off, then a really good lineout jumper like Retallick will pick you off and win the ball or disrupt your own ball so badly that it's not clean and therefore difficult to use. George was unfortunate to be slightly off and have Retalkick in opposition. Hartley had been accurate enough for England to win good ball anyway.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by forestfan » 11 Nov 2018, 10:03

Yeah, but once you start losing them, if you don’t/can’t change your hooker then you have to cut your losses and go short, rather than just handing the ball back to the opposition? You can’t score points if you don’t have the ball. He should have recognised that Retallick was on fire and not thrown anywhere near him.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 11 Nov 2018, 10:28

Yes I would accept that's better than losing the ball but Jamie obviously kept thinking he'd improve enough to be able to hit his targets. It severely restricts your options going short and would mean a far more forward dominated second phase with the vastly more experienced and fiercely formidable all black pack probably all over our much weakened injury ravaged one.

If we were to win we had to try and give our backs their best chance too, and taking the opposition forwards out of the equation via the lineout with quick ball spun out to them was very much part of the plan.

In hindsight as George kept throwing it away, although Retallick can pick off ball not really intended for his opposite number anyway, such is the precision needed, George would have been better going for the lesser evil as it were, not a great tactic and certainly unlikely to be a winning one, but better than losing the ball.

He thought he could execute our plans better and would get it right this time, he couldn't but then that's sport and no hindsight. Hartley is just crucial to England's attacking plan for the lineout, George is far more dynamic in the loose and can be quickly up to the play the ball action after a man is tackled, he runs well with the ball too, just his throwing can be off at times.

Tbf this injury ravaged England side has done absolutely brilliantly, noone really gave them much of a chance at all, so many key men out too, almost fifteen or sixteen injured. To beat South Africa and come within a hares breath of beating the heavily odds on favourites bodes well for when they get back to full strength again.
Last edited by liquidfootball2 on 11 Nov 2018, 10:36, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by forestfan » 11 Nov 2018, 10:33

Yeah, certainly a big step up from the disastrous Six Nations and failure in South Africa over the summer. Although you could say if we can’t beat the All Blacks when conditions favour us like yesterday, it’s unlikely at any other time... but they have to have an off day sometime, and they’ve had a few more than usual this year.

In terms of where we stand, we’re back to contesting the #2 ranking with South Africa and Ireland, at least. Eddie Jones must know better than anyone how to avoid the Japan banana skin, then there’s the demoralised Wobblies to finish with, so hopefully we will finish 3-1 on the autumn which won’t be bad at all considering the issues, a bit of momentum to take into next year.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 11 Nov 2018, 11:13

forestfan wrote:
11 Nov 2018, 10:33
Yeah, certainly a big step up from the disastrous Six Nations and failure in South Africa over the summer. Although you could say if we can’t beat the All Blacks when conditions favour us like yesterday, it’s unlikely at any other time... but they have to have an off day sometime, and they’ve had a few more than usual this year.

In terms of where we stand, we’re back to contesting the #2 ranking with South Africa and Ireland, at least. Eddie Jones must know better than anyone how to avoid the Japan banana skin, then there’s the demoralised Wobblies to finish with, so hopefully we will finish 3-1 on the autumn which won’t be bad at all considering the issues, a bit of momentum to take into next year.
The main plus for me is to compete with so many injuries, not just the normal amount but a huge debilitating number, we have so many players to pick from and in that way are fortunate, but as in other sports when you make wholesale changes to any team, and even if the substitutes are decent, it just doesn't work, too many all at once is usually fatal.

Somehow Eddie Jones has had his scratch side performing beyond all expectations, it's far, far better getting it right now than on last summer's tour. The disadvantage of playing at altitude, something that hits many sides and can have a detrimental effect, isn't too relevant going forward anyway.

