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Monday, May 25, 2009

Courtney Lawes smashes Morgan Parra in European Challenge Cup Final

Courtney Lawes smashes Morgan Parra in European Challenge Cup Final

Northampton Saints finished off a successful season back in top flight rugby as they beat Bourgoin 15-3 in the European Challenge Cup final on Friday. Saints have now qualified for next seasons Heineken Cup, knocking out Wasps in the process.

No tries were scored in the ill-tempered match which had two yellows and a red handed out. Steven Myler kicked 5 penalties for the home side, keeping them in control of the game throughout.

French scrumhalf Morgan Parra was unfortunately injured in this crunching tackle from young Northampton lock Courtney Lawes. The Bourgoin players were clearly incensed at Lawes' being viewed as not being worthy of even a talking to from the referee. Two minutes later they took it out on Lawes, which led to the red card for punching.

Bourgoin coach Eric Catinot later suggested that the referee was a bit lost, and complained that Lawes had been just as deserving of a red card.

Dimitri Yachvili has since been called up to the French squad to replace the injured Parra, who was set to tour New Zealand and Australia in June. Yachvili will compete for a starting place with Leicester number nine and former Biarritz team-mate Julien Dupuy.

This isnt the first time we've seen Lawes crunch a Bourgoin scrumhalf. Just ask Julien Tomas.

Your verdict: Was this a late tackle, or was he committed?

Time: 01:52

Posted at 10:26 am | 93 comments

Courtney Lawes huge hit on Julien Tomas

Posted in Big Hits & Dirty Play

Viewing 93 comments

jacobo May 25, 2009 12:23 pm

1st comment!!!

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Jacobo May 25, 2009 12:25 pm

not late, just a good hard hit....


I SCORED A DROP GOAL IN A MATCH TODAY!!!!

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 12:28 pm

2nd scrum half he's mullered this season by my count, big hit.

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 12:41 pm

Nothing wrong with that.
How could he pull out?

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 12:43 pm

He's definitely commited to that tackle. Nothin he could do to stop himself

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KingDong May 25, 2009 12:48 pm

Committed to the tackle. Perfectly legal. The ref definitely thought so. An absolute cruncher of a hit. Lawes is an utter unit. The kid is henched to fuck.

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sii May 25, 2009 12:50 pm

Bastadr Parra wont play the summer tests because of him

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Melrik May 25, 2009 1:17 pm

In another video, where we see the face of Courtney Lawes face, his intention is really hurt. At no time does it to the flask. Some time later in the game, it projects a player unnecessarily in advertising signs. It is clearly back to break frogs ... if scrum half was not french, your comments would surely be different (Mike Blair, Harry Ellis or Luke Burgess injured for several months) ! You prefer to support a murderer or a boxer who avenges his friend?

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 1:30 pm

Fair tackle already commited para would have been injured if he had the ball its rugby u get hurt even with legal challenges the behaviour of the borgouin players after was disgraceful

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 1:32 pm

what the hell is Melrick talking about, great hit by lawes, thoughts are with parra to obviously

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 1:48 pm

Melrik i dont know if english isnt your first language or not but that made no sense.

Anyway, my verdict is big hit, no doubt about it he was commited

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adrian May 25, 2009 1:57 pm

It was a good hard hit~
Scrum half should never drift and delay the pass. If not,could end up like Parra

Meet My Friend : Pain~

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 2:23 pm

The problem is not that the tackle was late or not, it was high that's all, a tackle can be made below the shoulders, not on the shoulders... That's all there is to it

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Flooz May 25, 2009 2:24 pm

According to me, this tackle was correct. Very butal but u can't say it was late.

But i'm not sure that the english commentators would have said "nice tackle!" if the scrum half had been from the saints, and we all know that...

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RS May 25, 2009 2:25 pm

Puuuummmmmmm!
100% legal.

