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Tyma
Dec 22, 2004

Chwyldro Dawnsio Dawns




Rugby is without dispute the greatest sport in the history of forever. Invented in 1823 by a small boy who got tired of kicking in football, the game quickly evolved into the graceful, distinguished ballet we all know and love today. Rugby is played by two sides of 15 men (with reserve players on the bench in case of injury, exhaustion or being a bit poo poo), who proceed to spend 80 minutes pretending to be chasing an egg shaped ball around the field as an excuse for thudding into each other at high speed just to hear that cool smacking noise of the collision.

The rules are simple, you want to get the ball and get over the other team's line to score. The other team thinks this is total bullshit and will do everything they can to stop this, which mostly involves sending gigantic cubes of man-meat hurtling at great velocity at the scrappy little fly-half who is seriously reconsidering his life-choices as he zips towards them.

Teams are divided into forwards and backs though they are all on the field at the same time. Forwards are the first line of defense/offense for a team - they're traditionally carved out of stone or - if no stone is available - a bear is dragged out of hibernation, shaved, shoved into spiked boots and shoved bewildered out onto the field of play. Backs are the faster, more agile players who get all the glory, money and women that come part and parcel with the glamorous, sophisticated and highly dignified world of Professional Rugby. The backs are traditionally the players who zoom past the startled, exhausted forwards to get over the line, though they are also often the guys who kick the ball back to the other team in terror when they see a forward thundering towards them ready to devour them. The fullback is the greatest coward there is in Rugby, a man to be pitied and loathed, and never trusted.

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Upcoming Dates Of Great Interest

01 February - France vs England (Six Nations)
08 February – Ireland vs Wales (Six Nations)
09 February – France vs Italy (Six Nations)
15 February - Cheetahs vs Lions (Super Rugby)
21 February - Crusaders vs Chiefs (Super Rugby)
22 February - Wales vs France (Six Nations)
22 February - England vs Ireland (Six Nations)

09 March - England vs Wales (Six Nations)
15 March - Championship Day (Six Nations)
28 March - Glasgow vs Ospreys (Pro 12)
29 March - Leinster vs Munster (Pro 12)

Previous Threads
Rugby Union 2013 Thread
Rugby Union 2011 Thread
Let's All Watch The Rugby Football
Rugby Player Thread

Selected Viewing From The 2013 Season
Hurricanes vs Chiefs [Link] (2012 Super Rugby)
Wales vs England [Link] (2013 Six Nations)
Chiefs vs Brumbies [Link] (2013 Super Rugby Grand Final)
South Africa vs New Zealand [Link] (2013 Rugby Championship)
Ireland vs New Zealand [Part 1] [Part 2] (Autumn International)




Each team is trying to get control of the ball, and carry it across the opponent's Try Line to score points. Once the ball crosses the line, a player has to place the ball on the ground, in order to score a “try”. Once a try is scored, the scoring team gets 5 points, and a chance to take a shot at goal, which is worth an extra 2 points.

The team carrying the ball will try and run or push towards the goal line, and pass the ball between players. You can only pass the ball to players behind behind you, so the team with the ball will usually stand in a “V” formation, to help pass the ball to the wingers as efficiently as possible. The defending team will form a straight line across the pitch, and try to tackle the ball carrier.

When the player with the ball is tackled to the ground, both teams crowd around him and form a Big Pushing Contest, called a Ruck, where the attacking team will try and push defenders away from the ball long enough for the Scrum Half to safely pick it up. The defending team try and push themselves over the top of the the ball, so they can gain control of it.

Players are allowed to kick the ball forwards, to try and gain territory, or to score a goal. Each team will usually have one or two players dedicated to this role (The fly-half and the full-back). If the ball is kicked between the goal-posts, the attacking team score 3 points, although this is becoming more and more of a rarity. If the ball is kicked and goes out of play, then a bunch of complicated rules come into play, and everyone gets confused. When watching a game, you'll always want to see your team kick the ball a long distance, and for it to bounce on the ground before going out of play.

The ball will come back into play via a “Line-Out”. Each team forms a straight line at the side of the pitch and the ball is (theoretically) thrown in a straight line above the two teams,who each try to jump up and grab it.

If a player commits a foul, then the referee will award a “scrum” to the wronged team. This is a bigger, more organised Pushing Contest, with lots of rules I don't understand, and can't explain to you. If the foul is a very serious offence, then the wronged team will have the choice of being awarded either a Scrum, a Line-Out, a sot at goal (worth 3 points), or a chance to gain huge amounts of territory, by kicking the ball into touch. If the offence is super, super serious, the player will be given a Yellow Card, and have to leave the field to sit in the Sin Bin for 10 minutes. If the offence is super, super, super serious, the player will receive a Red Card, and gently caress off back to the dressing room for the duration of the game.

Whenever points are scored, the conceding team always kicks the ball back to the scorers. Because this gives the scoring team momentum, aggressive play is encouraged, and most teams will always try and kick penalty points wherever possible.

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Formations

Each team is made up of 15 guys, and they all have fairly specific offensive roles. When on the defence, everyone can and will make tackles, although they'll usually be tackling their opposing counterparts. The guys numbered 1-8 are the forwards, who's job it is to hold the line, and try to push the other team back. Whenever there's a Scrum, these are the 8 guys who take part, and they're usually the first to get involved in a Ruck or a Line-Out. All of these guys come in varying degrees of huge.

The #9 is the Scrum Half. He picks the ball off the ground during a Scrum or a Ruck. He's usually small, fast, and very good at passing the ball before he gets tackled by his opposing number. Because of the new rule changes for the 2013 season, every Scrum Half is going to be under more pressure than ever before, and will have a very short time frame in which to make vital decisions.

The #10 is the Fly-Half, which is sort-of-maybe like a Quarterback. The Fly-Half usually receives the ball from the Scrum Half, and has a relatively large amount of time between receiving the ball, and being tackled by his opposing counterpart. Because of this, the Fly-Half is able to look at the opponent's formation, and decide which plays to make. He also has the luxury of being able to kick the ball without the kick being charged down. The Fly-Half is usually the team's dedicated kicker.

Players #12 through #14 are the ball carriers (Centres and Wingers). They try to run around (or through) opposing players, or simply run into the opposition's defensive wall, so they can abort the current play, begin a Ruck, and carry on gaining territory with a different approach. The Wingers tend to score the majority of tries, and are usually the fastest runners on the field.

Player #15 is the Full Back, which means he's one of the bravest guys in the loving world. He plays at the very tip of the V-shaped formation, and is the last line of defence whenever something goes wrong. If the opposing team suddenly grab the ball and make a break for the line, he has to chase them to make the saving tackle, and if the opposing team makes a strategic kick down field, it's his job to run after the ball, pick it up, and boot it back down field, before a stampede of opposing players can run him down.

