Topic: Six Nations

Well England were well and truly stuffed!! First time in 38 years the Jocks have beaten us at Twickers!! Thoroughly deserved too.

The Frogs minced the Eyties.

The Taffys beat the Micks.

No crowds is very weird.

This is the bitterest pain among men,
To have much knowledge , but no power.



Re: Six Nations

I'm sorry I didn't get around to posting about this year's six nations.  Probably because we just finished the 2020 six nations.

Once again England, Ireland, Wales, Scotland, France and Italy face off.  England enters as the defending champs after winning the elongated 2020 campaign.  Yet we're off and running again before we even get a chance to sit down.

This year I'm picking the French.  They got a bit lazy and got ambushed by the Scots last year.  However those were the bright young Frenchies of 2020.  Now they're more battle hardened and have more international experience.  They have their pieces in place and some of the most exciting young players, among which are scrum half DuPonte and fly half Ntamack who are both healthy again, in international Rugby right now.  This should be their year.  With England dithering, Wales reloading, Ireland deciding now would be a good time to take up self inflicted butt loving, Scotland being, well, Scotland with their penchant for the spectacular loss, and Italy in their perennial role as Wooden Spoon Barer the French are this year's favorites.

My predicted order of finish is France, Scotland, England, Wales, Ireland and Italy.

The fixtures for the first weekend were as follows

France v. Italy

Ireland v. Wales

England v. Scotland

Here is how it played out.

Wales v. Ireland (In Wales) Wales scored first with a penalty and then Irishman Peter O'Mahoney committed a piece of foul play that should be in the Rugby Handbook of exactly how not to enter a ruck with a shoulder to his opposite number's head.  An automatic red card and the Irish were a man down just 13 minutes into the contest.  What followed was a case study on how an Rugby Side can literally beat themselves by making almost every mistake in the book.

After the penalty the Irish stayed game and put the first try across and took an 11 to 6 advantage into half time.  However just after the break the Irish became suddenly generous and the Welsh got rolling off a knock on by the Irish.  Playing advantage the Daffodils bust through the Irish defense.  The Welsh 13 seemed to be the only Red jersey on that side of the pitch as he literally ran past 4 green jerseys without any visible support into the try zone to score their own first try and bring the score to 13 Ireland to 11 Wales.

After another try exploiting an advantage off another Irish penalty the Welsh took the lead which they held until the end.  The Irish were actually in striking distance at the death of the match even though they were behind 21 to 16, but then Irish generosity struck again and Billy Burns of the Irish managed to punt the ball out of the back of the try zone on the fly off a penalty kick and the match ended there with the Welsh beating the Irish 21 to 16.  The Welsh escape and the Irish manage to make love to their own hinder regions once again.

Italy v. France (In Italy)  Nothing to see here.  Move along.  France drubs Italy 50 to 10. 

England v. Scotland (In England) Ah the sacred ground of Twickenham.  An absolute Death Trap for all things Scotish and for years the virtual Tower of London for the Scottish sides that have dared to show their faces in Jolly ol' England.  For decades the Cross of St. George has been brutally superimposed on the Cross of St. Andrew at Twickenham as if to remind the Scots that their cousins to the South were ascendant in all things Great Britain.  And then this weekend ... shades of Stirling Bridge and Bannockburn arise!  Scotland the Brave is playin' on the pipes!

This was a tough, tight, grinding Rugby match, although it seemed as though England committed every penalty in the match.  It was off one of those penalties that Scotland drew first blood with a Finn Russell penalty kick in the 5th minute.  Scotland took a 3 to 0 lead.

The sloppy and penalty ridden play of England continued as in the 23rd minute Billy Vunipola got a yellow card for a high tackle around the neck of the Scots ball carrier.  It wasn't necessary as the ball carrier was stopped dead and surrounded by English jerseys, but Vunipola reached out his massive arm and clothes-lined the hapless number 10 from Scotland.  Just a terrible moment of lazy play by a player who should know better.  A few moments later Scotland found the try zone with a classic Rugby overlap play to the long side of the pitch, scoring from 30 meters away.  This play was set up by a beautiful box kick by Finn Russell that the English failed to field.  The ball fell kindly into the hands of the Scots and they were off across the pitch with quick passes.  A powerful run by Duhan van der Merwe for the last ten meters coupled with some absolutely shoddy tackling by no less than 4 English defenders and the Scots were into pay-dirt with the try for an 8 to 0 lead over the shell shocked English.

In the 37th minute the English now down 8 to 3 off a penalty kick, got rolling and seemed on the verge.  Then Scotland's number 10 got sent off by a yellow card for a trip on the English ball carrier.  Owen Farrell booted in the penalty and the English narrowed Scotland's lead to 8 to 6.  England was now within a penalty and a man up for the next ten minutes.  For a moment England seemed to have wrested momentum in the match.  But halftime arrived to give the Scots a breather and a chance to regain the front foot.

Early in the second half the Scots were again assaulting inside the English 22 and again the English committed a silly penalty by failing to wrap on a tackle.  Finn Russell booted home the penalty kick and the Scots were up 11 to 6.

