Sunday, November 25, 2012

Ireland soar, Scotland stumble, and England and Wales need to man up

Ireland came storming back into form with a handsome victory over Argentina, as handsome my lady readers have told me, as Tommy Bowe.  Craig Gilroy’s dancing feet were the catalyst for this win, as he scored one out of nothing, and made a break which set up Sexton for the next.  But all the Irish players stood up, delivering a feel good performance, with width, skill and pace. Argentina were shell shocked, and turned in their worst performance this year so far. It means Ireland secure a top eight spot, and Argentina drop out, pipped by Samoa at the 15thdecimal place. Declan Kidney must be thinking ‘Hahahahaha, up yours!’ to all his critics. In theory, we can play better than this, with players like O’Driscoll, Kearney, Ferris and O’Brien missing. I wonder if they play like that every time in practice, and then serve up half warm drivel on match day, and Kidney’s thinking to himself, ‘You feckers!’

MOTM was Donncha Ryan, and he did play well, as did Gilroy, and Sexton, who just about didn’t put a foot wrong. This is great win for the team, and sets us up nicely for the 6N.

The same as last week, I watched the Bok match mostly on fast forward, which was no bad thing, as they ground out an ugly low scoring win over England. Willem Alberts scored the jammiest try ever, but he has a habit of being in the right place at the right time, and as Jean de Villiers said in the post match interviews ‘It was a a well worked move, we’ll take it!’ South Africa have one three on the trot on tour, hardly playing any rugby along the way. But I suppose at least with Lambie at fly half they showed they want to do more. England really should be doing better, hard to say what’s going to turn them from side contenders to world beaters, but I don’t know if Stuart Lancaster is the man for the job. I would get someone like Christian Wade and stick him in the team tomorrow, to offer something unusual in attack that they don’t possess now.

Australia scraped by Italy, France sorted out Samoa, but not by much, and Tonga accounted for Scotland
and Andy Robinson.  Fair play to him for taking the responsibility, it was a match they should have won.

Finally, it was the heavyweight clash between Wales and New Zealand, I suppose you could have billed it the kings of the North vs the kings of the south. Unfortunately, Wales don’t look like the kings of anything at the moment. They have zero confidence, and low expectations. I don’t know why, as they are not my team, but they are really pissing me off at the moment, they have so much talent and are using it so badly. I wanted to see Wales absolutely smashing New Zealand in the contact areas, but there was some pretty half hearted stuff going on there, and it all went pear shaped pretty quickly after they lost the collisions and started missing tackles.  Liam Williams stood up to be counted, normally I find him an annoying little shit, but he was the one player not overawed by the situation. The All Blacks had it all, pace power and skill, and also seem to be developing an unfortunate sidleline in cheap shots, with Adrew Hore surely to be cited and  banned.

International Match
Saturday , November 24
Ireland 46 - 24 Argentina 
Italy 19 - 22 Australia 
England 15 - 16 South Africa 
Wales 10 - 33 New Zealand 
France 22 - 14 Samoa 
Scotland 15 - 21 Tonga 

1 NEW ZEALAND - 92.91
2 SOUTH AFRICA - 86.94
3 AUSTRALIA - 86.31
4 FRANCE - 85.07
5 ENGLAND - 81.07
6 IRELAND - 80.22
7 WALES - 78.95
8 SAMOA - 78.71 (78.709236088306938 to 15 decimal places)
9 ARGENTINA - 78.71 (78.708853582562098 to 15 decimal places)
10 ITALY - 76.24
11 TONGA - 76.10
12 SCOTLAND - 75.83

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