Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

in reality, all of this has been a total load of old bollocks
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby Nikki Gradual » 10 Jun 2017, 10:42

The Write Profile wrote:Well, it was dour and occasionally turgid, but the Lions deserved their 12-3 win over the Crusaders tonight. The gameplan seemed to be based around rushing defence and ensuring the Crusaders had no gaps to work with. The Crusaders didn't seem to read the tempo of the game at all tonight, far too often they were left stranded midfield and resorting to box kicks that went nowhere in particular. It will be interesting to see whether this is how the Lions will play against the ABs, certainly, there were moments where they almost showed flair, but the sheer desire to win trumped creativity tonight.


To be fair that was a pretty greasy pitch and that ball was obviously like a bar of soap. That did more to kill the creativity than anything else.
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby Copehead » 11 Jun 2017, 00:36

The Write Profile wrote:Well, it was dour and occasionally turgid, but the Lions deserved their 12-3 win over the Crusaders tonight. The gameplan seemed to be based around rushing defence and ensuring the Crusaders had no gaps to work with. The Crusaders didn't seem to read the tempo of the game at all tonight, far too often they were left stranded midfield and resorting to box kicks that went nowhere in particular. It will be interesting to see whether this is how the Lions will play against the ABs, certainly, there were moments where they almost showed flair, but the sheer desire to win trumped creativity tonight.

That was the first sighting of a close to full strength Lions and they did pretty well by and large.

The Crusaders are unbeaten this year and are supposed to be the best club side in the world, although Sarries may argue with that as did the Sarries who lined up with the Lions, and they were shut down by very strong defence and bullied a bit up front. They are a team with a fair few All Blacks as well so theL ions will be pleased with shutting them down and pushing them around. They were far more disciplined today as well.

Once again they butchered at least 4 solid chances because the last pass did not go, or in Stander's case was not taken. That is because the attack is still a work in progress with players who do not know each other, losing JDII didnt help.

I think Murray and Farrell were excellent together. 2 generals on the pitch moving the ball around very well. It was a shame that Farrell had to move to 13. I think the Lions coped very well with that disruption, but then they had Sexton to come on and link with Murray and Farrell is defensively sound anywhere, but the disruption cannot have helped their creativity.

All in all very positive, back row still a work in progress as are the centers, but Front 5 and back 3 sorting themselves out.

Be interesting to see whether Hogg or Watson get the nod at 15, Watson was very impressive there.

*edit*
Didn't realise that was the ABs tight 5 playing today, that will be a worry for them.

They obviously wanted to have a real go at the Lions scrum today but could not manage that legally and gave away penalties like party treats.

The ref will talk to the test refs about what he perceived their illegality was so it is unlikely to be a one off interpretation although you could see it angered them, this was a froggy ref wasn't it and they like a good scrum so it wasn't the Lions conning the ref because they were weak, it seemed to be early pushing and wheeling they were getting pinged for, early pushing is what packs lacking confidence do to get an edge. Wheeling is more of a 50:50 call but the ref obviously decided it was the Crusaders front row who were up to skulduggery by that stage.

One up to the Lions there, the ABs front row will have to have a rethink. They don't usually try and get a dominant scrum they just use it as a restart, this smacked of getting a psychological blow in at what they perceived to be a Lions strength, and it didn't work .
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby Nikki Gradual » 11 Jun 2017, 08:36

Haven't caught up with the other home nations games yet, but if you thought the Lions game was turgid, England vs Argentina made up for it in spades. It was like sevens at times.
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby The Write Profile » 11 Jun 2017, 08:45

Nikki Gradual wrote:Haven't caught up with the other home nations games yet, but if you thought the Lions game was turgid, England vs Argentina made up for it in spades. It was like sevens at times.


Cheers, I might watch the replay on Sky, though I find it baffling that they still have England (and the other home nations) playing test matches during a Lions Tour. Doesn't that diminish the standing of both? I guess money talks.

Meanwhile, it pains me to say it, but I'm predicting the Lions to make short work of the Highlanders, who are without their two best players (Ben Smith and Aaron Smith). I suspect the game might be more open than the Crusaders match, mind you, now that everyone has a fair idea of how the Lions are going to play. I think the Crusaders weren't used to not being able to play their natural game, as they have all season, and were subsequently out-muscled and out-thought.
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby Copehead » 11 Jun 2017, 08:52

The Write Profile wrote:
Nikki Gradual wrote:Haven't caught up with the other home nations games yet, but if you thought the Lions game was turgid, England vs Argentina made up for it in spades. It was like sevens at times.