If I remember correctly wasn't there a pattern in South Africa of England starting off playing well and South Africa coming back strongly? If so then this is often the case especially at altitude which South Africa usually fully exploit. NZ franchise sides often hit that same wall when they go to South Africa too, the atmosphere is so much thinner and you can't get your breath easily or recover quickly. England also tour right at the end of a very long domestic season with no real break after the finals and so perenially suffer from a very high number of player withdrawals. Tbh you can hardly blame them, they want a break after a long season and the World Cup is next year not this. As a result of the intensity of the schedule, international and domestic, there are naturally a high number of injury casualties, something that seems to have gone into overdrive recently.

Last seasons Six Nations was very poor indeed from England when that long record breaking and fine unbeaten run came crashing to a halt. They seemed to completely lose their way and serious doubts over the sustainability of Jones hard training sessions and preparation, so successful for so long up to this point, came under mighty scrutiny, this for me was the really worrying time rather than the later South African tour, in which at times they did show signs of recovery. They won the last test and with last week's win had made it two in a row vs the Springboks.

It's far better for it all to start coming right again now, even with so many still to come back in, some of these green replacements may have done well enough to contend for places too or at least be pressing for places in the squad, these are better times and better problems to have.

You can spin your conclusion both ways...

"Although you could say if we can’t beat the All Blacks when conditions favour us like yesterday, it’s unlikely at any other time"

OR

You could say that the All Blacks won't or are hugely unlikely to play such a badly injury depleted or scratch England side next time when it really matters...if they can just scape a win now when conditions so favour them like yesterday, it’s unlikely at any other time

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by unc.si. » 17 Nov 2018, 21:56

I hear that the next Marvel movie is going to be about Peter O'Mahony.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 17 Nov 2018, 23:11

I really think that air of All Black invincibility has slipped badly.

They drew a home series against the Lions and with home advantage which is admittedly so crucial in Union, but have now looked thoroughly unconvincing in scraping past a much weakened England side without sixteen players and followed it up by losing to a very good Irish team who are themselves now laying claim to the All Blacks number one ranking.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by forestfan » 17 Nov 2018, 23:48

Ireland are really overdue a good World Cup, they’ve never even made the last four... final chance for the likes of Sexton, Best, Kearney and Murray next year, they have to make it count. Nobody will look forward to facing them, that’s for certain.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 03 Feb 2019, 09:10

forestfan wrote:
17 Nov 2018, 23:48
Ireland are really overdue a good World Cup, they’ve never even made the last four... final chance for the likes of Sexton, Best, Kearney and Murray next year, they have to make it count. Nobody will look forward to facing them, that’s for certain.
Except perhaps England

:D :D

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 07 Feb 2019, 22:16

Eddie Jones is poised to make just the one enforced change for the Guinness Six Nations match against France at Twickenham on Sunday as he keeps faith with the side who secured an impressive victory over Ireland in their opening game.

Courtney Lawes, who made a destructive impact off the bench in the 32-20 victory in Dublin, is expected to replace Maro Itoje, who suffered medial ligament damage to his right knee. Joe Launchbury, the Wasps lock, is expected to play a significant role from the bench.

Rookie wing Joe Cokanisaga has also been pushing for inclusion in the 23-man squad - . Cokanisaga, who stands at 6ft 4in and weighs 17st 9lb, was heavily involved in a full-bore training session on Friday against Premiership club Bristol at the squad’s training base in Bagshot.

Meanwhile France are likely to recall Mathieu Bastareaud, their heavyweight centre, to the starting XV . Bastareaud has been in and out of consideration with various France coaches, but his bulk as well as his experience have been deemed necessary to thwart the muscularity and threat posed through the midfield of Leicester’s Manu Tuilagi.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 08 Feb 2019, 14:23

Chris Ashton in for Jack Nowell on the right wing is the main headline as Eddie Jones targets a fast start. The only other change to the starting XV , Courtney Lawes for Maro Itoje at lock forward, being enforced and largely anticipated.

