Sunday, June 22, 2014

Good news for Scotland, heartbreak for Wales

 Lions 2009: Bakkies Botha's ban for dangerous play is upheld after unsuccesful appeal
 Missed (

Scotland struck a blow for the North with a hard fought victory over Argentina on Friday. They might do their fans a favour and stop leaving it up until the last minute to win, but the wins are coming, and that has to be a confidence booster.

I didn’t see it, but France pulled their normal stunt of trying only 33% of the time, all in the second test this time.

England meanwhile, couldn’t bring the same intensity of the previous two weeks to their last match. In the first half, this wasn’t New Zealand finding a new gear, it was a racing bike v a tricycle. England to their credit managed to draw the second half – they are a good team with a lot of potential, and just need a few players back and more matches under their belts. The All Blacks match at Twickenham in November will be eye wateringly intense.

South Africa and Wales wrapped things up, with a horror show loss for Wales in the last two minutes.
Leading by thirteen points with 8 minutes to go, they must have felt like their second victory ever over the Boks was in sight. But shipping a try and then a penalty try took it all away from them. South Africa were there for the taking,  but Welsh indiscipline, bad luck and harsh rulings conspired against them. They need more leadership – after Charteris’s penalty, the old heads should have calmed it down, even if it meant conceding a try and then getting  down the other side of the field. South Africa looked like they were expecting a cake walk, they need Bakkes back, and need to find a bit of leadership themselves.

Finally, Japan under Eddie Jones claimed another scalp in the shape of Italy.

Saturday , June 21
Australia 39 - 13 France 
New Zealand 36 - 13 England 
South Africa 31 - 30 Wales 
Japan 26 - 23 Italy 
Friday , June 20
Argentina 19 - 21 Scotland 

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