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Rugby |OT|First Try (now: Six Nations 2019)

gir

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,733
A little bittersweet last couple of weeks for the US. 2nd year of a professional league well underway and it's successful. According to insiders on /r/MLRrugby the average is about 2000, 2.5K which is pretty good. USA 7s just made its 5th straight final and finally won a cup for a change. Currently in 1st place for the season as we reach the halfway point.

On the flipside though, we got destroyed by Argentina B team last week and lost to Uruguay at home this week for the ARC. You'd think with 2 years of professional rugby we'd be making progress and adding some depth.
TBF to the US, look at Italy. Decade plus in the 6N and Pro 14, haven't won a 6N match in years and one of their teams might finally make the pro 14 playoffs. Takes a loooooooooong while to become competitive
 

Metalix

Member
Oct 28, 2017
837
Eagles were great in Las Vegas (the last ever 7s event there, and I never made it once ;_;) from what I saw, really impressed with them, seem to be the All Black Sevens for fun nowadays.

Scotland won the trophy after a dire first day, so all wasn't lost.
 
Oct 31, 2017
4,267
TBF to the US, look at Italy. Decade plus in the 6N and Pro 14, haven't won a 6N match in years and one of their teams might finally make the pro 14 playoffs. Takes a loooooooooong while to become competitive
Yeah true. I can't complain much given the - so far - success of the 7s team this year. It may actually never happen and the US may never become a world powerhouse in the sport. Soccer in the US has been professional for 25 years and we suck just as much today as we did 25 years ago.
 

gir

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,733
Have the WRU finally shit the bed? Merge scarlets and ospreys instead of get rid of dragons to have a 4th team in the north of wales. The news has gone down as well as a leadfilled zeppelin
 

Plinkerton

Member
Nov 4, 2017
734
Have the WRU finally shit the bed? Merge scarlets and ospreys instead of get rid of dragons to have a 4th team in the north of wales. The news has gone down as well as a leadfilled zeppelin
Not an Ospreys or Scarlets fan but this is totally ridiculous to me... they're calling it a merger but it sounds like the WRU are basically killing off the Ospreys in favour of their North Wales project which is most likely going to fail anyway.

And you're 100% right about the Dragons. They've consistently failed for years on and off the field but the WRU won't cut them because they've just dumped like £6 million into them.

The fact that this is all happening days before a massive 6N game and in a World Cup year is just the icing on the cake.
 

gir

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,733
Not an Ospreys or Scarlets fan but this is totally ridiculous to me... they're calling it a merger but it sounds like the WRU are basically killing off the Ospreys in favour of their North Wales project which is most likely going to fail anyway.

And you're 100% right about the Dragons. They've consistently failed for years on and off the field but the WRU won't cut them because they've just dumped like £6 million into them.

The fact that this is all happening days before a massive 6N game and in a World Cup year is just the icing on the cake.
talk about self-sabotage, obv hoping all the goodwill around the wales national team would help to offset the negativity of the news, but it could derail their players because of the concern over their future.

Also, how would a new merged scarlets-ospreys afford all its international players? Lot of star talent going to leave wales
 

Plinkerton

Member
Nov 4, 2017
734
talk about self-sabotage, obv hoping all the goodwill around the wales national team would help to offset the negativity of the news, but it could derail their players because of the concern over their future.

Also, how would a new merged scarlets-ospreys afford all its international players? Lot of star talent going to leave wales
I imagine they're hoping some of those players will head up north rather than leave Wales. Someone like George North, from Anglesey, would be a good example. I guess they could probably move some to the other regions as well.

But yeah imagine a lot will just be fed up and want to leave, and who can blame them?
 

gosublime

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,272
Odd - by this time in the week I'm usually trying to dampen down any hope I have, this week I'm trying to find it!

Predictions -

England Italy. England to win. Feel this will be a pretty non-entity of a game, as England must be pretty sure they will win their next two games and will just be watching to see what Wales can do in the next couple of games.

Scotland Wales. This is the first time that, without other commitments getting in the way, I'm thinking of just missing a Scotland match in the Six Nations. I can't see us winning and I can see it being an absolute battering. It's one I'd really like to win just so Gatland doesn't have a perfect win record against us and the fact it's at Murrayfield is a plus, but if we do get battered that will make it all the worse. Wales to win, Scotland to not even put in a performance.

