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Saturday, February 06, 2010

England off to a good start with victory over Wales

England off to a good start with victory over Wales

James Haskell scored two tries as England, wearing their Centenary celebration kit, beat Wales 30-17 at Twickenham to get their 2010 Six Nations off to a positive start.

Wales Alun-Wyn Jones had a moment of madness in the first half as he tripped hooker Dylan Hartley. The indiscretion happened right in front of referee Alain Roland, who yellow carded the Welsh lock without hesitation.

It proved to be a vital moment in the match, as England raced to a 20-3 lead while Jones was off the field in the sin-bin. Tries by Haskell and Danny Care meant that 17 points were scored by the time Jones returned to the field, early in the second half.

In a post match interview, Welsh coach Warren Gatland was frank about the fact that hed quite happily drop a player for a lack of discipline, hinting that Jones may be taught a lesson.

Wales trailed 20-10 with less than ten minutes left, but got back into the match with a superb try by centre James Hook. They almost scored again as Hook offloaded to wing Tom James, who couldnt collect the pass cleanly with the tryline begging.

At 20-17, Wales were on all out attack by a loose pass from Stephen Jones was intercepted by Delon Armitage, and a neat bit of interpassing allowed Matthew Tait to sprint down field before a flick pass to Haskell, who dived over for his second try.

An exciting second half resulted in England breaking Wales run of three Six Nations defeats in succession. Haskell was named Man of the Match, and Martin Johnson will be feeling confident going into their next match, against Italy next weekend.

Wales will host Scotland, who play France at Murrayfield tomorrow.


Time: 05:22

Posted at 8:24 pm | 72 comments

Viewing 72 comments

Fred February 06, 2010 7:50 pm

Looked like a bunch of cricketers out there with that kit. Could have been worse I guess.

Good second half, enjoyable. Funny seeing Prince Harry cheering for Eng, and Prince William for Wales. From what I could tell anyway

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Anonymous February 06, 2010 8:00 pm

I thought the old school jerseys were very nice. Much better than the usual crap England wear. And I'm only 20, so it's not as if I'm an old boy who hates modern designs.

Game was shit, imo.

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JPM February 06, 2010 8:05 pm

One of the worst games of rugby I have ever seen...I have been watching the 5/6 Nations since 1982!

Basic errors, bad kicking, knock on galore...it was like Keystone cops meets Harold Lloyd out there.

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swissvinch February 06, 2010 8:19 pm

Not the biggest game of rugby, that's for sure. Seems that this year's 6N will be based on kicking and defending...
Very very very very poor display by Flood for England: maybe the return of Flutey would inspire England backs.

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Calon Lan February 06, 2010 8:23 pm

Terrible rugby all round to be honest, Wales definitely deserved to lose but I'm not really convinced that means that England deserved to win.

Thinking about it, Wales, England, Ireland & Italy all deserved to lose today if it was possible. Some of the poorest rugby I've seen for some time. I certainly don't see any of the four teams that have played deserving of the Six Nations title if they continue to play like this.

Come on France & Scotland tomorrow, I don'r care what the score is but it would be nice to see at east one team play some proper rugby this weekend.

I know it's only the first weekend and things "should" improve but another four rounds of this sort of rubbish really isn't something to look forward to.

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Anonymous February 06, 2010 8:28 pm

AW Jones was a total disgrace with that penalty, I guess he'll get banned for a couple of weeks.
It wasn't a really good match but England deserved it much more than Wales

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David February 06, 2010 9:05 pm

It was maddening being a welsh fan and watching them play today. England deserved it because we were just plain stupid

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Anonymous February 06, 2010 9:23 pm

i missed the AW jones penalty? what happened?

i thought all in all it was a typical opener, hopefully they iron out the creases by next week (and as neither an england nor welsh supporter, the term 'they' means everyone!)

that being said at times there was some good rugby being played, thought the welsh looked a tad more inspiring in the 2nd half.

i thought monye was poor as poor can be....

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David February 06, 2010 9:46 pm

He tripped an england player 2ft away from the referee. While he was off England got stuck in to Wales.

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3/4 centre February 06, 2010 9:53 pm

I totally agree with you, calon lan.

Allez les bleus!

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Half Pom Half Sheep February 06, 2010 10:16 pm

First half was shit, second half was average.

