Sunday, February 26, 2012

6 Nations - England get really close, Scotland fairly close, and Italy nowhere close

The last handy running Scot before Hogg (picture )

Ireland got things underway at the Aviva on Saturday with a convincing win over the ItaliansThe Italians made a good fist of taking the game to a rusty looking Ireland in the first half. The crowd was starting to get pretty restless – first we went to France, and you didn’t play, then we come to the Aviva and you don’t play either. After half time, normal service was resumed and Ireland ran out easy winners. Earls got one, so did Court and Trimble, and Bowe got two, while Kearney is back to near his best. Eoin Reddan’s introduction speeded the game up and gave ~Ireland the front foot ball they needed, and Sexton’s near impeccable boot kept the score board ticking. Kidney must be feeling the pressure a bit – moving Bowe into centre, and using his bench effectively – very unKidney like. So We’re back on horse with a win, let’s get stuck into the French now.

It wasn’t the massacre I predicted at Twickenham as the English manned up and could have got a result with a bit more composure. They’ll feel a bit hard done by, but this isn’t the last great scorer, it’s the jungle of the 6 Nations, and whether you win or lose gets marked, not how you played the game. I just wish Wales had played that badly against us. England defended well, and attacked well, but only in fits and starts. In the long run, that’s not an issue as the new combinations will gel, and they are only going to get better. The Welsh had no rhythm, and there was no flow to their game. Wales staggered but progressed, England came out of it honour intact, and it’s all still to play for as the 6N is not won or lost yet.

The French in typical fashion, kept the Scots guessing up until the last ten minutes, then turned on the power and put the game to bed. It was a hard fought full blooded affair, one for the RSPCA to get on the case, as I saw cruelty to several animals including Rougerie and Grey. On the positive side, Scotland scored two tries, and their backs looked like they really meant it for the first time since, um, Scot Hastings played. On the downside, it’s played three, lost three, and they are going to arriving in Dublin desperate for a win. France are looking frighteningly good (exhibit A – Fofana), and the Wales France match is going to be a killer.

In the Pro 12, Ulster, Munster and Connacht won. Leinster got an away draw against Glasgow, which I didn’t catch because I hadn’t worked enough credit in. Result for Irish rugby!

RBS Six Nations
Saturday , February 25

Ireland 42 - 10 Italy 
England 12 - 19 Wales

Sunday , February 26

Scotland 17 - 23 France


  1. Scotland looked good, should have seen off the French, but for confidence and focus. Hogg is a find, needs to give his confidence to the rest of the team.

  2. Hogg played really well, the whole team did. Fut it's a really good French side, so physical. Dusatoir is like a machine.