Ireland France. Interesting to see that France have gone with an unchanged team - I have a sneaky feeling France could take this, as their young ones coming in will play without fear. A lot will depend if Sexton/Murray have found their mojo.
 

Plinkerton

Member
Nov 4, 2017
734
Super interested to see how the last week has affected Wales. I’m wondering (and hoping) whether it’ll give them some sort of siege mentality and they’ll be really up for it. Think it’ll be a lot closer than everyone’s predicting regardless.

Also really looking forward to tomorrow’s game... a stuttering Ireland vs France who seem to be finding their groove should make for an excellent game.
 

phisheep

Member
Oct 26, 2017
899
Really looking forward to Scotland v Wales; it's a fixture that so often throws up interesting games that I can't even get partisan about it. Wales to win probably, but I wouldn't be at all surprised to see Scotland ahead at half time and Wales do their usual smash and grab in the last 20 minutes. SCotland to take a losing bonus point though.

Ireland v France will be interesting too - it'll all be down to whether France can dishevel and disrupt the Irish game plan. I expecthat t it'll be tight but will go to whoever is in front at the halfway mark.

England v Italy probably won't be a stunner of a game, but I do wonder what surprises Italy will spring this year, and just how boringly England's plan A will go.
 

gir

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,733
easy win for wales, maybe even with a bonus point. Scotland have really regressed this year, not sure it's just the lack of depth
 

phisheep

Member
Oct 26, 2017
899
Yet again no supporting players on a Scottish break, you'd have a try there. And subtract the forward pass and the score would be the other way round.
 

gir

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,733
might finally have a match now, only if scotland can capitalise on this possession
 

gir

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,733
beautiful

after complimenting davies, his mistake lead to the scottish try :P
 

Soap

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,298
Wales did enough in the first half to win. Wales are the typical “just enough” team.
 

phisheep

Member
Oct 26, 2017
899
Fantastic second half from Scotland there. Wales looked really rattled for a while. A proper game, as it so often is. Watson, Graham and Grigg were marvellous, and I really want to see Hastings start at 12 against England.
 

phisheep

Member
Oct 26, 2017
899
It's not very often I doze off during a rugby match, but that was one of them. Shame, because after 10 minutes at 7-7 it looked like it could be fun.

Looking forward to next week, though, it seems to me that England may be vulnerable to exactly the sort of attack that Scotland mounted against Wales in the second half. Numerous times England showed weak defence in their own 22 down the 12/13 channel, and I think that is something that Scotland can exploit.

That man Cokanasiga is a bit scary though, ain't he.
 

phisheep

Member
Oct 26, 2017
899
That's pretty impressive from Ireland. On this form they could just lineout-and-maul Wales to death next week. Mind you, I'd expected them to handle the weather better, they usually do well in the wet, but they dropped the ball a lot in the first 10 mins or so. Also seems to me there are times in the middle of the field where they are trying to pull off training-ground moves utterly regardless of where the opposition is standing. I'm just Welsh and looking for loopholes.
 

Thraktor

Member
Oct 25, 2017
229
So, turned on the rugby at 70 minutes. Odd game?
I don’t know how Ireland lost that second half. Plenty of chances to score (including 4 successive penalties at scrums on the 5 metre line, which surely should have been a penalty try?), but just too many errors creeping in, and then conceding two tries in the last few minutes. An odd end to the match, given how much Ireland dominated the first 70 minutes.
 

phisheep

Member
Oct 26, 2017
899
So, turned on the rugby at 70 minutes. Odd game?
Not all that interesting a game tbh. Nearly all of it played in the France 22 and was like this: kick to touch, lineout, maul, rumble rumble, penalty, kick to touch, lineout, maul, rumble rumble, scrum, penalty, scrum, penalty, scrum, penalty, kick to touch, lineout, maul .....

Ireland left about 20 points by not kicking at goal. Very one sided, very "controlled". Also very wet.
 

