Closing montage from Heineken Cup final


George Pisi hit makes Shane Geraghty ill


Japanese player loses ball over tryline


Jason Rutledge's great tryline defence


The Top 5 'Big Boppers' in World Rugby


Ma'afu banned for punch on Tom Youngs


Tony Brown takes big hit from Pakalani


Carlos Spencer & Stephen Larkham fight


Dafydd Howells scores quickest try ever?

Monday, May 17, 2010

Jamie Heaslip flattens Ronan O'Gara in Magners League semi

Jamie Heaslip flattens Ronan O'Gara in Magners League semi

Leinster defeated Munster in the Magners League semi final in what was yet another great match this past weekend. It was a typical all-Irish derby with plenty of passion and ferocity, and was a tightly fought affair but was separated by some good kicking, and a nice try to Rob Kearney.

There were a fair few talking points, but one of the most enjoyable moments for the Leinster fans, and most probably neutrals, was when Ronan OGara got absolutely smashed by powerful number eight Jamie Heaslip.

Heaslip had such a strong game that he was actually named Man of the Match, once again adding to his growing reputation as one of the best in his position in the world.

OGara on the other hand, his Ireland teammate that he smashed here, was recently named Europes beat player for the past 15 years of European rugby competition.

He claimed the award for ERC European Player Award after a panel of former players chose him. Those players included Sir Ian McGeechan, ex-internationals Lawrence Dallaglio, Ieuan Evans, Fabien Galthie, Donal Lenihan, Michael Lynagh and Stuart Barnes.

Whether OGara would be your choice or not, theres no debating the fact that he got well and truly smashed by Heaslip. There was another big incident and that was the Tomas O'Leary tackle on Cian Healey just before the tryline. If you'd like, I'll post that too for discussions sake.

Posted at 9:54 pm | 71 comments

Viewing 71 comments

Marc May 17, 2010 9:24 pm

Heaslip was a good sport he went over after it happened to make sure he was ok.

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Anonymous May 17, 2010 9:25 pm

was delighted couldnt have happened to a nicer person ha

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Dan May 17, 2010 9:30 pm

Typical cynical response from a Leinster supporter! He has given more to this country than you ever will. Sucess is the worst thing that could have happened to ye. Im not judging all Leinster fans just people who enjoy watching there own country men getting run over!

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Anonymous May 17, 2010 9:30 pm

this made my weekend

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Anonymous May 17, 2010 9:39 pm

nothing better than seeing ROG getting done.
watched the lions dvd again the other day and i still couldnt believe how he managed to throw that 2nd test away.
deserves all he gets

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Fin May 17, 2010 9:40 pm

in response to Dans comment i was there for 2006 when u beat us in lansdowne semi final i was 14 years old and i remember COUNTLESS men in red coming up reminding me and jeering me about their great victory i hugely respect rog when he pulls on the green jersey but when hes in red hes the enemy simple as.as regards to letting success go to our heads again i refer to 06 you never EVER let us live it down till we got you back now were gettin you back in spades just cause your all gettin a taste of your own medicine dont complain!its thoroughly deserved!

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Anonymous May 17, 2010 9:40 pm

did you enjoy watching cian healy almost get decapitated by tomas o leary then dan?

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Anonymous May 17, 2010 9:45 pm

Hahaha Healy got owned, he's wayyyyy too overhyped. Initial contact of O'Leary was shoulder/bottom of chin (Healy tucked his head in) and it should have been a yellow, but it was funny seeing him flop down like a sack of po ta toes.

AMAZING hit by Heaslip. They must have shown the reply 300 times after it happened. Great stuff

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Anonymous May 17, 2010 9:48 pm

Dan why bring this back to a munster leinster argument nothing was even mentioned of the sort. If your going that way.....Over in Edinburgh for the final last year there were numerous bitter munster fans wearing leicester tiger scarfs instead of supporting our countries provinces..........what about the abuse johnno a fellow country man received in recent weeks when he had a dip in form. your full of shit!!

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BAZINGA May 17, 2010 9:49 pm

Heaslip just seems to be getting better and better, O'Gara never stood a chance there he tried to take him in completely the wrong position and heaslip's running power, de villiers who is one of the best centres in the world was struggling to stop him along with whoever the other player was I couldnt see his number or face. What's with all the yapping at each other lark? Comment on the video not all this my team is better than your team rubbish, it saddens me what some irish fans come out with nowadays, I miss the old days when we were all crap lol

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FrankyH May 17, 2010 9:50 pm

Dan, who was your comment aimed at exactly? I can't work it out.

Big charge!
'You're not getting on, the bus is full'. Beeeeaaauuuuty!

