Sunday, November 30, 2014

Post 500! Leinster could learn from Sam Davies and Connacht!

 How did I ever get to 500 posts!?

The match between Munster and Ulster at Thomond was a thriller, if not always entirely very skilfully played out. You can see the rustiness  of the lay off, and the gaps the big names leave. Munster’s halfbacks were alternatively brilliant and woeful, Kealtey making good ground running, then passing all over the place, and his place kicking was not up to standard, Williams try scoring but throwing a good few wild passes of his own. It was Munster who looked the likelier of the two to run away with it, but they also worked hard to keep Ulster in the game with silly penalties and yellow cards. Ulster meanwhile, look like a team with a new coach and head of rugby. It’s going to take a while for that to all calm down. My MOTM was Robin Copeland, and I though Francois vd Merwe was very good for Ulster.

On Saturday, Leinster’s ordinary run of form continued  with a flat win over the Ospreys. They look out of ideas, Gopperth is playing at about 30-40%, and very few guys are putting their hands up. They have injuries and internationals missing but so did the Ospreys. Showing a bit of form were Douglas, Murphy, and Dave Kearney, who seems to have muscled up a lot. What I’d like to see is Madigan at 10, for a decent run (if he’s not injured) and Gopperth on the bench. Gopperth was getting lessons off Sam Davies, who kicked superbly.

Connacht’s good start to the season continued with a solid win over a game Scarlets side. It was pretty physical – Leinster might want to have a look at how it’s done – a real arm wrestle. It took a moment of brilliance from Matt Healy to seal it for Connacht, the man has some serious gas. Good times at the Sportsground!

In the internationals, both England and Wales got important wins.  And off the two, the Springboks should be the more worried – they only really turned up once, against England, and don’t look the no 2 side in the world.

Guinness PRO12
Sunday , November 30
Glasgow Warriors 19 - 15 Dragons   
Saturday , November 29
Zebre 18 - 10 Edinburgh
Leinster 18 - 12 Ospreys   
Connacht 14 - 8 Scarlets   
Friday , November 28
Munster 21 - 20 Ulster   
Cardiff Blues 36 - 25 Treviso   
International Match
England 26 - 17 Australia
Wales 12 - 6 South Africa

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