Monday's Rugby News - Green and Gold Rugby

Monday’s Rugby News

Monday’s Rugby News

Monday’s Rugby News looks at Japan surging, too much Petaia hype, that spear tackle and, a call for a longer world cup.

Japan Lead Pool A

There have been great games at this World Cup. Inspirational moments. But there’s only one side, besides the Wallabies, that I have on my must-watch list and that’s Japan!

I can’t tell you exactly why but I can tell you some of the parts that fuel my admiration. The player’s attitudes. There’s no bullshit, no agro, they’re just here to play. They’re the underdogs. Their fans are amazing. Their immaculate defence. And they’re leading Pool A with three wins!

Scotland, their final pool game opponent, finals hopes are looking very shakey after the Brave Blossoms bonus-point win against Samoa on Saturday. Japan kept a sea of red and white clad fans enthralled for 82 minutes when they scored the final try.

Jamie Joseph, the Japan coach, said: “We were a bit frantic in the first half, we didn’t execute exactly how we wanted to, but after half-time we were more in control. Our team had incredible belief to the very end and the bench came on and made a massive impact.

“That is one of the big reasons why we have been successful. It is not just one or two players that we rely on.”

Ireland, whose last match is against Samoa next Saturday, are second in the pool with 11 points while Scotland, who face Russia in their game in hand on Wednesday, have five.

Assuming Ireland do not slip up, Scotland will need a bonus-point win against Russia and then a victory against Japan while denying the hosts a bonus point to advance to the quarter-finals.

Petaia Hyped!

Jordan Petaia

I like Queensland’s Jordie Petaia a lot as a rugby player but, I want the media to back off a little with the hype they’re wipping up. After a first forty minutes, he can rightly be proud of, the Aussie press went completely cra-cra.

Check some of the headlines out.

Rise of Jordan Petaia freshens Wallabies for tougher Cup battles

Test try caps short but sweet debut for teen sensation Petaia

Wallabies cruise to victory over Uruguay as Petaia stars on debut

Don’t get me wrong, I agree that Jordan is an amazing prospect. And I know these guys need to sell papers or whatever it is they sell, but I’m nervous for the big guy. He’s been broken most of the year and I’d have loved it if he’d stayed at home and recovered. So I was very nervous when he ran out and instantly relieved to see him run unhindered.

To his credit, Petaia seems to be ignoring the hype and getting on with it. here are his thoughts on the experience.

“Especially after the anthem I was pretty itchy and pretty nervous as well, but once I touched the ball and got into the game a bit more, got a bit more comfortable, it was good,” he said.

 “There’s been games I haven’t touched the ball in so this was good. I was just focused on doing my role, whether that’s in defence,” Petaia said. “I’m happy to wait 23 minutes.”

Then it happened. He took a floating cut out pass from Beale and beat two defenders to take the ball into contact. Catch, carry, ruck. Game on.

Three phases and 32 seconds later it was on again. Halfback Nic White cleared the ball from the ruck and passed it to Beale, who gave it inside to his baby winger.

“Jordan Petaia welcome to the World Cup show!” boomed World Rugby’s Australian commentator Sean Maloney as Petaia charged over for his first Test try.

 His teammates swamped him. He looked relieved more than anything.

“I was pretty excited, I think I jumped straight up, put my head back down and got around the boys,” Petaia said. “That was an awesome ball from Kurtley, I was pretty happy to get over.”

Horror Spear Tackle

In case you haven’t seen it some guy posted this on twitter.

Andrea Lovotti has been slammed after he was sent off for a horror spear tackle after the whistle during his side’s 49-3 loss to South Africa.

Italy coach Conor O’Shea said his side were fortunate to receive only one red card in their loss to South Africa on Friday, a team he rates as possibly the most powerful he has ever seen.

O’Shea’s side were not helped by the sending-off of Lovotti on 43 minutes after the prop tipped Bok No.8 Duane Vermeulen onto his head at a ruck.

Yet he was not the only culprit in the incident with front-rower Nicola Quaglio also involved in the tackle.

Referee Wayne Barnes spoke to his assistants and the TV Match Official, but only seemed interested in dealing with the main culprit, Lovotti.