Because of Full-Back's unique position (and a ton of convoluted offside rules), he can make a play called a “Garryowen” (I'm not making this up), where he will pick up the loose ball, kick it down field over the 24 guys fighting in the middle of the pitch, run through them unopposed, and either catch his own kick or smash full-force into any opposing player who dares intercept it.

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Championships

The Rugby World (and by association, the real world) is split into the Northern and Southern hemispheres. For over a hundred years, the Southern Hemisphere have dominated the sport at international level, but as the game reaches professional status in more countries in Europe, the Northern Hemisphere are slowly starting to catch up. Inter-hemisphere matches are very frequent at an International level, but almost non-existent at Club level.

The Olympics
The reigning and completely undefeated Olympic champions are the USA. The last Olympic Rugby match was held in 1924, between the French national team, and a USA team made up of Gridiron players from Stanford University, who had never played Rugby in their lives. After roughing up and then seriously injuring French hero Adolphe Jaureguy, the American team triggered a full-scale riot, which resulted in the Olympic Committee declaring that Rugby was not compatible with the ideals of the Olympic spirit.

The World Cup
Every 4 years, the world of Rugby Union comes together for a grand tournament, in which New Zealand inevitably choke steamroll every other team. The 2011 World Cup was held in New Zealand itself, and since the country of New Zealand is still a functioning society, we can safely assume that they won. The next World Cup will be held in England, which is not a functioning society. New Zealand will still win.

The Six Nations
Every year, The Six Nations must each send a tribute of 15 young players to Twickenham, where they mercilessly slaughter each other for the amusement of the Rugby Hierarchy. Lately, the smaller nations have started rebelling, with the 2013 title going to Wales. Wales are now one win away from becoming the first team to ever win the tournament 3 years in a row, but are also on the verge of imploding from internal politics.

The Rugby Championship
A tournament held once a year between Australia, New Zealand and South Africa, who are coincidently the best 3 teams in the world. This year, Argentina have been added to the competition, in an attempt to order to boost awareness of the sport create a southern-hemisphere whipping boy. The current champions are New Zealand, who literally won every single game of Rugby they played in 2013.

Rabodirect Pro 12
Formerly the Celtic / Magners League, the Pro 12 is the Northern Hemisphere's international “Super League”, consisting of twelve teams from Ireland, Scotland, Wales and Italy. Each team represents a region, and is free to field players from other professional teams in that region, as well as it's own contracted players.

Super Rugby
The Southern Hemisphere's equivalent of the Pro 12 operates on the same ideas, but uses a slightly different format. New Zealand, Australia and South Africa each field teams from 5 regions. They all play a home and away match against every other team in their country, and 8 matches against random opponents from the other countries. At the end of the season, the top team from each country is entered into a playoff tournament, along with a 4th team deemed by the league to have been the “least poo poo”. The current (although technically not the least poo poo) team are The Chiefs.

Heineken Cup
A mid-season competition where the Pro 12 teams compete against the top teams from England and France. Some teams treat this as a really big deal, while others will only field their B-teams. In the end, Leinster win regardless.




Where can I find Rugby News?
Herald Sun
Planet Rugby
ESPN Scrum
Official Pro 12 Website
BBC News
Wales Online

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How Do Substitutions Work?

Each team starts with 15 players and 7 Substitutes. If a back row (#9 – 15) player is replaced with a substitute, he cannot return to the game later on. If a front row player (#1 - 8) is substituted, then he can only rejoin the game if another forward becomes injured, as forcing a player fron the Back Row to take the injured players' place in the Scrum would probably result in some sort of death.

If a player is bleeding, the referee can declare a “Blood Substitution”. The player is temporarily replaced by any player on the bench, and leaves the field so that he can inject himself with the blood of Jonah Lomu have the would sewn up. When the bleeding is stopped, the players can switch places again.

In 2009, the London Harlequins managed to abuse the system, asking their players to use blood capsules and feign injury, in order to bring substituted players back onto to the pitch.

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Did that dude just get sent off for nothing?

Some of the most serious fouls aren't very high-impact. Lifting a player so that his legs become parallel with his shoulders is always an instant yellow or red card offence, even if they manage to land safely. Arguing with a referee is usually a yellow card, and any player who kicks the ball away after committing a foul is deemed a big baby, and usually gets a yellow card.

Sometimes, a team will repeatedly do something that fucks up the flow of the game, like scrummaging incorrectly, throwing crooked line-outs, or abusing a technicality in the rules, to gain an advantage. If that team receives a warning from the referee, and still continues to gently caress up the flow of the game, then the referee will often yellow-card one of their players as a scapegoat, in order to penalise the team and force the game back on track.

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Where's The Best Place To Start?

The next big international contest is The Six Nations, which runs through February and March. Use this to set your expectations low, and prepare to be loving blown away when you start to watch the new season of Super Rugby in late February. The Southern Hemisphere season runs from February until August, and the Northern Hemisphere season runs from September until May... So as a general rule, whenever you happen to ready this OP, there's some sort of Rugby competition being played, and we're probably very angry at whatever Fly-Half is currently on TV. Hooray!

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Who Should I Support?!
If you want to see exciting matches : Hurricanes / Rebels
If you want to support the underdog : Western Force / Highlanders
If you want a drunken sing-along every week : Bulls / Reds
If you want to ride The Rugby Rollercoaster : Brumbies / Waratahs
If you like cuddly animals and don't mind losing all the time : Lions / Sharks
If you want to win absolutely everything : Chiefs / Crusaders

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Tyma
Dec 22, 2004

Chwyldro Dawnsio Dawns




All kick off times are in GMT. All of these matches are being televised, usually free of charge via a free stream on ehe BBC's website. If you can't the stream, there's usually a stream of the stream somewhere. Games marked with an Asterisk* are matchups that will occur again during the 2015 Rugby World Cup.

Saturday 1st November
Barbarians vs Australia (14:30 GMT)
USA vs New Zealand (20:00 GMT)

Saturday 8th November
England vs New Zealand (14:30 GMT)
Wales vs Australia (14:30 GMT) *
Ireland vs South Africa (17:30 GMT)
Scotland vs Aregentina (17:30 GMT)

Saturday 15th November
Italy vs Argentina (14:00 GMT)
England vs South Africa (14:30 GMT)
Wales vs Fiji (14:30 GMT) *
Scotland vs New Zealand (17:30 GMT)
France vs Australia (20:00 GMT)

Saturday 22nd November
Italy vs South Africa (14:00 GMT)
Ireland vs Australia (16:30 GMT)
Wales vs New Zealand (17:30 GMT)
England vs Samoa (19:00 GMT)
France vs Argentina (20:00 GMT)

Saturday 29th November
England vs Australia (14:30 GMT)*
Wales vs South Africa (14:30 GMT)




The Six Nations is an annual tournament held between England, Wales, Ireland, Scotland, France and Italy. Like all sensible outdoor sports, the tournament is held in the middle of winter, while three of the participating countries are partially submerged, due to flooding, and one of the countries involved may not be playing professional rugby in six months time. It's the country which is odds-on favourites to win. Rugby is loving weird.

