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Thread: Rugby 2017

  1. #1
    Senior Member dontpanic's Avatar
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    Rugby 2017

    Since it's a Lions tour year and for some THE Lions tour is to New Zealand we can expect a pretty competitive 6 Nations hopefully culminating in an Ireland V England showdown in Dublin. Don't forget the 6N will also debut bonus points which should add to the fun. As ever there'll be lots of squad picks to be arguing over as well as Super Rugby, the decline of South Africa and it's getting close to the World Cup in Japan. One I'd be personally very interested in going to as I went there to the soccer version in 2002 and it would be a cool thing to go back 17 years later.

    Anyway some bad news for England and the Lions as Manu Tuilagi is ruled out for the season with a cruciate ligament injury he got during the Saracans game at the weekend

    Manu Tuilagi: Leicester Tigers and England centre out for rest of season - BBC Sport

    6 Nations fixtures - RBS 6 Nations Fixtures & Results : RBS 6 Nations

    Lions Fixtures - https://tours.lionsrugby.com/join-th...7/match-dates/

  2. #2
    Senior Member Thin White Duke's Avatar
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    Nice one Don't Panic.

    The decline of South Africa hey?

    We'll see about that.

  3. #3
    Senior Member dontpanic's Avatar
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    I really hope South Africa make a comeback, rugby needs more competitive nations if it is to grow and compete with other sports on a global scale. I won't be making any Lions picks till after the 6 nations mainly due to an expected high injury rate, I'd actually guess Sexton won't be fit to go or at least start a series game.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Thin White Duke's Avatar
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    Sure as night and day SA will comeback.

    Just some small niggling political and social issues to deal with.

  5. #5
    Super Moderator dawsey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thin White Duke View Post
    Nice one Don't Panic.

    The decline of South Africa hey?

    We'll see about that.
    There is no decline. SA haven't lost a game this year 555

    Re the Lions, I don't think Tuilagi was ever going to be in the matchday 23 anyway. Henshaw/Farrell and JJ have the centres covered although knowing Gatland he could just as easily pick Roberts and J Davies! Looking forward to both the 6 Nations and the Lions.
    RIP Nicke June 1971 - Jan 2013.

    AT SOME POINT IN LIFE, EVERYONE HAS GAMBLED ON A FART AND LOST.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Thin White Duke's Avatar
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    No that is true Rog.

    But looking at the big picture and being positive SA is far from done.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Waharoa's Avatar
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    The All Blacks won't be the same after the Lions series either with a few players expected to leave. Faumuina is the first one... expect a few more to follow. Ben Smith, Israel Dagg and Aaron Cruden perhaps? By Japan, England and Ireland could be one and two in the world. I predict the All Blacks will beat the Lions 3-0. The only vulnerable test, will be the first one.... but though a tight series... I just can't see the All Blacks losing at home... they haven't lost at home for 8 years...

  8. #8
    Senior Member dontpanic's Avatar
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    Head injuries continue to be a major talking point this year with Northampton effectively getting off with a slap on the wrist over George North's incident last year.

    George North: Northampton Saints' treatment of wing 'disappoints' World Rugby - BBC Sport

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    Senior Member dontpanic's Avatar
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    An unexpected announcement about Sam Warburton stepping down as Welsh captain, I often thought he could thank the fact that he was captain so he got his starting position particularly with Justin Tipuric playing so well, Alun Wyn Jones looks set to take over.

    Wales Rugby: Alun Wyn Jones set to take over from Sam Warburton - BBC Sport

    I'm sure we debated this one at the time - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yLpptT_nCp0

  10. #10
    Senior Member Waharoa's Avatar
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    For me... Warburton has been the best number 7 behind McCaw of the last 7 or 8 years... very few Number 7s have McCaw's all round game, but he comes closest. You have guys that are very good at certain aspects (Pocock, O'Brien) but very few that can do it all...
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    Super Moderator dawsey's Avatar
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    Just as well England are fortunate to be able to call on 2nd or 3rd choice players with the injuries they have.
    For the first game against France, regulars that will miss out include Marler, M Vunipola, Robshaw, B Vunipola and Tuilagi again crocked for the rest of the season.
    A big chance for fringe players to put their hand up.
    Good news that Itoje is back and Launchbury and Kruis should be fit. All three very important players for England.

    Re Sam Warburton playing 7, I always feel he has Tipuric waiting in the wings should his game drop. I rate Sean O'Brien , and on his 6 Nations and Summer tour to Australia performances, Haskell the better player.
    RIP Nicke June 1971 - Jan 2013.

