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Monday’s Rugby News

Monday’s Rugby News

Monday’s Rugby News talk about the massive final over the weekend along with the World Cup, the future Wallabies coach speaks out and the Bledisloe fixtures have been confirmed


West is Best

Jonah Placid scores Western Force v Brisbane City NRC 2019 (Credit Delphy)

The Western Force has claimed the 2019 NRC with a convincing 41-3 victory over the Canberra Vikings.

It was a see-sawing battle during the first half with neither team willing to give an inch in defence, with the only try coming from Force hooker Heath Tessman giving his side a 7-3 halftime lead.

However, the Force would blitz their Canberra rivals in the second half, with two tries in the 10 minutes after the break gifting them a comfortable lead, before a pair of late tries to Jeremy Thrush and Jonah Placid sealed the result.

Second rower Fergus Lee-Warner was immense for the Force and was rightly awarded the Phil Waugh Medal for best on the ground.

The overall tally of six tries was a welcome sight for Force fans and the 2019 Telethon Appeal, with Force owner Andrew Forrest donating $100,000 per try to help sick and disadvantaged kids in the west.

The title marks the second time that the ‘toast rack’ will remain in Western Australia, with captain Andrew Deegan proud of the way that his side repaid the faith of the raucous home crowd.

“I think we just got our opportunities and we took them at the right time and we came away with the win there,” Deegan said.

“But I was really proud of the boys and the blokes that came off the bench, that whole second half we took our opportunities and we scored five tries there

“We wanted to send all the blokes off on good terms and for the Sea of Blue (supporters), we can’t thank them enough, and (the result) for next year, builds a bit of momentum for Global Rapid Rugby.”

Vikings captain Blake Enever heaped praise on the victorious Force, particularly the way they were able to shut out the game in the second half.

“They made the most of all their opportunities and we made too many mistakes,” Enever said.

“Good on them. They’re a good team, they’re well drilled and they have a good coaching staff.

“Well done to them and I think we just weren’t clinical and we missed a lot of opportunities today.”

World Cup final confirmed

England win

The final for the World Cup has been confirmed with England set to play South Africa next Saturday.

England was the first team to secure their place in the final with a stunning 19-7 win over defending champions New Zealand.

Eddie Jones men controlled the first half, with Tuilagi’s converted try and the first of Ford’s penalties gifting them a 10-0 lead.

Another Ford penalty early in the second half made it 13-0 but the All Blacks eventually broke through when Ardie Savea snatched an overthrown line-out to reduce the margin to just six.

However, England would continue to control possession and territory thanks to a superb forward effort led by locks Courtney Lawes and Maro Itoje, with Ford nailing two more penalties to secure the win.

The win pretty much secures Eddie Jones as head coach and let’s face it, with the likes of Itoje (24), Ford (26), Underhill (23) and Curry (21) set to lead that team for the next 5+ years, why would you leave.

Their opponent will be South Africa, who narrowly held on for a 19-16 win over Wales.

The contest was dominated by the boot with both teams resembling AFL teams withthe amount of times that they kicked in open play throughout the match.

The Springboks would be the first time to find the tryline when centre Damian de Allende crossed to give them a seven point advantage with 25 minutes to go.

However, Wales would hit back with a late try to Josh Adams levelling the scores with just 10 minutes remaining.

Ultimately, it was the boot of Handre Pollard which secured the result, slotting a 76th minute penalty to give South Africa the win.

“We’re in the final of the World Cup… but that’s only half way there.We’d love to win the World Cup,” said South Africa coach Rassie Erasmus.

“We play a class England team in the final now but we’re there. We’ve got a a chance now and we might go all the way. You never know.”

Brisbane Bledisloe

Reece Hodge, Kurtley Beale ,Will Genia  , Marika Koroibete ,Isi Naisarani during national anthem

Reece Hodge, Kurtley Beale ,Will Genia  , Marika Koroibete ,Isi Naisarani during national anthem

The destinations for the 2020 Bledisloe Cup have been confirmed with Brisbane and Melbourne the lucky recipients of the two tests.

With ANZ Stadium set to out of action during the second half of 2020, Rugby Australia confirmed that the third clash is set to be held at Suncorp Stadium after earlier revealing that the first will be at Marvel Stadium.

The deciding (hopefully) contest is pencilled in for an October 17 showdown and will be the last test on home soil before the Wallabies contiki tour around Europe.

They also confirmed that Brisbane will host a test match next July as well, with Australia welcoming Ireland for their mid-year matches in a two-test series.

The Irish test is set to be held on July 4 and will mark the first challenge for Michael Cheika’s successor.

Suncorp has become some sort of a stronghold for the Wallabies, having defeated Argentina in their last match there along with winning their last Bledisloe fixture at the venue in 2017.

Rugby Australia CEO Raelene Castle believes that Brisbane would be a great spot for two Tests next year.

“Suncorp Stadium has been the venue for some of the most memorable Wallabies Test matches in recent years and the stage is set for two more high-quality Test matches in 2020,” Castle said.

“Brisbane knows how to put on a great show and the Wallabies always have outstanding support every time they come to town.

“The Wallabies have a strong record at Suncorp Stadium, and it is no wonder that it is one of the favourite venues for our players.”

Tourism Industry Development Minister Kate Jones was naturally pleased with the news, suggesting that rugby fans would be delighted that Suncorp would host two of the Wallabies’ matches in 2020.

“Fellow World Cup quarterfinalists Ireland and the All Blacks in the third Bledisloe Cup match are good gets for local tourism operators,” Ms Jones said.

“The Queensland Government supports major events like the Wallabies because they attract visitors and create jobs in the local tourism sector.”

Rennie refutes reports

dave rennie

Glasgow Warriors coach Dave Rennie has denied any contract has been signed with Rugby Australia whilst reiterated his interest in the role.

Rennie is the red-hot favourite for the vacant position, with reports suggesting that he was already pencilled in for the job before the Wallabies were knocked out of the tournament.

The former Chiefs coach is currently contracted to Glasgow until the end of the European season in June next year, which he has reaffirmed that he plans to stick to.

“Probably the easiest way to clarify this is that I know there’s lots of speculation in the media that I’ve already signed [a contract with Australia] and people have been informed and all this sort of stuff,” he said.

“That’s not accurate. I haven’t signed, and I will definitely be here till the end of this season, which is the end of June.

“I’ll just reiterate: regardless of what happens to me beyond this season, I’m here for the full season. It’s important to me. I’m committed to the Warriors and I won’t leave earlier.”

Whilst no contract has been signed, Rennie admitted that he is definitely interested in the role, although refused to discuss it further until it had been confirmed.

“Yeah, I think we’ve discussed this before, so yeah, absolutely,” he said.

“I guess what I’m implying is there’s lots of talk about this and I’m already committed [to Glasgow], you know. There’s a lot of speculation, as there has been for months.

“All I would say to that is that it’s almost like when we sign players,

“We don’t discuss anything until there’s an announcement to be made. It’s no different to coaches and me.”

There has also been talk that Rennie’s assistant and Scotland defence coach, Aussie-born Matt Taylor could join him at the Wallabies, which the NZ-born coach responded with “Speculation”.

  • Human

    Maybe England are quite a good side after all. They made the AB’s look like the Wallabies.
    Jones is certainly a clever RWC coach.