What followed looked a bit like the old Rugby drill named kick tennis.  The sides took turns booting the ball over the respective defensive lines and the fullbacks had a chance to shine.  Stuart Hogg, Scotland's Captain had several brilliant minutes of Rugby catching English kicks and either running and getting positive meters or kicking back and catching the English back line flat footed culminating in a play where he fielded an English kick behind Scotland's 22 meter line and then punted it back down the pitch where it bounced out into touch well inside the English 22 meter line. 

Then will just over 3 minutes to play the Scots punted to the English number 11 Johnny May who inexplicably failed to field it and spilled the ball for a knock on.  He was under absolutely no pressure and had only to keep his eyes on the ball for it to fall softly into his hands, yet he lifted his chin to look at Scotland's pursuit (which was still distant) and simply missed it.  As the commentator lamented, "That, in microcosm, sums up England's afternoon".

There was one furious round of play at the death as England tried desperately to score a face saving try, but the Scots turned the English over in a ruck and kicked the ball into touch to secure the victory.  At the final whistle you could hear the collective groan of English Rugby fans the world over.  Honestly this match wasn't as close as the score indicates.  Had the Scots converted a few more of their penalty kicks (something for the Scots to think about) this match would have been done and dusted early.  However the Scots let the English hang around, but the English just couldn't get any traction.  Just as when Good King Robert the First smote Sir Henry Dabun with his battleax the English had fallen to the Scots in tragic fashion giving hope to all Scottish nationals from the Solway Firth in the south to windswept Shetland in the north and all points in between.  Creag an Sgairbh!

After the match English coach Eddie Jones, inexplicably with his head still attached to his neck although I can only assume that will be remedied come Monday morning, called the loss to Scotland at Twickenham an embarrassment to the whole country of England.  Tell the headsman to sharpen his axe!  Eddie Jones must atone for this affront to English national pride with his head!  Set it on a spike on Tower Bridge and let all those who see it know this is the awful price of such a treasonous failure of spirit!  Not even the Royal Writ of Clemency from Elizabeth the Second can save Jones from the gallows this time!  Nor would her Royal Highness deign to stoop so low as to save Jones from the angry throng of her loyal subjects now baying for his blood!  What would Alfred the Great say?  What would Henry the Fifth Say?  What would Richard the Lionhearted Say?  What would Queen Victoria say?  What would Lord Churchill say?  What would the Iron Lady Margaret Thatcher say?  Good gods not even the abdicated and disgraced King Edward would speak in Jones' favor and he was a Nazi lover!  Only Jones' removal can begin to wipe the sting of his humiliation from the national consciousness!  A plague on his house! 

So there you have it.  The first week is in the books and we're looking on to the second week and for that the fixtures are:

February 13 : England v. Italy.  Should be all England all the time.  It's a perfect "get well" game for the English but they did not exactly shine in the first half against the Italians last Six Nations.  I'll pick the English, but only because they're playing Italy.  Anyone else in the tournament I'd have to pick against the spiraling English side.

February 13 : Scotland v. Wales.  Should be a victory for Scotland, but Wales won't go easy.

February 14 : Ireland v. France.  Les Tri Color toy with the Irish and eat cake while the Irish continue to make sweet love to their own bundun.

Son, you've got a panty on your head.


Re: Six Nations

The second weekend of the tournament is done and the results are in.  I watched parts of all three games and all of Scotland v. Wales.  France v. Ireland was on at 10:00 PM here on tape delay so I only saw the first half.  Here are the results.

England v. Italy in England - Well there were a few tense minutes for the English in the beginning of this one.  Italy played like a side with nothing to lose and drew first blood with brilliant ball movement leading to a try two and a half minute into the game.  Eddie George was on the verge of ritual suicide in the coaches' box.  The Italians added a penalty but the English were able to right the ship quickly and leveled the score at 8 to 8 in the thirteenth minute.  Still no one in England could bring themselves to exhale.  England added two more tries before the half though, including a brilliant flying try with one of the most artful groundings ever, and took a 20 to 11 lead into the break.  Perhaps Eddie's sphincter could unpucker slightly.

At the beginning of the first half the Italians were poised to respond but an intercepted pass on the English 5 meter line lead to a pitch length chase ending in an English try.  From there the scoring orgy was on and the English got their bonus point and won going away 41- 18.  It took a while and there were a few tense moments, but the men of St. George got the job done.

Scotland v. Wales in Murrayfield - Oh my, St. Andrew!  Where art thou?  The Scots came out flying in this one playing with flair and pace.  They scored two magnificent tries off of clever little chip kicks into the woefully underpaced Welsh backfield and looked for all the world like they were headed for a 2 and 0 start in the Six Nations for the first time in a long, long time.  Scotsmen everywhere were hoisting their pints and daring to dream of a grand slam.  Wales kept it close with a try, but the Scots took a lead into the break and still looked for all the world to be dominating the game.