The first round of the 6N's rarely produces classics, it will get better.

Englands back row were immense.

Borthwick really proved a point today.

Loved Tait's round the back pass.

James Hook is absolute class.

Byrne had a shocker.

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themmull February 06, 2010 11:24 pm

Jesus too games which werent the best to look at and all of a sudden the whole six nations is gonna be shit??

Calm yourselves people and see what happens...Not every game is always open free running rugby yano..

I expect it too be a very scrappy first half tomoro too but eventually the Scot defense will gave and france will win by two or three tries

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UK_andy February 06, 2010 11:35 pm

Swing low, sweet chariot... just in time for the World Cup. Welsh are put in their place... love it!

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Anonymous February 06, 2010 11:47 pm

hmmmmm, themmull, i agree about its only the first few games so to say the 6N will be crap is rubbish but, im not so sure about the way you describe the game with scot and france, to me, i interperet that as a big defence game, and really if going by scotlands previous defensive game (australia) im not sure how their defence can give way as such....

i think that might be their only hope, to kill the ball and force france into errors...

i have a feeling in scotland try to play a more expansive running game and with it being their first game this competition, mistakes WILL be made and france will not hesitate to rip them apart!

anyway, on this game, i gotta say i love the england shirts, they actually look great, i think it brings back the rugby, and not the advertising, you notice the O2 emblem, hardly visible which i thought was great! (and im not an old boy either!!!)

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Anonymous February 06, 2010 11:52 pm

ok ok, im sorry, but where the hell is the mention and french part in this game today?!?!?

I mean, its the SIX Nations right, so why werent the french team being interviewed today?!?! and also WTF sunday is the sabbath, the day of rest, why the hell would they put france playing then?! dont they know that its the day of rest, obviously the IRB had something to do with this!!!!

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Anonymous February 07, 2010 12:34 am

I agree with ^ about scheduling games on Sunday. Scotland was more or less screwed out of Euan Murray this weekend because the IRB decided to schedule the game on Sunday. Why does anyone need to play on Sunday, least of all the one team (as far as I know) with a play who refuses to play on sunday (which, for the record, isn't the Sabbath. That'd be sunday, which is why the word for "Saturday" in most European languages is the same as the word for "Sabbath.")

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Anonymous February 07, 2010 12:48 am

^ To the religious dope:

Welcome to the 21st century and a secular society! We have been playing sport on Sundays since the 20th century... perhaps you were slightly confused and sensed familiarity with England's 19th century looking kit - this would be an error in judgment sir as it is, in fact, the year 2010. I think your day of rest should be spent shopping for an up to date, nay, relevant frame of mind. I wish you good hunting!

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Anonymous February 07, 2010 3:39 am

ummmm, no sabbath is sunday fool....

i do agree though, the IRB are trying to screw france though, i dont know how...i know why...everybody hates us, but i dont know how it will screw us, but it will!

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Anonymous February 07, 2010 3:45 am

andy powell should grow his hair back.....he looks odd with short hair.....

'I mean, its the SIX Nations right, so why werent the french team being interviewed today?!?!'

lol, a shocker eh!! IRB must be planning some hefty ban for the french soon!

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Predicts a French 6N February 07, 2010 5:33 am

In the games defence, I must say atleast tries were being scored?

Five tries, three coming from England. How often can you say that? Not much lately any how. Plus one of the tries was from about 80 metres out, intercept by Delon Armitage, offloads to Tait, Tait steps Shane Williams and offloads to Haskell for a try.

Big fixture next week with France vs Ireland, I suspect France will win this. One of the reasons Ireland won last year was becuase all their big matches were played at home (England, France), this year though is going to be tough.

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Ted February 07, 2010 8:03 am

I was at the game and I have to say we were pretty optimistic afterwards. Not a perfect game by England (and I can imagine being very frustrated if I was a Wales fan) but not too shabby either. If we can get the silly penalty count down we might have half a chance.

What was more everyone I was with said how entertaining it had been, especially with the Welsh fightback in the second half. My standards are probably really low as I'm a humble NH rugby fan and I don't even know what good rugby smells like let alone looks like, but I'm a pretty happy Nh fan this morning.

Oh and i thought the new jerseys were ace, shame we aren't going to play in them every time.