  • Geoffro

    So,if Rennie is truly committed to Glasgow till June WHO is going to lead the Wallabies into next year’s tests.There’s a lot of work to be done (or undone) in the next nine months

    • Fatflanker

      Yeah, that worries me – can’t see Rennie achieving very much at all next year TBH. Perhaps Scott Johnson will coach in the interim. Frustrating.

      • Geoffro

        A year ago Johnson and Jake White were the frontrunners.Im ok with that still

  • Patrick

    Couldn’t we kidnap the RA board for a few million in ransom and use it to buy back Eddie?

    F%^& me England looked good. I had thought that this was a fragile NZ team but not that fragile, they basically looked utterly shell shocked, which was surely a lot to do with how effectively England executed a perfect strategy.

    • formerflanker

      um, who’d pay?

      • Geoffro

        Exactly my first thought

      • AllyOz

        I think we would have to threaten to install them on other companies boards unless they paid us.

    • Fatflanker

      EJs a bloody good coach these days, no doubt, but we couldn’t afford him, I doubt he’d seriously consider coming back and I doubt RA could cope with his strong personality. NZ might get him interested!

      • Patrick

        He has unfinished business here – he should have won the RWC with us. He did with RSA, he probably will with England, he overachieved with JPN…he fell just short with us.

        And I set out my plan to afford him above ;)

        • Mishad

          I suspect you’re right re unfinished business. The purpose of a coach is to turn teams around into winning teams. A coach without a shitty team to apply his smarts is like a man living a life without meaning. The transformation of the England team over the last 4 years is remarkable, and I’d be very interested to know what steps took place to make that happen.

        • Who?

          I don’t know that he should’ve won the RWC with us in 2003. He could have, but to make the final, given the record that season, was arguably overachieving. I think what the weekend’s shown is that it’s pretty clear he’s the best tournament coach in the game. Rumour was he was almost sacked on his SA tour (avoided it with the 12-11 win), but in tournaments…

        • Patrick

          Sure he did wonders with us in ’03 but he could have won and he knew it.

          But yes he is clearly the best tournament coach perhaps in rugby history, remarkable record really.

        • Who?

          Agree he could’ve, just not sure should’ve is accurate. :-)
          2003 Final, consultant in 2007 to the champions, Brighton Miracle, this year… You’re right, it’s a remarkable record.

      • Dud Roodt

        As Patrick says – from a lot I’ve read about him, I think he has a massive desire to come back and win a world cup with the Wallabies. But they’re going to have to open the purse strings

        • onlinesideline

          is he absolutely quitting even if he wins on saturday ?
          if so you’d have to say its because he’s buggered
          would he have the innards to start a whole new campaign again with us ?
          if he is to continue coaching wouldnt it be the group he’s just enjoying some success with ?

        • Dud Roodt

          Not sure to be honest. If he wins it might even increase his chances of quitting.
          I think he harbours some serious disappointment about how it all ended here so would love the opportunity to redeem himself (not my view that he needs to, but perhaps his).
          The only thing I can see stopping him is his health. He had that stroke a few years ago and may look to wind down and take more of a director of rugby type position

        • Yowie

          Surely there are only so many “maximum effort 100% risk” campaigns in a person’s life before they are spent and can’t do it again.
          If examples are needed, there are plenty in sport and military matters.

        • Who?

          GeeRob spoke a bit about it on Offsiders yesterday, said Eddie himself told her last year that he’d come home when they offered him the job. But she feels things may have changed in the last 12 months… Especially given that, last year, had he not won the game in SA 12-11, he’d likely have been sacked. But now he’s the king again.
          Definitely GeeRob’s best appearance on Offsiders, spoke way more candidly than she’s ever done before. Clearly enjoying a fraction of freedom, and clearly, given how she dumped on Cheika over the embassy incident, on the side of the administration over Cheika. The other journos tried to defend Cheika (it’s hard when these things are lumped on you), she wouldn’t have any of it (he knew months in advance!).

        • Brisneyland Local

          Red Rob, Cheika’s largest defender for years. That won’t be forgotten. Along with her pro- spanners and Beale line.

        • Who?

          Very definitely off that sunk ship now. You should check out the first 10 minutes or so of Offsiders on iView.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Will do

        • Yowie

          Edited/deleted

        • Patrick

          No he is not quitting at all, that is why we need to pay him a motza to get him.

      • AllyOz

        He would be expensive on his own and the support staff he has would also come at a considerable cost too.

    • Brisneyland Local

      No one would pay for the R A Board. Maybe if we kidnapped Poey people would cough up.

      • Yowie

        but there are no ropes strong enough to hold Poey tied-up!

        • Brisneyland Local

          True. He is the Australian Chuck Norris.

        • Yowie

          There doesn’t seem to be a private message function on Discus, so i’ll type this reply on an old page and you’ll get a copy by email.
          If the 2020 Suncorp Stadium catch-up goes ahead I would like the opportunity to get a ticket in the same part of the stadium as the Gagr forum crew and/or meet people in person. I’m a Brisbane northsider btw. I’m fairly new to posting on the forum and i don’t want to intrude on a close-knit group, but it would be good to say hello. The first part of my mobile number is 0410. I’ll put up the rest in other posts then edit/delete all posts after you’ll have gotten an email copy. Once you have my details in due course please let me know directly (eg) if there is a push to buy tickets in one part of Suncorp and/or if there is a catch-up at X pub before the game. No dramas if inappropriate or all too hard.

  • onlinesideline

    the CEO signing up a coach quickly is a clear self preservation move, thinking that the new element of optimism of a new coach will be a bookend to the RWC / Cheika debackle. Its RIDICULOUS an independent review excluding Castle is not being done INSTANTLY. WHEN IS IT URGENT…WHEN ??? – What do these people do all bloody day – why the delay ?

    If what someone else on here said, a kiwi, is correct, that Dave Rennie is considered by many in NZ to be past it….this could be another disaster. Id be looking at Jamie Joseph. He is the one coaching internationally and succeeding. Rennie’s Cheifs success was a while back and its Super rugby – nice but its just that.

    The English match was sublime by the Poms. As a Pommy berater / hater (secret admirer at times) man that was a display and a half. It may nor be the aussie way, but it was knockout footy not a Perth Bledisloe. They are miles ahead of us on their good day. Every player from 1-15 new EXACTLY what to do under each different circumstance – like Eddie said, creatures of habit. They had clear mindedness, INTENT, no confusion, confidence, assuredness, skill, cohesion, disinterest in bully boy stupidity, fitness and TBH they didnt seem stressed because they were efficient. If they bring that kind of rugby to the table, I have no beef with the Poms doing well and winning it. OTH the Saffas have had to beat, France and Wales only to get a shot at Bill, avoiding NZ and OZ . Poms look and feel like the champions at the moment.

    I was thinking about Eddie coaching us today. Aside from Eddie instilling all of the above in the Wallabies, there is one area of our culture that may bite back at Eddie and thats the PC of public criticism and the bite back may come from our players and supporters.

    Eddie is quite prepared to throw players under the bus publicly. Could they / we handle that ? Personally I think we desparately need it and we have to toughen up. Cheika was diametrically opposite to this. It didn’t work did it. The players felt too comfy IMO.

    Eddie would call a spade a spade about certain Wallabies NOT TURNING UP, NOT HAVING THE DESIRE – this is how Eddie was carrying on in the beginning of his English stint, among other criticisms. He publicly berated them. This would be a revolution down here but we really need it. We needed big names to be dropped.