    AT SOME POINT IN LIFE, EVERYONE HAS GAMBLED ON A FART AND LOST.

  12. #12
    Senior Member dontpanic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dawsey View Post
    Just as well England are fortunate to be able to call on 2nd or 3rd choice players with the injuries they have.
    For the first game against France, regulars that will miss out include Marler, M Vunipola, Robshaw, B Vunipola and Tuilagi again crocked for the rest of the season.
    A big chance for fringe players to put their hand up.
    Good news that Itoje is back and Launchbury and Kruis should be fit. All three very important players for England.
    Hey at least somebody in England is optimistic, get them now before they're gone!

    England Grand Slam T-shirts go on sale three weeks before the start of the Six Nations*
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  13. #13
    Super Moderator dawsey's Avatar
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    It's an American company , Groupon who have produced the shirts.
    I would hope everyone connected with England RFU distance themselves from the shirt.
    I doubt England will win the 6 Nations, let alone a Grand Slam. Ireland in Dublin is always tough.
    RIP Nicke June 1971 - Jan 2013.

    AT SOME POINT IN LIFE, EVERYONE HAS GAMBLED ON A FART AND LOST.

  14. #14
    Senior Member dontpanic's Avatar
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    They have done it before in Dublin, remember the red carpet Martin Johnson incident?

  15. #15
    Super Moderator dawsey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dontpanic View Post
    They have done it before in Dublin, remember the red carpet Martin Johnson incident?
    555 I expect theIrish PM remembers too.
    RIP Nicke June 1971 - Jan 2013.

    AT SOME POINT IN LIFE, EVERYONE HAS GAMBLED ON A FART AND LOST.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Waharoa's Avatar
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    France look like they might be half decent too....

  17. #17
    Super Moderator dawsey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Waharoa View Post
    France look like they might be half decent too....
    They could and should have beaten Aus in the AI's.
    I'm banking on home advantage helping England beat France.
    RIP Nicke June 1971 - Jan 2013.

    AT SOME POINT IN LIFE, EVERYONE HAS GAMBLED ON A FART AND LOST.

  18. #18
    Senior Member dontpanic's Avatar
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    European Cup quarter final line-up complete with a nice selection of teams from four countries.

    To be played weekend of the 31st March - Venues to be announced.

    Clermont V Toulon

    Leinster V Wasps

    Munster V Toulouse

    Saracens V Glasgow

    Ireland also announced their 6 Nations squad for the first two games, some omissions, Cronin at hooker due to injury and Madigan at out-half mainly because he plays in France. Which leaves only Paddy Jackson as cover for out-half which leaves Ireland a bit exposed as Sexton is very injury prone and is a target for other teams. Jackson has improved as a player but with Piennar doing most of the kicking for Ulster Jackson remains the 10 who isn't really a 10. On the plus Ireland do have the most in form back row in the competition, CJ Stander seems to be the man to beat for man of the match for Leinster these days, Heaslip also playing well, Sean O'Brien and Jack Conan who has been outstanding lately.

    Forwards (22)
    Finlay Bealham, Rory Best, Jack Conan, Ultan Dillane, Tadhg Furlong, Cian Healy, Jamie Heaslip, Iain Henderson, Billy Holland, Dave Kilcoyne, Dan Leavy, Jack McGrath, Sean O'Brien, Tommy O'Donnell, Peter O'Mahony, Donnacha Ryan, John Ryan, Niall Scannell, CJ Stander, Devin Toner, James Tracy Josh van der Flier

    Backs (18)
    Tommy Bowe, Andrew Conway, Keith Earls, Craig Gilroy, Robbie Henshaw, Paddy Jackson, Rob Kearney Kieran Marmion, Luke Marshall, Stuart McCloskey, Luke McGrath, Conor Murray, Tiernan O'Halloran, Garry Ringrose, Rory Scannell, Jonathan Sexton, Andrew Trimble, Simon Zebo

  19. #19
    Senior Member Waharoa's Avatar
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    What we need is the European Champions League combined with Super Rugby... if southern hemisphere rugby isn't to disappear as an independent entity... instead turning into a feeder for European clubs. The current models are unsustainable...

  20. #20
    Senior Member dontpanic's Avatar
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    I can't see complete integration anytime soon, too impractical but I could see some sort of a NH winner V SH winner and maybe that could develop. TV money will dicate as usual, I'd also like to see an NH V SH international winner take all match for the 6 Nations winner V Rugby Championship winner.

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