I'm unashamedly bias towards one of the teams (although strangely it's not the one I wrote about), so this year we have Goon Champions to introduce the teams, and tell you which team you should blindly support this month, when you inevitably become so drunk that you forget which country you come from.

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The 2013 tournament kicked off in Italy, in a game that captured the true meaning of The Six Nations – Beating a country you hate, in the only sport they're good at.

France started as joint favourites with England. On the back of a World Cup final, and 5 consecutive wins, they started the tournament with a fantastic (and entertaining!) loss to the minnows of Italy. Italy would also go on to humiliate Ireland, finishing an impressive 4rd place in the tournament, and condemning France to last place.

Scotland and Ireland both saw 2013 as a transitional year. Scotland deemed it a good time to sack their coach, and recruited a round of new Scottish players, with some dubiously foreign accents. Ireland suffered enough retirements and injuries to force a complete re-shuffle of the squad, and forced 20-year old Paddy Jackson into the centre of a team that had already been built around the more physical style of Johnny Sexton. Jackson floundered on his much-hyped debut, and although he eventually re-gained face, Ireland finished a dismal 4th place.

With France falling at the first hurdle, England were the clear favourites to not only win the tournament, but scoop up a Grand Slam in the process. After beating world champions New Zealand at the tail end of 2012, England proceeded to absolutely demolish any team in their path. On the way to the final, they made some enemies, who cited foul play, uninspiring matches and an air of arrogance as reasons many neutral supporters increasingly eager to see England get their comeuppance.

Wales came into the tournament as champions, but on the back of 7 one-sided losses. Over the course of the next month, Leigh Halfpenny dragged the bleeding corpse of Welsh Rugby around the British Isles, and ended up back in Cardiff, to play the final match against incumbent champions England.

The game was billed as a potential upset. Wales could deny England their grand slam, and could mathematically actually still win the six nations, if they hit a certain points total. What followed was a complete massacre, as 80,000 Welsh fans watched their team dominate England in every single aspect of the game. 80 minutes, and a clear 27 points later, Ryan Jones lifted a hastily re-decorated Six Nations trophy, and learnt the true meaning of The Six Nations - Beating a country you hate, in the only sport they're good at.





Wales come into this years championship after a winning the previous two Six Nations; with last years coming right down to wire.. If England had bothered to show up in the final game.

However, coming off a poor autumn/winter series against the Southern Hemisphere teams, and the lack of faith in the stability of their own club game, Wales are at a low point coming into this years Championship.. But gently caress all of that - Wales embodies what it means to show clutch when it's needed most. Sure, they'll keep you on edge for 78 minutes of a game, and by all rights will usually convince you that they're about to lose. Then, something magical happens, which makes you jump with joy and could possibly get you kicked out of any Scottish pub for showing "too much passion".

..Unless Rhys Priestland is making the game winning kick. In that case, you're probably hosed.

Even though Welsh rugby appears to be in turmoil, most of the national squad featured in last years' successful British Lions tour, and are on the verge of achieving something no team has ever done before – conquering The Six Nations for a third year in a row. For some reason, Rhys Priestland is starting at #10 again this year, and I can't possibly explain to you why. Through all the inconsistencies, poor play choices and horrible kicking, any professional team would have dropped him, he's back yet again, and the timer starts ticking down to his first major gently caress-up of the year.

Sam Warburton also returns this year to captain the Welsh side, despite injury concerns (one of which is keeping him out of the opener against Italy). So, winning British Lions captain Alun Wyn Jones will once again step up as captain. There ARE reasons to expect great things from Wales. Most of them coming from Dan Biggar. If Biggar gets playing time (for the love of god, let's hope he does), look for him to dominate teams with his dashing good looks (and shrewd tactical play)

Whether you watch the games in a pub, or in The Millenium Stadium, Welsh fans are the loudest and proudest of any in the competition, and will happily give you partial ear damage. Prepare to sing about hymns, arias, hunger and hapus, even if you don't understand what any of those songs are about.

It's business as usual for Wales this February. The whole world looks like it's falling down around Welsh Rugby, but we still have a shot at winning, and another chance to make a mockery of England. Surely that can't be a waste of time, can it?



It's been over ten years since England won the world cup, and some people may be telling us to get over it. Actually, it’s the opposite. That win caused a massive increase in kids playing rugby, which has now lead to many more talented players eligible for England. With victories in the 2013 Junior World Cup showing that the conveyor belt is in full flow, England are building a strength in depth that is quickly surpassing all other countries. Be afraid..

England is the team everybody wants to beat:


This is because they arrogantly win more games than they lose. Scotland are particularly angry at England for arrogantly knocking them out of the 2011 World Cup.

Looking at England’s opponents: Wales are the biggest threat as they’re content with being a big fish in a small pond, France have an insane coach, Italy have one world-class player, Scotland’s best players are suspected of drunken assault and Ireland? Well..

Provided England’s youngsters don’t poo poo the bed in Paris, there’s a good chance of them beating Ireland and Wales at home and setting up a decider in Italy.

Chris Robshaw : A very good captaincy record (better than Sam Warburton’s), doesn’t get played off the park repeatedly by SH opensides (unlike Sam Warburton) and plays brilliantly even when his team doesn’t (unlike Sam Warburton). Despite not being a ‘genuine seven’ he affects a fair rate of turnovers (more than Sam Warburton) and has a fantastic consistency to his performances.

Owen Farrell : The format dictates that I talk about the incumbent fly-half, so here’s post 2003 Wilkinson, Mark 2. Known for his psychotic stares when eyeing up the goalposts and not much else, this is the tournament for Farrell to cement his position in the England team. He can do that by getting the backline to fire, which is something that has only happened once since 2011. Maybe we’ll just settle for a 100% kicking ratio.

Joe Launchbury : Fantastic speed, immense strength, brilliant hands and a phenomenal workrate. He is quickly growing into one of the best locks in the world.

Why should you support England?
You enjoy being hated by everything and everyone, and derive your happiness solely from other people’s pain. If England win a grandslam everybody else in the world will be sad, so if that thought makes you smile, support England!

Why will England get the wooden spoon?
If they fail to score any tries in the competition they could lose every match, which is very possible considering the general state of England’s backline for the last two years.




The Scotland national rugby union team is one of the oldest active international rugby teams on the planet, having participated in the first ever international rugby fixture ever played (Scotland SMASHED England by 1 goal to nil. Smashed them to bits.) Thus having established their rugby dominance, Scottish rugby grew from strength to strength, destroying all comers at the 4 and 5 Nations while producing genuine legends of the game like Sir Ian McGeechan, Finlay Calder and Gavin and Scott, the Hastings brothers. Scotland also won the last ever 5 Nations, objectively making them the best team to ever compete in that tournament, and everyone should just be thankful that the Scots deigned to play the game with the rest of the Euro-trash riff-raff. Even now, they periodically remind everyone of their true quality by pipping the South Africans at Murrayfield once in a while and regularly destroying the Wallabies at home and away. This also makes them the last 6 Nations team to win a game against the old Tri-Nations teams on their home soil, unlike the other 5, who continue to poo poo the bed whenever they see a green, gold or black jersey. Take that, you jerks.