Italy trailed 17-3 at halftime but had won a penalty five metres from the Bok line following a thrilling break into their opponents 22, which made the moment of madness all the more infuriating for O’Shea.

“If we could have got a score then you think, in some way, things could have gone for us. We were certainly not out of the game.

“You plan for a lot of things in rugby, but you can’t plan for that. Andrea is more destroyed than us, but we are all destroyed.”

A longer World Cup?

Rugby World Cup – William Web Ellis Trophy

With the pressure to make the quarter-finals that Scotland find themselves under it’s no wonder they’re calling for a longer world cup. Scotland find themselves in the unenviable position of having to win two games, one with a bonus point, in four days. It’s hard not to agree with them, who can forget Russia bravely running out of puff against Samoa just four days after opening the Cup against Japan.

Don’t be fooled though this affects the top nations a lot less than the next tier. Teams like England and New Zealand have the depth to cover a short turnaround while the Russia’s and Urequay’s of the world don’t.

The former Scotland scrum-half said: “I think bigger World Cup squads would certainly help. It’s a challenging position to be in.

“You leave yourselves a little bit vulnerable in some positions when you cut down to 31-men.

“So there’s no doubt a couple more players would definitely help, as would potentially extending (the competition) an extra few days so everyone gets similar breaks in between.

“It’s unique. It’s not something that happens during the normal season. It’s another challenge we’ve got to take on and to enjoy.

“We’re looking at guys backing up. There might be guys who don’t go on the pitch 100 per cent fit and that’s something that might need to be looked at.”

“It’s obviously a challenge,” he said. “Russia first up that’s what that focus is going to be on, but at the same time we are aware we’ve got that four-day turnaround straight after so how we look after the players, the volume of training we do, the direction in which we take training, what we focus on is going to be really important.

“It should be seamless for the players, we don’t want to add undue stress on to them in that period where they are going to have to recover quickly.

“Some guys will have to back up because of the numbers in the squad and the make-up of the squad we’ve got, so looking after them, preparing them to be able to perform from a physical point of view is going to be really important.

  • muppet

    BREAKING: The Wallabies reveal the jersey they will wear for the rest of the tournament.

    • Can we post this on our Facebook page?

      • muppet


  • Custard Taht

    Pool A is fantastic! The Scotland V Japan game is probably the most anticipated game of the Pool Round now. The result of that game has so much riding on it. Ireland run the real chance of saying sayonara to the finals!

    Taking out the refereeing, this RWC has been awesome, and probably the most competitive. It is just a shame that World Rugby has decided to take what would and should have been a fantastic advertisement for the game, and make the talking points more about the refs, and less about the on field action.

    • Greg

      There have been some great games.

      The less experienced teams have all come prepared to be competitive.

      Namibia was down 10-9 to NZ after 30 minutes but then couldn’t stay with them. Russia, Georgia all having a go. Did I mention Japan?

      • Missing Link

        it’s fantastic, those 100+ – 0 results of around 20 years ago did nobody any favours

      • Patrick

        I’ve blocked out my lunchtime for Wales Fiji, I loved Japan Samoa, and I can’t wait for Japan Scotland as well as France England. Two genuinely competitive pools, and perhaps a new force in World Rugby (Japan) – what more could you ask for?

        • Greg

          “what more could you ask for?” Wallabies in the final?

        • Patrick

          I can’t help myself thinking that we can do it, I never can.

          But I can also think of a lot of reasons why we might not so I’m enjoying the rugby day to day :)

    • Seb V

      100% agree. How bloody good are Japan at hosts. Filling stadiums, singing foreign national athems, awesome stuff.

  • Hoss

    You know I wanted and believed we could go deep in this Cup. Believe it or not we do have the talent. But then I stumbled over this quote from the coach, post Uruguay game. Post four penalties against us for high tackles. Post two yellow cards for high tackles in the same game. Post the Fiji game we we list a player for 6, reduced to 3 weeks for a high tackle……….’we don’t need to assess it as a whole (group) I think the boys are doing quite well’

    It’s like the last time i went to movies with my little ones and wanted to smack the masses of feral children there, but then an epiphany, I should walk over and whack the parents instead. As a passionate fan, an invested Wallaby lover it kills me to say that the QF’s are us and then let the smacking begin.