    But reality is, coming home to OZ, it wold be like going from Caviar to chopped liver. Far less resources, far less player pool, far less everything. As someone said, he’s on the way to a knighthood.

    • Patrick

      I agree about renewing Cheika’s contract although I don’t blame Castle as much as the board and her shit for brains predecessor.

      • onlinesideline

        Mate – sorry no excuses. She was running the show, she wanted the top job with all its pressures and tough calls to make. He had overseen as coachan absolutely horrific 3 years, unheard of in Wallaby history. I dont think ANYONE would have begrudged her for making the call and putting in home grown high achiever.

        • Patrick

          I wouldn’t have but I bet the board would have.

        • Who?

          Pretty sure this is only the second year for Raelene – that she’s not yet had the role for 24 months.
          .
          Clyne has to go. Raelene, we don’t know. We can’t point at much that is clearly her call in the past 2 years.

    • Jcr

      Agree with quite a bit of what your saying , but a few things for me , top Australian sporting teams seem to believe once they are at the top that’s all they need to be and once they fail because they don’t evolve then the public calls for a bloodbath .
      To me RA needs someone to run it who is inclusive of all states and levels of rugby but has the strength to maybe disband portions of Australian rugby that don’t fit into the holistic approach, I don’t know Kearns but I’m picking he’s not an inclusive sort of manager. NZR used to have the inward look , tribalism , jobs for the boys etc but they realised it won’t work in the long term . All this shit about the Australian way of playing rugby is just that , it’s all bollocks . It’s possible to play any style if you have the skills , both as individual players and as coaches to implement the style. It doesn’t mean that the team will win , it just means your playing what is deemed as the best solution to the problem.

      • onlinesideline

        mate I agree with about inclusiveness across the board.

        Re your comment about a bloodbath after the fact – you’d have to say there isnt much of a media call for a bllodbath even today. It all seens pretty mild in fact. Like we have just surrendered already to “just a new coach” will cure all. Im not seeing a call for Castles head across the board.

        Re style, and the aussie way. I hear you but truth maybe the aussie way is just a polite way of saying, we can only play one way. If we were coached to play like England on Saturday by Eddie for instance, do you think we would have the players and muscle and rugby IQ to do it. Probably not.

        • Patrick

          I wonder if we might have that kind of cattle given some decent coaching?

          And if Kearns is appointed anything I’ll vomit.

        • Crescent

          Suspect the lack of a call for a bloodbath comes from the coach falling on his sword, a swathe of players retiring from international duties – once again the board gets a free pass because very few journalists are looking past the agreed byline that rugby is failing and asking hard questions around why rugby is suffering and who is responsible. We didn’t get into this mess overnight – it has been brewing for years and will take years to undo the damage.

          No quality administrator will want to take on the mess – there is too much pain involved and chance of seeing the necessary reforms through to completion is not guaranteed.

        • Hannes En Brianda Barnard

          Looks like we will waste this crisis as we did before – poor leadership!

        • Jcr

          Different cattle and so need different plans . I honestly don’t doubt Aus has the cattle , it’s just there not finished cattle and no one wants to build the yards cos there’s no plan on how to build them etc etc .
          It’ll be interesting to see whether the SA style draws the poms into that or whether Eddie will change his and make the yarpies try to adapt. Could go either way if Eddie tries to out SA , SA . Against the Wobblies he was happy to back the defence and win on turn overs against the ABs it was all territory and ball in hand , if he goes the second route I’m picking SA will get flogged .

        • AllyOz

          Different sections of media seem to have different factions that they support but, on the whole, the media in general seem onside with the current RA Board or at least the current CEO. Neither Wayne Smith, the head rugby writer at the Australian, and the various rugby writers on the Nine/Fairfax papers (GRob etc) are really taking it too them.

          As far as the cattle go, I don’t agree. Physically our blokes has much the same attributes as the players in the other top teams. I think if you looked at athletic or physical benchmarks we would compare reasonably well across most positions. But I am not sure that our blokes are as skilled or have the game sense or the mental discipline of the English players you mentioned. That can, to a large extent, be coached but perhaps coached from an early age and not just at Super/Test level.

        • idiot savant

          I have no doubt we have the cattle in the forwards. I think we have 2 competitive international packs. The Poms did not bully us like they did the ABs. I guarantee you any coach in world rugby would want to get his hands on our forward pack.

          In the backs we have work to do but I would argue that’s where game plan and matching selection from astute coaches can make a difference. You can kick for territory and pick great defenders for example and use your forwards to score. A tactic like this might be needed in the next year or two while we blood our next generation of playmakers at super rugby level.

        • AllyOz

          I hope we can play that same exciting brand of rugby we saw on display in the Wales vs South Africa game. ;).

          Certainly I think we have two genuine world class front rows, and several of them are likely to get better. In the second row, with the losses overseas, I think we might feel the pinch a bit. For me, Isi Naisarani is still a little way off a Kepu, some of the better games of Wycliff Palu. I also think we are missing the sort of players like Owen Finegan was. We have Hooper and some good opensides coming through but I wonder if Hooper will have to adapt his game a bit now. We do have a couple of blindsides developing but they aren’t quite there yet. For me, LSL is a better lock and is possibly going to be needed more there.

          Backs wise, we have no first choice 10s left from that squad, Toomua is a 12, we relied heavily on Kerevi, who is gone, we only seemed to be able to find one genuine finisher in Korobiete and if we were forced into a game of force ‘em backs like last nightI feel we might be in for a shallacking. There are certainly some big holes to fill in the backs as you say. We will have to wait and see who comes forward out of Super Rugby. The baby Reds will have an extra year under their belts and they have potentially JOC and Petaia which could be the Wallabies centre pairing. But some youngsters will have to come through or we are going to have to rely on some older players who have never really quite made it yet to make up the numbers for a while. If injury allows we could run on White, Toomua, JOC, Petaia, Banks/Maddocks, Korobeite and DHP/Maddocks. That wouldn’t be too bad for a start but there isn’t a lot that is clear under those just yet.

        • idiot savant

          I agree LSL is a lock and I would be surprised if he didn’t play there all next season for the Reds. What we lose from Arnold in mauling we will gain in ball carrying. Hooper, naisarani, Samu, valentini while not world beating will be solid in the back row. Our set piece should be good.

          Agree white and To’omua will be hard to go past for the halves next year. The new coach may have different views on the rest of the back line. With the junior Wallaby talent coming through in the next couple of years there is enough for a talented coach to want to get stuck in.

        • Patrick

          I have not seen anything from LSL to suggest that he gives us a shadow of Arnold’s physical presence, but I’d love to be proved wrong.

        • Jcr

          A fair number of players I’ve met are similar to tradesmen, they do what they do but need an apprenticeship to bring the whole lot together, once they do that it usually helps and they can help etc . Without management you plan a horse and end up with a camel etc .

        • Who?

          I think you’re right on most of it. Mainly want to discuss that second paragraph. I COMPLETELY agree that our players would benchmark very well against all nations. I think we’re a step behind with game sense, in key positions. But I think we have most of the mental discipline and skill. We just don’t have the game plans to fit our players, or the cohesion.