Despite hailing Nowell's "brilliant" performance against Ireland, Jones said that Ashton's promotion represented a ploy to target a fast start.

Ashton scored after just 112 seconds against New Zealand in November and England are aiming for a similarly quick opening on Sunday.

"We have gone for Chris Ashton on the wing," said Jones. "We think he might sneak us a try early in the game. Jack Nowell was brilliant against Ireland and he’ll play a significant role for us off the bench.

Ben Moon, Dan Cole and Joe Launchbury have come onto the bench but Jones has resisted further changes, meaning Joe Cokanasiga and Brad Shields must wait for their first action of the 2019 Six Nations.

Jones did hint, however, that Itoje could be back sooner than expected, although he also added "We have got great depth in the squad so Joe Launchbury and Courtney Lawes will fill his shoes very well."


England: 15. Elliot Daly, 14. Chris Ashton, 13. Henry Slade, 12. Manu Tuilagi, 11. Jonny May, 10. Owen Farrell (captain), 9. Ben Youngs; 1. Mako Vunipola, 2. Jamie George, 3. Kyle Sinckler; 4. Courtney Lawes, 5. George Kruis; 6. Mark Wilson, 7. Tom Curry, 8. Billy Vunipola.

Replacements: 16. Luke Cowan-Dickie, 17. Ben Moon, 18. Dan Cole, 19. Joe Launchbury, 20. Nathan Hughes, 21. Dan Robson, 22. George Ford, 23. Jack Nowell.



Some interesting odds available (best odds for each given - oddschecker)

England 1/5, Draw 40/1, France 6/1

And the other two games

Scotland 9/4, Draw 28/1, Ireland 10/21

Italy 11/1, Draw 66/1, Wales 1/12

Scotland/Ireland looks the only one reasonably likely to be close to me, although in rugby you never know.

Outright

England 8/11,

Wales 3/1,

Ireland 15/2,

Scotland 16/1,

France 100/1,

Italy 5000/1

Wales at 3/1 looks about the best bet to me as they have England in Cardiff in a really close one to call and home advantage could prove decisive. England at a best price of 8/11 (odds on) offers no value whatsoever.

I think England, Ireland and Wales are very closely matched so for England to score four tries and a bonus point against Ireland in Dublin, against no points at all for Ireland, was exceptional and gives them a huge advantage.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 08 Feb 2019, 23:54

Austin Healey doesn't pull any punches when analysing the French, he's leaving himself hugely open if things don't quite turn out that way... but here's his scathing analysis.

Only included the real hits...

Which France will turn up?

There’s no point in saying which France are going to turn up. I will tell you which France are going to turn up: the rubbish one, the same as every single week for the past two years. It will remain that way until a proper coach gets a hold of them and is given the freedom to shake things up.

How will England approach it then?

If you are playing Ireland in Dublin then you know you have to be 100 per cent. Nothing less will do against the most structured, precise and clinical team on the planet. Eddie Jones gave them a plan for what they to do in every area of the field and his players implemented it brilliantly.

Now England are playing against a team that is effectively amateur in its approach. You have got some unbelievable talent in France, but the coaching standards appear to be abysmal. Their attention to detail and psychological approach is like something from the 1980s. It’s almost like they rock up, have a couple of glasses of red wine and then it is jouer, jouer, jouer.

Who to look out for then? - Accidents waiting to happen?

No player goes through their career without committing a few errors along the way, but it is the where and when you slip up – and how you react. Yoann Huget coughs up the ball for George North’s first try, puts his hands up and shrugs his shoulders. Oh well. Imagine if an England or Ireland player had done that, how mortified they would be? Look at the way Keith Earls has owned up for his mistake in England’s first try.

Then you have Sébastien Vahaamahina, who makes a big mistake in every game I see him play. That pass has nothing to do with him being exhausted and everything to do with him having a mindset that he could just do it and damn the consequences. You can’t just say s--- happens because it happens every week to France.