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Richard King May 17, 2010 9:51 pm

Yes please to the Cian Healy/Toms O'Leary attempted decapitation incident! Whole match highlights would be even better!

I've watched replays of this steamrolling over 100 times, and it just continues to get better! ROG definitely needed his Lucozade Sport after that!

LEINSTER! LEINSTER! LEINSTER!

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Abs7 May 17, 2010 10:15 pm

Once again another tackling masterclass by ROG..

This guy is starting to make Sexton look like god with regards to defence at the moment.

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good one May 17, 2010 10:26 pm

...I guess good on ROG for making an effort? If it were Humphries, I'm guessing he wouldn't have been in Heaslip's way to begin with.

I'm usually a huge fan of ROG's (despite his god-awful tackling abilities), but why does it seem like he picks the shortest of the short shorts out of all the Munstermen (save Flannery, maybe)?

I would've liked to see Leinster get through to the HC finals since Munster didn't - Heaslip against Harinordoquy always has potential to be a good show. Oh well, I guess.

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Anonymous May 17, 2010 10:37 pm

Heaslip is a beast. Plain and simple.

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Tom May 17, 2010 10:45 pm

Nice steamroll by Heaslip, some whiplash too!

Fair played Leinster, Munster will not be the force they were with the blooding of new players but they have some good lads coming through. Average age of the squad v the Cornish Pirates was about 23.

Look ye cant blame ROG for the lions test ffs there were 15 men on the pitch that day so give over, he wasnt the only player who missed tackles in the lead up to the try that won it for the saffs.

Connacht fan

PS - Any highlights of the game RD?

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Clinomaniac May 17, 2010 10:47 pm

Heaslip. Right up there with the best 8's in the world ATM no question!

Big hit!

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Anonymous May 17, 2010 10:48 pm

Why oh why did he go high on him? I'm sorry but as professional rugby players you'd expect anyone to be able to bring someone else down no matter the size. It's technique. Adapt, you're not going to smash him backwards so go for the legs. Numpty. Oh well not like he's thrown lions tours away or anything.

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Tim May 17, 2010 10:49 pm

O'Gara really is a defensive doormat isn't he.
How many times have we seen him end up on his arse after trying to make a tackle?

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DanWalsh May 17, 2010 10:54 pm

have to fair play to heaslip, great carry great sportsman-ship, he doesnt let the munster/leinster rivalry get to him,he might smash o gara, but he'll check up on him after not shout abuse like i saw other leinster players doing when rog went down, people need to remember these players are internation team mates, im munster through and through no doubt, but i will cheer leinster in the final this year, the carry on of some supporters on both sides is nothing more than childish, leinster are flying high and i say fair play ye deserve it but dont let it get to your heads yes you have been better than munster in the last 13 months but not by much, enjoy it while ye can

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BOD May 17, 2010 11:07 pm

Hey its not just Leinster fans who might not like ROG, please don't blame all the negative comments here on Leinster fans - most of us respect him a lot. Though we did enjoy caning you again this year xoxo
BTW Heaslip - SHAKE AND BAKE BABY!!!

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robbo May 17, 2010 11:13 pm

id give my right testicle to get the ball in that position ...

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mise May 17, 2010 11:22 pm

In O Gara's position, wilkinson wasted his opportunities by spending most of his career in Newcastle.

He may have been (one of) the best out halfs in Europe over the last 10 years, but in club rugby in Europe, he hasn't shone to the same extent.

On Heaslip: big fan, and e had an incredible game, but Harinordoquy is still the best in Europe in that position.

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mise May 17, 2010 11:24 pm

sorry that post may seem confusing:

I'm referring to Wilkinson's relative anonymity in club rugby as facilitating O Gara's selection as best #10

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Anonymous May 17, 2010 11:42 pm

"On Heaslip: big fan, and e had an incredible game, but Harinordoquy is still the best in Europe in that position."

This year Harinordoquy has been the best in Europe without a doubt, but it's too early to call long term who's better

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Anonymous May 17, 2010 11:48 pm

When an Irishman does it it's amazing, but when Jean Deysel does it from a standing start it's "Oh it's only Ronan O'gara"

I often mistake Heaslip for a prop, not really a proper "athlete" more of a bully boy.

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(u-p)rick May 17, 2010 11:54 pm

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ycG6Q46e7cE&feature=related

You guys should take a look at this, its an eye gouge, VVVV nasty!!!

lol, "O'gara's always going to lose out".... you said it....

now come on, heaslip vs ROG...who didnt see that happening?

View Video

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Joost May 18, 2010 1:29 am

O'Gara tackles like a six year old girl. Heaslip rund like a 50 stone juggernaut.