    • disqus_NMX


      • Hoss

        And the greater shame mate. Nearlies aside, No other side is lighting up this Cup. Not Ireland, not the SD’s, not Wales – nobody. A finals berth is there for the taking. And as for the Nearlies whilst they will take some beating they ain’t out of second gear yet. All its gonna take us for a Penguin (most likely a French) to crack down on ‘The Teflon Don’ (K Read) and the World Cup changes dramatically.

        • Greg

          Black three got a yellow yesterday. Maybe there is a change coming.

          @KRL I am not calling conspiracy…. but there has been inconsistency.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Mate. Everywhere. I noticed not a lot of complaints when Skeen called a forward pass to save a try against the Wallabies. The Read one to me was it would have been an on field yellow so no call. It’s only brought up post game if it was an on field red. However I am a one-eyed AB supporter so of course I see it differently. The same as the citing commissioner, but differently.

        • Greg

          Yep and against the Saffas. Unfortunate that there have been so many incidents with Read. He is not a dirty player but is getting away with murder.

          Bad for the game and the tournament. We should be talking about the great play – there has been heaps.

        • Keith Butler

          Maybe he should wear the 7 shirt in memory of Sir Ritchie.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          And the conspiracy continues

        • Keith Butler

          Tongue in cheek mate. McCaw one of the best 7s ever and like all great players lived on the edge. Read much the same but not the player he once was.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Yeah I agree Read has dropped off a bit. I think he’ll pull it out for the knockout matches though

        • Patrick

          I actually think that the current NZ crop is going to crack, perhaps even in the QFs, because they don’t have the discipline to play 80 tough minutes without getting carded under the current rules if they are referreed fairly.

        • From NooZealand

          Truly? or wishful thinking?

        • Patrick

          Truly actually. But I have been proved wrong many a time before,enough in fact that I stopped betting on rugby :)

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Well according to most they aren’t so I guess they’ll do ok

        • From NooZealand

          Hossomoto the wise wrote: And the greater shame mate. Nearlies aside, No other side is lighting up this Cup.

        • Missing Link

          blasphemy!! :)

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Mate I’m not sure that’s true. He’s a damn good player and just maybe he knows the rules well enough that he can take it to the line every time

        • Missing Link

          I kind of missed that and all I heard was “number 8 is never onside” when I saw Salakaia-Loto flying into a ruck, I was thinking “here we go again, that f’ing Ben Skeen is going to get another wallaby binned” hahahahaha

        • Who?

          We had three infringements there. #8 white offside, Coleman cleaning out from the side, and #13 white taking out the halfback (Beale – tackled him behind the breakdown from the ground).
          Amazingly, the rulings were correct – no try as #8 was never onside, first material infringement was Coleman coming from the side.

        • laurence king

          The channel 10 panel were aggrieved that the try was disallowed and quoted some former player/referee that the TMOs were intimidating the referees

        • The TMO interventions may or may not be intimidating the referees. A lot of commentators, and broadly from what I’ve seen the SA and then the Australian are the worst (although it’s close with the French from what I can follow) have a really poor understanding of the laws.

          That said, on the British coverage of the RWC there’s a huge disparity in the commentary teams. One set does this week-in, week-out for the Gallagher Premiership or whatever it’s called. All of their commentators are sent away to referee conferences are trained as referees, low level but they understand the laws and stay current. They’re not perfect, but they understand the laws and their current interpretation. One set are largely ex-players who commentate on… not sure. Not something I watch. They are all “Oh, I used to play against his dad” generation. And their understanding of the laws is about that far out of date. It’s bloody annoying. My partner won’t watch with me if they’re the commentary team unless I mute them they are that bad.

          So I would take their indignation with a pinch of salt I’m afraid. A lot of them really need to brush up on the laws and get to grips with it. Like it or loath it, the laws have changed a lot, even since the last RWC, and “in my day that used to be ok” just doesn’t cut it for a commentator any more.