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Phil February 07, 2010 9:44 am

I enjoyed the game, especially the second half. Thought that Easter was great carrying the ball, Care's running was incisive, hopefully a sign of better things to come from England. Shame play didn't spread to the wingers as often as we'd like.
Incidentally it's desperately naive to refer to the 'secular 21st century'! Just because the majority of those contributing to British media adopt this stance doesn't change the fact that a non-religious world view is only held by a tiny proportion of the world's population!

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skinner February 07, 2010 10:18 am

A note to Brian Moore, who said Tom James was "cheeky" to contest the knock-on.

"A knock-on occurs when a player loses possession of the ball and it goes forward, or when a player hits the ball forward with the hand or arm, or when the ball hits the hand or arm and goes forward, and the ball touches the ground or another player before the original player can catch it."

Nothing in there about the chest that I can see.

Anyways, not like Rolland could've known - from where he was, it looked like a clear knock-on.

And like others have said, it's not like Wales really deserved a win here, eh? Man, they look far off from what they were in 2008...England didn't look to bad, either. Sort out the scrums, I think. But good line-out and good defense.

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Calon Lan February 07, 2010 10:45 am

Anonymous said:
andy powell should grow his hair back.....he looks odd with short hair.....

More than anything, Andy Powell really needs to grow some rugby skills and he's not going to grow those lying on a sun bed or working out in a gym.

I appreciate that he's generally OK at putting one foot in front of the other but he's normally a liability when he gets hold of the ball.

Alun Wyn made a really stupid mistake in the heat of the moment which pretty much settled the game.

He doesn't have a history of mistakes like this and I don't think being dropped as some sites are suggesting is going to achieve anything.

Because of where he lives, when he gets up today his name is going to be on the front page of every Welsh paper and they'll go over it again & again on the news throughout the day.

Although the whole team were pretty awful for the majority of the match, in Wales at least he will be correctly ripped apart for his mistake.

He'll learn from it and he'll move on.

Not long until the Scottish/French match now. Not really convinced that Scotland are in a position to score tries but I hope they at least try to.

It seems that most points so far instead of being earned by the scoring team have been gifted by mistakes made by the other team.

Although France always get the "Not sure which team will turn up" comments I don't really think they are any worse for that that than Wales are to be honest.

Hopefully they won't play as badly as Wales did yesterday as I think they are going to need to play with a smile to encourage Scotland to shift up a gear.

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mat February 07, 2010 10:46 am

the game wasn't that bad, some good attacking running by wales, just spoilt by mindless kicking.
from listening to the commentry from Brian Moore the ref seemed to not have a clue about the scrum, wales clearly had the edge, bit for some reason when wales shoved eng off the ball the ref calls a reset? and the eng put-ins were almost rugby league.
England kicking was much more organised, but i hardly agree with the comentator on this clip who says england were playing an attacking style!
Difference was Jones got caught Shaw didn't and the interception.
linical work by armitage, 14 point inerception!

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mat February 07, 2010 10:53 am

calon lan.
wales weren't aweful yesterday, they just lost, they ran the ball much better than england and had the edge in the scrum and should've had more penalties/free kicks.
however they would have only missed the kicks at goal/kicked the ball away, Copper ruined two moves in the english 22 by kicking so the full back called easy marks.
watch it again there are lots of possitives, sort out the line out and kick less / recycle more and we can win the rest.

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3/4 centre February 07, 2010 11:07 am

I didn't see the entire game, but the end was excellent, for a neutral. The welsh return, and this superb counter-attack when they was about to score again... It was very unexpected and pleasant to watch.

The english jerseys were beautiful. the violet one is a shame compare to this one.

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Anonymous February 07, 2010 12:03 pm

The sabbath was, originally, a Saturday, and still is for Jews. Hence the Italian word for saturday is 'Sabato' and in Spanish it is 'Sabado'.

However, look at Sunday in Italian - Domenico. Spanish - Domingo. French - Dimanche. Gaelic - Didomhnaich. All of these have the same form 'domus' which is Latin for 'Lord'. So, Sunday is the Lord's Day.

Either way none of this should matter - we wouldn't be having this debate if Murray hadn't turned into a bible basher. The buck stops with him, not anyone else.

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Anonymous February 07, 2010 12:25 pm

here we go , we'l be hearing about how england are favourites for the world cup now ..