But as it always is with the Scots, just when things look bright and cheery the roof falls in.  Yet again the Welsh benefited from an opponent who inexplicably inserted their cranium into their rectum.  In the 53rd minute a Scot was sent off via red card for entering a ruck with his head down and putting his shoulder into the face of a Welshman.  For the second time in two weeks off the exact same penalty the Welsh found themselves up a man for nearly the whole second half.  The Welsh made the most of it forging to a 20 to 17 lead.  The Scots didn't give up and managed to retake the lead by scoring and converting a try as Scotland's captain Stuart Hogg burst into the Welsh try zone to go up 24 to 20.  Yet the lead and the Scots could not hold and five minutes later the Welsh pounded home another try off a powerful maul to retake the lead 25 to 24.  Alas there was no more gas in the Scots' tank and they fell in Murrayfield to the Welsh 25 to 24.  Alas, poor Scots, t'was not ta be!  On a brutally cold day in Murrayfield, when the Scots literally had it all going their way and victory seemed so close that the Scots were beginning to dream of having a shot at a Grand Slam, they proceeded, on home ground mind you, to pull up their own kilts over their own head and invited the Welsh to have their way with them.  What a disappointing way to follow up their long awaited success in Twickenham.

Finally in the match of the weekend the Irish played the French in Aviva Stadium in Dublin, Ireland.  For the first half the Irish dominated the French and seemed on the verge of dusting them off early.  They took an early 3 to 0 lead and the French got level.  Then the Irish seemed to pound home a try in the 24 minute to take a good lead.  Yet after a TMO review it was found the Irishman had been out of bounds before he grounded the ball and the French got possession.  French flair brought them roaring down the pitch and they scored an artful try full of nifty offloads and pin point passing.  Despite all the Irish possession and dominance the French took a 10 to 3 lead into half time leaving the Irish to wonder just what they would have to do to get the better of the French.

In the 53rd minute the French found the try zone again by pulling the Irish defense to one side of the pitch and then quickly swinging the ball to the other side with precision passing.  French flair, powered by their scrum half DuPonte, who is rapidly becoming one of the most intelligent, creative and exciting players to watch in the world, drove the French lead to 15 to 3.  DuPonte's creativity with his passing is undeniable, but what he does after he makes the pass is where he truly shines.  The lines he runs in support are both efficient and nearly prescient.  He literally seems to see the game three passes ahead of the moment and he's always Johnny on the Spot when it comes to support and recycling the phases.  He's a walking text book on how to play scrum half in the modern age.

The Irish got a try in response in the 56th minute when the muffed a line out, but got a friendly bounce of the Irish turf and punched it home.  Irish hopes were restored and the Irish seemed poised to strike as they got a beautiful penalty goal from Burns in the 63 minute to get the score to 15 to 13.  Yet it was not to be as France did not fade on defense and in extra time drove back and then turned over the Irish attackers and punted the ball into touch to take a 15 to 13 win from the Irish on home ground.  Again the Irish are left to wonder just what it will take to get their own private parts out of their own hinders.  Off to an 0 and 2 start they are among the lost of this Six Nations and are poised to completely implode.  St. Patrick pray for them!

Son, you've got a panty on your head.

4 (edited by Cesca 2021-02-15 20:02:17)

Re: Six Nations

Well I concur with that assessment.

Losing the early try to the Italians, brought about national apoplexy!! Thankfully the ship was steadied and in the end it was a comfortable win. But, why oh why do the English insist on giving us all a brown trousers job, before coming right, coming right would be just fine, all on its own without the attendant laundry requirements!

ROFL the Jocks were doing so well, then valiantly snatched defeat from the jaws of victory and selflessly gave it to the Taffys who are now two for two and not looking too bad.

The Frogs, well they were off for lunch for a while and the Paddys took advantage. Once lunch and the siesta were over the French looked good and now are certainly looking like the team to beat.

St. Dennis is the clear favourite, with the possibility of St David coming up on the near post. St George maybe looking good on points but may well pull up lame.

This is the bitterest pain among men,
To have much knowledge , but no power.



Re: Six Nations

This weekends fixtures and Matches.

First off France v. Scotland has been postponed from Sunday February 28th.  The committee will find a make up date for this match.  The French get some time off to rest and recover.  More is the pity for the rest of the contestants.

Ireland v. Italy in Rome - Should be a walk over for the Irish, but both teams are in the cellar with an 0 and 2 start.  While Ireland is staggered with terrible luck this should be a bonus point opportunity for a side of their caliber.  It's not that they've been totally bad this tournament.  It's that they've found new and creative ways to blow their own feet off in the first two matches.  The Italians are game, but they don't have the horsepower to hang in this fight for more than 20 minutes or so.  Ireland wins with a bonus point and gets itself off the schneid by beating up on the perennial wooden spoon repository.  Ireland over Italy 35 to 12.

England v. Wales in Cardiff - England has looked adrift this whole tournament.  Even against Italy where they scored a bonus point and many tries, for the first 20 minutes England looked tentative and robotic.  They just lacked consistent creativity and flair in the attack through the first two games.  Their offense is predictable and boringly repetitive.  I seen very little slash or verve in their running and rather they seemed to opt to got straight into opposing tackles and set up their next phase.  That's not necessarily bad, but its never punctuated with incisive running and passing and their ball speed out of the rucks seems plodding.  They look like they're not exactly sure what they want to do out there and that's deadly.  In fact they look like they're scared to make a mistake and that makes them conservative and very beatable.  The English needs to stop thinking about playing rugby and start playing rugby.  At 1 and 1 the English need to get right with the rugby gods and that right quick or they'll be mired in fourth place and all but an afterthought for this tournament.