Captaining the Scotland side once again is the superbly eyebrowed Kelly Brown, who plies his trade with the London-based Saracens. A tough loose forward who was unlucky to miss out on Lions selection last year, he leads the team as best as he could. His skillset is such that he can play in all three loose forward positions, and is currently used primarily as an openside flanker.

Greig Laidlaw, another who was unlucky not to make the Lions tour, will likely be the playmaker at 9. Endowed with the skills to play at 10 as well, the Edinburgh-based halfback is the latest quality halfback to emerge from Scotland, who have an embarrassment of riches at 9. Laidlaw has a very strong kicking game and is a reliable placekicker for the team, so look to see him go to the boot often in order to pressure the opposition and gain field position for the Scots. With captaincy experience at both the A-level and test level, Laidlaw provides some much needed leadership to the Scottish backline

Stuart Hogg, who made the 2013 Lions Tour to Australia, is one of the more underrated fullbacks in Europe. While the likes of Rob Kearney and Leigh Halfpenny get the plaudits, Hogg has quietly put together a series of impressive performances for both province and country and the Glaswegian fullback is the main go-to guy for the Scots when they are on the attack with the skills and confidence to try some dazzling attacks that would be more suited to the French, All Blacks or Wallabies. Hogg is an absolutely vital and required part of the team if the Scots have any chance of winning.

By supporting the Scots, you’re getting behind a team with tradition and moxie. Even if they don’t win, they usually make their opponents earn their victory and in recent years, have developed a fairly entertaining and enterprising brand of rugby that you wouldn’t expect from the conditions they play in. When you watch Scotland, you’ll get to see almost everything that makes rugby such a wonderful game.

On the other hand, Scotland have become quite proficient at finding ways to gently caress things up on and off the field, with an interim head coach – whom, despite being “interim” is currently in a tenure longer than some permanent head coaches – who is more suited to being an assistant. Keep on the lookout for passes that find the touchline (assuming it indeed does get that far) instead of the winger, possession being kicked away just because, soft tries being conceded, scores that are divisible by 3 and a home stadium that might as well be a graveyard. The individual parts of Scotland are actually quite good, but they just can’t seem to bring it all together into one neat package, while what should be one of the best back three units in Europe sits wasted due to consistent poor decision-making by the playmakers and a fairly pedestrian midfield. Oh Scotland, you really do test our patience as you flabbergast us by playing so far below your capabilities.




Rugby in Italy dates back to the ancient Roman sport of harpastum, because the fact that both sports involved a lot of seemingly unnecessary violence and also passing the ball backwards is a clear indicator of the origins of the sport and definitely not a coincidence that was hyped up by the Fascist government in the 20s and 30s. As a result, with a 2000+ year history in the game Italy dominates the sport at all levels, especially the levels related to "never actually winning anything worthwhile" and "demolishing Australia's scrum at will but forgetting there are 7 additional players on the field to tackle."

Actually, rugby, like soccer, came to Italy through the seaport of Genoa, but whereas Italians were able to adapt quickly to the Association game thanks to their rich heritage of slapstick physical comedic acting and also massive corruption, they have never quite picked up on rugby probably because no one gives a poo poo if you fall down in rugby so stop trying to take dives.

Nevertheless, the Italians who do play rugby, most of which are in the north-central area of the country, love the sport passionately and as a result Italy have developed into a halfway-decent team since they got tired of beating up on Georgia and Romania and joined the Six Nations in 2000. I say halfway-decent because Italian forwards are often quite good, with Sergio Parisse frequently called the best No. 8 in the game and usually made captain of the Barbarians, Martin Castriogovanni generally acknowledged as perhaps the most dominant tighthead prop in the world and, more importantly, the only serious rival of Adam Jones in both the propping AND hair categories (note that both players I just named were born in Argentina, but, non me ne frega un cazzo), and Mauro Bergamasco being an extremely able flanker who gamely stepped in at scrumhalf one time that he would rather forget, but the backs are unremarkable to the extent that I can't tell them apart. No that is not racist, I lived in Italy in high school and my host family were rugby fanatics, I just can't remember who actually plays in the backs.

So as I said, Italy joined the Six Nations in 2000 and fit right in at first, because they beat Scotland. However, they have been the wooden spoon "winners" in about 2/3 of the competitions, with their first away non-loss not coming until 2006 when Wales were having an off year. Italy are always the team that is "almost there" and "within striking distance of winning," though last year's credible victory over France has made those faint praises seem more legitimate. Italy are playing France away this year, though, so their odds of winning in Paris are rather low - but expect Italy to win a game you were pretty sure they would (Scotland), get a draw by frustrating the other team's scrum, and/or pulling off an inspiring, heartwarming upset victory over a team everyone else would rather see lose (England). You should support Italy over every other team except yours, because :

A) gently caress England

B) Each win for Italian rugby brings us one step closer to a world in which we never have to see Italy win the FIFA World Cup again. 




Ireland's last Grand Slam, the 2009 win which ended 61 years of ‘Maybe next year’s from the Irish fans came off the back of a change in leadership. While ould Declan Kidney’s first season glory was never replicated, the Irish rugby supporting public are hoping that the 'new coach smell' of former Leinster head Joe Schmidt brings similar results, or at least an improvement on 2013 where defeats to Scotland, England and Italy saw the Irish finish 5th. While last season's form might suggest a similar finish this year, the Autumn series showed something different. With the heartbreaking, instant classic of a Test against the All Blacks still fresh in the memory of Ireland’s players, coaches and fans there’s a building confidence about what this Irish team can do.

The front five looked more than capable against New Zealand, with a strong scrum and formidable line-out.The masters of the choke tackle, the Irish pack excel at slowing down opposition ball with the likes of Peter O’Mahoney. Jamie Heaslip and the returning Paul O’Connell more than able to make an impact at this level. Add in the potential of Robin Copeland, Iain Henderson and Rhys Ruddock, and the forwards look even more impressive.

In addition to the prime Irish beef up front, you’ll find the dancing feet of the backline behind, with the Talisman of Irish rugby - Brian O’Driscoll taking the lead alongside his fav centre partner ever in Gordon D’Arcy. With 203 Ireland caps between them, and a similar number of years, the long-time partners at 12 and 13 are backed up by youngsters like Robbie Henshaw and Luke Marshall, and aided on the wing by Simon Zebo, the resurgent Luke Fitzgerald, Tommy Bowe and Rob Kearney’s brother Dave. Imagine all this being unleashed by the hand of Johnathan Sexton,Racing Metro’s newest toy (who may or may not survive the gruelling schedules of both Ireland and Racing).