        • idiot savant

          The reason why there is no big media call for RCs head is that it is unjustified. RC did not hav the power to unilaterally sack The head coach. The board would have to approve. Phil Waugh a board member has as admitted the board discussed sacking him but declined. RC had no power over that.

          I am not convinced that RA could not have afforded to sack him. He had a year left on his contract which I estimate would have cost 1 million at most. Not good but not ruinous either.

          So RC, not being allowed to sack him, did the next best thing. She tried to curb his weaknesses by adding 2 people who both had experience in selection and game plans. It was all she could do till his contract ran out. And she started looking around for new coaches as you can’t have enough lead time with all the best people already contracted. All in all that looks to me like someone who has done their job in difficult circumstances.

        • Yowie

          agreed.

    • Nutta

      I don’t think Castle wanted to keep Cheks. But I don’t think RA could afford to terminate his contract early either. And certainly there was NO ONE who would have willingly stepped into the breach without possibly recreating the whole my-way-or-highway dilemma.

      • onlinesideline

        I would have taken someone like Laurie Fisher or even a Cron any day of the week over Cheika. It was guaranteed that we would lose an important pool match and definitely get knocked out in the quarters. We all knew it 9 months out. And it happned just as we all said, for the reasons we all said. What would we have had to lose with a Laurie Fisher or Cron ?

        Im sure there were people to replace him but without international experience. Weirdly RA think a 40% win rate under Cheika, a 50 point implosion against Scotland is acceptable / preferable over a less experienced coach. How strange is that.

        Re the termination fee – Im sure that was a factor too

        • Nutta

          You have to love senior management outlooks on life. Whilst I as a pragmatic person agree with you, the politics would not have played out that way. Imagine the scenario;
          RC – ‘We need to sack Chek’
          Board – Ok. Can we afford it?
          RC – No. But you know that.
          Board – Do we have a competent, multi-party acceptable replacement?
          RC – No. But you know that.
          Board – So why?
          RC – Because Cheks is a loser and we are going to loose anyway so lets just get a head-start.
          Board – Why are we going to lose?
          RC – Because you nufties have overseen the gutting of the game in this country since the coffers-of-gold post 03.
          Board – Thank you RC. Can you just wait outside whilst we call Phil Kearns and ask his opinion? Then when you come back in why don’t you just your resignation typed up in advance? It will save some time. 12point double-spaced Roman please.

        • onlinesideline

          Do you think Kearns had any say in keeping Cheika on, as much as he is Waratah clique ? I do rememeber him saying at half time of the Argentina match debacle in BA when we were down 31-0 I think it was, when Nick Whatsaface said ” how do you polish that turd ? ” Kearns said “its just not working” – as if to say Cheika has to go ? Do you remember that ?

        • Nutta

          Bloody oath I remember it. That was also the beginning of Nick getting pushed out of the FUX commentary chair for daring to voice the obvious to the point he is not even in it anymore. That has also signaled to everyone else to STFU if you want to keep your job and thereby ended The Wombat’s (Kafers) on-screen advice sessions etc.

          There is a very real push to install Kearns as RA CEO. My mail is it even has the support of Qlders (beyond that idiot Martin). My understanding is that Kearns-Coup would already have happened if Eales didn’t recuse himself from the vote (given their open-friendship). Did Kearns want to keep Cheks? If Kearns seriously saw himself getting a crack at the Big Chair he would have supported nothing that would have made for a destabilising situation so-soon after he had it. But again though – it’s all self interest and nothing to do with the health of the game.

        • GeorgiaSatellite

          Hi OLSL. No disrespect to Cron, but he won a Shute Shield, then took the Aus U20s to 6th in the world cup, then was an assistant coach at the ‘Tahs. I’m not sure being catapulted into head coach of the Wallabies would have done his career (or the Wallabies) any favours at that point.

      • Singapore Sling

        RA could not afford Cheika yet they added Johnson to the payroll. I don’t think they had much choice but I looks like they weren’t afraid of spending money they don’t have.

        • Nutta

          RC had to do SOMETHING. They couldn’t do nothing. So they took an a-typical bureaucratic approach to not deal with the issue but take the cheapest way out in the short term by having a Claytons solution openly visible whilst ratcheting up the pressure in the background. I reckon the quiet hope was that the external pressure would finally push Cheks to do something so ridiculous he would either quit or have to be sacked with no payout – just like we saw them do with Link. In that case they could bump Scotty J in the pocket and segue him straight in – just like they did with Cheks. But hope isn’t a strategy, Cheks knew their cards and held better cards because of the strength of his contract and so it didn’t happen.

        • AllyOz

          I think Johnson only starting drawing a wage from April – May onwards, so that’s only 5 – 6 months overlap. That might have made it a bit cheaper. I think the only other serious option at that time would be to sack Cheika and put Larkham in charge. If the issue was that they had different philosophies then the board could perhaps be justified in not supporting the Cheika approach and supporting the Larkham approach instead. As long as the other coaching staff agree and they would seem to have little choice. Anyway it’s done now. Onwards and upwards from here.

      • Brisneyland Local

        Sir Graham Henry volunteered to hold the job for a year to t a k’s them through RWC, and the recruitment process. We turned him down.
        Utter fuckwits.

        • Nutta

          Really? Fair dinkum? I didn’t know that. Bloody hell.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Yep and RA dismissed it.

        • Yowie

          Edited/deleted

        • Patrick

          Exactly what you said: Utter fuckwits. Kearns is too, imho.

    • Hannes En Brianda Barnard

      I think the Tah players picked the Wallaby coach when RA foolishly picked (wrong) side in the Beale fiasco. Cheika loyalty to his Tah players must be understood from this context.

  • Patrick

    It’s been such a pleasure to watch the last two Ben Skeen games and barely hear a pop from him! Clearly he got the memo, but it is a nice change :)

    • Crescent

      They must have turned his radio off and given him a recording of an old match to watch.

      • Yowie

        gold

      • Missing Link

        “Is the monitor working now, Ben?”
        “yiss yiss, I can see the trensmushion”
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NwLODrWTwKI

        • Yowie

          I’m just going to cluck “skup ad”

        • Greg

          Some things never change. Black forwards standing next to white 9 at the rucks.

    • Nutta

      I agree but disagree. I agree that TMO’s – esp the likes of him – should be like we were raised; well-dressed and behaved but STFU unless spoken to. And then answer only the question asked quickly and without waffle. In those terms, the more recent silence is indeed golden.

      However playing sport is about that most-noble of human qualities – fairness. And a huge part of fairness is in consistency so you know the game you’re playing. That is so you can both play it and be expected to play it fairly. The variances in consistency in-terms of what would have got carded at start of Bill vs end of Bill is quite sad and problematic. Whilst I was glad it did not, there were about 5 or 6 things I saw in the Jones v Jarpys game alone that would have earned yellows but 10days earlier. That changes the game profoundly.

      • Patrick

        That is quite a fair point and I did think that a few times the last few games.

        I think it was a deliberate shock therapy to ensure that the finals would be played cleanly and the kiwis (basically the only team not to cop a tough call or three) to win… the first part worked a treat and I didn’t really mean the second, so on that front, well done refs.

    • Happyman

      Clearly the word has gone out that the TMO is to intervene less not more and I for one am OK with that.

      • Yowie

        I can only imagine the mental games going on with an ambitious referee or match official. “It’s my big opportunity, I better make a good impression by doing a lot of things during this game.”