ROG is making it easy for Kidney to pick the most complete and aggressive 10 in Ireland. An SEXton is on Fire!

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jpm May 18, 2010 1:34 am

Well deserved. It actually made ROG's aatempted tackle on Fourie look pretty good

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Greiffel May 18, 2010 8:30 am

The troll is back, causing trouble and embarrassing fellow SA fans as usual.

Once again, anything deemed to be against the site's commenting guidelines will be removed. Thanks

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james May 18, 2010 8:47 am

yeah lets get up the O'Leary incident and full highlights, was at the game and it appeared like a war at times with hits from the start knocking players clean off their feet. To those who do not understand the Leinster/Munster rivalvry the best way to describe it from my persprective is that, after Leinster, there is no team that I prefer seeing succeed than Munster, but at the same time there is no team I prefer to beat than Munster. A strange rivalry but in my mind at least it makes sense!
With regard to the childish abuse each side throws at us I do think were as bad as each other, although at the Heineken Cup final last year the Munster fans left themselves down very badly with their abusive anti-Leinster support and refusal to sell their tickets to Leinster fans. I was told by one fan that I was 'wearing the wrong jersey and should still be in the red of Munster, because they are Ireland's only team'. Boo-urns.
I think its time be all calmed down a bit, enjoyed the action the way the players do by getting on with it on the pitch with high tempo, high aggression rugby but shaking hands at the end and moving on. Nexy year, as always, I hope the best team wins.

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Leinster 8 May 18, 2010 9:18 am

Well said James

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Mike May 18, 2010 10:27 am

O'Gara still hasn't learned to tackle - no surprise there. But the guy was knocked clean out and refused to leave the pitch, you have to respect his guts. It's not how many times you get knocked down, it's how many times you get up that counts.

Re. the rivalry - you always get pricks supporting every team/province/club/nation. You shouldn't shrug and say 'Saffa/Leinster/Stade/whatever fans are pricks', you should say 'pricks are everywhere, even supporting MY team, and I hate pricks'.

Re. the guy who claims that Heaslip is not an athlete, but is like a prop - did you see his try against France last year? And all the tries he has scored for Leinster in the last couple of years?

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Anonymous May 18, 2010 10:32 am

Ha! There is a great article on The East Terrace about his tackel technique. Google Ronan O'Gara and 'patent'.

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Mike May 18, 2010 11:00 am

I think this is the article you mean: http://theeastterrace.typepad.com/my_weblog/2009/05/ronan-ogara-looking-to-patent-unique-tackling-technique.html

It is bizarre how you can be so good at 90% of the game, including the really difficult stuff, and be so bad at the 10% that is the easiest to do. But as I said, I admire the guy's guts, he keeps getting flattened and he keeps getting up.

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Anonymous May 18, 2010 11:16 am

don't suppose RD has a clip of the Donnacha O'callaghan interview where he described playing with o'gara as 'having to look after your little sister'

haha think it was for skysports last year!

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cp85 May 18, 2010 11:42 am

'nothing better than seeing ROG getting done.
watched the lions dvd again the other day and i still couldnt believe how he managed to throw that 2nd test away. deserves all he gets'

- haha, did exactly the same.

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The Inside Shoulder May 18, 2010 11:45 am

Poor ROG, he's so shit at tackling and everybody knows it.

Every team he plays against must have a "ROG call" where they send a big man straight down his channel.

It's a viscious circle as well because now he's got this reputation whenever anybody looks up and sees him they try extra hard to knock him down.

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Anonymous May 18, 2010 12:19 pm

O'Gara is a bitch....always has been. You dont try and take an 8 that high when ur a 10. Especially if your as powerless as this fairy.I'd say Heaslip was delighted to see Rog in front of him......Choo Choo!!

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sebastian May 18, 2010 12:35 pm

he could have gone lower really. "around the ankles they are all about the same size" a wise man once told me

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Dan May 18, 2010 1:16 pm

My comment was aimed ay annonymous up the top. And how am I making it a Munster Leinster thing, it was a Munster Leinster game, so what are you on about?!? And why do Leinster fans expect every Munster fan to support ye? I severely doubt Saracens fans were supporting Leicester last year, I personaly dont have a problem supporting ye but you cant expect all of us to jump on the Leinster band wagon when we lose. And Fin you were 14, they were taking the piss, they would hardly rub it in a kids face. Try Ulster fans getting stuck in you for supporting them in 99!

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Flooz May 18, 2010 1:24 pm

Great hit
and sorry to say that, enjoyable to see that on o'gara.