Cheers, I might watch the replay on Sky, though I find it baffling that they still have England (and the other home nations) playing test matches during a Lions Tour. Doesn't that diminish the standing of both? I guess money talks.

Meanwhile, it pains me to say it, but I'm predicting the Lions to make short work of the Highlanders, who are without their two best players (Ben Smith and Aaron Smith). I suspect the game might be more open than the Crusaders match, mind you, now that everyone has a fair idea of how the Lions are going to play.


How do you counter a suffocation well drilled blitz defense carried out by the best players in the NH?
I suppose you can try grubber kicks and dinks over the top, but those are risky things to pull off, or you send the ball skyward, but fielding high balls isn't exactly a weakness in NH rugby.

In reality you run at it until you break it, and the ABs are probably the best equipped team in the world to do just that.

The Summer tours during Lions years are seen as crucial for GB & I teams to blood young players.

How did SA spank France as well? I know it is close to the end of the French season and they are often reluctant tourists but still. Are the Bokke on the come back trail?
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby Nikki Gradual » 11 Jun 2017, 10:26

Copehead wrote:Are the Bokke on the come back trail?


I hope not.
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby Copehead » 11 Jun 2017, 21:26

Nikki Gradual wrote:
Copehead wrote:Are the Bokke on the come back trail?


I hope not.


me neither

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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby The Write Profile » 13 Jun 2017, 10:39

Well, I certainly didn't expect that result! :D

That was arguably the best game of the tour so far as a spectacle, both sides looked to run it at pace, and really there was nothing between the two tonight. Perhaps the Highlanders were more composed when it mattered, certainly they seemed to get in the right areas during scrumming, but both sides made some strange kicking decisions- way too much of the aerial ping pong- when it was clear that both sides possessed the linebreaking ability.

I honestly thought the Lions were going to run away with it when they scored that intercept try early in the second half, instead the Highlanders kept plugging away, forcing the Lions into compromising positions and generally being sensible with their setpieces. It was frantic, but it was fun to watch- 23-22 sounds about right on balance, but god it's going to be pandemonium in Dunedin tonight :D

Rugby was the winner on the day, as they used to say. Just as an aside, Sam Warburton was a class act in defeat- very magnanimous and also level-headed about what they need to do from here to challenge the All Blacks. To be honest, I think the Lions are just about there- there's been moments in every match where you get a semblance of the sort of game they want to take to the All Blacks, here they were obviously trying to run the Highlanders ragged- but it hasn't totally clicked so far.
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby Nikki Gradual » 14 Jun 2017, 20:41

The Write Profile wrote:Rugby was the winner on the day


Finally catching up with this game and it looks to me that Alex Ainley appears to been the winner - he should have been yellow carded for what was a blatant professional foul to aid Naholo's try.

That said The Highlanders so far seemed to deserve what is a far superior game than the last.
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby The Write Profile » 15 Jun 2017, 01:35

Nikki Gradual wrote:
The Write Profile wrote:Rugby was the winner on the day


Finally catching up with this game and it looks to me that Alex Ainley appears to been the winner - he should have been yellow carded for what was a blatant professional foul to aid Naholo's try.

That said The Highlanders so far seemed to deserve what is a far superior game than the last.


I think the referee let a lot go in an effort to keep the game moving. It was in stark contrast to the stringent officiating in the Crusaders match and does suggest that the style and the results of the next few matches will be greatly determined by how the referee decides to police the breakdown in particular.
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby The Write Profile » 16 Jun 2017, 10:54

Well, the All Blacks played well enough against Samoa to win 78-0, but really, the result gives us no indication as to what to expect for the Lions series. Put simply, Samoa run out of gas about 30 minutes into the match, and the All Blacks really put forward all of their attacking combinations to the mettle. There were moments of brilliance, particularly from Beauden Barrett and SBW in terms of both their finishing and offloading, and from Retallick, in terms of sheer strength in the carry. But really, by the second half, Samoa had given up, and it seemed all the All Blacks had to do was string a couple of passes together and it would result in a try. That said, it was still better viewing than the Wales vs Tonga match, which was affected by bad weather and a lack of intent from both sides.
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby Nikki Gradual » 17 Jun 2017, 09:06

Awaits Macandy...
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby andymacandy » 17 Jun 2017, 09:45

Nikki Gradual wrote:Awaits Macandy...