        • Happyman

          I know it is funny the officiating on the weekend was seen as good because no one noticed it.

          Irony Mode On
          This one is for Hoss the NZ win rate with Owens as Ref has fallen to no wonder they looked frustrated as he could not get them out of trouble. could only disallow two tries and still to enough.
          Irony Mode Off

        • Nutta

          I played a bit of footy over recent years in comps where the Touchie is mic’d to the Ref only at semi and gf time and By Christ do they make fkn pains out of themselves.

  • Kiwi rugby lover

    Thanks Nathan,
    I hate losing but that was an awesome game. Well done England they won all the little contests and just didn’t let us into the game. Gutted but no complaints. Part of me wants SA to beat them but another part wants them to win just because they played so well.

    Well done Perth, couldn’t get the games here but it sounds like a great game. Hope RA keep this growing as it seems to be really bringing some players on.

    Suncorp for the Bledisloe, BLL I might have to come up for that one.

    • Crescent

      Was messaging with some Saffa mates during the match – agreed with pretty much the same thing. Impressive display and application from England (I say with gritted teeth…) – just did not give NZ a chance to seize the match. How nice that it was not down to officiating – all the talk was done with the players playing the game in an absolute contest. Still want SA to win the final – but geeze England are looking good. No gloating from this side of the ditch to see NZ out – I will admit that if it was an NZ v SA final, I was going to cheer for the Saffas – but it is because I love the underdog story. It is a brutal tournament and goes to show how hard it really is to win.

    • Who?

      That was a ridiculous game. To me, it felt like the 2003 RWC semi, where Eddie did a job on an AB team which had one strategy and folded when it didn’t work. NZ’s trained to find the space, but everywhere they looked for it, there was a white jersey to bundle them into touch. England lost lineout ball to the Wallabies a week earlier, but they stole AB ball and were (apart from one dud throw) secure on their own ball. TO me, it was all down to the coaching staff, the game plan, anticipating exactly what NZ would bring, whilst surprising with what they brought. I certainly didn’t expect England to play with width in the first 20, to get outside the compressed NZ defensive line, and I don’t think Shag anticipated it either.
      .
      The scary thing was that NZ barely fired a shot on attack, scored their only try on a simple English mistake, and England had two tries denied (I thought the obstruction call was harsh – watching live, I agreed with Nige – Whitelock bit in on the decoy). So it could’ve been 33-0…..
      .
      Very sorry the ABs lost, wanted them to smash England. But Eddie’s a clever lad.

      • onlinesideline

        On this occassion I was happy to see the Poms win becuase they played good football. I really dont’ have a problem with the English winning if they play. For me its about whats good for the game. Previously I would agree with you. Additionally another blackout is not good for the game as well. I dont hold any favouritism towards the kiwis just because they are southerners. They have dished out more pain to us than the Poms and most times with ruthless pragamatism. They absolutely delight in beating us. Cant see your logic in preference for them.

        • Who?

          I’m an Irish-Australian (first generation), that’s all I need for my preference for the ABs. I’d rather win, but if I can’t win, then ANZAC brotherhood over the filth who oppressed my family for 700 years.
          .
          Plus, it would’ve avenged the Wallabies’ loss and shown that the demolition the ABs put on Ireland perhaps wasn’t so bad…
          .
          But a ridiculous game – I’ve never seen the ABs dominated like that. Who can do that?! Ridiculous in that I don’t think ANYONE could’ve foreseen just how effective that game plan would’ve been. I don’t think even the most one-eyed English fan could’ve predicted that sort of dominance. Truly staggering stuff.

        • onlinesideline

          Aha I see – One could also argue that the loss to the English by the ABs made our loss look a little more acceptable :) – if one can say that.

        • Who?

          No – not remotely. Because it makes those who think Cheika’s performance was remotely acceptable and his departure was sad feel more justified in their position. Which wasn’t justified even before the RWC.
          If NZ get up over England, we can point at Perth. “Yeah, we beat them this year, but we were outcoached by Eddie.” If England get up, “We haven’t beaten England this RWC cycle, we just don’t have the players…”
          It’s not a good thing.
          .
          And it’s England – they’ve had 950 years of winning (since 1066), they’re at their nicest when they’re losing, rather than being unbearably smug. Can you imagine it if they win both the RWC and Cricket WC in the same year?! I’m sure the chant (aside from Swing Low and the like) will be, “Rugby’s coming home!”

        • Yowie

          How are things looking after Brexit happens mate?

        • onlinesideline

          lol

        • Who?

          Who knows? Maybe a little less smug..?

        • onlinesideline

          is the All Blacks supporter chant in our back yard not annoying. Annoys me. Im sick and tired of it. I must admit I don’t harbour the same sense of historical perspective as you do, not being of Irish heritage myself.

          Re your Perth comment. To me Perth never washed. In fact I may rustle a few feathers here, but the kiwis have had the serious wood on us for 20 years and way more than we care to admit. Firstly Perth was a 15 on 14 match. Our Brisbane victory in 2018 was a dead rubber. The Bled was already won.

          The reds finals win in 2011 was in year when the Crusaders had no home ground due to the earthquake as their stadium was cactus. They did nothing but travel. Also a few of the players had family and friends who were affected by the earthquake. By the time the final came around they were done. In other words love em or hate em, any victory we have snuck in against the kiwis has been tainted with a hollow mitigating circumstance.

          The only victory that felt good was the Waratah final in 2014. The rest —mhewww – we’re kidding ourselves. If it wasnt for the conferenc system in SR we would be a complete no show at finals.

          Even the 2011 Radike led Bledisloe victory in Brisbane was in large part due to the resting of kiwi players pre Word cup.

        • Yowie

          I’ll thank you to leave my rose-tinted fantasy version of the 2011 Reds final out of this. It’s a historical fact that on that day the Crusaders were all 10″ tall and shooting lightning from their eyeballs.

        • onlinesideline

          mate didnt stop me screaming my lungs out in my local pub but ….

        • Who?

          I’m definitely over the ABs chant in Australia. But it’s hard to blame them, when the issue is we don’t have enough non-Kiwi locals in the stadia. When I went to the 2013 Lions series, I sat behind a bunch of Pommy expats (mostly been out 9 years), and, sitting in an ‘Australian-based ticketholder only’ based area, had a bloke fresh off the plane from Cork alongside me (no, I didn’t organize the ticket). To me, that’s an indication that we don’t support our team enough.
          .
          Perth was 15 on 14, but we were in the ascendency after the first half. All NZ’s points came against the run of play, and we were winning because our forwards were dominant. We tend to do that every so often. Brisbane 2011 (I was there), 2014 Sydney and 2015. I get a couple of those a RWC years, but not exclusively. The issue is that our game plans often require forward dominance that’s unrealistic (i.e. that can’t be achieved regularly enough to be successful).
          .
          The Reds’ win in 2011? That was Blackadder’s best season as coach. Perhaps the Crusaders gained extra capacity from the desire to do it for the fans at the home where they couldn’t play..?
          The Waratahs’ title in 2014 was built off JacPot and a decision that Kiwis still question from Joubert. So it’s no better.

        • onlinesideline

          Re Perth Ascendency is nice but it was still 15 on 14. And if my memory is correct, there was only 6 points in it at the 55th minute. The red card was before half time.