        • laurence king

          In the particular instance, the commentary team were not arguing over the correctness of the law, just that there are are so many interventions. The Uruguayan in question was fractionally offside but if everything is going to be checked, it would kill the game.

        • Ah, sorry I misconstrued what you wrote. And commentators not understanding the laws is a bit of a hobby-horse right now.

        • laurence king

          Nah, don’t think I explained myself clearly enough. Cheers

        • Patrick

          I thought his no try against Uruguay call for the no 8 was terrible. Honestly if you ref that way you’d need three whistles to get through the game.

        • Who?

          I thought it was worth the review. But I was surprised that was the offence that got the try overturned. I was waiting for tackling the player in the air, on the ground, or cleaning out the halfback (Beale). It was good, enthusiastic play by Uruguay, just a little overexcited.
          And then the final ruling – #8 offside so no try, but Coleman the first material infringement – was actually quite good.

        • Human

          AB’s had two yellows yesterday….purely to remove any accusations of bias towards the AB’s. It will not happen again though.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Hahaha gold mate

        • onlinesideline

          that Hansen guy knows how to develop, culturize, strategize, skillify, select, coach AND REPRESENT a rugby team.

          Cool dude in my books. Nearlies have this on toast.

        • From NooZealand

          Thank you wise one, I just quoted you in a reply to Patrick.

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      Mate if it makes people feel better I’m happy for them to blame the referees. But honestly, crap like this that has been the same for the last 5 years is why the Wallabies won’t get past the Qtrs. I just hope RA are doing something now about who they’re bringing in to replace this clown and his muppet coaching crew.

      • Damo

        With due respect to our genius resident cartoonist, Mr Muppet.

      • Hoss

        Yes mate. I have on rare occasion, pointed to failings with officials (fucking Nigel Owens has given me Tourette’s). But a well coached, well drilled, well selected, well lead side will be able to minimise said impact of shit-house calls / world Rugby ‘crack downs’ through their own efforts and rising above the ‘victim’ mentality.

        We have had two cards and one suspension from high tackles and our coach doesn’t deem it necessary to discuss with our squad.

        Nuff said really.

        • GeorgiaSatellite

          Are you using ‘fucking’ here as a verb or an adjective?

        • Hoss

          Open minded if it got our side a few more 50/50 calls

    • onlinesideline

      I don’t want to watch the match agains the Poms. I really really don’t. All our deficiencies will be there on full display for the rugby world to see, starting with Eddie v Cheika. Its going to be the rugby cringe of all cringefests and the sad end to a chapter for these bunch of blokes, who lets face it, clearly have given everything. The Poms have the mental edge on us as much as the nearlies at the moment maybe even more TBH and thats significantly uncomfortable for us aussies. Poms ? sporting dominance ? – this is wrong on every level. But fairplay to fast Eddie, you gotta give the guy SOME credit.

      I really thought putting Genia and Foley in backline making it a NEW backline AGAIN in a VITAL pool match, which has ultimately made us play / beat 3 heavyweights to bring Bill home as the dumbest thing that Cheika could have done. Just idiotic. He’s blown it already by that one selection. IMO they may as well start packing now. I really think we are looking at a Scotland like implosion against the Poms and it’s memory will be buried under the eskys, thongs, insect repellant, suncream of summer as soon as humanly possible. A long bad nightmare from a long 5 year winter.

      • Seb V

        England don’t have a mental edge over us. They have a better game-plan which they implement effectively each time. Which is pretty, kick to the corners, play territory, kick bombs, wait for wallabies to make mistakes (like being unable to exit 22, or dropping high balls). It’s a simple and easy strategy to beat us. Cheika has no answers to this and continue to play the same ineffective game-plan each time. So I blame the game-plan and player selection not the ‘mental edge’.

        • onlinesideline

          agree on your game plan comments but aren’t they one in the same. (one leads to the other) Its not that important but ….

          Additionally they have beaten us a bucket load of times in last 4 years, including in a series in our own backyard. You sure thats not a mental edge ? You telling me Poms wont feel they can beat us, like they have done in last 7 outings or so ?