On the other side the Welsh have benefited from some tremendous luck vis a vis the Red Card.  They were being dominated by Ireland and squeaked out a win when one of the Irish was sent to the sidelines and then the next week the Scots were thumping them like a drum until one of the Scots got sent to the showers for the same penalty.  The Dragons haven't looked very mighty this tournament, but they've got enough to beat good sides that are suddenly down a man, even though in both cases it was a close run thing.  However if you live in the land of Arthur King of the Britons then you shrug your shoulders and you say, "2 and 0 is 2 and 0 by whatever means and we're tied with the French for first place in the tournament."  And they have a chance to deal an absolute death blow to their nemesis England.  I expect Daffodil pride to be running wild in this match, but without some continuation of their tremendous luck this weekend their days atop the standings are numbered.  England grinds out an ugly, but satisfying win this weekend and pulls themselves back into contention for the overall title.  England over Wales 18 to 15 on a late penalty goal.

Son, you've got a panty on your head.


Re: Six Nations

I just heard the Frogs and Jocks is off. The Scottish coach is worried the rescheduled match may mean some key players are out with club commitments.

The Micks should trounce the Eyties, but they have a way of shooting themselves in the foot, or should I say boot.

The Taffies will have their dander up after the Scots win at Twickers, and the English look very shaky, so the Welsh may very well triumph.

I think the French getting a rest will tell, I really don't give the Scots any hope, but I have been wrong many times smile

This is the bitterest pain among men,
To have much knowledge , but no power.



Re: Six Nations

Well No French or Scots.

The Irish managed to stick it to the Italians pretty well.

Well the less said about the English an Welsh. The English were just brittle and second rate and did not deserve to win. The Welsh were more positive and hungry. They now have the Triple Crown. All the fuss over the referring etc was just nonsense. Accept the decision of the ref and move on.

This is the bitterest pain among men,
To have much knowledge , but no power.



Re: Six Nations

Well it went like Cesca said.

The Scots and the French took the weekend off thanks to the French coming up with a positive COVID test.  This match will be rescheduled.

The Irish used the Italians as crash test dummies for a weekend.  Thus Ireland got themselves out of the cellar and their head above water in the tournament by standing on the shoulders of the half drowned Italians.

Then the Welsh found a way to beat the English.  Oh, woe unto Eddie Jones and his whole mishandling and and misshapen crew of a National English Rugby Side.  Out of respect for my esteemed colleague across the pond who is probably even now rallying the torch and pitchfork wielding mob to relieve Eddie Jones of his head for this latest national humiliation, I will confine my comments to only a few specific points rather than reliving the match as usual.

First the Welsh didn't benefit from a Red Card during this match, but they did benefit from some, shall we say, creative refereeing.  The kindest way of putting it is to say that the home side got the benefit of some home cooking when it came to the referee (Knock On, Sir?  Maybe TMO, Sir?  Still no Knock On, Sir?).  That said the English did manage to haul themselves into contention and tie the score at 24 all in the second half, then proceeded to let the Daffodils slip through their fingers.  The English were down, but still had a chance until late in the match the Dragons snatched an English pass out of the air and scored the long distance try that buried the English and gave the Welsh a bonus point (facepalm).  I know the English were playing desperately there, but, ye gods look at the target before you release the pass, English backs!  Schoolboy rugby stuff!

Now Wales sits atop the standings at 3 and 0 with the idle French in second at 2 and 0.  Next come the Scots at 1 and 1 and then the English and Irish at 1 and 2 with the Italians in their usual position of tail end charlie.  The Welsh are all smiles with their Triple Crown (one could have gotten very long odds against that occasion at the beginning of the tournament) and have their eyes on the Grand Slam.  All that stands between the Dragons and a Grand Slam are a date with the Italians for a potential bonus point on March 13, 2021 and then a clash with the French on March 20, 2021 for potentially all the marbles.  Unless they've used up all their luck the Welsh should be 4 and 0 coming into that match with the French having potentially 2 bonus points in the bag plus a healthy point differential as tie breakers.

I knew the French would be in good shape this tournament, but the Welsh?  Never, never never.  However with a Six Nations that started with the end of one of the longest droughts in Rugby history (Scotland prevailing in Twickenham) I suppose at that moment all predictability went up for grabs.

While I'm sure the English are on the verge of just not watching this anymore I have to say I'm excited to see England play France on March 13, 2021.  The one thing that can save this tournament from complete humiliation for the English is to spoil the French party.  The sky is dark and the predictions are grim!  The odds are long and the worst is on the horizon!  England is once again under threat of invasion by the foul and most foreign French!  Many times have the English faced this threat and those same many times the English spirit has rallied to stave off the French menace!  Up, every stout heart of England!  Up and to your posts!  Three cheers for the Lucky Union Jack!


For Queen and Country and St. George and in the words of a favorite song of English sailors:


Safe and sound at home again!
Let the waters roar, Jack!
Safe and sound at home again!
Let the waters roar, Jack!

Long we've tossed on the rolling main!
Now we're safe a-shore, Jack!
Don't forget your old shipmates!
Fally rally rally rally rye-eye-do!

Son, you've got a panty on your head.


Re: Six Nations

Latest on the French and Scotland game.  There are rumors here in the sporting press that someone in the French camp may have breached the COVID-19 bubble required by the international tournament rules and that the breach resulted in the positive test that caused the France v. Scotland match to be postponed.  If that is the case Scotland could be awarded a forfeit by international rugby against the French and that game will not be made up.