The outlook is pretty bright! We’ve a pack who can win the breakdown, and backs that can score from anywhere. Ireland have everything you look for - exciting young players alongside legendary old timers, a top tier place kicker and a coach who won everything at Leinster!

Where could it all go wrong you ask? Well, a look at the names on the injury report so far might give you a clue. With Keith Earls and Sean O’Brien missing the tournament Ireland’s depth is already coming into question. Losing Mike Ross would be disastrous, as anyone in Ireland who is over 20 stone and capable of catching a ball is in with a shout for the backup 3 jersey which is currently being contested for by Declan “The chocolate teapot” Fitzpatrick, Martin “Long fart noise” Moore and a man named Rodney Ah You. The squad is pretty much paper thin at critical positions and that has hurt Ireland more than once.

In conclusion, Ireland are great but might be shite, but you should support them anyway because you can pretend to be Irish for a while and use it to excuse your heavy drinking.




France had the shittiest 2013 of the 21st century, picking up the Wooden Spoon for the first time in 14 years, and finishing the year 2-9. Hopefuly, whoever decided it a good idea for France to play against The All-Blacks FOUR times in a year has since been fired, and 2014's France team can be a little less ambitious.

Although they often find it hard to convert strength into points, France certainly do have a lot of Strength going for them. Captain Paspal Pape is a goold old fashioned 'start fights with anyone not wearing the same colour shirt as you' kind of rugby player, and his props are both capable of holding the scrum in place long enough to get in some cheap shots and maybe some sort of turnover.

At the back of the pack is their main ball carrier, Louis Picamoles. I should point out at this point that the silliness of any player's name is inversely proporionate to how rock hard they happen to be, so rest assured, Mister Picamoles is an absolute nightmare to tackle. They also have a man called Bastareaud. He is big and black, and is just as terrifying as his name suggests.

The most interesting cog in France's team this year is Jules Plisson, a young Fly-Half who by process of elimination, has found himself jump four other guys, in order to start in the #10 shirt. I've never seen him play, there aren't any creepy youtube tribute videos or deviantart drawings of him, and his Wikipedia page is a single line of text. There ARE naked photos of him on Google Image Search though, so whatever your opinion of Owen Farrell, It's surely worth watching France this weekend for the Fly-Half matchup alone!

Statistically, (and this is the most boring statistic in the loving world, let me tell you), France always wins The Six Nations in the year following a Lion's tour! Apparantly, this means that while the best players in the world are really tired, the wily French can take advantage, and capitalise on their weaknesses by picking a seemingly random selection of players, and turning up looking more worn-out than the opposition. If, however, everything goes well, France are more than capable of slowing the game to a grinding halt, and dominating the opposition with their unique brand of boring rugby.

After a lacklustre 2013, France are desperate to avoid spiralling into another string of defeats, before the upcoming World Cup. The optimistic outlook is that 2013 was a transitional year for France, but in reality, 2014 is looking like a transitional year as well, and with so few matches between now and the World Cup, they'll have to stop rolling the dice, and settle on a team at some point.

Tyma fucked around with this message at 16:43 on Oct 29, 2014

Tyma
Dec 22, 2004

Chwyldro Dawnsio Dawns




SupeRugby (pronounced “soup-rugby”) is the Southern Hemisphere's super-league, consisting of 5 teams each from South Africa, New Zealand and Australia. Each team represents a large region of their respective country, and is free to field players from any professional teams in that region, as well as it's own contracted players.

Super Rugby stands out from the other leagues in the world, because the style of rugby being played is often much more open and fast paced than the conservative style played in the Northern Hemisphere, and at test matches. The conservative style creates some incredible tension when you invest yourself in the intricacies of a match, but most Super Rugby matches are incredibly easy to appreciate – all the dudes are really tall and really fast, and all they care about is scoring more trys than the rest of their own team. Because most of the games are played at a high climate, they can also all kick the ball almost half the length of the pitch, and even games without interesting rivalries often turn out to be entertaining.

Each team will play 16 matches (8 home and away matches against every other team in their country, and 8 international matches). At the end of the season, the top team from each country enter into a playoff tournament, along with a 4th team deemed to be “least-poo poo”. The winners are crowned “Champions Of Everything”, and everyone goes to sleep England for 6 months.

In the league table, each win is worth 4 points, each draw is worth 1 point, and a Bonus Point is awarded if a team scores 4 tries in the same match, or loses a match by less than 7 points. If the Playoff final is a draw, then this happens, which is always amazing.




The biggest news this season is the Blues' signing of Rugby League superstar Benji Marshall. After 10 years and 1000 points in Rugby's sister sport, Marshall neogotiated an early end to his NRL contract and took a hefty pay cut, in order to live his dream of playing for a second-rate rugby team. This is literally the plot to the movie Space Jam.

Joining Benji is joined by a series of increasingly cartoonish characters, including angry alcoholic Piri Weepu, Beauden Barrett's evil brother Kane Barret, and Charlie Faumuina, who is a giant, talking anthropomorphic beaver.

Exactly where Marshall is going to fit into Rugby Union is uncertain, as is the team's planned method of transport into space. Benji naturally favours a play-making role, and despite the pressure being put on his shoulders, could actually wind up playing Fly-Half in his debut season.

In the midst of all the excitement and cartoonish tomfoolery, The Blues' pre-season hype came crashing down, as seasoned lock Culum Retallick suffered a training-ground injury deemed severe enough to release him from the 2014 squad, with no apparent replacement to fill the hole in the scrum.




The Hurricanes are a fictional soccer team headed by the female heir of the team's departed owner, and coached by racist Scottish caricature, Jock Stone. In their quest for sporting supremacy, The Hurricanes tour the world, righting wrongs and solving mysteries during their unpredictable adventures. Although their adventures are no longer broadcast on television, they will be forever be remembered for their unforgettable characters, and catchy theme song.

The star of the show is fly-half Beauden Barrett – a young dairy farmer who's life turned upside down, when he learnt that his father was a professional rugby player! He's basically Luke Skywalker, except he's on a journey to the alien world of Queensland, to rescue Princess Saia. In 2013, Barrett broke into the All Blacks squad as a walking Band-Aid, and Good Luck Charm. In 16 games, Beauden Barrett has never lost a game of international rugby.

Joining Barrett in the back row and celebrated scumbag and convicted wife-beater, Julian Savea and all-round awesome guy, Cory Jane. Hurricanes captain Conrad Smith returns to professional rugby after a worrying concussion, and 6-month sabbatical. Despite the low finish, The Hurricanes have retained their entire starting squad for the 2013 season. Their only real signing is fly-half Marty Banks, who you may remember as the scorer of THIS TRY earlier in the year. Banks was scouted playing rugby in the Russian national league, and appears to be able to score spot-kicks taken from any spot in the known universe. Exactly how he'll fit into a team that already has Beauden Barret is an exciting mystery that only The Hurricanes can solve!