Difficult to prepare for then - mentally at least?

This makes them a difficult side to prepare for. It is like at school when you were playing a good team, you would raise your game, but when you played against a rubbish team you often found your performance dropped as well. It is almost that you play to the level you are against. That’s where England have to be super careful not to get complacent, stay tight in their structure and back themselves to control everything about the game. France’s only chance is if England get brought down to their level by playing fast and loose, committing multiple turnovers like Wales.

Of the team changes...


England’s Dublin demolition job was impressive enough in its own right but that fact that Jones can juggle his resources on the wing to suit his tactical thinking is a real sign of England’s burgeoning status in the global reckoning. It is all the more so in the context that France have been obliged to pick two centres, Damian Penaud and Gaël Fickou on the wing, and a wing (Yoann Huget) at full-back, so stretched are their options.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 10 Feb 2019, 20:55

This year's version of the six nations had been hyped up pre-tournament as a true clash of titans, when for once reasonably credible and realistic world cup contenders smashed against each other to produce potentially the closest championship in years.

Only two rounds have gone - and it may well yet produce such a nail biting finale, but so far England have been on another level to the others, with the only close fight possibly being all about a distant second rather than anything grander.

It took England only 66 seconds to leave France trailing on the scoreboard and they never looked back, scoring six tries in a comprehensive rout at Twickenham today. In truth France were dire, looking nothing like the impressive side who raced into a 16-0 lead against Wales the previous week, with their six changes having little effect. Yoann Huget was hooked before half-time after a dismal defensive performance.

The star of the show however was Jonny May, chasing onto Elliot Daly's kick for his opener, stepping Penaud brilliantly to score his second and then following up Chris Ashton's grubber for his treble as England took a 30-8 lead into the break.

England may have relaxed slightly in the second half, only adding a rather fortuitous penalty try and the sixth when Owen Farrell dived on a loose ball behind France's try line, but this was a mauling from hell for France and the biggest margin of victory in 'le crunch' for over one hundred years.

Jonny May has always had speed and finishing power but speed alone will only take you so far at the highest level. May has become more measured, more in tune with everything and everyone around him. And he has worked damned hard for his rewards.

He probably should have been man of the match in Dublin for me, but he certainly was here. A hat-trick against any six nations team is an achievement, so one against someone other than Italy, and by half-time, was truly exceptional. It tore the heart out of France who looked a broken side, clueless and adrift. They have been on the decline for years but never have they been so outclassed and so outplayed.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 11 Feb 2019, 09:04

Looking at the bookies best prices for England's final three games, how things change.....

Predictably they see Italy as an absolute nonentity in round 4's group of matches with England 1/100, but they also make them 1/5 to beat Scotland in round 5's group of games.

The only one they think might be in anyway closer is Wales at Cardiff in round 3 with England a best price of 8/13. England have won the last four times they've met and six from the last seven including their last two in Cardiff.

Outright to win the tournament they're 1/4 but the grand slam can still be had at evens with Hill's at least for now.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by jimmy ching » 11 Feb 2019, 12:28

I actually fancied Wales before the tournament started. Now though, after watching the first two rounds, it seems to be heading in just one direction, it's England's. They are looking so solid, fast and testing. No doubt they'll be clear 2nd favourites for the World Cup by the time November arrives.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by trampie » 11 Feb 2019, 13:39

Wales are and have been building for the WC for quite sometime, it will be interesting to see how England go against a Wales team missing some players due to injury, but all the same Wales have still been finding a way to win when not at their best a lot of the time recently.

Only seen the highlights of England v France and it appeared England were kicking all the time, will that tactic work against Wales with the likes of Liam Williams and Dan Biggar under the highball/running back ?, England are really good with quick ball but are they going to win loose ball with defences possibly not organised when Tipuric and Navidi might be involved ?