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No.7 May 25, 2009 2:27 pm

Melrik, that tackle was legal, i can understand people being upset because it was their french scrummie, but they cant say the tackle was illegal.....if it was blair or ellis, i would just say it is a big shame but it wasnt illegal

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 2:27 pm

To be fair Lawes is a bit of a plank

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 2:45 pm

and the laws state: "not higher than the line of the shoulders", not "lower than the line of the shoulders". The law protects the neck of players, not their shoulders. Therefore: not high

perfectly legal, and i'm a french rugby supporter

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 2:48 pm

ouch holy moly thats gotta hurt
great hit 100% legal parra was being an arse the whole match he might think twice next time
there is a new law in town and his name is courtney

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 2:49 pm

just a great hit
huge.

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 3:06 pm

wonderful hit, it isn't late

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nowrapmaster May 25, 2009 3:22 pm

no wrap illegal tackle

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opfazonk May 25, 2009 3:22 pm

perfectly timed! nothing wrong with it. big match for him overall!

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expresstrain May 25, 2009 3:36 pm

As with Lawes' tackle on Julien Tomas earlier in the season, it was an unfortunate mismatch. Parra kept the ball too long as he scuttled sideways; Lawes was committed when Parra let go of the ball; he hit at the shoulder partly because of the difference in size and partly because Parra had stooped slightly to pass; and Lawes' arms did move to wrap around, but Parra just went flying backwards. A massive shame -- Parra's a star in the making and France have already lost Tillous-Borde -- but Lawes isn't guilty of anything except being a monster. The response of les Berjalliens was inevitable but unjust.

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 3:42 pm

I officially ask my fellow countrymen to stop moaning, that's fukin ridiculous and embarassing for every other honests french guys.

That's perfectly legal, bad for Parra, but that's life of a rugby player!

can't wait for the tour in Australia and NZ, hope we'll win a game at least...

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Joey May 25, 2009 3:54 pm

THAT AINT 2 BAD. JUST UNBELIEVABLY POWERFUL SRY 4 CAPS THEY ON BY ACCIDENT AND NOW I REALISE I COULD HAVE JUST DONE IT AGAIN FAR QUICKER OR JUST LEFT IT AW WELL

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 4:01 pm

That even hurts me

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 4:12 pm

No wrap from that murderer, his main intention is to kill. so painful to watch.

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 4:14 pm

not late! great hit

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 4:30 pm

I am sorry the player got injured, but that was a 100% fair tackle. He was committed when the guy had the ball and the impact was about a milli second after he passed.

Just because someone gets injured does not make it illegal.

No punishment necessary. It's rugby.

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 4:34 pm

That tackle was not high. As for wrapping up...the impact bounced Parra back so fast there was no opportunity to wrap him.

Just a crunching hit and legal at that.

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 4:40 pm

I've played against Courtney at club level when he used to play for Northampton Old Scouts - all i can say is im glad im not playing against him now...

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 4:50 pm

frenchman? Morgan Parra is portuguese!

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 4:52 pm

No problem with this tackle, 100% legal and i'm french and was cheering for Bourgouin.
It's sad for Parra but that happens in rugby. Hope he will recovery fast and be back with France.
On another subject i can t wait to see julien dupuy plays in the french squad.

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 5:40 pm

I think we all agree this is a legal hit. Very painfull and very unlucky that Morgan will miss the French team now.
It was of no sportmanship though that the Bourgoin staff were talking about a red card for this.
I'm a big Saints fan all the way from Holland so probably not 100% objective but come on it's rugby.

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 6:13 pm

@ anon:

I don't know why you think he's portuguese... he's french, no doubt about this. He's born in france and plays in XV de France. So no, he's not portuguese.

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Colin May 25, 2009 6:40 pm

Melrik or whatever your name is, sorry i cant be arsed scrolling down. That hit was totally legit, i dont know about you but when i go in to tackle somebody (ESPECIALLY A FRENCH CHEESE EATING SURRENDER MONKEY) i want to smash them into the ground.

EXCELLENT TACKLE!!!!

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 6:46 pm

was committed. shit happens when a small guy gets creamed by a big guy

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 7:14 pm

good tackle, shame for parra though. seemed to be really injured. poor young guy!