        • Seb V

          It’s hard to say. We did beat them last RWC in a pretty humilating way knocking them out of their own Cup. So I think they will be at the back of all the players minds. I think that may help with the belief in the team, but then again you’re right too, they beat us last 5 games since so I just don’t know. Eddie certianly has the mental edge over Cheika that is for sure.

        • laurence king

          A lot of coaches have the mental edge over our Michael

        • I think too many players, certainly in white, are different since 2015 or were fresh faces in 2015 and are now established players for that to have really much impact on them. Add to that a strong recent run and they’ll look back at that far more than what happened 4 years ago.

      • From NooZealand

        Its going to be …. the sad end to a chapter for these bunch of blokes, who lets face it, clearly have given everything. and for their sake, let’s have some hope. Miracles do happen.

      • Human

        The Poms have not been great so far.
        The Frogs could beat them, as could the Wobs.
        The difference is that Eddie is a clever coach, that may give them the edge over us.

        • onlinesideline

          thing is / was every time the Poms have beaten us they werent that great then either

        • Human

          Not sure I agree…they were going well when they beat us out here shortly after Eddie took over. I do agree about them not being great the last couple of times they beat us….I put that down to Jones knowing how to get his team set to beat a particular opponent…as he did with Japan and with the Wobs in the 2003 RWC semi versus the AB’s.

        • Who?

          It’s arguable that they were only going great because they beat us… We dominated the territory and possession stats for that series. We just didn’t know what to do with all the ball we had. We played lots of league – one out runners, slow support to the breakdown (if they’d had a decent openside, they’d have ripped us apart!), slow ball, try again. We were horrifically ineffective. We asked nothing of them other than to make simple tackles on telegraphed ball carriers, and they were more than up to that task.

    • Keith Butler

      Don’t worry mate, all is not lost. My SDs may well beat the French but I really don’t fancy our chances facing a fired up G&G. I’d actually prefer to face the Welsh at least we know what to expect. Whatever happens I expect derision and mockery when we make our exit from both my Aussie mates here and Welsh friends back in the UK.

      • Kiwi rugby lover

        Mate. I know being nice is the way to go but with all due respect to the cartoonist and everyone else you will completely kill them. TBH this should be the catalyst Australia needs to revamp their setup

        • juswal

          For sheep’s sake, stop. You have analysed Australian rugby’s negatives to the colon and back. The coach, the board, the CEO, the states, the clubs, the players, their skills, their deficiencies, their personal qualities—everything and everyone shat on, repeatedly, over and over.

          Now you’re death-riding the Wallabies against England. On Green and Gold Rugby. It’s blutterbunging.

          How can you not see how offensive this behaviour is? Take a look at yourself, really stop and think about your conduct.

          If you can’t see it from an Australian point of view, imagine an Australian fan turning up on a New Zealand fan site and laying on the disrespect and disparagement—day after day, like a broken record. And telling a fan of England that his team will “completely kill” New Zealand.

          It wouldn’t be OK. You wouldn’t accept it. But it won’t ever happen, because Australian fans don’t crawl that low.

        • Greg

          Juswal… not sure if you are being sarcastic or not. Just in case….

          The problem with KRL’s comments is that they are quite objective and reasonable.

          Something has to change with the Wobs. I think we have the cattle but we are not producing consistent rugby. The deficiencies are largely not improving. Honestly, I don’t mind if we lose so long as we play a good game because I know if we play our best we can beat most…. but we don’t do it.

          I will be here for the rest of the tourmament and will and *gladly* accept you pointing out I was pessimistic. I want you to do that. It’s up to the boys now.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          It’s just me he hates, not the rest of you. Try and ignore it like I try to

      • You know how much it will pain me to say this, but I’ll be shocked if Australia lose to the English.

        They could go out and pull out a Perth-like performance and stuff them up, yes. They have the capacity to do it. Perhaps England, who will play a direct power running game, mixed with kicking to the back three will force them to play to what seems to be their better structures from the beginning too. But, generally speaking, England have pace and power to burn, kickers to rain down testing high balls all over the park, players who like dominating the breakdown and a forward pack that will look to impose itself and hasn’t really looked troubled yet. The Wallabies lack pace out wide (whether they pick Hodge or AAC), depending on team selection may lack two people at the back who are safe under a high ball, has looked poor at the breakdown for a big chunk of the game and while their set piece has looked good that hasn’t been enough to win them games, how they’ll fare when there’s a real contest at the set piece… who knows?