My how terribly French that would be; shooting themselves in the foot as they stand on the precipice of a Six Nations title/Grand Slam.

Stay tuned!

Son, you've got a panty on your head.


Re: Six Nations

French Sports Minister Roxana Maracineanu has called the FFR (French Rugby Federation) out onto the carpet and ordered them to conduct a full and proper investigation into the reason behind the positive tests on the French Rugby Squad.  Word is that three weeks ago after their match with Italy, French Rugby players left the team bubble in Rome, Italy to have waffles.  The Sports Minister pointed out that the COVID protocols do not allow the French players to leave the bubble to eat waffles and that if they did so then the players had to be re-tested after returning to the bubble.  Minister Maracineanu has threatened to revoke the FFR's special authorization to travel internationally to their Six Nations tournament matches which enable the team to travel despite French bans against traveling abroad.

FFR president Bernard Laporte responded ""to my knowledge, nobody's at fault".

This drew a sharp response from the Minister in her interview with L'Equipe TV.

"We asked an investigation from the FFR and from [president] Bernard Laporte, who himself came to see us before the tournament to present us the protocol and tell us that everything was going to go well, that the bubble was going to be strictly respected with controlled entries and exits."

"Now that we can see that this is not the case, I am waiting for him to come and explain to us what has happened."

"If nothing happens, if we don't look into this chain of contaminations and they don't explain to us how it could happen, then the authorisation that has been given [to play in the Six Nations] can be withdrawn."

This gets juicier and juicier!

Son, you've got a panty on your head.

11 (edited by Cesca 2021-03-01 19:52:30)

Re: Six Nations

Well with the former French President (Sarkozy) now doing time (albeit at home with tag) for corruption, it would seem, as it has been for the past millennia that corruption is rife in La belle France!


This is the bitterest pain among men,
To have much knowledge , but no power.



Re: Six Nations

Well it seems the French saga continues to spin out.  It turns out it was the French Coach who was patient zero.  He left the bubble to go see his son play rugby.  He was wearing a mask, but he still breached the bubble.  So did the French players who went out for Roman Waffles (I've been to Rome a few times, but I never got waffles.  Actually I didn't know they even had waffles.  It never came up.  I did drink a lot of red wine and I ate a lot of cheese, but Waffles just wasn't ever on the menu.  Did I miss something?)

Now before the tournament started each team was required to submit a bubble plan to international rugby and their own governments and only when each team signed off on the other's plan was each team allow to participate.

The rub comes in when they talk about rescheduling.  The plan in discussion seems to be to schedule the game a week after the rest of the Six Nations ends.  Lots of Scots rugby players are scheduled to return to their professional club teams as soon as the Six Nations is over to begin their professional seasons.  As a result many of the Scots might not be available to their national team for the match. 

The argument now is that the French should either be allowed to play the match or be forfeited for breaking bubble protocol.  The French Rugby Federation has come out in support of it's coach and is arguing for their side to play the match.  The Scots on the other hand aren't very keen on the idea of playing the match and want a forfeit.

Stay tuned!

Son, you've got a panty on your head.


Re: Six Nations

I have to confess in my culinary meanderings, I have never come across Roman Waffles smile

This is the bitterest pain among men,
To have much knowledge , but no power.



Re: Six Nations

The Six Nations tournament resumes this weekend.  It appears that France is going to survive bursting it's own bubble, at least for the moment, so it's damn the virus and full speed ahead!

The first match of the weekend is Italy v. Wales in Rome.  The Welsh are in the lead with their destiny in their own hands and a Grand Slam within reach.  They should beat the Italians and earn a bonus point.  However the Dragons have been extremely lucky this tournament and luck has a way of turning around at the most unlikely moment.  Luck always seems to balance itself, good for bad, out when it comes to sports.  It would be the rugby gods' little joke if the Welsh are on the receiving end of 2 red cards and some questionable refereeing in a loss to the lowly Italians after scooting past the Irish, the Scots and then the English with the aid of Lady Luck.  Then it would be red wine and pasta all around!  However barring that Wales should win and win handily, so we'll leave it at that and keep a weather eye out for the hurricane of bad luck that is surely stalking Wales.

Next up is England v. France at Twickenham.  France is on it's own run of luck here.  After the waffle misadventures and the Coach breaking their tournament approved bubble, it appears they will escape unscathed and with a possibility of a Grand Slam of their own intact.  A win at Twickenham will set up a showdown with the Welsh in two weeks with, in all probability, the Six Nations trophy on the line for Wales and a chance for France to go through and win it all two weeks later.  France just seems untouchable this tournament and their young stars are maturing before our eyes into some of the most talented and creative rugby talent on the planet.  The young Sun Kings are in ascendance toward the pinnacle of International Rugby.

The English, on the other hand, seem to be on the other side of their rise to prominence under Eddie Jones.  Another loss and England will only rank above the Wooden Spoon repository Italy in the tournament standings.  A tournament that began with them as the favorites has degenerated into a winter of English Rugby Fans' discontent.  The Faithful of St. George are limping, battered, and bowed as they stagger into home ground for this most recent show down with the ancient enemy of their forefathers, the foul and most foreign French.  Hopes are low and prospects are dim for England.  The creme of French Rugby are bravely in their battle ranks.  They have unfurled the Oriflamme and are honing their blades to issue the Coup de Grace to the besmirched and exhausted English manhood.  There is no hope and invasion is imminent.  Warm up Les Marseillais.  The French are poised to score a crowning victory here and put St. George to shame once and for all.