The Hurricanes play in Westpac Stadium, which is the big circular one that always manages to look completely empty. They're generally known for playing wide open games, and both scoring and conceding 40 points a game.




As with all great sporting blood feuds, The Brumbles and The Waratahs hold a 500 year rivalry over 19th century import taxes, and something to do with metropolitan boundaries that I don't understand.

When Super Rugby expanded to 12 teams in 1996, The Waratahs were already established as the regional rugby team of New South Wales. The license for a third Australian team was handed to the ACT region, and set up less than 100 miles from the existing Waratahs' region. Although apparantly doomed to a life as a filler team, The Brumbies scraped together the part-times and cast-off players that had been rejected by the Waratahs outfit, and powered by friendship and magic, they marched to a respectable 5th place finish in their debut season – 2 places above their rivals.

Despite a reputation as the 'weaker' team in New South Wales, manager Jake White has lifted The Brumbies to new heights, leading them to top the Australian conference last year, before narrowly losing the Grand Final to The Chiefs. He followed that up with a victory over The British & Irish Lions, and celebrated by throwing a tantrum, and walking out on the club.

Without their coach, and many of their best players nursing injuries, The Brumbies seem to be gobbling up new players to in fill the gaps. The most exciting is Japanese fly-half Harumichi Tatekawa, who fills in for 'Man Of The Match - Every Match' Christian Leafiifano, and hopes to form a back row partnership with 'Austalia's Most Attractive Man', Jesse Mogg.




If someone pictures of Quade Cooper and Jesse Mogg aren't enough to satisfy, you can join the SAS Super Rugby Fantasy League, and compete for the promise of a grand prize which I may or may not regret having to buy and then ship to the Southern Hemisphere. Before you spend hours researching obscure South African bench-warmers, please be aware that the prize will be exactly as grand as Owen Farrell's defensive tackling.

Step 1. Sign up at Fox Sports' Fantasy League site.

Step 2. Click on the tab that says “My Team”, and pick your 15-man team, and bench. Don't worry about picking the same player that's already been picked, there's enough Quade Cooper for everybody.

Step 3. Join the SA League by clicking on the “Leagues” tab, opting to join a Private League, and entering the private league code 232-3732 to join.

Step 4. Avoid missing ball for high score.

You can buy and sell players during the season. Try to keep track of who is injured, what players have byes, what players are benched etc. on a weekly basis. You need to have your team selected I believe by the Friday of each week of play (actual time of the deadline will depend on your specific time zone and these are listed in the rules section as well).

Feel free to use http://www.superxv.com keep up with starting lineups which are usually announced on Wednesday the week of the match though there can often be last minute changes due to injury, illness, or bad behavior if you play for an Australian side. Finally, just so you guys avoid a mistake I made last year, for the first week of the competition it's only SA derbys, so make sure you don't pick a bunch of awesome players from NZ/Australia who won't even play the first week.

Tyma
Dec 22, 2004

Chwyldro Dawnsio Dawns




The 2011 World Cup was pretty cool. Wales got to play in the most heartbreaking Rugby match of all time, The All Blacks absolutely demolished every other team, Quade Cooper got boo'd every time he touched the ball, and the biggest cheer of the tournament came when he somehow fell over and broke his own knee.

The next World Cup is in being held in England (Boo!), and for some unexplained reason, also in Wales (Yay!). The names of some countries were put into a sparkly top-hat, and came out in such a way that we can already proclaim the 2015 World Cup Winners to be New Zealand! If you want to watch the tournament anyway, to see how they win, then you can look forward to the following groups :

Group Of Death
Australia
England
Wales
Oceana 1 (Fiji / Cook Islands)
Wildcard Team

Group S
South Africa
Samoa
Scotland
Asia 1 (Japan / South Korea)
Americas 2 (USA / Uruguay)

The Group Of Foregone Conclusion
New Zealand
Argentina
Tonga
Europe 1 (Georgia / Romania / Russia)
Africa 1 (Kenya / Namibia / Madagascar / Zimbabwe)

Pallette Swap Flag Group
France
Ireland
Italy
Canada
Europe 2 (Georgia / Romania / Russia)

-

Tickets will go on sale throughout 2014, and will be allocated primarily to uneducated toffs. If you, the common jersey-wearing, song-singing, Cooper-hating rugby fan wish to attend Rugby World Cup England 2015, then tickets will be available to purchase at the following dates.

January 2014 - Tour Packages
February 2014 - Hospitality Packages
May 2014 - English Rugby Club Allocations
September 2014 - Pre-sales
November 2014 - General Sale

The prices differ by game, but are pretty much as absurd as everyone expected. The Wales vs England group stage match starts at £75 for the cheap seats (This is the price of top-tier tickets for the same Six Nations fixture), and go upto £315. Tickets for the final are between £150 and £715.

Right now, USA are not 100% certain to qualify, but based on the assumption that no huge upsets happen, the following games are probably the most exciting on paper, and might not destroy the bank :

23/09 - Scotland vs Japan (Gloucester) £20-£85
11/10 - Canada vs Japan (Gloucester) £15-£60
20/09 - New Zealand vs Argentina (Wembley) £50-175
26/09 - Italy vs USA (Leeds) £20-£85
10/10 - Samoa vs Scotland (Newcastle) £50-£150




This ongoing topic garnered hundreds of posts in last years' thread, most of which were people asking to have it explained. It makes about as much sense on face value as Richard Hibbard's tribal tattoo, so here comes an honest attempt at it :

In the past 3 years, Wales have been regarded as the most successful team in the northern hemisphere, thanks to a very recent influx of young, back-row talent. At club level though, they only have four professional teams, which all compete in the Pro 12 league (against the 3 other Celtic nations), and the Heineken Cup (Celtic nations, England and France).

Last season, England decided to ruin Rugby for everyone, by pulling all of their teams out of the Heineken Cup. Both England and France objected to the fact that while English and French teams generate the bulk of TV revenue for the competition, the Heineken Cup is dominated by Irish teams, who apparently hold an advantage, because their Pro 12 league does not have a relegation system.

In Wales, there was growing uncertainty about the new competition. While the Welsh national team generates around £80 million a year, the professional clubs generate very little, because every aspect of the sport is governed very closely by the national body (The WRU). Although this governing body helps fund the professional teams, it also imposes a salary cap on each team, and has to sanction every rugby match that takes place in Wales.

England and France both re-negotiated their respective TV deals, and begun plans to start a new cup competition, which would either exclude the Irish teams, or force them to give England a larger cut the revenues generated by the competition. Both England and France struck deals with BT Sport, a new TV network with seemingly infinite money. Both countries took the 'infinite money' deal, and started throwing it at Welsh players, to try and lure the biggest household names to their respective teams. The Welsh teams, being bound by the Salary Cap, couldn't possibly match these offers without reducing their squads down to a team of 5 players, and some of the lesser known players started taking the offers.

