New Zealand: 9th September - 23rd October
Well done to Wales and France, it will be an interesting semi-final!
Even though I knew the score it was still nerve-wracking watching the match, which makes no sense whatsoever
Dear ITV, any chance of talking to France at some stage?
I'm hoping that with England out we can loose Phil Vickery from the commentating team. Nick Mullins I can cope with, but Phil sounds like he's shouting the entire time and is just about the most annoying person to listen to that I can imagine.
Wales played out of their little red socks, while England were a bit lax, almost as if they'd believed they'd got the French beaten & just had to turn up. My doubt about the French is their ability to string performances like that together, especially against anyone NOT English.
I will be supporting Wales over the French - you watch that be the kiss of death, so far both predicitons were wrong. Anyone want to take bets on the Argies vs Saffers for the other semi?
I like it when Vickery's voice goes squeaky when he's excited. I suspect some of his commentary is only audible to dogs
It would be nice if ITV could find an old French player to talk to in the studio even if they can't get anyone for the commentary.
Not sure what will happen for France v Wales. If the French team are going to be their normal inconsistent selves then they'll play badly and lose.
Can't see the Argentinians getting past NZ but still have no idea who's going to win out of SA and AUS.
Just under 3 hours sleep didn't help, but I was there.
Still hungover mind.
NZ vs SA semi...
NZ Wales final
idea... Not impressed well it is now NZ to win! No team to have lost a pool match has ever gone on to win the World Cup... SO only NZ to win - 2nd time in 24 years and can only win on home soil!
Ratzer wrote (see)
Yet, given the draw, who would put good money down against Wales not making the final? And then, who wouldn't risk a tenner on Wales' very first official victory against the ABs being in their own World Cup final...? You may call me a dreamer...
Still dreaming... Favourites against the French? I like it.
Finally got a clear head to look back on the weekend. Wales won a great match. Ireland were there on the day and no more could they have done. Wales edged it in everything, but most especially in the Coaches' Competition.
England lost. They gave France some tries and then France only had to sit back and hold on to what they had. That said, France have some gifted players out wide and back. And Harinordiquy is a bull.
No idea what happened in that Aus-SA match, but I wouldn't have rated either of their chances for the next match on that basis. SA couldn't score, and Aus couldn't get out of their own half.
Argies were spirited, and good, but never had enough to concern the All Blacks. However the ABs didn't manage to show a free style of rugby until the tackles started to fail into the second half. Now down to their third choice 10, who dropped a little more than his fair share in his 30 mins, they aren't looking as far ahead of the other teams as they did during the group stage. Aus aren't enough of a challenge though, regardless of the Tri-Nations results.
I read a lot of the papers. Sunday's Telegraph was funny: after the cover there were four pages on England losing. Then two pages on Wales and Ireland. One of the Sky Sports commentators put together his team of the weekend that included two Welsh players and two English, one of which was the boy who first got fined for an interesting gumshield but then yesterday, possibly wisely, decided to jump ship and swim back to Samoa. I wonder what the coverage will be like next weekend? Jonny will probably make some of the commentators' teams of the tournament...
Back to coaching corner and looking ahead to the first semi. (I don't think I did too bad on the last prediction - Ireland did try to play it tight through O'Gara and the back-row, but the Welsh tactics forced them to try to get out wider to make gains. Brilliant judgment by Gatland. Strangely, I'm going to propose that he took his inspiration from the play of Gavin Henson in his last twenty minutes against the English before he went off. He always tackled in close to the breakdown and low down at the ankles. For all his issues, he was a fearless tackler.)
Now, I can't put my brain in Marc Lievremont's head. It's simply not possible due to the amount of crap in there already. So I'm going to be controversial instead. Hook to start at number 10. Why? Because the French don't have a 9-10 combination. They might, being not unintelligent players, determine that they need to target Jamie Roberts. Hook inside him suddenly raises a doubt that they're targetting the wrong place to stop the line breaks. I also fancy seeing North drop into the full-back position on offense, also targetting the line-break off the inside pass at that 9-10 axis.
Luckily we're no longer in the position we were a few years back where England were able to spare a flanker to do a job on Jamie. There's no way you'd spare a flanker with the likes of Warburton and Faletau carrying ball. And I do think that this Welsh team are more capable of dealing with tactical changes on the pitch than some of their forebears.
What is also interesting is that France are apparently naming a team on Tuesday, and giving Warren a whole two days to figure out who he needs to counter it.
Australia - New Zealand? I think Aus are going to rely on Pocock to run it into the 10 channel, but the AB back row are just too good for that. It may just turn into a kicking contest as Aus try to pin them back.
It seems strange that though the ABs haven't really been tested yet, that they have so many injuries and niggles. Is this because of their season only recently ending? Would they be fit enough to endure a tight 80 minute game if they ever get one?
I wonder if ML is actually picking the team or if they're deciding amongst themselves?
He's already starting on his new identity - he's shaved off all his hair and grown a hideous moustache!
Well done wales, best team done.
Ireland - Ogara had a wretched first half. Defensively Ireland wernt as good as they have been. Darcy went awol twice during a couple of wales tries. For the Phillips, try Darcy was gazing into midfield as Phillips was measuring up the corner flag. I probably woke up the whole street I was shouting so much at Darcy. Would he listen? Of course not.
This isnt sour grapes. I thought Ireland were less than could be. But even if had been at full intensity I did think Wales had the game to win.
Wales look good. Played with intensity and discipline. (Except when Shane went headless in own 25 and gave Ireland a penalty in front of the posts.)Despite tipping NZ to win I would be happy to see them beaten - esp by a 6N team. Wales in this form have a better chance of beating NZ than Ireland. If Ireland had won I dont think they could sustain it over the two hard games in two weeks.
Eng/France - nice to see les Bleus remember where they come from. Eng looked very poor.
Aus/SA - Pat Pocock vs the boks. In many areas of the game SA were far far better, glad they lost as I dont likethey way they play the games. Kick the ball high and send the big boys after it.
NZ/Arg - watched in the company of a Kiwi - he was very worried. Well done the gauchos. NZ seem to be unlucky with No. 10s - bad time for them to play Aus
So, an Englishman, an Irishman and a Scotsman walk into a bar...
(I guess you are suggesting the welshman isnt drinking because he's playing next weekend?)
... the Munsterman says: "Sure, I've just remembered I need to nip home for a bit to polish me Heineken Cup collection. I'll be with you in a couple of hours. I know a shortcut tru the fields of Athenry so it'll be no time atall. "
No, I was going to say that the Scotsman ordered Whisky, the Irishman ordered Whiskey, and the Englishman is a c%^t. But yours is quite funny.
Disagree with you on Johnson. I think they should get Andy Robinson back.
Visit the official Runner's World page
Follow Runner's World on Twitter
Other Natmag-Rodale Sites
Run For Charity
About Runner's World
Runner's World is a publication of Hearst Magazines UK which is the trading name of The National Magazine Company Ltd, 72 Broadwick Street, London, W1F 9EP. Registered in England 112955. All rights reserved.
Website powered by: Immediate Media Company Limited. | © Runner's World 2002-2013 |