Yet this is where the English are truly the most dangerous.  Historically whenever they are down and almost out, they rise again and triumph in the face of ultimate tragedy.  All the English Rugby side has to do is reach down into the stalwart soul in every Englishman and summon up the spirit that survived against all odds and against all comers and rose up to rule the waves!  Somehow, someway Eddie Jones and the English find a way to resist the implacable French onslaught and once again send the French back across the sea with one mighty blow of the English battle axe.  Rule Britannia!  For victory and ST. GEOOOOOOOOOOOOORGE!  England wins a grinding and ugly game in the mud at Twickenham to spoil the French hopes of a Grand Slam and once again remind the French just who the defenders of civilization really are in this world.



https://www.youtube.com/results?search_ … rs+Henry+V

Finally on Sunday is a fun match up of Scotland vs. Ireland at Murrayfield.  Both of these sides must be smarting from the knowledge that somehow the Welsh got the better of them when they both seemed poised to ride waves of momentum to the top of the standings.  Scotland came flying into this tournament playing that spirited and fast paced style of Rugby they're famous for.  They were confident and dangerous and then they stubbed their toe.  The Irish, on the other hand, have played their role as the Rugby version of Eeyore, mopey and downcast and shot through with self inflicted defeats.  I'm looking forward to this one.  It's a chance for Scotland to get back up and into the chase.  While they cannot get a Grand Slam, they're still in the hunt if they can win out and pick up some bonus points along the way.  A win here leaves them with a match up with the Italians and then possibly a showdown with the French for the whole ball of wax.  A French loss to England and a French victory over the Welsh put the Scots back firmly in the hunt, so quick is the word and sharp is the action.  My heart is rooting for Scotland and my head is telling me this year they can do it.  Scotland defeats Ireland as the Irish, late in the match find yet another new and creative way to insert their headquarters into their own hindquarters.  Forth Legion of St. Andrew!

Son, you've got a panty on your head.


Re: Six Nations


Admiral Nelson attends thee Roses Rugby!

Son, you've got a panty on your head.


Re: Six Nations

Well I am not going to disagree with any of that, it pretty much sums it all up.

The Celts of one description or another will be happy the "Bastard Aenglish" go down to the French and probably be happier than the Frogs that they have beaten "Les Ros Boef"

Having said that we do have the best rousing speeches smile To my mind although Branagh is good none can surpass Olivier:


Although Burton runs it a close second:


This is the bitterest pain among men,
To have much knowledge , but no power.



Re: Six Nations

Tanemund wrote:


Admiral Nelson attends thee Roses Rugby!

Victory lies four miles as the crow flies (pun intended) from where I sit typing.

This is the bitterest pain among men,
To have much knowledge , but no power.



Re: Six Nations

What a match!

England v. France was the match of the tournament thus far.  France, led by their Golden Danger Man DuPonte scored two of the niftiest tries you'll ever see in international rugby.  They are truly deadly from anywhere on the pitch.  In fact they put home their first try little more than one minute into the game off a nice little chip kick and a slick collection of the ball by DuPonte.  But England kept cool and responded with fast paced and decisive rugby of their own.  England, with the exception of about 10 minutes in the second half, stayed disciplined and decisive for the entire game.  Both sides played amazing rugby, but with five minutes to go the English chased down the young Frenchmen and rammed home a try to take the lead and win! 

The first half was some of the finest rugby I've seen from both sides and France took a lead into half time.  England was still down three going into the final 10 minutes and then they suddenly burst forth with penetrating runs and nifty offloads leading to a try powered home by their pack off a maul. 

This win will surely send the English faithful into delirium!  The English has yet again vanquished the French just when the French seemed assured of victory!



This win will a good man teach his sons!


Son, you've got a panty on your head.


Re: Six Nations

Ok, a fantastic weekend of rugby!

Wales beat Italy.  No surprises there.

England beat France!  What a match.  England showed it's quality in all phases of the game.  On Saturday they weren't just slaves to thumping the ball.  They ran, they passed, they stretched the French defense and generally controlled themselves when it came to penalties.  There was a sloppy stretch in the second half, which the French graciously matched, but then the English found form again with ten minutes to go and managed to put a winning try across as well as defend effectively until the end of the match.  Three cheers for the Roses!

The French played what is becoming their signature style:  Stout defense that never panics and then absolutely brilliant offense sparked by DuPonte.  If DuPonte isn't the best rugby player on the planet, he's in the top five anyway.  With Faf De Clerk from South Africa, DuPonte is the vanguard of the new breed of Rugby player that is bursting on the international scene.  He's just always in the right place at the right time, doing exactly the right thing at the right time and his knowledge of the laws is unmatched.  At least once a match DuPonte does something on a Rugby pitch that force everyone to consult the laws and realize he's one or two step ahead of the rest of the game.  The French can score from anywhere on the pitch and when they have the ball they always go forward in chunks of meters at a time.  I have no doubt that by the time the next World Cup rolls around they'll be one of the teams to watch.  They have to work on their consistency and their fitness a bit, but I would love to see them matched up against some of the Southern Hemisphere teams as they have been against the best of the Northern Hemisphere to see where they stand internationally.  However I have no doubt their style and flair will give any team in the world night sweats on the eve of any match.

