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Tim Nanai-Williams and Samoa get the better of the USA in Brighton

Not even on the WC site?

I thought that first Eagles try was well worked from a pretty awkward position after that shoddy kick. Bit of luck involved, but that was a slick try. Well done Samoa.

2 Years, 9 Months ago

South Africa aim to up the intensity after another win over England

Honestly, half my enjoyment coming to this board is seeing some of your comments. Classic.

3 Years, 7 Months ago

Scotland give New Zealand Murrayfield scare but come up short

This is about the best I have seen Scotland play against the All Blacks, at least in recent memory. I thought overall their game was outstanding, and their defense in particular was immense. I felt that the ABs were not particularly potent in attack, and our general play was very sub standard. Scotland was able to capitalise on a lot of our basic errors, and coupled with their superior general play, they were the better team for me on balance.

Carter's place kicking was a let down, as were some of his handling skills at times, but I think his general kicking game was quite sound. McCaw didn't have his best game by a long shot either, and with such an inexperienced starting line up, I think they both really needed to perform against a Scottish side coming off the back of a good win against one of our regular opponents. I think perhaps Hansen's selections were a bit too experimental and too many of the combinations weren't quite gelling. However, it was nice to see Slade had a good game, I also thought Sam Cane was quite solid.

Scotland were great though. They put in a fantastic overall team effort, and I think had our bench not been as strong as it was, the All Blacks would've been staring down the barrel of their first ever loss to them. Scotland have a great player and captain in Laidlaw, I thought his distribution and handling were excellent. Their backline also shows some real promise. I think if they can continue to play with that sort of intensity and perhaps a little more polish at scrum time, they will be a serious handful come the World Cup.

Personally, I think it is awesome to see Scotland play the way they did in this match. I'm very proud of my Scottish heritage and always love to see them do well. I just hope they can continue this sort of form. So, good luck for the upcoming season Scotland, I think you'll make a real dent in the 6N with your current game.

3 Years, 7 Months ago

The Wallabies claim comfortable victory over Ireland in Dublin

That's exactly what I thought. I'm really pleased to see the Aussie forwards carry and pass the ball like that, AND score tries. I thought that, and Cooper's running line for his try were exceptional pieces of skill.

I didn't watch the full match, but the Wallabies appear a bit more composed, particularly from their set piece play, than they have done for large periods this year. It's good to see them (hopefully) on the mend. I'm keen to see how Ireland go against the ABs this weekend, being the last match of their season. The thing I love about Ireland, is their capacity to be a really tenacious side. A home match, against a team on the verge of being the first to earn a perfect season in the professional in era, and who have never lost to them... I think the score might be slightly closer than many think. They certainly showed a lot of passion in the second test last year and against the Aussies at the WC. Something that the All Blacks will have to respect. I've been looking forward to this test for a while now, can't wait.

4 Years, 7 Months ago

Bismarck Du Plessis controversially yellow carded for huge hit on Dan Carter

I have been a die-hard All Blacks supporter for my entire life. And when they aren't playing the ABs, I support the Boks passionately as my adopted team. The match last night for me (and thousands of other fans and supporters) was supposed to be a showcase of the two best teams in test history playing some great rugby on my favourite ground in my home town of Auckland. What we got treated to was an appalling display of incompetency and poor judgment by the match official mixed in with some mostly stellar football.

What many people have already noted is that there is more than enough technology to utilise in international rugby fixtures to avoid the kinds of decisions that marred what should have been an epic match up with The Old Foe. Bismarck's tackle on Dan Carter was in my opinion one of the finest so far this international season. I was absolutely bemused when the ref carded him for it. The second incident was marginal, but in no way merited a card. I recall seeing Hosea Gear fend off Keith Earls in similar fashion last year - by the logic of consistency, should he not have been carded? Or Bismarck's fend been deemed legitimate?

I guess what I'm rambling on about is a huge lack of both consistency and logic to many refereeing decisions in the international game. I am of the firm belief that cards should only be given in clear and certain instances of foul play or misconduct - use the available technology to determine what is and is not legitimate, because a number of refs can't seem to do it properly themselves. Rugby is not endearing itself to new fans with the kinds of decisions that were made last night. It is frustrating for players, coaches and more significantly, the fans who just want to see their sides playing rugby the way it is meant to be played, without unnecessary interference from the match officials.

Whew. Rant over.

p.s. Cheers RD for the timely clip upload, you guys do a great job.

4 Years, 9 Months ago

Nick Evans and Jonathan Davies pick their British & Irish Lions starting XV

Needs more Cian Healy.

Seriously, if he's not on that tour I will be greatly disappointed.

5 Years, 5 Months ago

Wallabies avoid defeat with come from behind win over Argentina

Well said that man!

5 Years, 9 Months ago

Wallabies avoid defeat with come from behind win over Argentina

I don't know where you're getting this idea that people in the South consider Argentina unworthy for inclusion the Southern Hemisphere competition. I have honestly not heard a single person in my group of friends and family say anything disparaging about Argentina. Quite the opposite actually. Since their performance in the 2007 World Cup I've been hoping that they would be included in an annual competition. Even in the media here in NZ I haven't heard anything negative about this. It's been known for a long time that Argentina would be included in the Tri Nations, and my impression is that people (in NZ anyway) have simply been eager to see how Argentina would fare. And so far from what I can tell, most people are pleased with the Pumas' efforts. Please don't think that just because we are from the Southern Hemisphere that we look down on other rugby nations, because for most real fans, that simply is not the case. Cheers.

5 Years, 9 Months ago

The All Blacks retain the Bledisloe Cup with convincing win over the Wallabies

The Wallabies defense, I thought, was the best aspect of their game. The first half defense in particular was pretty decent and as Deans said, it was a solid effort to have only leaked one try. I reckon the ABs tried to rush a little bit, forced a few passes that weren't on, and just generally lacked patience. For the last half hour it was quite frustrating watching them create several genuine opportunities, only to not complete them. A prime example was Carter's pass virtually on the tryline near the end of the clip.

I thought the same at the end of 2010 that the Aussies were on the rise, but apart from their Tri Nations last year, they've been a bit up and down. I've never been one to blame a coach for a teams poor performances, but these last two tests make it seem like the Wallabies are just lost at the moment. Surely the coach is responsible for ensuring everyone is focussed on the task at hand. He's already had a number of years in charge of the Wallabies, and his record is hardly outstanding.Perhaps it is time to show him the door..

This game was a funny one. The Wallabies kicked away far too much possession, but the All Blacks failed to capitalise on that too many times. And Australia seemed to lack any attacking drive at all, which is very out of character for them. The game flowed better than last week, but I still think the All Blacks are a little disjointed. It was overall a good display from them, but there are still things to be worked on. Australia will need to step it up big time against the Boks, and Argentina at home judging by this morning's result.

5 Years, 10 Months ago

The All Blacks retain the Bledisloe Cup with convincing win over the Wallabies

Umm, because they won last week as well..

5 Years, 10 Months ago