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minstrel boy February 07, 2010 12:29 pm

you gotta love them old school jerseys!
it was a good and fun match to watch. the only thing that surprises me is the fact Flood is still in the team... he is not a centre, period.

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goodNumber10 February 07, 2010 12:32 pm

Terrible game, and i'm an england supporter.

Wales should have won it, but neither team showed any ambition until the tail of the game and I've not seen such dismal forward play in years.

England had no ambition, wilkinson hardly moved the ball once I think because he had flood at 12 instead of fluety - if i'm honest i think flood has to start at 10.

Tait did nothign and got sonned in the contact area, nice flick pass to haskell though - but too litle too late.

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welshno7 February 07, 2010 12:59 pm

i dont know why the whole of wales
have suddenly written off our team . okay we lost our opening game but we lost to a very good english side playing at home , also the score line looks awfully flattering but it was a very tight game , there's no way you can defend an interception! , we now have 3 home games to look forward to so keep your heads up boys!
but on the whole must say well done to england
CYMRU AM BYTH

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Flooz February 07, 2010 2:08 pm

People are a bit hard with england
Ok, it wasn't the best game of rugby of the year, but i feel this english team can do something this tournament.
Players like Care, Tait or Armitage can bring a lot if they xanted to play the whole 80 minutes.

Wales seemed a bit limited despite their good reaction. but what a silly foul by AW Jones, it costs 17 points...

Let see what will do our "parano frogs" (their new nickname?) vs scotland ;) Maybe more open game in the air?

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Terry the Trucker February 07, 2010 3:04 pm

ah of course, whenever England win a game, the other team ALWAYS deserved to win. forgot that rule.

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geordie February 07, 2010 5:52 pm

england were so lucky jenkins and rees wernt playing then i think wales would have snatched it, but england did well and there rugby wasnt too boring.

oh how i love a good win over the welsh

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Anonymous February 07, 2010 5:57 pm

Dont want to get too optimistic but its amazing what a win can do, even if its due to the other teams ineptitude. case in point wales a couple of years ago. they won as half of englands team got injured, ben kay had to play back row and england went in to self-destruct mode. wales still had to take the chances which they did. they got the win and went on to the grand slam

now I want everyone to read clearly - im not saying england will win the grand slam or even the championship. but its game like this which can give teams confidence which encourages a more expansive game. when people like flutey return this can only benefit england further (no offence to flood but he is on his day a good number 10 and was playing at 12 whereas flutey on his day is world class 12. makes a huge difference)

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WelshOsprey February 07, 2010 6:41 pm

Fucking awful game.
I think we've found hooks best position though.

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Anonymous February 07, 2010 6:45 pm

tait got slung about like a ragdoll all game

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John F February 07, 2010 7:22 pm

Anonymous,

In latin domus=house, deus=god.

That was a pretty poor game as everyone has said. Hook had some good moments, that was probably the best thing in the game. Apart from that it was quite even, the key moment clearly being Alun Wyn Jones bizarre decision to drip Hartley. He is a hooker, not like he was about to go on a dazzling run!

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sebastian February 07, 2010 7:31 pm

little harry doesnt understand the game :D

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mat February 07, 2010 9:12 pm

the big talking point in rugby is teams not playing adventurous attacking rugby, england did none of this but still won.
wales did in the end and it did work, but it was the attacking play that lead to the intercept try.
welsh no 7.
'theres no way to intercept an intercept'
there is its called playing boring and deep leaving the full back in position, but Byrne is such an agreesive runner leaving it open, aweful pass though jones.

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mat February 07, 2010 9:20 pm

terrythetucker
from what i've read in the media, mainly from people who don't follow rugby england were miles better than wales, 3 points in it with 5mins to play?
i wouldn't put a bet on for a grand slam yet!
it was Brian moore and the pundits that said that england "got the rub of the green" with some decisions.

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cp85 February 07, 2010 9:31 pm

Always find these 'tait got slung around' comments such utter twaddle. The guy set up the try and wasn't too bad throughout the game. His problem was getting flat ball from Flood, hopefully that problem will be sorted witht ht reintroduction of Flutey in the next game.

Bboth teams can argue missing players. Mike Philips is obviously a huge loss to Wales as well as numerous others. England have a fair few too.