The clubs appealed to the WRU for help, asking that some of the profits from the Welsh team be invested in the clubs, so that they could use the money to retain their most famous players, and use them as to negotiate better sponsorship and TV deals. The WRU refused to commit any investment to the clubs, unless they extended the participation agreement that was already in place. At this the English Premiership approached the Welsh clubs, and offered them the sum of money they were requesting from the WRU, in order to leave the Pro 12, and join the English league. The WRU threatened to sue the clubs, the clubs threatened to sue the WRU, and staying in Wales to watch the world burn suddenly seemed a lot less appealing to players, than the 'infinite money' offers that were still on the table from the clubs in France.

In January, the agreement between the clubs and the WRU officially expired, and Leigh Halfpenny (the national team's star player) signed a deal to move to France. His club (The Blues) immediately pointed fingers at the WRU, insinuating that although they tried to re-sign him, they were hampered by a lack of funding, and the uncertainty over which competitions they would actually play in next season. The clubs re-iterated that they wanted to play in the English league, and The WRU re-iterated that they forbade such a thing. At this point, The WRU pulled the biggest dick move in the history of rugby, and offered The Blues captain (Sam Warburton) an incredibly large sum of money to play for.. The WRU. This is devious on a number of levels, since The English leagues specifically forbids any team from playing union-contracted players. While The WRU touted the move as an effort to save Welsh rugby, and insisted that they would allow The Blues to continue to field their player, the four Welsh clubs responded with an announcement that no Welsh club would ever field a WRU-contracted player in their teams.

The latest update (February 1st) is that while no announcement has been made regarding which competitions the Welsh teams will play in, all four teams have been VERY active in the transfer market, signing both Welsh and non-Welsh players.

butros
Aug 2, 2007

I believe the signs of the reptile master




Hell of a job with the OPs everyone involved.

Tyma posted:

The Olympics
The reigning and completely undefeated Olympic champions are the USA. The last Olympic Rugby match was held in 1924, between the French national team, and a USA team made up of Gridiron players from Stanford University, who had never played Rugby in their lives. After roughing up and then seriously injuring French hero Adolphe Jaureguy, the American team triggered a full-scale riot, which resulted in the Olympic Committee declaring that Rugby was not compatible with the ideals of the Olympic spirit.

Proud to see my countrymen's contribution to this, the greatest sport

quote:



Thanks for including this! THERES STILL TIME TO JOIN US!!! There are currently 7 of us goons taking part, please feel free to join ASAP

Vagabundo
Mar 20, 2007

Donncha wish your girlfriend was hot like me?
Donncha wish your girlfriend was a freak like me?


My name was spelled wrong

Vigil for Virgil
Sep 15, 2013

Its just not the same without our Virg being here.


So will Scotland exceed all expectations this year and reclaim the wooden spoon that is rightfully theirs?

Unimpressed
Feb 13, 2013



Great job Tyma and the rest of the OP team. Is it too late to add the tahs? I'm willing to put in some but how do you make those banners for each team?

Tyma
Dec 22, 2004

Chwyldro Dawnsio Dawns


Unimpressed posted:

Great job Tyma and the rest of the OP team. Is it too late to add the tahs? I'm willing to put in some but how do you make those banners for each team?

I have most of the banners already made, but most of the effort goes into reading up enough on each team's history to be able to say something more interesting than "Hey, they play here, and these dudes play for them!". I should have all 15 done by this time next week, but if you can send me some interesting notes about the teams or star players, that would help someone associate with the team, that would really help me pump them out!

Email is awfultyma at gmail

Vagabundo posted:

My name was spelled wrong

So sorry, dude. I had a few days of bad health, and I was rushing the text on the graphics towards the end, and I actually had to miss a Rugby match that I had tickets to, in order to get the thread up before kick-off tomorrow. Should be fixed now.

The Ospreys apparently won 37-36 while I was rendering them, so gently caress each and every one of you that ever bothers to read them!

EdBlackadder
Apr 8, 2009


Lipstick Apathy

Great OP, going to miss the opener against France unless my club game is rained off (which is a distinct possibility given the flooding around here at the moment) but I'll be watching it Sunday morning.

Unimpressed
Feb 13, 2013



Sent you an email Tyma.

Fenrir
Apr 26, 2005

I found my kendo stick, bitch!



Lipstick Apathy

Scotland's rugby team is always at least 2 or 3 parts loving trainwreck but I can't quit them. I balance it out by rooting for the All Blacks elsewhere, because they're awesome. I guess that makes me the Yankees fan of Rugby but I don't give a gently caress

CyberPingu posted:

So will Scotland exceed all expectations this year and reclaim the wooden spoon that is rightfully theirs?

No.

Tyma posted:

The names of some countries were put into a sparkly top-hat, and came out in such a way that we can already proclaim the 2015 World Cup Winners to be New Zealand!

You can arrange them any way you want and the All Blacks will still win

(And Scotland will still be a mess )

Fenrir fucked around with this message at 01:06 on Feb 1, 2014

Vaders Jester
Sep 9, 2009

Welcome to fucking Scotland.


Fenrir posted:

Scotland's rugby team is always at least 2 or 3 parts loving trainwreck but I can't quit them. I balance it out by rooting for the All Blacks elsewhere, because they're awesome. I guess that makes me the Yankees fan of Rugby but I don't give a gently caress

Scotland will always do their best to be slightly worse than their opposition at all times, they occasionally get this wrong by getting loving smashed by Italy or making Australia look terrible but at least they're relatively consistent. You know what you're getting as a Scotland fan.

The upside is that I only live a couple of minutes from Murrayfield so the walk home after another "brave effort" isn't too long.

Tyma
Dec 22, 2004

Chwyldro Dawnsio Dawns




Saturday 1st
14:30 - Wales vs Italy (BBC 1 / S4C / iPlayer / Stream)
17:00 - France vs England (BBC 1 / iPlayer / Stream)

Sunday 2nd
15:00 - Ireland vs Scotland (BBC 1 / iPlayer / Stream)

All kick-off times are GMT. The BBC broadcast all matches worldwide on free-to-air channels, and offer a live online stream during the game. The stream often doesn't show up until kick-off, and sometimes gets tucked away in the news section of the particular team that's playing. It's legit to find people offering streams of the stream.

In addition to the whole Six Nations thing, the BBC have just started airing a weekly documentary series about life behind the scenes at The Scarlets, which has just reached the point in time where George North leaves the club, and Welsh Rugby starts to implode. It's a really cool look at the daily management of a Professional Rugby club, and should still be availible on iPlayer for the next week. Episode 1 starts here, and new episodes air every Tuesday.

Fenrir
Apr 26, 2005

I found my kendo stick, bitch!



Lipstick Apathy

Vaders Jester posted:

Scotland will always do their best to be slightly worse than their opposition at all times, they occasionally get this wrong by getting loving smashed by Italy or making Australia look terrible but at least they're relatively consistent. You know what you're getting as a Scotland fan.

The upside is that I only live a couple of minutes from Murrayfield so the walk home after another "brave effort" isn't too long.