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 7:50 pm

I thought wraping with the arms was mandatory... And I always understood this law as a way to avoid this kind of situation...

If the hit is so hard so he hasn't even time to catch the guy, then clearly something is wrong in my opinion.

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Baze May 25, 2009 7:55 pm

Bien sur que c'est un plaquage retardement, c'est plus qu'une charge l'paule qu'un plaquage. Vu l'arbitrage pendant le match c'est pas tonnant... Un franais qui fait a prend jaune tout les coups.
Of course it's late tackle. This referee is a dummy.
The refering during the H cup and the european challenge.
Like Drogba, I say "it's a fucking disgrace"

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 8:30 pm

Thats what happpens when you are a scrawny midget

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propandruckingit May 25, 2009 8:30 pm

An absolute monster of a tackle, 100% legal.

How does anybody expect him to pull out?? The same with Hartley vs Dupuy earlier on in the season. The difference between him passing and the ball and the initial contact is about 0.5 of a second in slow motion so how does anybody expect him to pull out?

High? Well its as high as you can get without it being an illegal tackle, straight in line with the shoulders.

Shoulder Charge? Yes in essance, but only due to the fact that Parra bouced off him at such a rate, you can see him trying to wrap his arms even after the contact is made and he is flying through the air (again you have to think this all within a second or so), THE TACKLE IS LEGAL.

Amazing tackle and worth a post on here, great believer in courtney played against him and know him through all my friends that went to school with him, great work ethic and going to be one of the youngest international locks to wear the red rose.

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 9:25 pm

I dont think the tackle was perticuly late but ive seen those given. But i think he could have pulled out or changed the tackle because it was clear he was passing and the ball had gone but lawes just wanted to nail him anyway. But a great hit anyways i loved watching it and glad he did it but i reckon it was a little late.

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 9:34 pm

"But i think he could have pulled out or changed the tackle because it was clear he was passing and the ball had gone but lawes just wanted to nail him anyway."

Well yes he could have been awfully nice and decided to do that, but he was 100% committed and is under no obligation to pull out or soften the blow. It was not late.

Yes he wanted to nail him. But just because someone is shaping to pass does not mean they will. Para could have decided to hold the ball, dummy, step, kick or any number of things. So he did the defender did the right thing in wiping him out even though, with hindsight, we can see he passed the ball....but that's rugby.

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Anonymous May 25, 2009 10:23 pm

Ouch. Poor parra.

Nothing wrong with it though he was totally committed

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Laurie May 25, 2009 11:13 pm

He was already committed. His head was down, ready for the hit, before Parra passed.

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Alexander May 25, 2009 11:55 pm

Ha arm wrapping crap. Grow some balls guys. This is MEEEEEAN!!!!!

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RedYeti May 26, 2009 1:12 am

That was a monstrous hit; definitely not late or high however.
I was so happy when Parra got smashed cause he'd been a dick all game. In my view what goes around comes around in the form of a 6'7" wrecking ball.

What is more disgusting was the Bourgoin players who attacked Lawes in a ruck after this though. The tighthead (I think) started punching him, but Lawes did not throw any back, he just covered himself, then the replacement lock (I think again) ran in and punched Lawes from behind, in the temple (a potentially deadly blow, especially from someone as powerful as a rugby player). Lawes still did not throw a punch back, and was hit again when the Bourgoin player realised one of Lawes' teammates had restrained him to stop any retaliation.

I hope that there are citings over this, because it was disgustingly dirty play from the French side, and I don't blame Courtney for smashing the Bourgoin fullback into the advertising boards soon afterwards :)

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Zavala May 26, 2009 6:45 am

Pause the footage just as Parra is releasing the ball and you will clearly see that Lawes is almost in contact already. His head is down and he has set himself up to hurt (legally) to opposing scrum half. It is not at all late and as has been mentioned, he does attempt to wrap up but the impact of the tackle against the much smaller man does not allow it in this case.

