Thursday, February 23, 2012

I'm tipping Ireland, Wales, France, and Stan for Munster!

Stan for Munster (picture )

Ireland are up first to defend their honour against the Italians, and to get back on the horse after their defeat to Wales.  The team still has a bit of a stodgy feel it to it, with O’Callaghan and D’Arcy there for the ride, and Earls badly misplaced in center.  He’s not there for his tackling or handling skills, fairly basic requisites for a center. D’Arcy may be there because of a lack of options, but the time is now to be giving Bowe a go, or look at O’Malley, even Trimble could be an option.  Italy have taken a punt on Tobias Botes  (pronounced Bow-tez) at fly half. Not a bad player, but he can’t kick penalties to save his life. I can’t see any other way Italy are going to score points, so that pretty well scuppers whatever slim chance they had in the first place. I don’t know if it’ll be proscecco rugby from Ireland but they will surely win this easily.

The match of the weekend is the contest between England and Wales. Wales are like a juggernaut pounding down the M25, while England are more like a mini with a learner driver, changing lanes without checking their rearview mirror. The results are not likely to be pretty. England may well beef their team up with Flood, Lawes and Tuallagi, but – loads of unfamiliar combinations, it’s not likely to gel in time. Could easily be a match to go down in history, and not for the reasons England want. Wales by 10-14 points. While we’re on Wales they’ve apparently been boosting their fitness with treatment s in freezing cryochambers in Poland. Aren’t those the ones the Irish team used in the build up to the 07 world cup, which did us basically feck all good. Do you think the Poles sabotaged the chambers as payback for us robbing them of a generation of young people?

The final match of the weekend is Edinburgh, where the Scots will be trying to get the better of the French. Thanks to a colossal balls up on the part of French rugby in Paris on THAT Saturday night, they haven’t played together for a three weeks, while the Scots were actively bashing their brains out  against Wales a mere two weeks ago. The Scots stepped up their game from England to Wales and if they step up again, they are going to give the French a good match. France may feel the backlash of a lingering grudge by the Scots for decisions going against them against Wales. The French, on paper, should beat them easily, and will probably do that.

Finally, with Tony McGahan on his way out of Munster, time to throw a leftfield suggestion into the hat. With the IRFU and the FAI sharing the Aviva Stadium, could the spirit of sharing not extend to managers, or in this case , ex managers, namely Steve Staunton? Graham Henry could be an advisor, but I’d back Stan the Gaffer to deliver something completely unexpected for Munster.

RBS Six Nations Saturday , February 25
Ireland vs Italy 13:30
England vs Wales 16:00
Sunday , February 26
Scotland vs France 15:00

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