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Jared Payne banned for two weeks after red card challenge on Alex Goode

Banning kicking in one's own half? Might as well turn rugby into American football then. I laugh when I read comments that teams used to kick away possession so much in the past. With less kicking now there's more tackling, less rucking, static play, and a game that looks more and more like rugby league than rugby union. Barry John wouldn't approve of that suggestion, one of the best tactical kickers the game ever saw. And no one grubber kicks like he could anymore. I'd suggest that using all forms of kicking tactically and correctly could really put defenses under pressure, and they wouldn't be charging up so fast in defense, opening up some gaps that seem to be non-existent in so many first class matches. It's bad enough defensive rucking doesn't happen anymore and that defensive forwards clutter up the mid-field instead.

1 Week, 13 Hours ago

Heineken Cup 2014 Quarter Final Highlights

Well, if this was the same ref as that Ireland/NZ match last November, he missed at least one forward pass in that final rush to win the game. He calls it, Ireland win. He doesn't, and NZ win.

1 Week, 23 Hours ago

Joe Marler questions referee Andrew Small's choice of footwear

I question the whole kit of rugby in the recent past and now. Polyester super-tight shirts with no collars? No long sleeves? Polyester shorts with no pockets? Time for rugby to do what baseball in America did in the 90's, when they got rid of the ugly non-traditional shirts of the 70's and 80's and went back to real baseball jerseys. They are polyester, but they look old school flannels.
Time to go back to cotton shirts and shorts, or cotton-poly blends, at least poly shirts like the British Lions last tour, and the shoes: black please! There's no reason for rugby to try to look like soccer. And it wouldn't make a bit of difference in style of play, but would surely look better than the ugly kit I see worn these days!

1 Week, 5 Days ago

Carlin Isles dropped ball blooper ruins great fifteens debut try

And as an addendum, bring back rucking, real rugby shorts and socks too. Tired of this new looks with weird stripes, panels that don't do anything really, and socks with vertical stripes and no upper cuffs, and shirts with no collars or long sleeves!

2 Weeks, 2 Days ago

Carlin Isles dropped ball blooper ruins great fifteens debut try

I'm glad to see that he's playing 15's. I have to say that I always downed the ball as quickly as possible if I were running in a try, not wanting to take any chances, and I never got a chance to score with no one around so as to dot down under the posts. He should have taken that first opportunity and done so. And carry the ball with two hands if you are in-goal with no one around, anyway! It's not the time to take any chances palming a ball one-handed. Carlin rarely has had to carry a ball with two hands playing 7's. He will have to playing 15's.
Looks like it was a chilly day in Scotland. I'd rather wear one long-sleeve shirt than a short sleeve one with a long one under. Time for rugby to go back to basic rugby shirts and get rid of the soccer look!

2 Weeks, 2 Days ago

The Top 5 Brian O'Driscoll Moments of All Time

I'm sure if Brian has any regrets about his career it's loosing to New Zealand last November, and at least one of those passes in the passage of play was forward as time expired with the All Blacks in possession.

3 Weeks, 6 Days ago

Ben Tameifuna and Jamie Mackintosh banned for old school rucking

You're right about the release of the ball. Sometime in the 70's it became "okay" to hold onto the ball on the ground for a second or two and then releasing it, and hopefully by then your teammates were there to ruck the ball back. Watch any videos from the 60's and 50's on You Tube and you will notice tackled players released the ball even before hitting the ground in some situations. I think this led to a belief that tackled players had the right to keep possession for their side by hanging onto the ball in the tackle for that brief momentary period of a second or two to allow for teammates to arrive at the breakdown. Viewing old games shows that possession seemed to go from one team to the other much more often than the modern game. Of course a variety of rule changes, most of them regarding kicking, has much to do with possession of the ball, as well as the time permitted to release a ball in the tackle.
The way the game has been played in the last decade or so there's also the situation of a ball lying at the very back end of a ruck, for much more than a few seconds, and either the scrum half or acting scrum half bends over the ball, even laying a hand on it, and looks at the defense (and then the defense is already set up by then by the needless waiting) before picking up the ball and continuing play. In my mind that ball should be considered out of the ruck, because it isn't being rucked back anymore, and is "loitering" at someone's foot who is sometimes not even bound on to other players in the ruck. If "use it or loose it" came into being regarding mauls, the same should be applied to rucks: pick up the damn ball and use it!

3 Weeks, 6 Days ago

The History of Rugby - Part 3

You think they could have mentioned the times rugby was in the Olympics. I know Australia won in 1908, but the USA beat France in 1920 and 1924, with a team made up of college kids or alums from Stanford, Santa Clara, University of California, and a few other schools.

2 Years, 1 Month ago

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