As he was named, "best player of erc history" it's a good recall to describe how he was bad in defence or in the game animation.
He was just the right No10 to kick the penalties conquered by a fabulous munster pack.

But munster titles speak for him as Wilkinson, Jason robinson or Galthie chosed to stay in their "family" clubs of newcastle, sale or colomiers

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Anonymous May 18, 2010 2:38 pm

hey jamie is class really powerful i'm a die hard leinster fan and i did enjoy seeing rog get flattened! :) but when u look at the out half position its a team choice! o'gara kicks every thing never sets up the backs and can't defend so o'leary covers his ass as well as the back row but when u look at sexton he can kick good just has had a injury ridin season but has sttill a way higher percentage than rog in the magners league this season can kick further than him great running threat and a brillant tackler thinking back to the win in thomand he held up quiny on the gain line created a maul and we turned the ball over he is a great defender but we need both for the world cup cos u can't have all ur eggs in the one basket! love beating munster but cheer for them when they play anyone else!!!

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Darren May 18, 2010 3:13 pm

Heaslip is the best Irish rugby player around at the moment.

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Anonymous May 18, 2010 3:28 pm

Ronan o'gara is a great kicker, and probably one of the best readers of the game in the northern hemisphere. But he is so weak its ridiculous. I swear theres enough videos of ronan o'gara getting smashed, or pussying out of a tackle or generally getting sat down for rugby dump to do a compilation video.

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PK May 18, 2010 5:19 pm

Guys, it was a case of a number 8 going down the number 10 channel - that's part of rugby and we shouldn't be shocked. O'Gara is not a big man and his defence has always come into question, but he's still a class act and has been the heart-beat of Munster & Ireland for a long time, deserving his European Player Award recently from the ERC. Heaslip is already a legend and is probably one of the best number 8's in the world and a future Irish captain, I've no doubt (and I'm a Munsterman!).
Let's stop all this bickering between regions, it distracts from the rugby - the players all shook hands after that match so let that be the end of it.

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Anonymous May 18, 2010 8:12 pm

Thats just the way it is Ronan

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mise May 18, 2010 8:14 pm

Sexton's kicking is now, I'm afraid, waay to suspect. Both replacement kickers for Leinster have done far better than him recently.
And its now Ireland need to focus on, not the fact that this time last year Sexton's kicking was good.
Sexton _was_ the challenger, now he's all Ireland have as an alternative (unless Kearney starts kicking seriously, and takes the job off sexton).
Good overall player, but we do need a kicker.

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Anonymous May 18, 2010 8:27 pm

To be fair to O Gara, Heaslip is a number 8 and if he couldn't smash through an outhalf it wouldn't say much for him.Heaslip has about 4 stone on him as well and is a fair bit taller too so it was never exactly a fair fight.

Definitley worth putting up O'Leary's tackle on Cian Healy though

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MCB May 18, 2010 9:11 pm

Well said PK. I think a lot of this still comes down to the fact that many people find O'Gara is a dislikeable person for one reason or another. Seems people jump at the chance to criticise him for any mistakes he makes or whenever he misses a tackle.

People, especially his critics, seem happy to ignore the fact that the man is the best tactical kicker in the game, reads it very well, has a good distribution and is one of the best pressure kickers in the world.

Everyone knows he's a very poor defender but he's still one of the best outhalves of the last decade. Was a great hit by heaslip, even any other outhalf wud have found it difficult to have put him down there.

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Jimmy May 18, 2010 10:49 pm

O'Gara is massivley overrated, he can kick yes, but his running game is non-existant, his passing game is only adequate and he can't defend to save his life.
He's lucky he plays in the NH, he'd never cut it as a five eight down south.

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Anonymous May 18, 2010 10:55 pm

Thats a good point MCB I think most reasonable people would agree with you. Despite that I still like slagging him off. He is however alot better than people give him credit for.

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Anonymous May 19, 2010 4:22 am

the funny thing is how all you irish fans complained when jaque fourie and jean deysel ran over ogara saying that it happens all the time, and now an irish guy does it to him and hes suddenly god!
im australian btw not south african but jamie heaslip on form is nowhere near as good as pierre spies is on form.

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Anonymous May 19, 2010 6:18 am

^^^ Pierre Spies is one of the most overated players in the game today, he's not fit to tie Healip's shoes. Heaslip is far better and proved it on the Lions tour.

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Anonymous May 19, 2010 8:05 am

any chance of showing the highlights of the rest of the game?

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Mike May 19, 2010 8:52 am

the funny thing is how all you irish fans complained when jaque fourie and jean deysel ran over ogara saying that it happens all the time, and now an irish guy does it to him and hes suddenly god!
im australian btw not south african but jamie heaslip on form is nowhere near as good as pierre spies is on form.