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browner April 08, 2013 6:27 pm

1.32 to be precise

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Anonymous May 26, 2009 6:57 am

I hope RD will bring up more about this match soon because it was a perfect sign of bad discipline from a few French players all of the time. 5 penalties, 1 yellow and one red for thrm. A few punch-ups (also including Northampton players to be honest, Best and Murray)...and as a cherry on the pie this monsterous tackle on Parra. I haven't seen any red cards this season except when we played French sides (Montpellier, Bourgoin). It is still something that seems to be in their veins. Nevertheless the best team won.

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nick_s May 26, 2009 8:30 am

It was a huge hit, but I think the major issure for Parra was that he wasn't prepared for it. The poor guy crumpled as soon as lawes hit him.

It's unfortunate, but that was a pretty spot on a tackle technique-wise.

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Kenny May 26, 2009 8:33 am

this game was a perfect example of 2 teams with a number of scumbags playing on both teams.

Neil (18 weeks for eye gouging)Best got in a scrap and got sin binned.

Dylan (12 weeks for eye gouging) Hartley grabbed boyet by the neck and swung him way.

Boyet the french diver jumped on the grpund lay there for a little while pretending to be hurt then got up and ran after the play.

Courtney Laws chasing a kick that had gone over the try line then rammed a french payer into the hoardings and got the ball in the head for his stupid unnecessary tackle.

And of course that bourgoin flanker than punched him in the face right infront of the ref and touch judge for no reason.

Murray also got loads of digs in the head for nothing.

Very entertaining to watch as a spectator, but too many scum bags on both sides is always going to give u a matche with all this in discipline.

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Anonymous May 26, 2009 8:42 am

Not having a go (well.. actually I am) but honestly, what is with the typical French rugby mentality?

Its almost impossible to watch a game of French rugby nowadays (or to have ever watched one) without some stupid punchup kick off, and it all errupts from the smallest thing, which in this case was from a PERFECT tackle.

I think that the entire FFR should be given some form of disciplinary course or be scrapped!

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Anonymous May 26, 2009 9:50 am

every now and then u get creamed and yeah that hurts when u r a little guy but thats part of rugby and that hit was really hard but parra was asking for it all night long

http://www.olympic-rugby.org/

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HamishM May 26, 2009 9:55 am

Bourgoin need to HTFU, MTFU and GTFU. Fuck's sake, that was one of the best hits I've seen and no way was it late.

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Flooz May 26, 2009 10:41 am

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/sport/rugby_union/article6350590.ece

This very interesting article from stephen jones from Times explain a part of the problem...

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jt May 26, 2009 10:50 am

big man moving at speed. just committed.

unfortunate for parra tho..

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Anonymous May 26, 2009 11:56 am

The tackle is a shoulder charge, he didn't wrap properly with the arms, which sent the scrummie bouncing to the ground... it isn't because he bounced that Lawes couldn't wrap, it is because he didn't wrap that he bounced...

Still he was committed and the tackle isn't illegaly high, and I would say the late wraping maybe an error and not intentional. Certainly doesn't deserve a red card, probably not a yellow even if there is an injury, but it warrants a penalty because of the tackler not wrapping with the arms properly...

It is sad for Parrra, but the match was lost already anyway.. the saddest part is that this was the last straw for a Bourgoin team that felt that the referee kept denying them their dominance at the scrum by not penalising the Saints enough.. as a result they blew their cap off..

Again very bad for french reputation and sad for Parra but clearly this tackle wasn't "murder"...

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Antoine May 26, 2009 1:03 pm

Right, he's portuguese. Just like Dallaglio and Cipriani are Italian!

As whether that takle was illegal or not, I think it was legal. But I also think there's something wrong in rugby if you can injure another player without breaking any rule. The brutality should be assessed when deciding if a tackle is legal. Because the injury frequency in rugby at all levels is really a shame, also for the developement of the sport.

And don't give me that football sissy talk.

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martin-offload May 26, 2009 5:34 pm

Not late or high. it wud be hard to be high as he injured his shoulder!

