Sunday, December 18, 2011

Leinster soar, Munster rumble, and Quins excell.

The 'lip (photo

Another weekend, dominated by rugby, I do have a proper life as well, no really. Ok not really.

Leinster soared high on Saturday, as they pretty comprehensively thrashed Bath at the Aviva Stadium. 7 tries does it for me. Fitzgerald is getting back to his best, Heaslip was immense, and Sexton was masterful. They have an irresistible attack, but with three tries conceded, they have to work on their defence. BOD was in the Sky studio instead of on the pitch where we want him, and he’s going to have to impart some of his experience to McFadden and O’Malley. Their discipline was fairly ordinary in the first half but they always had too much for Bath, who apart from Louw, Barkley and Abendenon look very run of the mill.

Sunday afternoon saw Munster welcome the Scarlets to Thomond for a titanic battle that went right down to the wire. Scarlets would be making mincemeat of half the teams in the Heineken Cup the way they are playing, and they made a good fist of surprising the men in red, before Munster roared back and took the game away from them. Munster’s pack is impeccable, but somewhere between Murray and O’Gara their backline doesn’t get the chances they deserve. How many times did Earls get passed the ball for instance? That aside, the engine rumbles on, 4 from 4.

I also saw most of Connacht Gloucester, a pretty heart breaking loss for the Galwegians. They have a total team ethic, while Gloucester seemed to be every man for himself. O’Connor impressed at fly half – they impressed all over the pitch actually.

Ulster got the 5 points they needed, while Irish slipped up at home, and are really going to struggle to get out of the group now. Saracens Ospreys was a good hard match, won by Saracens doing all the basics well, solid scrum and line out and excellent defence. They don’t use their line much though. The Ospreys look really competitive, Tupuric is great to watch, Ryan Jones was the MOTM for me, and Ashley Beck is a star in the making. Mauritz Botha is outstanding for Sarries.

Finally, I saw Quins give Toulouse a bloody nose in their own back yard with an excellent away win. Don’t underestimate the power of the top 2 inches in a match, Toulouse were wondering by how much they were going to win, and Quins had nothing to lose. Mike Brown could do no wrong, Care was brilliant, and they all played for each other. Toulouse had two tries not given, missed plenty of penalties, and have no one to blame but themselves.

Biarritz 29 - 12 Benetton Treviso 
Edinburgh 19 - 12 Cardiff Blues 
Ospreys 13 - 16 Saracens
Aironi Rugby 20 - 46 Ulster 
Leicester 23 - 19 Clermont Auvergne 
London Irish 19 - 25 Racing Metro 92 
Gloucester 23 - 19 Connacht 
Leinster 52 - 27 Bath 
Montpellier 13 - 13 Glasgow
Sunday , December 18
Munster 19 - 13 Scarlets 
Toulouse 24 - 31 Harlequins 
Northampton 45 - 0 Castres

No comments:

Post a Comment