Trip was stupid and Jones will no doubt get punished. Wouldn't say it cost them the game, but it didn't help losing the big man. Lets not forget England lost two players last year to narrowly lose in a tense game.

I'm looking forward to seeing how the rest of the tournament progresses.

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Rowan February 07, 2010 9:37 pm

Yes, you could say England are lucky Jenkins and Rees weren't playing, but can't you say likewise Wales are lucky that Mears, Vickery, Sheridan and Flutey are out too? I mean if you're going to make the injury argument, you have to give it both ways or you don't use it at all. Injuries, just like yellow cards are part of the game, as England painfully found out last year with all their sinbins which cost them the Ireland and Wales games.

Ah well, looking forward to next week, enormous clash between Ireland and France, England should look to get a 15+ point win over the Italians

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Anonymous February 07, 2010 10:30 pm

I absolutely think you could say that the send off cost Wales the match...17 points in those 10 minutes that may otherwise not have happened - especially the try just before half-time. I mean, of course England out-played Wales, but I'm sure Jones knows/thinks he cost them the game.

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canis February 07, 2010 11:54 pm

Anonymous said... All of these have the same form 'domus' which is Latin for 'Lord'

I think you mean "dominus".

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David February 07, 2010 11:55 pm

We were crap in the lineout anyway, but -1 to the pack made our scrum shite as well. The late comeback was spectacular but it just put us under too much pressure.. imo england deserved it really.

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David February 07, 2010 11:55 pm

We were crap in the lineout anyway, but -1 to the pack made our scrum shite as well. The late comeback was spectacular but it just put us under too much pressure.. imo england deserved it really.

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Anonymous February 08, 2010 12:23 am

Is it just me, or was cooper absolute dribble at scrum half for wales. He seemed slow and some of his kicking was daft?

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1up February 08, 2010 2:51 am

Hook is a genius

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Anonymous February 08, 2010 4:19 am

Anonymous UK_andy said...
Swing low, sweet chariot... just in time for the World Cup. Welsh are put in their place... love it!


Wayyyyy too early for that sort of enthusiasm Andy! Ireland will whack England at Twickenham. Awesome Hook try.

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Reds February 08, 2010 4:23 am

amazing to see some actually running rugby from the north, good stuff.

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vinniechan February 08, 2010 5:03 am

Flood was good in defence but questionable in attack. He kicked when he was supposed to run and ran when supposed to kick.
Also, I think the forwards in this game were doing absolutely everything to slow down the ball for the opposition, which explained.
England should not have conceded those tries and something must be done (the first came when the entire pack were defending behind the ruck, resulting a prob scoring down the wing; the second happened when 3 forwards defended inside channel Tait had to drift out wide. Simply moronic).

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vinniechan February 08, 2010 5:06 am

Also, I think Tait was solid (though not dazzling as people expect him to be). Made a few good runs and gained some yards in the thick of action, and generally, made 5 tackles and missed one which he could not do much about.

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c ashton February 08, 2010 9:52 am

i thought d armitige had bit of an ordinary game i know he hasnt played that much for irish after injury maybe that was the problem would have like to see foden come on for the last 10 mins atleast
also flood should be 10 or nothing he was terrible as a centre

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r flutey February 08, 2010 9:57 am

has any one else noticed that when england get quick ruck ball they all run around like head less chickens like there suprised at getting quick ball and dont know what to do with it.
they always seem to kick when they should run and run when they should kick are we just crap at decision making or what

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Anonymous February 08, 2010 11:46 am

i think there is a distinct lack of drive.....(sort of agree with the above)....i find it similar to scotland.....

both teams seem so surprised to have clean quick ball, they dont really know what to do.....and no one seems to know what anyone else is going to do.....

i watch these quick little passes in other games (especially france) and its almost like everybody on the french team knows what is happening and they RUN HARD!!!! whereas england tend to look shocked, someone runs, throws a pass to someone who wasnt expecting it, and half the time its an awful pass, then that guy gets hammered, and its a fight to keep the ball....or the guy knocks it on....

now i know its not all the time, and england did show some inspiring rugby this weekend (i stress the word some!) id just like to see some more powerful quick, meaningful rugby....

for example, every french player, back and forward alike, look like they want to score a try when they get the ball...ears pinned back and running...except they arent so one dimensional.....