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Raw Lions Will Roar! May 26, 2009 5:39 pm

that was a fantastic tackle. not late. not high....typical French though moaning about everthing then starting fights when they don't get there way, if you cant deal with physicality of the game then dont play!

unlucky parra, he's young though so plenty more chances for him in a france shirt.

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Raw Lions Will Roar! May 26, 2009 5:41 pm

...oh and Antoine, shut up you pussy. The game has been played like that since it started, if you can't stand the heat then get out the kitchen!

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Anonymous May 26, 2009 6:28 pm

Immense hit. absolutely awesome unit. Parra had it coming to him bigtime.

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number7 May 26, 2009 8:19 pm

that was a good hit but he had another better one later in the game that deserves a mention too.he destroyed another guy he really is not a guy you want to hit a cheap shot to the back of his head...cos he will fuck you up hahah

really a hero thats how a man plays rugby keeps the head and waits for his chance

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jean May 26, 2009 10:22 pm

He is not using his arms!
Very very angry against that stupid butcher

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Anonymous May 26, 2009 11:47 pm

Antoine, you shouldn't play oir watch rugb.
It's a physical game. People get injured all the time, it's part of the sport.
Deal with it, or follow another sport.
Jesus, I can't believe you even said that.

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Kyle May 27, 2009 12:35 am

Not late at all, but just a hint of no wrap. If I were there I'd think "legal"

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Anonymous May 27, 2009 5:18 am

serves the scrummie right for crabbing across field

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mike hunt May 27, 2009 11:19 am

i bet lawes thought "i think i made him shit himself" just after.

brilliant tackle. more please.

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Anonymous May 27, 2009 12:42 pm

well done, he's really destroyed for months I guess... and for the very stupid (and so proud of themselves) analysists who argue that french teams should be banned from any competition, don't they know it's already done,courtesy of a bunch of so called referees ?(see Toulouse Vs Cardiff, for instance). On se retrouvera.... Messieurs les Anglais, vous avez tir les premiers!

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Anonymous May 27, 2009 12:55 pm

Les franais sur ce forum, vous faites honte au rugby franais alors fermez vos gueules bande de pdales! ce plaquage est absolument correct, le rugby est un sport de combat o l'on se blesse souvent il faut bien vous mettre a dans la tte, alors arrtez de vous plaindre chaque fois qu'un franais est bless (et surtout quand le plaquage est parfaitement lgal). J'ai honte de vous bande de niais, Antoine et Jean s'il vous plait retournez regarder du foot.

My french compatriots make me feel ashamed, i can't believe they're moaning about this perfect tackle. Fukin faggots.

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Anonymous May 27, 2009 1:02 pm

Et toi avec ton ridicule "Messieurs les anglais, vous avez tir les premiers" tu es vraiment pathtique. Tu leur donne trop d'importance, ton complexe d'infriorit fait piti voir. Arrtez de vous plaindre les franais c'est insupportable et honteux pour notre pays. Un peu de fiert bordel! On fait le dos rond, on ferme nos gueules et on se bat, c'est tout, arrtez de pleurnicher comme des enfants capricieux c'est rellement honteux.

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Anonymous May 27, 2009 1:09 pm

Ask him if hes not portuguese. Just ask him. Ask Zidane if hes french. Its the same. They just use the better jersey.

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Anonymous May 27, 2009 1:28 pm

I don't know if you're french anon just above, but i can tell you that Zidane or Parra or Swarzevski or Ouedraogo or Michalak or Yachvili feel 200% french. You're an absolut ignorant and a dumbass. You speak about something you obviously don't know. Personnally, my name isn't french, but i can tell you i feel 200% french, no doubt about this.

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Anonymous May 27, 2009 2:18 pm

Oh my god that was huge!