        I can just see too many ways for England to not fire at 100% and still beat the Wallabies unless they absolute do hit the ground running.

        • Keith Butler

          No injury worries apart from BV but Mark Wilson good replacement though. Team on a slow upward track and for once EJ keeping his gob shut. What could possibly go wrong. Will be interesting to see the team he selects against France. Will he trial Farrell at 10, Tuilagi at 12 and Joseph at 13? Go well against the Fijians. A semi final place beckons.

        • I would agree. NZ, SA, England and Wales for the SF I think. Ireland, France and Japan can all pull off upsets, in increasing order of likelihood IMO but I’m really not seeing it.

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      Reality biting you on the arse mate

      • Hoss

        Farking confronting too mate when I have spent so much time living on Planet Hoss were the snozberries taste like snozberries.

  • Moz
    • Greg

      Once upon a time the Betoota did satire. I see it has switched to serious reporting!

  • dane

    Re. The length of RWC. While lengthening the cup to ensure all teams get proper rest does seem sensible. I actually like the occasional short turnarounds. It allows for games nearly everyday which keeps the pool stage more engaging and allows fans to watch more games (not being able to watch 6 games on a saturday). It also adds another element that can result in upsets, which really give creedence to the RWC

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      I agree mate. Increasing the Squads to 35 would alleviate a lot of the problems. Not all though as some teams just don’t have the depth for more players to be an option.

      • I think the issue with the short turn arounds is that England, SA, NZ, Wales, France, Australia (with a good coach) and Ireland can field a larger squad. They could take 46, most of them anyway, and play decent games Saturday and Sunday, then rest for a week. But you don’t have to go too far outside that group and you’ll start to struggle. Scotland only have 2 professional teams, so do Italy. Argentina only 1. For some nations that comparison gets trickier – Fiji really only have 1 I think, but have players at a high level in just about every league in the world.

        Adding an extra week, so everyone has a week’s rest at least means, regardless of how small your core pool of players, they’re all equally rested. No one has to face the #1 team in the world on four day’s rest. Whoever that #1 side is, they can cope. Canada, who did it this time, not so much.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Yeah I agree on that. The trouble is if you start spreading the competition out too far it becomes too costly for the teams and supporters. Maybe a bit of a balance

        • While that’s also true and you’d have a bit of a log jam, one extra week of pool stages with Fri, Sat, Sun, Mon games and a juggle so everyone gets 6 days rest – you basically play the pool matches on the same day, and they drop back a day through the weekend rotation each week of the tournament so if week one you play Sat, week two you play Fri, week three Mon and week four Sun. QFs you have the Fri and Sat group play on Sat, the Sun and Mon group play on Sun.

          Tournament gets one week longer… no crazy turnarounds.

  • Missing Link

    Happy Monday folks, must be a public holiday in NSW given the lack of enthusiasm, or could it just be a reflection of the Wallaby’s chances of winning the cup.

    I’m starting to have serious reservations, I always put my faith in the Wallabies and no doubt Uruguay have improved over the last 4 years but we really looked headless for a lot of the game. Again I’d like to assume Cheika is playing his cards close to his chest, we lost of Wales deliberately to throw England off scent and when we face them in the quarters, the team that smashed NZ in Perth will be unleashed. Then we will go on to beat Japan after they pull off a miraculous quarter final ambush of the darkness after 4 NZ players are red carded for tackling above the nipple, that’s sets up a final with SA who didn’t realise we threw the rugby championship game against them in Jo’burg… Cheika’s 4D game of chess is all starting to come together.

    • Greg

      Cheik is that you?

      • Missing Link

        hang on, just looking for my missing 9 iron

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      Love the optimism mate

  • Seb V

    Now that was 100% a red card by Italy and one of the most dangerous spear tackles I’ve seen in a long time. Lucky to be only 1 red. Could have given a red or yellow to the other player involved too.
    I think it should have been the only Red Card in the RWC so far, the others were so soft in comparison.