Hey man, at least Six Nations 2012 is starting to fade in my memory. At least there's that.

Communist Bear
Oct 7, 2008



Well, i'm going to try go into a pub in Edinburgh today and watch the matches on. Any recommendations on places? Someone suggested the Beehive at Grassmarket.

Vigil for Virgil
Sep 15, 2013

Its just not the same without our Virg being here.


Fenrir posted:

Hey man, at least Six Nations 2012 is starting to fade in my memory. At least there's that.

If Murrayfield was a better stadium and if the fans supported club rugby more id be inclined to go to more home games. But as it is...no i just cant bring myself to do it.

Vigil for Virgil
Sep 15, 2013

Its just not the same without our Virg being here.


WMain00 posted:

Well, i'm going to try go into a pub in Edinburgh today and watch the matches on. Any recommendations on places? Someone suggested the Beehive at Grassmarket.

If you can tolerate slightly high prices, though the Magners is usually on special. The Three Sisters down Cowgate is probably the best place to watch rugby. Tyma will back me up on that

Communist Bear
Oct 7, 2008



Yeah I heard the three sisters is good. Will try there then.

Tyma
Dec 22, 2004

Chwyldro Dawnsio Dawns


WMain00 posted:

Well, i'm going to try go into a pub in Edinburgh today and watch the matches on. Any recommendations on places? Someone suggested the Beehive at Grassmarket.

The Brass Monkey on Leith Road is where Welsh fans used to watch it. Three Sisters can be an incredible atmosphere if there are enough random Stag Do's staying there, but otherwise it's miserable and expensive. Both pubs are coin flips, really.

Edit : Three Sisters should be good for the France game. There are lots of European backpacker hostels in the neighbourhood, and everyone will want them to beat England anyway.

Tyma fucked around with this message at 14:12 on Feb 1, 2014

Tyma
Dec 22, 2004

Chwyldro Dawnsio Dawns


Ahahaha! Rhys Priestland : Player of the decade!

stavros880
May 1, 2005
I like monkeys

Tyma posted:

Ahahaha! Rhys Priestland : Player of the decade!

Never doubted the guy. Raw talent.

Apollodorus
Feb 13, 2010

TEST YOUR MIGHT


So my club's rugby match today was cancelled, but at least I can watch rugby on TV now!

That was a bad bounce on that kick, well scored by Cuthbert though. Italy look good with the ball,they just need to keep it.

Plucky Brit
Nov 7, 2009

Swing low, sweet chariot


Parisse is man-marking Phillips. It's hilarious.

tarbrush
Feb 7, 2011

But Schefter said they Love Herbert?!


I've watched 30s and already heard "NUMBERS!" That drinking game in the previous thread would have me in trouble by now.

Mister Chief
Jun 6, 2011



Why are there no replays?

Answers Me
Apr 24, 2012


Plucky Brit posted:

Parisse is man-marking Phillips. It's hilarious.

It's nice to see someone expose the massive flaws in Phillips' game. Stop taking a step, pass the drat ball quicker!

Sneaks McDevious
Jul 29, 2010

by LITERALLY AN ADMIN


Mister Chief posted:

Why are there no replays?

because the 'REALLY HIGH CAM' is really cool

Vagabundo
Mar 20, 2007

Donncha wish your girlfriend was hot like me?
Donncha wish your girlfriend was a freak like me?


Answers Me posted:

It's nice to see someone expose the massive flaws in Phillips' game. Stop taking a step, pass the drat ball quicker!

The theory behind it is that it drags the defenders out a step or two as well, creating a gap in the ruck defence. Phillips is slooooooooow though.


Also, Wales is hilariously one-dimensional on attack. One or two passes from the ruck and then run at the opposition defence, repeat ad nauseum. No wonder the old SANZAR sides always beat them, usually with some comfort.

Plucky Brit
Nov 7, 2009

Swing low, sweet chariot


Vagabundo posted:

Also, Wales is hilariously one-dimensional on attack. One or two passes from the ruck and then run at the opposition defence, repeat ad nauseum. No wonder the old SANZAR sides always beat them, usually with some comfort.

I think Wales have a bigger problem in that they have virtually no aggression or mobility from four of their tight-five. As a pack they can't compete with the SA or NZ, and Australia's pack only looks bad when compared to those two. Hibbard is class though, amazing to think he's only really matured in the last two years.

The Italy team does look pretty enterprising, they've just been unlucky with a few bounces and refereeing decisions. I would be surprised if they won any of their away games, but they could easily turn over Scotland and possibly England at home.

Edit: The BBC sound editor should be shot.

Vagabundo
Mar 20, 2007

Donncha wish your girlfriend was hot like me?
Donncha wish your girlfriend was a freak like me?


Plucky Brit posted:

I think Wales have a bigger problem in that they have virtually no aggression or mobility from four of their tight-five. As a pack they can't compete with the SA or NZ, and Australia's pack only looks bad when compared to those two. Hibbard is class though, amazing to think he's only really matured in the last two years.

They are definitely lacking an Etzebeth or Retallick for sure.

Apollodorus
Feb 13, 2010

TEST YOUR MIGHT


Wow, that was a sweet Italy try. Exactly the way to begin the second half.

fake edit - wait, looks like no try b/c of forward pass. Cazzo.

real edit - no, it's a try! I guess the vid ref thought it was flat. Meta Italia!!!

irlZaphod
Mar 26, 2004

Kiss the Joycon to Kiss Zelda



I think they got that wrong... Hands were going backward, but it looked like the ball went forward.

Apollodorus
Feb 13, 2010

TEST YOUR MIGHT


I thought so too, yeah, but che ne so io.

Plucky Brit
Nov 7, 2009

Swing low, sweet chariot


irlZaphod posted:

I think they got that wrong... Hands were going backward, but it looked like the ball went forward.

The rule is based on the hands. The reason is the speed of passing isn't fast enough when going at full pace; at that point a large number of passes would be considered forward even if they were passed backwards.

Rugby: The only sport to consider relative velocity.

Tyma
Dec 22, 2004

Chwyldro Dawnsio Dawns


Allan's pre-kicking routine may be one of my favorite of all time

Plucky Brit
Nov 7, 2009

Swing low, sweet chariot


If only he could actually kick.

Duro
May 1, 2013

by Lowtax


If these dumb fucks could actually kick the ball between the posts, maybe they'd actually win something other than the wooden spoon

stavros880
May 1, 2005
I like monkeys

irlZaphod posted:

I think they got that wrong... Hands were going backward, but it looked like the ball went forward.

I thought the hands were going forward, but it was close enough i dont really care. I think when you have to slow it down and analyse every frame it just ruins the game. Just take a few seconds then give the attacker the benefit of the doubt. Except Cueto of course, he was in touch

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Vagabundo
Mar 20, 2007

Donncha wish your girlfriend was hot like me?
Donncha wish your girlfriend was a freak like me?


Ridiculous call against Paul James.

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