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Anonymous May 27, 2009 3:30 pm

je ne sais pas si mon "vous avez tir les premiers" est aussi pathtique et ridicule que tu le penses,libre toi de le penser de toute faon, mais je te trouve trs bien en flagorneur de ces prtendus si beaux tacleurs anglais... et en parlant franais sur un site anglophone, ne sommes nous pas finalement dcals? quant tes faggots, tu es franchement eagger to please them (tu devrais le savoir, ils ne nous aiment ni comme ennemis, ni comme amis!!!)

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Anonymous May 27, 2009 5:03 pm

Tout ce que je dis c'est que les franais ont l'habitude de pleurnicher et ne se rendent pas compte de l'image dplorable que cela donne de notre pays, et je n'aime pas que la France paraisse ridicule. L'image que l'on donne l'tranger m'importe beaucoup, c'est tout. MAis apparement la majorit des franais n'en ont que faire de donner raison aux stereotypes gnants qui nous collent la peau.

Je me fous totalement des anglais, mais au moins eux pleurnichent moins et agissent plus.

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Anonymous May 27, 2009 5:37 pm

de toute faon ce sont des sournois qui font mieux et plus discrtement les basses besognes que les joueurs franais, je dois bien te le concder, monsieur le dfenseur de l'image de la France!

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lol May 27, 2009 10:25 pm

Anonymous said

"frenchman? Morgan Parra is portuguese!"

Actually Morgan Parra was on the born 15 November 1988 in Metz, France and he is named after the well known Irish parranoist Morgan O'Reilly.

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Anonymous May 28, 2009 12:08 pm

it's part ofthe game.. if you delay the pass to (don't know the right verb maybe "employ") a defender you should pay the price..
perfectly legal tackle and good sacrifice from scrumhalf to help his team!

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Anonymous May 28, 2009 1:21 pm

"Actually Morgan Parra was on the born 15 November 1988 in Metz, France and he is named after the well known Irish parranoist Morgan O'Reilly"

And he was named Parra after is Grandfather, and hes Great Grandfather. And so on.

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Anonymous May 28, 2009 1:40 pm

"but i can tell you that Zidane or Parra or Swarzevski or Ouedraogo or Michalak or Yachvili feel 200% french"

they might feel like frenchmen but the french crowd insult them as well as the colleagues any time things go wrong

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Anonymous May 28, 2009 8:59 pm

always looks worse on slo-mo ... just a good hit, although would have liked to see tacklers arms wrap around a little more

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Anonymous May 31, 2009 7:52 pm

timing's good but no arms wrapping around and high : its just a high shoulder challenge
hes gotta go out with yellow cos its 2 infringments in half a second

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Anonymous September 28, 2009 7:31 pm

1 the tackle was on shoulder = fair 2. tackle was commit, you try and move whie in the air and looki down. = fair 3. he tried to wrap but the guy was flying away from him at a equally speed = fair, nothing he could do. 4. hes french its all fair game. 5. this is rugby......you get hurt....if you dont like it dont play/watch. ppl say if this happened to an english player like ellis.....if it did i would still be laughing my head off (maybe more if it was gomersal)

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Flooz October 26, 2009 5:17 pm

this was brutal but not malicious

but each time, i watch a rugby contest with sky. It's terrifying how the commentators are biased.

they say "big hit" with a so orgasmic tone as parra was on the ground with his shoulder broken... i can swear they would say "murderer or malicious" if the same tackle was from a french player.

a season to forget for the french in terms of referring and stupid commentators

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Anonymous May 24, 2010 9:17 pm

PARRA IS A EXCELLENT PLAYER AND I AM FRENCH AND PROUD OF HIM . GO PARRA GO I AM ALSO FROM METZ , U THE BEST.

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JA1 December 22, 2011 4:41 pm



one could say that lawes Parra-Lysed the number nine!!

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Anonymous February 21, 2012 4:00 pm

If you could dig out the fights from this match too that would be great! Lawes taking a massive punch to the face and it not bothering him at all, only to turn and look at the guy who has just blindsided him

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WRUFC5 June 09, 2014 8:00 am

It's rugby we play not ping pong! If you can't take the physicality of the game don't play it. Any scrum half who is as stupid as this one deserves to get smashed.

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