          Well considering the Crusaders had already won a bunch of titles already, I think you can assume they always had massive desire. But desire or no desire, they were still handicapped that year. If they got up to reach the final it showed their class but they were still at a disadvantage dont you think ?

        • Who?

          I think it was a disadvantage in 2011, but I’m not sure it was the disadvantage it might’ve been. Expectation was removed, desire was increased… I think it may have been a neutral outcome.

        • juswal

          I agree with nearly everything you’ve said today, online, but I don’t accept that Barrett’s red card in Perth was a random factor that distorted the match result. He put the shoulder into Hooper’s head because he (among others) was losing composure under pressure. Players have strengths and weakness; that’s his weakness.

          NZ has paid a big price for starting ScoBar a couple of times this year. He doesn’t have the skills or temperament and I doubt we’ll see him playing Tests again.

        • Patrick

          I don’t agree with juswal so often but I agree here. I thought before the weekend, partly for the reasons juswal outlines, that this NZ team is a lot more fragile than in past years.

          How many times have NZ gone a man down and put on more points? Against us, they were under pressure, Scott Barrett cracked and then the whole team folded like a cheap trick.

          Against South Africa they’ve been as lucky as not this year.

          Against Eng they were reduced to rubble – a lot of people have said they were like the Wallabies and they were: running it wide with no momentum or go forward just hoping that one of their superb athletes could pull something off because they had literally no idea how to make something happen. It was eerily familiar except I’ve never seen it with black jerseys before.

        • Nutta

          You’re not alone. My thinking has always been very similar

        • Missing Link

          Cannot disagree OSL but the miniscule amount of wins we’ve had against NZ since 2003 has felt to me like winning the world cup :)

        • Nutta

          TAL.

        • Jcr

          Fuck , you want to get sent to school in NZ from Aus and then carry on living there most the time since and listen to the rugby comments , to be fair laterly the Wobblies have provided plenty of ammo . Anyway, the poms deserved it , fuck them , but I’m currently sitting in a pub in the Central O and I’m going to bate some kiwis .

        • onlinesideline

          I spent a couple of years in school in NZ when I was young. I played rugby from age 5 – 7. Wellington. Got the absolute shit kicked out of me and I remember thinking even then, “what age did these blokes start playing ? ” – Its as if they had been playing all their lives and we were only 5 or 6. When did they actually start playing ? At 3 years of age ? My old man said my first touch I got the ball and just sat on it. Things never really changed when i went back to OZ.

        • Singapore Sling

          What kind of malicious parents send their kids to school in NZ. Oliver Twist never had it that bad.

        • Yowie

          Jcr would have gotten the cane on his first day at the NZ school for coming to school through the gate rather than hopping over the side fence….

        • Jcr

          Na , it was from smoking but to be fair I would export my kids if they were like me . Back from pub , reality as per discussion was the ABs got spanked . Am keen to catch up with sort of son in law to get his views .

        • Who?

          So are you saying you’d use NZ as a penal colony..?

        • Nutta

          Folk always hate the big brother. Doesn’t matter if it’s AFL states hating Victoria, Qlders hating NSW in all aspects of life, or Texans despising the rest of the USA. So Kiwis hating on us is of no surprise. But all that being said, i would love to see how they went without us to fund their budget whilst also being their biggest physical barrier between them and the rest of the evils of the world.

        • Yowie

          I don’t think Kiwis have ever thanked us for all the brushtail possums either.

        • Nutta

          Or the spotted apples they always blamed us for.

        • AllyOz

          ungrateful bastards

        • Custard Taht

          Or Lamingtons, Pavlova, Phar Lap, Crowded House, Anzac Biscuits, and Mahe Drysdale.

      • Brumby Runner

        Who? I am usually most willing to cede to your greater knowledge, and most of all better recollection of events, but I swear I was present at the 2003 Semi when Mortlock and the Wallabies put the ABs to the sword. Am I wrong?

        • Who?

          No, we’re both right. It’s when Eddie’s Wallabies – including Snorky – came out and surprised an ABs team who didn’t have a plan B, who couldn’t figure out how to counter what was coming at them. Tuilagi didn’t go 80m like Snorky, but he did take a very early interception at 13 from a cutout ball from an X Factor All Black 10 (though Beaudy was playing 15)…
          Just felt like the same sort of coaching ambush.

        • Brumby Runner

          Yeah, sorry for my brain fade. I really read your post as Eddy and England, but I see now you meant Eddy and the Wallabies in 2003.

      • I’m not sure how much of it was cleverness on Eddie’s part – we’ve seen SA do that to the AB for example – the thing we’ve not seen is anyone do it for 80 minutes.

        And, we’ve not seen England put together an 80 minute performance against a tier 1 nation (including Italy) under Jones before either.

        It was an impressive performance by England, don’t get me wrong, but until the 70th minute I was sat there thinking that England would lose their concentration and the AB would strike back. The Sais never did, nor did the AB. That was the really surprising thing for me.

        The question will be if they can do that again this week.

    • Yowie

      I’m keen to go to 2020 Suncorp Bledisloe.

      • AllyOz

        Will it be Izzy’s comeback match? :)

        • Yowie

          Haha, I’m sure his legal team have factored all those games into their damages calculations.

        • Happyman

          God I hope not

        • Yowie

          Instead of the “welcome to country”, under the terms of some punishing court orders Rugby Australia will have to give the mic to Izzy for 10 minutes of Izzy’s thoughts on various morality topics before the game.

        • Happyman

          Yes I can imagine telling people who have just come down from the Caxton via Love and Rockets that they are all going to hell unless they repent.

        • Greg

          I thought we were talking about rugby.

          An outside back at 31/32 that hasn’t played for a couple of years might not be great. Perhaps if he bulks up he could have a go at 4/5? Could be an asset in the lineout.

        • AllyOz

          2020’s next year so it’s only 18 months. The court case is in February so if he was to win (and I am not expressing a view either way) he could be contracted to potentially play at almost the start of the Super Rugby season. So that would mean he would only have missed this year and plenty of sportsman have missed 2/3rds of a season with injury and played again. I did put the smiley face as I think it is highly unlikely but if the court case is awarded to him do they have to pay him out or might they have to honour the remainder of his contract. While the Waratahs might not find a place for him someone like the Reds might.

        • Yowie

          It’s almost always cash payout rather than “go back to work with each other you two parties whose relationship is irreparably damaged”

        • Greg

          Could he get the lineout calls do you think?

          out of interest, is he still training?

        • AllyOz

          He is an outside back, it is more likely that he won’t be smart enough to understand lineout calls than that he will be washed up by age 32.

        • Damo

          I doubt “kick it to Izzy” would be deleted from the playbook whoever is coach.

        • AllyOz

          Eddie Jones seemed to make “kick it to Reecey” pretty irrelevant on the weekend

    • Brisneyland Local

      Place at my house anytime brother!

    • Perth girl

      You do realise RA does nothing to bring on the Force players, Twiggy pays for Future Force and has done for many years

  • Nutta

    Morning Cobbers

    So the Twiggy-Ball Force blew the RA/Establishment Vikings clean off the park in the 2nd half. Personally I thought Rush was the MOTM and Tessman continues to make me jealous. Big Blake was right in that the Forcies took their chances and it was a thoroughly professional display in front of an appreciative crowd.