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Phil February 08, 2010 12:34 pm

Agree with the above.

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rolloart92 February 08, 2010 2:17 pm

Just glad to see some nice tries and to see England win.

And the comment by Skinner is very stupid. Its still a knock on if the ball rebounds off your chest,...if you say it isn't your a bit foolish. :/.

And I totally agree with Calon Lan, he should concentrate on rugby and not fake tan. I think hes over rated anyway.

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rolloart92 February 08, 2010 2:17 pm

Just glad to see some nice tries and to see England win.

And the comment by Skinner is very stupid. Its still a knock on if the ball rebounds off your chest,...if you say it isn't your a bit foolish. :/.

And I totally agree with Calon Lan, he should concentrate on rugby and not fake tan. I think hes over rated anyway.

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Terry the Trucker February 08, 2010 5:06 pm

England were better than Wales, end of. that is why they won.

PS, learn to spell your own name mate. (Mat???)

peace out.

Eddie Stobart's massive.

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Eric Shin February 08, 2010 8:38 pm

Rollart, its not a knock on if its from chest matey, arms + hand. do a bit of basic reading up sunshine xxx

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Anonymous February 08, 2010 10:28 pm

they went through the replay at the end of the game. it hit james chest first. he then carried on and didnt ground it properly. in fact it he actually knocked in on when trying to ground it. so justice done there even if for the wrong supposed knock on

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Skinner February 08, 2010 11:53 pm

"And the comment by Skinner is very stupid. Its still a knock on if the ball rebounds off your chest,...if you say it isn't your a bit foolish. :/."

Thanks for the feedback, friend. But those aren't my words, they're from the IRB rulebook. If you've got a problem with those, I suggest working your way up to the Laws Committee.

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Skinner February 09, 2010 12:02 am

^^Fair enough, if that's what happened anonymous. You're right in that ultimately, Rolland was vindicated in his call as James knocked it on trying to ground it. I was just referring to Brian Moore calling James "cheeky" for contesting the knock-on, being as it hit his chest first.

Brian Moore may be a forward, but he's still a rugby player and should know what the definition of a knock-on is.

Whatever, it's not like it matters. England won, deservedly. And Brian Moore is a tit sometimes; that's common knowledge.

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Sambobly February 09, 2010 4:06 am

How good was that James Hook Try!?! That was a great run! Bloody hell!

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Anonymous February 09, 2010 4:36 am

guys, you have to remember brian moore is a very passionate commentator (whether you like him or not, its obvious who he supports in a match) so he gets worked up! i think him talking about being 'cheeky' is referring to the accusation that the ball came off wilkinson....

so thats why.....

i know wilkinson was never the biggest player around, but honestly, the guy looked a bit like a lost school boy on the pitch at times...he did seem very 'commanding' like his usual self....and really seemed a little dreamy at times......apart from kicking duties....

but anyway its the firt game, and the guy has skill...so hopefully for englands sake he will pick up a bit more.

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Ted February 09, 2010 8:00 am

It absolutely was a knock on. To use the same quotation, "A knock-on occurs when a player loses possession of the ball and it goes forward". Is that not exactly what happened? It doesn't HAVE to come off a hand or arm as the last point of contact. If I'm running with the ball and I drop it and it goes forward off my chest then it's a knock-on surely? The only time it arguably wouldn't be is if I kicked it.

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Kev February 10, 2010 5:39 pm

That's funny, she says the same thing about you.

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Terry the Trucker February 10, 2010 7:15 pm

Ted, do some seriously BASIC reading up. a knock on is off the hand/arm. not chest. the issue was the grounding (there was none).

Eddie Stobart's massive :):):)

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Ted February 10, 2010 9:02 pm

Terry - I was quoting from what Skinner said about a dozen posts into this thread. If the rule says that a knock on can occur when a player loses control of the ball and it goes forward then it doesn't have to be off the hand or arm does it? He was passed the ball, he lost control of the ball, it went forward. Therefore knock on. Is that BASIC enough?

But you're right about eddie stobart. He is massive.

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Terry the Trucker February 11, 2010 7:19 pm

Erm matey is the ball going forward off your head a knock on???. nope. neither is chest. case closed, done and dusted, kippers and custard.

Eddie Stobart's massive.

PS, its a Law not a rule, laters sweetheart.

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