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England's Courtney Lawes suspended for two weeks

Mate, i can only agree with you. Christian Jean-Pierre is the douchebag's king. He was just stupid on the first game with the ABs. During France vs Japan, he pissed me off so much that i was shouting all alone against him in front of my TV. I haven't been able to enjoy the first half thanks to his services (and with the help of Thierry Lacroix).
During the Welsh vs South Africa Game, he reached a turning point... He hasn't been able to pronounce "Faletau" during the whole game. He called him Fatelau or Taufalea...
But it wasn't the worst...
I don't know if you have noticed : When F.Steyn caught the ball downfield, he has announced "Du Plessis" several times...
I didn't undestand until some point, cause its sooo damned stupid.
The replacing hooker, with the number 16 (on the game sheet) was Bismark Du Plessis. He thought he saw 16 instead of 15 on Steyn's jersey and announced that a hooker was going on at fullback, throwing up-and-under and etc ! And it never shocked him.
At this point, I turned the sound off and put RMC radio. Fortunatly, sound and image were almost synchronised. I am soooo happy now i know i don't have to hear him again.
Honestly, the second commentator team on France 2 did a perfect job during Namibia vs Fidji, in a game with many unknown players. And TF1 made a mess with their "best" commentators in game between major nations foul of superstars.

4 Years, 4 Weeks ago

Rugby World Cup Daily - Super Saturday

Namibia, Romania & Japan : Surprisingly good & many good signs for the futur. Japan won't stay a "minor" nation for long if they go on this way.

England, Argentina, Scotland & France : worrying and sometimes awful (especially for England and France).
England were lucky. If they go on this way, i wish they get kicked out in the quarter-finals. They are a real pain to watch, you have to expect better from a former WC winning team. I know they are not spectacular, but they are usually efficient...
And France... So close to get caught by Japan... And the French TV commentators talking about the ABs weaknesses... Look at yourself first.

Fidji has to improve in defence if they want to reach the quarter-finals.

4 Years, 1 Month ago

All Blacks beat Tonga in opening match of Rugby World Cup 2011

"I don't think you can assume France will win because NZ didn't "win good enough" against Tonga."

I agree with you, that's why i added "let's see what France can do first."

And i agree (and wish) that NZ can up their game during the tournament.

4 Years, 1 Month ago

All Blacks beat Tonga in opening match of Rugby World Cup 2011

Dagg is excellent, i'm a big fan of Muliaina, but this kid is awesome. Let's hope he can handle pressure in knock-out stages.
Kahui was excellent as well, but he's not a winger. It worked well against Tonga but he'll lack speed against harder opposition (Ok, back in 2008, it worked). He's a center, but Conrad partnership & class with Ma'a will probably keep him out of this spot, unless he keeps on playing like that.
Toeava... I've often said it, he's ONLY good at fullback and can cover in case of injury. The only time he played really well for the ABs was in HK in 2008 when he started at 15. Henry only have Guilford as a 11 and can't do otherwise. I'm a bit sick to see center coming to the wing only to bring physicallity. I understand why putting fullbacks at 14 (CJ has to start), to cover the field, but you need a real winger at 11 and a game-breaker if you can (which Zac isn't).

Concerning Tonga, if was quiet happy to see them that solid at scrum-time (especially with Taumalolo, who was excellent when he came on) and in the pick and rive art. They have to tidy-up their defence on wings thought. I think they may prove a hanful against France, depending if they lose against the Abs..

After what i saw this morning, i think France clearly have a chance to beat the Abs. Especially if Graham Henry keeps on going with this messy back-line. Thus, let's see what France can do first.

Cheers, and sorry again for my english...

4 Years, 1 Month ago

All Blacks beat Tonga in opening match of Rugby World Cup 2011

I'm French & an AB fan. So, before you start reading, i'd like to apologize for my poor english.

I watched the whole game (with the awful TF1 channel commentators, my french mates know what i'm talking about) and i'm a bit disapointed as an AB fan... But i have to reckon that the Tongian Defense was really physical, especially in the final act (which was quite surprising, and shows a real fitness improvment)
AB's lacked trust in this game, mainly in the earlier part, althought knock-ons continued throurought the game. Maybe it's because of the two latest defeat, i don't know. But honestly, if they wanna win the WC, they have to be waaaaay better than that. And GH has to stop making experimental selections.

I really rate Cowan, but he was awful in this game. His passing and kicks were poor. But I suspect the AB's inneficient ruck cleanout was partly responsible of this...
The AB scrum was good untill Woodcock went out. Ben Francks is a good Tighthead, but is not as good at Loosehead. ABs only have one Loosehead for this WC, and they will have to do with it. Crockett should be there. Moreover, as soon as Thorn was subbed, ABs started to lack of physicality. Whitelock is excellent in the air and in open play, but NZ lack an enforcer when Thorn/Boric (in form) is not there.
NZ Herald can say everything they want about MeaLamu's lineout throw, Hore isn't better either, and Flynn is not a solution.
SBW wasn't that good. Ok, he's got talent, ok, he tackled well. But he made several mistakes that cost his side at least a penalty and a scrum in their 22. Against any major nation (no disrespect to Tonga), it may cost a WC. Nonu has to be the starting second-five eight.
Vito is not Read. He brings something different but hasn't the forward-backs "linking" quality than Kieran has and suits to the AB's gameplan. Kaino is the incubent 6 and will stay. Thompson has to wait on the bench (and please, do not put him at 7).

4 Years, 1 Month ago