    Why would Jones come back and coach Oz? Why all the noise? It will be well into the next Bill cycle before he is available, given the Eng RU finances his contract price will be more than we can afford, and with a squad of that youth, resources and ability he really has something to work with staying in Eng. Short of him actually being caught on CCTV shooting the Queen the Eng RU will not being willingly letting him go anytime in the next Bill cycle. So why the hell would he come back to somewhere they sacked him, bagged him ever since (until the last 2wks) and into an environment about as stable as a Trump election rally?

    As for the Big Dances, wasn’t that a tale of two styles? The English played very well and took the AiB apart in a match that I will keep the recording of. What is telling in that is that the AiB only played 3 poor games in the last 2-3yrs (Ireland, Wobbs at Perth and this one) and outside of that were the benchmark on everything. So I shake my head at the cruelty of sport and I thank them for being everything they were in giving us all an insight into what teams can aspire to be. It will be interesting to watch the NZ fallout and where it takes them.

    That said, the better side on the night did win and I say this as graciously as I can – congratulations England on a good win.

    As for the Jones v Jarpys, well clearly that was one to forget unless you were actually playing in it. I don’t understand why the Jones didn’t keep pushing that left edge as they were clearly getting joy there but it is what it was, they essentially kicked each other to death, scored a try each and the Saffa’s choked them out.

    So picking the Final, on prima-facie game vs game form anyone in their right mind would pick the English to win it. However tournaments are usually won & lost on the health & depth of your squad and I think the weekend actually helped the Jarpy’s there. Whereas the Eng physio’s will be working OT all week on Ford, Farrell, Sinkler and the Vunipola Brothers, the Jarpy’s are in very good shape and have a vastly superior bench to pull on. Scrum I reckon the the Jarpy’s have it clearly. Lineout may just favour the Eng. The Eng backrowers will feast on ball on ground but the Jarpy’s deliberately hold everyone up. Both sides have powerful centres, basher defenders and both sides have smart kickers. So given each side’s physicality will largely cancel the other out both in A & D, I reckon the decisive factor will come down to who has the squad in better shape on the day and a more decisive bench (all things being equal). And that my fornicating comrades is the Jarpy’s at this point in time.

    • onlinesideline

      It could be the old story, that the Poms may have played their final on Saturday and the Saffas having only played France and Wales may have their game of games right bang on finals day.

  • Missing Link

    Well blow me sideways, I witnessed something I don’t think I’ve seen before. England played like the All Blacks and the All Blacks played like the Wallabies
    Don’t get me wrong, would much rather have an all SH final again but Eddie Jones is the coach that I imagined Cheika could be, or at least should be and he exposed Hansen for what I’ve suspected all along, a good coach who looked a lot better due to having a once in a lifetime arsenal of talent at his disposal. With those players gone and up against a unified team with a coach who had analysed his opposition and put together a game plan, he went to jelly, and nothing highlighted that more in the presser when he chimed in and blasted a journalist, accusing him of asking a disrespectful question and then offering him to “step outside and give him a rugby lesson”. Have to feel for Keiran Read though, always thought he was a good bloke and handled himself well in defeat.

    If the Springboks want to lift their 3rd cup, they’re going to have to bring everything they’ve got. I said a few weeks ago that England looked like a really strong outfit and the way they dismantled NZ has really put everyone else on notice.

    • Cleanest game Ive ever seen the ABs play. Very little offside, slowing the ball or off the ball stuff.
      I’ll have to watch it again to double check that, but at least that was something going for them.

      • Yowie

        Although one AB forgot that he wasn’t the English No. 9 at one point.

        • yes, forgetfulness can be a bad thing during a game.

        • Yowie

          He was probably mentally running through the details of the high tackle protocol at the time and ran out of mental bandwidth.

        • Perhaps a couple of bandwidth training sessions needed, oft overlooked in good coaching.

      • Singapore Sling

        Sounds like match fixing!

        • hmm… The plot thickens.
          Poor old Nigel couldnt even blow his own whistle for most of it.

        • Yowie

          He’s tried. Most of us have tried at some point….

        • OK.
          In the name of good form an all, I wont finish that line…

      • Patrick

        I think that’s because England really didn’t let them, they were spending too much energy trying to stop the next white truck to hold on to the ball or anyone or anything else like that.

      • Who?

        Hard to slow the ball when the (white) ruck defenders were entering the ruck with their hands and knees on the ground. But they kept their shoulders up, almost like a yoga pose, to give the impression that they were allowing a contest. When the reality was they were completely sealing off the breakdown.
        Looked coached, and very much to the (abysmal) standard of refereeing at this RWC.
        Eddie put together a master class right there…

        • Plane landing, or plane taking off…
          I guess you could call Englands entry “Invert Concorde”

        • Hannes En Brianda Barnard

          Owens allow the attacking team fast ruck ball by focusing on the defending side while Garces do the opposite. I prefer Owens as the team that wants to play rugby can get the rewards. Let’s hope Garces DO NOT get picked for the final for rugby’s sake. However the a French ref never officiated a RWC final, Rolland are the boss of referees and picked 4 French refs, most dubious selections, for RWC 2019.

        • Who?

          I’d rather see Barnes get the final… I haven’t rated Owens for years.

        • Yowie

          Would they appoint an Englishman to ref a finals game involving England? I know Super Rugby ceased caring about the appearance of ref neutrality for scheduling convenience, but it’s not like all of the refs are busy on World Cup finals night.
          (I think they let same-country refs to fringe jobs like TMO in World Cup finals)

        • AllyOz

          You mean Barnes as the Englishman? And is Owens Welsh and therefore neutral? I have suspicion it will be a Frenchman after reading Hannes comments – that is the sort of thing they would do.

        • Yowie

          That’s what I meant (albeit without claiming anyone was actually neutral or biased – just the apprehension of same based on country of origin).
          Yeah, the “French ref for Final” theory is stacking up ominously.

        • Who?

          Good point – shows I’m still in shock that NZ lost!

        • UTG

          Came looking for this comment and wasn’t disappointed, spot on as usual per refereeing of the breakdown. Some absolutely appalling forced penalties awarded when England were blatantly in the side or off their feet. I mean, well done to Eddie for coaching them to do it and the players for executing but it’s a complete joke.

        • Patrick

          1. Who? and UTG are right about the standard applied
          2. Traditionally, NZ would have been the ones exploiting it. You have to play to what is being whistled.
          3. It was different this time not so much because England “did it too” but because England actually beat the gainline constantly and drove NZ back constantly in contact so that they were able to get in place.

        • Who?

          I actually think Eddie deserves a bit more credit than that. In that, it wasn’t just that England beat the gain line, and therefore were able to seal off. It’s more the way they sealed off, knees on the ground, hands on the ground, shoulders up, it gives the impression that it’s aiming up ready for a contest, and a position I haven’t seen consistently adopted by sealing players before.
          .
          That only applied on attacking rucks, not defensive rucks, where instead we regularly saw Itoje pulling players off their feet (it’s a never-enforced offence to collapse a ruck like that) and then reaching over (whilst bound) with hands at the ruck.
          .
          The only side entry penalty was SBarrett late in the first half, the only sealing off penalty was Aaron Smith immediately before the maul no try.

        • Patrick

          Yes I agree with that although I am not sureit was so new as all that?

          But it also worked because, perhaps only because, the English were going forward and were there first.

        • Who?