Plinkerton

Member
Nov 4, 2017
734
It’s been a tournament of doing “just enough” really. Wales yesterday and vs Italy, Ireland today and against Italy... England are the only team who have totally dominated their opposition for a whole game so far. Unfortunately for them they’ve only done it for three games out of four.
 

gosublime

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,272
I think England will do it 4 out of 5 - Eddie will be wanting revenge for last year. Ireland Wales will be a big game.
 

phisheep

Member
Oct 26, 2017
899
And, for the first time since we started, Wales are now narrow favourites for the title on the betting markets.

The combinations for next weekend don't look too complicated - the tournament goes to:
- Wales if Wales beat Ireland, or failing that,
- England if England beat Scotland, or failing that,
- Ireland

Further bonus points and points difference don't seem to matter except for sorting out second and third places. Italy can't avoid the wooden spoon, and the best either Scotland or France can do is fourth.

(EDIT: Actually points difference will matter if Ireland take a bonus point win and England take a non-bonus point win - but since Ireland would need to put an unlikely 50-ish points over Wales the above analysis is almost certainly right.)

I think England will do it 4 out of 5 - Eddie will be wanting revenge for last year. Ireland Wales will be a big game.
Eddie might want it, doesn't mean he'll get it. I'll be donning my tartans for Saturday evening.
 

Metalix

Member
Oct 28, 2017
837
Couldn't break down the red wall, don't begrudge us not kicking the penalties either as it was crazy windy in Murrayfield. The kick that missed touch was actually blown back into play! Watson played like a man possessed when he came on, been sorely missed this tournament.

You know how the buzzword "clinical" gets thrown around a lot in punditry when the speaker doesn't know what to say? Even with that in mind, thought Ireland's first half was the most clinical performance I've seen in a long time, France looked completely helpless & frustrated. Would be happy with that if I were Irish after the unconvincing earlier performances. The conceded late tries (although that 2nd one was obviously not grounded wtf) not so much..

Not looking forward to Twickenham at all, although it's the last test and we'll have been playing the 6N drinking game up to that point so that should dull the pain.
 

Plinkerton

Member
Nov 4, 2017
734
Can't wait for tomorrow now... Think we could have three genuinely great games in a row. Hoping to see Italy pull off an upset and of course that Wales can get the job done. Can't really see past anything other than an England win in the last game, Scotland have been nowhere near good enough.
 

gir

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,733
England or Wales to win it tomorrow, too many variables for Ireland to win it. Plinkerton is right though, potential for a great saturday
 

Metalix

Member
Oct 28, 2017
837
Adam Hastings to take his rightful place at Fullback and lead his men to accomplish what his father & uncle could not - Calcutta Silver at HQ!!!

..well at least it can't be as bad as 2017.
 

gosublime

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,272
.well at least it can't be as bad as 2017.
What you talking about? We never played England in 2017. Twickenham just disappeared for a couple of hours, pretty odd thinking about it.




If there was any game I could scrub from my memory, that would be it. I was in the pub with all my English workmates for that much. By half time they were just making pitying noises at me.
 

gosublime

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,272
Off to a kid's party for the afternoon in a couple of hours so will miss a lot of the fun...

France Italy - France but it will be close. Would love Italy to win this one - feel like I write that for every match!

Scotland England - England, but I think it might be closer than people are predicting. Either that or Scotland will let a couple of scores in early doors and it will be a nightmare. No matter what, can't see Scotland winning it - particularly if they have a shot at the Championship.

Then, the big one.

Ireland Wales. I think Wales will win this one - home advantage, giving Gatland a Grand Slam send off - but I think it will be a 'purists' game. (Or, a closely fought defensive battle that will be won by penalty kicks)
 

phisheep

Member
Oct 26, 2017
899
Mug of coffee, bottle of orange juice, four boxes of Mr Kipling's apple pies. I'm ready, bring it on!!
 

chalkitdown

Member
Oct 26, 2017
1,378
I don't know what's a worse scenario today; Wales beating us to get the Grand Slam or us beating Wales and handing England the championship.

Oh who am I kidding, the latter is obviously worse. ;)

Hoping against hope for a Scotland miracle of course. But they'll probably get spanked.