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Super Rugby 2012 Profiles - The New Zealand teams

(nb: I feel bad for Kaino who's a great player)

2 Years, 2 Months ago

Super Rugby 2012 Profiles - The New Zealand teams

It's going to be an ugly year, now that the NZ teams have recruited nasty French players who indulge in eye-gouging:
http://www.3news.co.nz/Eye-injury-for-Kaino-against-Highlanders/tabid/1607/articleID/243288/Default.aspx

2 Years, 2 Months ago

No date confirmed yet for postponed Six Nations game

The good news is that the FFR has been planning the construction of its own stadium in the Paris region (to be independent of the Stade de France's planning), and its now down to two geographical candidates (Thiais or Evry - place chosen in june 2012). The stadium will house 82 000 and have a retractable roof. Opening match in 2017.
For French speakers:
http://www.ffr.fr/index.php/ffr/rugby_francais/projet_stade/dates_cles

2 Years, 2 Months ago

No date confirmed yet for postponed Six Nations game

sidenote:
The FFR's (French Rugby Federation) treasurer argues that the General Sales Conditions for Stade de France tickets do not make it compulsory for the FFR to reimburse tickets for the cancelled match (casus fortuitus).
This makes it possible for Pierre Camou, the FFR president, to appear magnanimous when he says that the FFR "will reimburse nonetheless", as a kind gesture to all those poor fans.
Rubbish.

2 Years, 2 Months ago

No date confirmed yet for postponed Six Nations game

When major rivers start freezing over, and sun-blazed Toulouse hits the -18 windchill mark, you feel that the organizers would get a sense of the urgency regarding the pitch. But somehow everyone got it wrong and now the blame game has started. It's the fault of the French. It's the fault of the Stade de France. It's the fault of the VI nations committee. It's Mr Pearson's fault. It's because of the TV channels (who, we later learned, actually proposed to move the match to 3pm earlier in the week - or so they say). It's because rugby has become too popular.

Although the pitch was in a bad condition (Vincent Clerc said that in some areas he couldn't even plant his studs into the ground - and skidded instead), what I personally think, regardless of cause or culprit, is that the decision could and actually should have been taken earlier.

10 000 people have come from Ireland (plane fare, hotel, ticket ...), perhaps three times as many from all corners of France (the Stade de France is a seven-hours or more drive from Toulouse, and will cost about 150 euros in toll and fuel alone, so if you had hotel and ticket costs ... ), and all the others from Paris and surroundings ... all these people deserved to have known 2mn before kick-off.

ps: here in Toulouse all rugby fields have been shut down by Townhall for 2 weeks now. All amateur rugby has been shut down. It seems only the pros have been playing (and even some Top14 games have been cancelled).

2 Years, 2 Months ago

Bradley Davies & Stephen Ferris controversial tackles discussed

Poor kids, that is just so sad. In my opinion everything should be considered the other way around as youngsters are not built to withstand the same pressure as pros. At my level of rugby, called "rugby loisir" (leisure rugby) here in France, we're not allowed to do real scrums because it's considered that we don't have the proper neck build. Second Ankle-taps are also illegal, but I can't really figure that one out.

2 Years, 2 Months ago

Bradley Davies & Stephen Ferris controversial tackles discussed

It does seem I always agree with you too! (and it's good to see that Caucaunibuca Stade Toulousain pic)

But I still think that Ryan infringes in this particular ruck, as he doesn't displace the Welsh number 1, who is clearly on his feet and thus contributes to forming the ruck. Ryan should move him backwards, he cannot sort of go over the number 1 and then miraculously find himself slamming into Adams. At least that's my point of view. If not, then referees would allow players to walk or dive over defenders, instead you often hear refs scream at players on one foot behind the ruck, and the other over the ruck: "put your leg back in place!".

Of course this only highlights the reason for Davies' reaction but in no way excuses it, as you say no one should try to take the law into their own hands.

2 Years, 2 Months ago

Bradley Davies & Stephen Ferris controversial tackles discussed

Frankly, I don't see anything wrong with the Ferris tackle. The Davies one however was brutal and dangerous and probably deserved a red. It came from a ruck, so the "Ryan didn't have the ball" is not very relevant.
I guess Davies wanted to be an executioner of sorts (Ryan comes in on the side, while pretending to enter through the door, slams shoulder first into Adams, and then starts pretending to "ruck" ... I guess Davies thought: "ok, enough of this" and expressed himself the wrong way).
I think Barnes shares a part of responsability here, if he had blown the whistle in the first 10 minutes of the game, like Kaplan would, against all ruck infringements on both sides, we wouldn't have seen exagerated rucking attempts past the 60th minute.

2 Years, 2 Months ago

Romain Poite enjoys the funny game, but Geordan Murphy disagrees

That penalty was 50-50. The Ulster tackler is on the wrong side and could be penalised, but at the same time the Leicester player is holding on to the ball, which is being properly contested by another Ulster player on his feet.
Poite is a former police officer who he doesn't appear to have much authority, but who is quite good at scrums and rucks (however he doesn't use his linesmen enough and misses quite a lot too).
I think he meant "funny game" about the theatrics that are particular to the relation between a referee and a scrum-half.

2 Years, 2 Months ago

Gloucester and Toulouse play out a classic at Kingsholm

Actually the commentary here is quite professional and unbiased (enthusiastic about both teams on the field) because this game was televised on Canal+ which is a paying channel. The non-paying equivalent, ie. public channel France2, which shows a few HC games and the VI nations tournament, offers a much more biased (pro-French) commentary.

2 Years, 2 Months ago

 
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