Ireland beats Scotland.  Alas but for a penalty at the death the Scots were in this.  They got down big but came roaring back to tie the match in it's twilight, but then gave up a penalty which the Irish managed to boot home for the win.  The Irish can take heart that they didn't manage to choke this one away, although it looked for all the world that they were going to when they blew a 14 point lead.

As for the Scotsman, again they were scintillating to watch and their style of wide open rugby makes them a truly dangerous international side, but once again they just didn't quite make it across the finish line.  How things have changed since the first half against the Welsh when they looked like they could roar on to a Grand Slam.  Then one penalty and they've been just a bit short ever since.

Still it was a brilliant match and I enjoyed it even though it was on at 11:00 PM here in the states.  Tape delay, so I had to make sure I didn't look up the scores.  This weekend is what makes this the greatest championship in international rugby besides the World Cup.  Any team in it (well almost any.  Sorry Italy) could go on a run and win it.

The French still have a chance since they have a match with the Welsh in the next round.  A French victory there spoils Wales amazing run and puts the French back on top with a date with Scotland left on the books.  Stay tuned!

Son, you've got a panty on your head.

20 (edited by Chuut 2021-03-17 05:22:37)

Re: Six Nations

Well I didn't think it was all that spectacular, lol... aside from the first 2 minutes and the last 5 minutes....too much foot tennis for my taste otherwise.  I think the Japanese have spoiled me.  The Golden boy also botched it at the end for France.

I will grant that anytime England beats France it is an exciting affair if you are English.


Re: Six Nations

So here it is ... Super Saturday.  The last weekend of the tournament where usually the championship is decided, but this year thanks to COVID and waffles there is a twist.  The Welsh are on the verge of a Grand Slam.  If they win against France on Saturday they score the Grand Slam and win the Six Nations title outright.  If the French win then all bets are off and all eyes will turn to whether the game of Scotland v. France is made up and, if it is made up, what the outcome will be.  So with that as preface lets look to the individual games.

The first match is Scotland v. Italy at Murrayfield in Scotland.  The Scots should win this handily and probably score a bonus point.  Italy will probably hang tough for twenty minutes before things just slide out of their hands.  Any other outcome would be a surprise, so we'll leave it at that.

The second match is Ireland v. England at Aviva in Ireland.  Both sides are out of it as far as winning the tournament goes, but there is still pride at stake.  Both sides are at 2 wins and 2 losses for the tournament with Ireland holding a 1 point lead over England in the standings.  The winning side will be at 3 and 2 for the tournament and that looks a lot better than 2 and 3, so expect both sides to come out blazing.

In it's last match against France, England seemed to find it's feet and finally played the rugby we've expected from them this whole tournament.  They are a talented and skilled side, and still as dangerous as any team in the top tier of international rugby.  The question for them will be will we see the Roses that showed up for the match against France, or the Roses who didn't show up against Scotland?

The Irish, on the other hand, are as skilled and talented a team as any, but with a penchant for shooting themselves in the foot when the spotlight is on them.  It is safe to say that no team in recent international rugby memory has been so adroit at spoiling their own party with stunningly bad rugby at the worst possible moment.  A victory over England on Saturday would be a bit of redemption for the Irish, and that is something they desperately need at the moment.  A loss to England on Saturday will turn those derisive snickers secretly laughed up international rugby sleeves into outright laughs, sneers and jeers.  In other words Ireland needs this one badly to salvage it's international reputation.  They're off a win over Scotland, which was narrow and partly lucky, but a win none the less.  The Irish are hoping this will be the springboard they need to get back to international respectability as they have been eclipsed by France and Wales, and now possibly being viewed as in the same plane as Scotland which means a first rate, second rate rugby side that can beat a top tier team but isn't among the elite as they will most likely lose to the elite sides in a spectacular and loud manner.

My pick for this match is England.  I think they found themselves against the French last week and they'll carry that into this contest with the Irish.  The Irish just can't be trusted in a big spot, and Super Saturday is a big spot.  They just have too much history of wilting under the harsh, bright lights to be the favorite here, even though this makes them a "home dog" in gambling terms.  England sneaks home a late penalty goal to win a physical, grinding test of the rival forwards 18 to 15.

The final match is for "all the marbles" as they say.  France v. Wales in Paris.  A Welsh victory means they score a Grand Slam and win the tourney outright.  The Welsh have their own destiny in their hands here.  A French victory means that the French will still have an opportunity to win the title pending the outcome of their rescheduled match against Scotland, if that ever happens.  Suffice it to say that if France wins they will have a very solid opportunity to win the Six Nations tournament with all the other sides in the shed awaiting the outcome of the Scotland v. France make up game to learn their ultimate finishing positions in the standings.

Coming into this match Wales has gotten every single break they could have gotten.  From some timely red cards, to opponents disintegrating on the verge of victory, to creative refereeing and then a tune up match in the last round they've sailed along as if selected and kissed by the goddess of rugby herself.  They haven't played badly, but they're not the best team in the tournament no matter what their record says.  However sometimes it's better to be lucky than good and they find themselves on the verge of a Grand Slam and a clean tournament victory if they can somehow manage one more win either by hook or by crook.

