Two Irish losses in a row, England roaring back into form on the second of said losses, Scotland running close with France and of course Wales falling one by one against the Italians; it’s safe to say that nobody looks now like they did some weeks back with regards their World Cup condition. All eyes this side of the pond are on Ireland of course, up until three weeks ago running hot amongst the favourites but now the nation’s fears start to creep in. Turns out they’re not invincible after all. Should we have our collective hands hovering over the panic button? Is there a bit of coy work being done behind the scenes? Is this ’07 or ’11 all over again? Continue reading World Cup 2015 – The Eve Of The War
There’s certainly a future with some multinational corporation as a professional secret keeper for Joe Schmidt. Two warm up games to go, three weeks out from the opening round of the World Cup and still nothing is clearer. Andrew Trimble, Tommy Bowe, Gordon D’Arcy, Jack Conan and more have all been released to their provinces and he has a team including a third different 13 in as many weeks to go up against the Welsh. Then there’s those Ian “Scrum Half” Madigan rumours to boot…. ah here, let’s get into it. Continue reading World Cup 2015 – What’s On Your Mind Joe?
There was a world of difference between the display against Scotland that Ireland put in versus how alert and gelled they seemed against Wales, nobody will dispute that. Yet much like their win against France in this year’s Six Nations it was down and dirty but got the job done. We’re also nearly into double figures for tries scored, quite the opposite of all the Six Nations bemoaning. All in all, things still look well oiled and promising.
We’ve grown accustomed to warm up games being an open playing field for new players and combinations, but 14 changes and seemingly no dip in quality across the 23? Unprecedented. Continue reading World Cup 2015 – All Change For Scotland Clash
On Saturday at 3pm a new era in the Pro 12 will be born. This year saw a heightened level of significance materialise within the league, as European qualification became solely hinged on Pro 12 table position. It might not be too much of a stretch to say that this relevance somewhat snuck up on some of the teams, with Leinster in particular leaving it until the penultimate game last week to secure qualification. Connacht, Edinburgh and Scarlets too are all finding themselves vying for the last ticket to Europe this weekend too. It is a pleasant sight to see seven teams in the table all still with some tangible reason to give it their all on the final weekend, here’s how they’re shaping up.
Continue reading Pro 12 – Knock Out Battle To Come