:D
Up to 5th in the IRB rankings!
Clearly not good enough for the Lions, who are prospering without us.......
To be fair, we have form against the Aussies. Glad to see that Gregor is continuing Verns excellent progress.
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby The Write Profile » 18 Jun 2017, 07:13

The Lions win over the NZ Maori side is their most impressive performance, but it was still pretty two-dimensional. I guess they have realised that the only way to stay competitive is to shut down the opposition and limit the scope for mistakes. It's undeniably efficient.

Whether it will prove successful against the ABs is another matter entirely - the Highlanders and the Blues beat the Lions by running at them at from multiple angles until the defensive line broke, while the Crusaders lost because they were sucked into the Lions game plan. I think the refereeing of the breakdown will be key in the test series. The Samoa game gives us no idea how the ABs will go because they weren't challenged defensively.

I think the series will be 2-1 ABs, for what it's worth.

Oh and congratulations Scotland!
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby Copehead » 19 Jun 2017, 12:46

The Write Profile wrote:The Lions win over the NZ Maori side is their most impressive performance, but it was still pretty two-dimensional. I guess they have realised that the only way to stay competitive is to shut down the opposition and limit the scope for mistakes. It's undeniably efficient.

Whether it will prove successful against the ABs is another matter entirely - the Highlanders and the Blues beat the Lions by running at them at from multiple angles until the defensive line broke, while the Crusaders lost because they were sucked into the Lions game plan. I think the refereeing of the breakdown will be key in the test series. The Samoa game gives us no idea how the ABs will go because they weren't challenged defensively.

I think the series will be 2-1 ABs, for what it's worth.

Oh and congratulations Scotland!


I think the difference in quality between the Lions side and midweek side is stark.

If the midweek side hat Hartley, Launchbury and Robshaw playing for them in the pack I think they would be closer to running through the warm ups unbeaten, but politics, as always, plays a part.

The Saturday side just don't allow sides to run at them like the midweek side do they are a massive step up in quality

Doing that to the same to the All Blacks is the only realistic game plan, coordinated attack usually takes years to develop whereas a tight defence takes weeks, They will attempt to strangle the All Blacks at source and have the pack to do it and the blitz midfield defence likewise.

Barrett is going to have to have a sterling kicking game to get through and around that because I don't think they will be able to pass or run through it too often, but he may be able to punt chip and grubber through depending on how good he is with ball on foot.
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby The Great Defector » 19 Jun 2017, 14:25

Any mass brawls yet?
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby Jumper K » 19 Jun 2017, 15:02

99!

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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby The Great Defector » 19 Jun 2017, 15:58

99 BRAWLS!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby Nikki Gradual » 19 Jun 2017, 23:07

andymacandy wrote:
Nikki Gradual wrote:Awaits Macandy...

:D
Up to 5th in the IRB rankings!
Clearly not good enough for the Lions, who are prospering without us.......
To be fair, we have form against the Aussies. Glad to see that Gregor is continuing Verns excellent progress.


I still don't see why Vern had to go. Surely he deserved another couple of years to reap the rewards of all his commitments and hard work and inspiration.
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Re: Copehead's RWC thread NOW IN ITS 14TH GREAT YEAR

Postby andymacandy » 20 Jun 2017, 06:36

Nikki Gradual wrote:
andymacandy wrote:
Nikki Gradual wrote:Awaits Macandy...

:D
Up to 5th in the IRB rankings!
Clearly not good enough for the Lions, who are prospering without us.......
To be fair, we have form against the Aussies. Glad to see that Gregor is continuing Verns excellent progress.


I still don't see why Vern had to go. Surely he deserved another couple of years to reap the rewards of all his commitments and hard work and inspiration.

I agree- I think the SRFU panicked at the thought of Toonie leaving Glasgow for another high profile job.
Vern was at the end of his contract though, so he wasn't fired, which would have been an utter travesty. He's at Montpellier now,and has apparently just signed Finn Russell.

And can I just record that I think its a nonsense that Alan Dell is a Lion, when Hartley and Launchberry are not.
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