The French on the other hand are coming off a bruising loss to the English.  Once again England interposed itself between France and world domination.  The French are behind Ireland by a point in the standings and to win the tournament the French likely need help.  They definitely need to beat the Welsh on Saturday otherwise it's all over but the shouting.  But if they do win the French will likely need the English to beat the Irish on Saturday and then the French will have to go sit on the powder keg and play a resurgent Scotland side.  Scotland has spoiled the French hopes just last year and they'll be salivating for a chance to do it again.  In other words the French path to the title, thanks to the English, is a little fraught with uncertainty. 

There are three potential roadblocks between the French and the title and those are the Welsh, the Irish and the Scots.  Of those three only two of them are within the direct control of the French as the French must hope the English beat the Irish on Saturday to remove the possible Irish barrier to the potential French Six Nations title.  Strangely the first of those, Wales, might be the easiest for them to overcome.  They have the Welsh in Paris so the French have home ground on their side.  The Welsh have been living on borrowed time and some fantastic luck.  As I said before, in sports luck seems to balance out and they Welsh have drawn heavily on their good luck to get to this point.  The question is does lady luck abandon the Welsh, as she surely will as she abandons everyone in the end, now or wait until later down the road?  In rugby luck is a rather thin thing to bet the purse on, but the Welsh are going to need luck to somehow slide past the French. 

In any analysis of this match, even the most generous to the Welsh, the French are more talented, younger and they have the best player on the pitch in the figure of DuPont (if not the second and third best players on the pitch with Jalibert and Fickou on the roster as well).  Also France is more desperate as they simply have to have this win or they have no chance to win the tournament.  The Welsh could lose this week, but win the tournament if the Scots beat the French during the make up game between Scotland and France.  Add this to the fact that the French are on home ground and this reveals itself to be a huge task for the Welsh.  In fact it's just too much for the Welsh to overcome in my opinion.  If nothing else the French have shown themselves to be lovers of chaos for it is out of chaos that their most brilliant rugby flows.  A French win completely upsets the apple-cart of the Six Nations championship and that alone is reason enough to pick the French.  France beats Wales 32 to 18 and in the process scores a bonus point to dash Welsh hopes of a Grand Slam win in the Six Nations and throws the whole tournament outcome into disarray. 

So to recap.

Scotland beats Italy.  No story there.

England beats Ireland.  The story is that combined with a Welsh loss to France the English triumph over Ireland suddenly gives England a hope of a second place finish in the 2021 Six Nations tournament to either Wales or France.  That's not a bad result given that the tournament started with a disastrous 0 and 2 start that witnessed Scotland break one of the longest losing streaks in international rugby history.  I think England's rugby pride could be salved a little by that ultimate result.

France beats Wales.  The story there is that the Welsh go from potential winners of the Six Nations to the biggest Scotland fans in the world.

Stay tuned!

Son, you've got a panty on your head.

22 (edited by Chuut 2021-03-18 22:03:53)

Re: Six Nations

Wales wins...and its over.

The Welsh are crafty and catch opponents sleeping, they are also exiting and feed on the momentum.  France tends to take naps during their matches and I think the Welsh will exploit this, like they did multiple times against England.  I just don't see France beating them, the French fell in defeat their last match and the French nation isn't known for quickly overcoming defeatism.  The French defeating a foe that scored 40 against the team that just defeated them seems like a stretch.  I don't think the French wear down the Welsh as they are known as strong finishers as much as the French are.  Nobody has as many Grand Slams as the Welsh, when they are on, they are on.  The only time that Wales didn't get a Grand Slam with a 6 nations victory, they lost their first match only.

As for the rest.  England vs Ireland, I honestly can't call, flip a coin.  But on a hunch I'll go with Ireland with absolutely no confidence in that.

Scotland will of course sent Italy home to eat pasta with a wooden spoon per tradition.


Re: Six Nations

Well ... that was that eh?

Scotland beats Italy.  No surprise here.

Ireland beats up on England.  Oh, dear.  The less said about this the better.  England never looked like they were up to international form.  Perhaps it was because of taking those Saracens who hadn't even played since the COVID shutdowns.  They just never got up to speed except in the France game.  Other than that they looked slow and plodding.  It's Fifth place for England just a scant six months after winning the 2020 Six Nations.  Time for a shake up.

Ireland looked sound.  They finally didn't shoot themselves in the foot.  Even after they got a man down they still controlled the match.  Good show for a change.  3 and 2 for the tournament and a possible 2nd place finish rides on the outcome of Scotland v. France.

France beat Wales ... on the last play of the match!  Holy cow what a match.  Wales showed quality throughout and looked like they just might get home with the Grand Slam.  But France put the ball across in extra time for a try that gave them the win with beautiful slashing back play.  I'll have more on this match later, but once again France is involved in a great match.  They seem to bring out the best in their opponents.

So now it comes down to France v. Scotland in Paris.  France needs a win with a bonus point and they must beat Scotland by more than 20 points to capture the Six Nations.  Otherwise Wales gets the title this year.

Son, you've got a panty on your head.


Re: Six Nations

Wales should have won that match, but they lost discipline at the end.  Maybe it was their lead, maybe it was France being a man down but Their minds left the match and they destructed.