          I just can’t recall seeing so many people doing the yoga ‘Cobra pose’ over a tackled player before. Sinking their hips down like that. Very disciplined. You don’t have to be going forward to do it, but you do absolutely have to be there first. Which was great commitment and discipline.

      • Greg

        I think that the NZ team received three “final warnings” for repeated infringements. I was surprised there were not a few cards.

        Wasn’t the penalty count 2-3:1 against the NZ team?

        That said…. I think your opening sentence is still correct.

        • You maybe right re: penalty counts, I wasn’t watching that closely.
          TBH, decided England was the winner about 30mins in and wandered off.

        • Patrick

          Yes, but they were mainly penalties through desperation/fatigue than purely cynical ones. That said I did think that a yellow card might be coming at one point.

        • Whether cleverly or not, they didn’t actually get a final warning if you listen to what was said. They got a warning to be careful, which is not quite the same, and then committed “non cynical fouls” according to the ref. Some I’m not sure about, but one he seemed to think Cane lost his balance and put his hand down offside, and rocked back to try and be onside again – I’m willing to see that as a mistake because his weight was going backwards as the ball came out which is clearly not what he wanted! Rather different to lying there and killing the ball or similar. You could give a YC for that but, even though it’s NZ, it would feel tough for a player who is correct his mistake to get a card for that to me.

          It’s one of the things I like about Owens. He doesn’t automatically say “it’s another penalty, off you go” he makes a distinction between “you’re slowing down their ball/stopping their play” and the fussy little laws that rugby has and those times when the player is trying to correct a mistake. He could certainly wield the card but he doesn’t have to.

    • Nutta

      Not starting the CC’s was an error. Cane and Coles were missed a great deal in the 1st half. I don’t think that was THE deciding factor, but it played a big part esp in the Eng getting cleaner & faster phase ball.

      • onlinesideline

        BR had to be underdone a bit too. He was blowing heavy each time he was on screen and didnt look like he had as much mongrel as normal.

        • Patrick

          Again I just think none of the ABs had ever really experienced such constant controlled aggression. They were simply playing catch up all day and having to fight just to stay still, they were all literally knocked off their feet.

        • onlinesideline

          yeah it was good wasnt it

  • Happyman

    There is no rush to appoint the next coach. time is on our side and if we get the right bloke in four to six months I will be OK with that.

    Both games at the RWC on the week were fantastic for different reasons.

    ENG v NZ Fantastic game and frankly the score flattered NZ. There only try game from a misfired line out which if you look at closely Reid stops the lifter from getting his man up. great attention to detail from Reid and it is what stands NZ apart from other opposition. Retallick has just given the worlds best lock mantle to Itoje his lineout work is just superb.

    SA v Wales both teams wanted to play the same way and eventually the SA set piece was just a little better.

    Force v Vikings congrats Force my take away is that the cohesion was the answer. They need to be brought back into the fold as there is too much momentum in WA rugby.

    • Patrick

      Itoje played perhaps one of the all time great locking games.

  • Greg

    Wasn’t the England/NZ game fantastic to watch. Some great rugby and NZ outplayed in all facets of the game.

    On the other hand…. the wales/sth africa game was tedious as… Although I get the tactics and the contest, it was not a great ad for the game. I think the backs from both sides took a coffee break for large parts of the game as the 9s kicked to each other. The green 9 had a red-hot go at trying to get someone to take a swing at him but no joy for him (or us!).

    It will be challenge for either Wales or NZ to get up for the 3v4 game…. why not call it a draw.

    • Custard Taht

      Because the Scots will sue world rugby.

  • Larry Jorgensen

    So first time I can remember doing so, I supported the All Blacks. And they lost …

    Now for definitely the first time ever, I will be supporting England.

    The game must not reward a strategy that resulted in 81 kicks from hand combined – a kick a minute and more than that for every minute with the ball in play.

    • laurence king

      Larry you obviously are a Wallaby supporter, we lost, you supported the ABs and they lost, and your saying that you will be supporting England. Follow my reasoning here please. If you want England to win, shouldn’t you be backing SA?

      • Yowie

        Perhaps Larry has been dragging the Wallabies down for years with his cursed support!

        • laurence king

          My thinking exactly we have judging Cheika unfairly. It’s been LJ all along

        • Larry Jorgensen

          That was logical conclusion I came to on reflecrion as well.

          I would provide these services at half the cost of recruiting Eddie Jones.

          Who needs a coach anyways?

        • Yowie

          I would provide these services at half the cost of recruiting Eddie Jones
          Interesting. Is that inclusive or exclusive of your costs of various international jerseys, air travel, hotels and game tickets?

        • Larry Jorgensen

          Inclusive. All tax deductible.

        • laurence king

          Well, with you supporting a team, a coach wouldn’t help them and we wouldn’t need one. Name your price. If RA have any sense they will get on board.

    • Jcr

      Why ? The aim is to get more points, surely.

    • GeorgiaSatellite
  • Hannes En Brianda Barnard

    The Force was a class above everyone else in the NpC and the final score is an indication the GRR is closing the gap, if any, with Superugby. I expect RA to do something about it, e.g. like dropping the NPC. The Vickings had 15 Superugby players and 5 Wallaby’s in their side. A lot of Force players signed up for Superugby teams for 2020 but many will take this performance into next year’s GRR. Cannot wait…
    The Boks won a game that will always be messy as Garces tend to penalise attacking teams in rucks while letting defending teams get away with no rolling away and lying on the ball. Both teams have very good kickers to goal so it was important to play as much rugby without the ball and in the opposition’s half. With Owens likely to referee the final attacking teams should get good front foot ruck ball that will bring the Boks attack into the game. It should be a much better game. Almost all Bok games that I saw Garces reffed turn out to be scrappy as the Boks’ attack depends on fast ruck ball. However England is surely the favourites on current form – but the Boks never lost a RWC final and have a lot of scope to improve.
    To the NZ my condolences as the best team do not always win, however welcome to planet earth. Statistically speaking, the bookies can confirm this, that even the strongest favourite has a less than 50% chance to win a tournament. It was always more likely that you wouldn’t win the RWC2019 than you would.

  • Larry Jorgensen

    And btw, these were the days …

    Spring Tour 2013: The Honey Badger on Wales win
    https://youtu.be/wbjiEDV8Zbk

  • Bernie Chan

    Lang Park is still the best rectangular sporting venue in Oz, so good news for rugby fans.

  • Hannes En Brianda Barnard

    The Wallabies never lost in Perth, had a sold out crowd for the Bleddisloe in 2019 however not a single test is scheduled for Perth in 2020. RA don’t learn from failures or unexpected successes. Melbourne got the Bleddisloe and Brisbane two tests including a Bleddisloe for 2020. WA paid $5 million to host the Bleddisloe in Perth this year, therefore it will be with a lot of interest that I will review the RA financial reports to understand how much Melbourne and Brisbane paid for the hosting righs and why the WA rugby spectators was again. The incompetence in this organisation is staggering, one the one hand they claims to be a commercial outfit but on the other hand they act like amateurs.

  • Perth girl

    Apart from myself and Hannes it’s obvious no one on this rugby site cares less about the NRC final so I’m just going to say we won, great game Force! We have now won NRC 1 and 2 this season. What silverware has any of the other Aussie teams won?

Rugby
@NathW1997

Loved rugby since the day I could remember, got the nickname Footy to show that, I watch Matt Dunning's dropkick every night before going to bed

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