    • Damo

      You have to think there is a fair bit of anger and frustration seeping out of the Italy camp. Competing with Tier 1 teams for so many years now, and have won almost nothing and don’t ever seem to improve much. No excuse for seriously dangerous play however.

      • GeorgiaSatellite

        Some of the shoves they were giving Saffers after they scored tries were really churlish.

    • Keith Butler

      The other prop was also cited and both got a 3 match suspension. Justice done.

      • Greg

        A comparable penalty to Hodge. Really?

        • Keith Butler

          On reflection should have been more for both – at least 6 matches.

        • Who?

          Maybe. Hodge got 6, reduced to 3 for good contact. Between the two props, you’ve got 12 weeks, half each, reduced for good behaviour… Maybe?

        • This is definitely one of the issues with the punishment framework. I broadly agree with the 50% reduction for a good disciplinary record. 6 weeks for a shoulder to the head seems light to me, but OK. But a tip and drive into the ground is a worse thing than that, it’s a string of deliberate choices, not one thing that can vary from a borderline accident to something more malicious. They need a bigger range for the punishments if the entry point for that tip tackle is also 6 weeks.

    • Upgraded retrospectively to 2 by the citing commissioner. I think Barnes was really looking for reasons not to make it 2 and send both props off with half a game to go. I didn’t agree with it then, and still don’t know, although losing two props and going to uncontested scrums… he arguably kept some level of contest and spectacle.

  • Seb V

    How Japan haven’t secured a QF spot after 3 wins seems bizarre. But I certainly hope they don’t stumble against Scotland.

    • Who?

      Didn’t France lose two pool matches in 2011 and still progress? NZ and Tonga? And then they made the final..?
      There’s always room for craziness.

    • From NooZealand

      彼らはそうしないでしょう !!!

  • Kiwi rugby lover

    Thanks Sully,
    With you 100% on Petaia, a player showing a lot of promise but really that’s all so let’s not over hype it and put too much pressure on the guy. I must admit a back 3 of Petaia, Koroibete and DHP is looking good though.
    I’m with Scotland in saying a bigger squad is a better answer. Dragging the competition out longer not so much but a squad of 35 would be good.
    Japan are playing so well. Really looking forward to their next game. As Moz showed below, the removal of the Sunwolves may have been premature. Maybe an option for Japan as part of the RC competition is worth looking at.

  • formerflanker

    A classy way to comment on a controversial and game changing GF refereeing mistake:
    “You all saw it,” Canberra coach Ricky Stuart said. “None of us will be commenting on that tonight. It is not the time to talk about it. The Roosters achieved something special tonight. I don’t want to take the spotlight off that.”

    • Greg

      Indeed classy.

      We so so much that is not classy at all.

      For the record… I thought he was waving his hand back to say that the ball was knocked back.

  • Andy

    In other news, Andrew Hore leaving the tahs only 3 weeks after appointing a kiwi coach pretty late in the piece. For tahs fans this is good news and shows the making of guy. Should have pissed off after the last game of the season. Ever since he took over the club and province has fallen off a cliff. Waste of sperm..

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      Didn’t get a gig in NZ for a reason

      • Custard Taht

        Or the Reds…..

      • juswal

        Except he did. He was at the Crusaders and NZRU last decade, and he’s going to the Blues.

  • A Dingo Stole My Rugby

    I’d also like to suggest that we not over-hype Dempsey.

    If we are going to pick him for the later games, I would specify that we want Uruguay Second Half Dempsey please, and not Uruguay First Half Dempsey, who was as mediocre and unimpressive as many of his lacklustre team-mates.

  • adastra32
    • laurence king

      Well I don’t think that he is just a naughty boy

  • Tah Tragic

    Rugby Australia – completely mismanage the game and drive fans away.

    NSW Rugby – hold my beer…


Just another Rugby tragic. Shane "Sully" Sullivan has been in man love with the game since high school in the 70's. He inflicts his passion on family and anyone who will listen. He can't guarantee unbiased opinion but he can tell you the Reds are Awesome! To read non-rugby content head to

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