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by trampie » 11 Feb 2019, 14:03

Wales six nations to date has been a bit mixed although they managed two wins on the road, France away the conditions of torrential rain did not suit Wales and should have suited a much bigger pack in France, Wales somehow won from 16-0 down or whatever it was and got 3 tries [one lucky fumble by the opposition and one a breakaway after a ridiculous long pass] but Wales might unbelievably had scored another two tries, Liam Williams went over and the try was initially allowed only for the TMO to rightfully rule it out [loss of control of ball in scoring] and then there was a nice disallowed try for blocking a would be tackler that was very harsh, I think it would have stood with most officials.

Then fringe players were picked away to Italy, Wales going 12-0 up early on all penalties most being so close to the try line the kicker could have thrown them over, the reason I mention that is Wales were in try scoring positions when Italy infringed, then Italy got some parity on the balance of play and a score then all of a sudden it was a closer game on the scoreboard than it probably should have been, Wales ended up with 2 tries but could have had another 2 as they had one disallowed for a fumble when I knew they would disallow it as they more often than not do in such circumstances but technically it should have been a try as the English summariser pointed out on the tv and then Wales had another score disallowed for a forward pass [correctly] but the forward pass had happened ages before the try [where do you draw the line ?].


My point in mentioning as ordinary as Wales have played in both matches and one of these games they played some fringe players is they have not particularly had the rub of the green, come the England match will Wales play as mediocre again ? and will Wales continue not to particularly be on the right end of decisions ?, also will England continue to play so well for a third match running ?

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 12 Feb 2019, 18:21

Mako Vunipola ruled out of the rest of the tournament with ankle ligament damage. Ben Moon the probable replacement although fellow Exeter prop Alec Hepburn and Leicester's Ellis Genge did deputise in the Autumn internationals.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by trampie » 12 Feb 2019, 19:06

liquidfootball2 wrote:
12 Feb 2019, 18:21
Mako Vunipola ruled out of the rest of the tournament with ankle ligament damage. Ben Moon the probable replacement although fellow Exeter prop Alec Hepburn and Leicester's Ellis Genge did deputise in the Autumn internationals.
That's a pity as Wales were going to target him as a weakness in the scrum, oh well.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by liquidfootball2 » 14 Feb 2019, 09:41

Although a potential world cup place in the wider squad will now be hotly contested between Genge and Moon, one of whom will have a huge opportunity to stake a claim by starting at Cardiff with the other or Hepburn off the bench, the loss of such a talisman as Mako has become, can't but not be felt.

The loosehead prop is an intuitive ball-player, capable of reading defences, judging teammate’s running angles and delivering dextrous offloads.

Several set-piece situations have seen England deploy him at scrum-half from lineouts, while Saracens often station him in midfield.

Out there, he provides so many options. He can hit hard lines to puncture the gain-line himself or act as a decoy to attract opponents and create space elsewhere. Alternatively, he can throw pull-back passes that allow his side to out-flank a tentative defensive line.

Throughout his carreer Vunipola has been a prominent figure in phase-play and playmakers often trail Vunipola because they know he can open up the entire field:

Vunipola’s ankle ligament injury is such a setback for England because of how he provides a different dimension, but also because the sheer volume of his contributions over the first two rounds of the 2019 Six Nations has been nigh on astonishing.

Vunipola’s output over 43 minutes on Sunday against France – 12 carries and 11 tackles – meant he averaged either a carry or a tackle every 115 seconds.and Vunipola’s display in Dublin was also immense, comprising 27 tackles and 11 carries in 76 minutes.

For all the many players England are lucky to have at their disposal, you just don't adequately replace such a player, his replacements are good players and can do a job, they are not Mako Vunipola.

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Re: Rugby discussion

Post by forestfan » 14 Feb 2019, 18:31

The Vunipolas do seem to be made of glass, and it’s a concern as to whether we will have them available to play a full part in the World Cup.

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