Another stupid comment. If you actually read back over what has been said and count how many say that O'Gara gets run over all the time and how many say that Heaslip was like Superman to run over him, you will find that 95% of the comments are critical of O'Gara, with a little passing praise of Heaslip.

Also, if you had actually watched the game, you would have seen that Heaslip dragged Leinster to victory in the second half, much like the brilliant Rocky Elsom did several times last year. I hate when folks criticise players they have not watched - I don't see as much SH rugby as I would like, so I never comment on SH players - I can't judge how good they are based on one or two games or 30 seconds of highlights on RD.

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Anonymous May 19, 2010 11:54 am

Well, all i can do is ditto what mike just said....

Its a shame RD is so open to trolls....

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jules May 19, 2010 2:30 pm

"There was another big incident and that was the Tomas O'Leary tackle on Cian Healey just before the tryline. If you'd like, I'll post that too for discussions sake." Yes please!

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Whitearrow May 19, 2010 3:53 pm

His tackling is shit but he still puts his body on the line regardless. There are a few pretty boys in rugby currently who wont even be in the channel. In rugby terms great boosh by heaslip, probably next irish captain. With all his faults though ROG has been pretty reliable for his country. 10 years at the top is not that bad for a poor tackler with poor running game as some say. And yes ireland did not have anyone else to challenge him but he still remained 'solid' for club and country. Say what you want but he will go down as an irish legend.

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Anonymous May 19, 2010 9:25 pm

hmmm definately agree with whitearrow there....


there are a lot of nae-sayers out there and in reality O'Gara is not 'that' bad, just in his defence he always seems to be wrong place wrong time!!!

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Tom May 20, 2010 12:18 am

It's not just his defence, he also has virtually no running game and his distribution is only decent, not particularly great.
He'd never be considered good enough to play for South Africa, New Zealand or Australia, not in a million years.
He' lucky he plays in Europe, where a kicking game gets you by.

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Anonymous May 20, 2010 8:44 am

Captain arrogant using his exemplary tackling technique.

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Whitearrow May 20, 2010 10:24 am

Fair enough he was and is not good enough for the SH teams but he was good enough for us so that's all that matters really. Rugby has only really started to come to the fore in Ireland in recent years. Humphreys, O'Gara, Sexton... always getting better so hopefully we will continue to progress

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Anonymous May 20, 2010 1:01 pm

...yeh id agree ROG couldnt walk into a SH team....

...just as certain 10's from the SH couldnt step into a NH side...

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Anonymous May 20, 2010 6:50 pm

Its funny, as an Irishman living abroad reading all the back and forth comments, reminds me what a petty bunch of wankers you are. Enjoy the rain.
Great hit, poor tackle (as usual from ROG) C'mon Ireland.

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Les Bleus May 20, 2010 7:18 pm

Come on guys, lets not start this NH vs SH bullshit again.

Ronan O'gara can kick yes, he doesn't defend well because he doesn't need to defend well, he has an extremely good pack, so they need someone with a big boot.

NH, it is wet, so it is better to play for territory and use the forwards where as SH is dry so you go through the hands out wide because it is easier.

Of course NH players play well in the SH and SH players play well in the NH. This mentality is bullshit, you are not superior because you are from New Zealand and the All Blacks are the best team in the world. You are just a player, unless you are from the All Blacks, you have no bragging rights as you have no involvement in the All Blacks / Springboks / Wallabies.

I have no bragging rights about the French rugby team, they are French which is all I have in common with them, I don't play for the French rugby team. We didn't beat the Springboks in 2009, the French rugby team did.

Stop confusing yourself with an international professional rugby team, you are not part of that setup, you are a fan which doesn't give you any rights to superiority.

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(u-p)rick May 20, 2010 8:16 pm

Wow les bleus.....possibly one of the most sensible things you've ever said....

*thumbs up*

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Tom May 20, 2010 11:23 pm

Les Blues, you're right of course, I'm not claiming any superiority to O'Gara, he's a much better player than I was or ever will be.
But as you said I'm a fan of rugby, and most fans of sports will weigh up the merits of different players. You do it.
In my opinion, O'Gara is not a very good fly half. He can't run the ball, his passing isn't much to write home about and his defence is a liability, so he's very limited.
i can't understand how he could be considered one of the greatest players in Europe in the last ten years, with just a kicking game.

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Anonymous May 21, 2010 3:20 pm

Should have gone lower!!

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Mr Twon (UK) June 10, 2010 12:39 pm

This made me smile alot!
although ronan is a good player! its lovely to see him get knocked about! :D

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