Sunday, February 16, 2014

Scrum penalties are the new running rugby for Leinster

 Jack McGrath (picture

Scrum penalties are the new running rugby for Leinster I found out this weekend. Matt O’Connor has turned a formally pretty iffy tight 5, to where even the B – team can boss the scrums and the line outs. It’s not as pretty to watch, but try bonus points don’t always have to be pretty. They seem to have forgotten how to make the space for the backline, but maybe that will come in time. I just wish that Isa was backline coach for Leinster, and not the Auckland Blues. Jack McGrath was good value for MOTM, Jordi Murphy was massive, but Madigan seems to be rooted in about third spot in the Ireland pecking order.

Munster ran out easy winners over Zebre in the end, after a wobbly start. It wasn’t their smoothest performance, and the rejigged backline didn’t really fire, but I hope they give it time, because Keatley shows a lot of potential at centre. JJ and CJ pulled the strings well, and so good to see Donnacha Ryan back in action.

Connacht got one over Edinburgh and pulled off the bottom spot. No problem to beat Toulouse away, and now a bit of success at home too.

I also stopped watching the Ospreys Treviso match after 20 minutes, with only one try scored. Of course, the Ospreys only went and scored another 20 tries after that!

Finally, I watched a fair amount of the Sharks v Bulls, with eye watering physicality. Both teams have pretty decent backlines too, be interesting to see what they do against the Kiwi teams.

RaboDirect PRO12
Leinster 31 - 19 Newport Gwent D'gons
Connacht 11 - 7 Edinburgh 
Munster 36 - 8 Zebre 
Cardiff Blues 20 - 27 Glasgow
Ospreys 75 - 7 Benetton Treviso 

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