The Tuesday Top 5 - Green and Gold Rugby
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The Tuesday Top 5

The Tuesday Top 5

Hi all! Yep, we’re back after a bit of a break, we were resting ourselves up for the World Cup then realised we might need to get a bit of practise in before it all kicks off. This week we look at what we learned from the Wallabies win over Samoa, talk a bit of NRC, check out all the RWC squads, wonder what impact the weather could have and try and get our heads around what happens when matches end in a draw.

NEXT TIME IS FOR REAL

It was against Samoa. Irrespective of the result, we really weren’t going to get much out of that game. There were a few takeaways. Pocock getting through 60 minutes was good. He was quiet compared what we are used to seeing, but being his first run in a long time that was expected. Foley had an average night but considering his lack of game time I expected him to be pretty rusty. Koroibete looked good and there were some pretty solid efforts across the park. Toomua seemed to be the exception. Errors and still not really producing too much and really, I question where he best fits other than providing good cover.

It was good to see those retiring from international duties given a farewell run at home and some future Wallabies make their debut.

Looking at the game overall, I would say the big questions are still around the game plan. The high tempo that the Wallabies want to play appears to be challenging to sustain, again their performance fell away in the second half and the high tempo game plan is yet to be really tested against one of the top teams. If the opposition slow the play of the ball and use good line speed to put pressure on the attack, will the Wallabies cope?

In 10 sleeps we will have the first answer. The Wallabies have shown form and now it’s about putting it together. I believe they have shown enough to warrant being considered as having a decent chance. It’s now down to a combination of building game on game to improve and making sure they get the results anyway they can.

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

NRC PRODUCING THE GOODS (FOR SOME!)

Round two is in the books and if you haven’t caught a game of the NRC yet you’re missing out. The quality of some of the games is fantastic and is providing the opportunity to see some young and emerging talent showcase their wares. The standard of the games is certainly rising and the NRC has clearly taken that step up above club rugby and is becoming that third tier we have desperately been missing.

The proof might be in the pudding come the Wallabies opening RWC game as Fiji has used the NRC Drua team to develop players. Its notable how many new aces are in this year’s Drua side with players from the Drua earning selection in the Fiji squad.

The Force have transitioned from the Global Rapid Rugby competition to the NRC to enable their side to keep getting games and keep WA rugby playing in quality competitions.

The Reds (QRU) and Brumbies have not only invested in securing many young prospects but are actively using the NRC as a development pathway for Super Rugby and it’s lifting the standard as players start competing for the few opportunities available.  We have seen its worth previously but it is now serving as the real tier 3 and development competition that Aussie rugby has been missing for a long time.

Unfortunately, the Rebels and Waratahs are yet to really realise the true value of the NRC or lever off what it is now yielding results for other teams. It’s arguable that some the lack of depth we see with the Rebels now and the Waratahs in seasons past is in part a lack of motivation to invest in the NRC.

Regardless if my team wins or loses, I love watching the NRC in part to see if I can pick who will be the future of Rugby in Australia, and more immediately, who is next out of the Queensland rugby factory who will be a pest or we can poach!

Fred Kaihea Canberra Vikings v QLD Country NRC 2019

If you haven’t already check out last weekend’s game reports here:

NSW Country Eagles v Melbourne Rising

Brisbane City v Sydney

Queensland Country v Canberra Vikings

Round 3

Saturday 14 September

12:00 Sydney v Queensland Country

14:00 Canberra Vikings v Brisbane City

16:00 NSW Country v Fijian Drua

Sunday 15 September

15:00 (WA time) Western Force v Melbourne Rising

The Weather Rules!

So by now I expect you have heard about the typhoon in Japan. No? Well there is a typhoon named Typhoon Faxai which hit Japan on Monday morning. It left more than 100 flights cancelled, thousands of travellers stranded at the airport, and nearly 1 million households without power. It delayed the Wallabies departure, I believe the All Blacks decided to fly right into it, and it got us all wondering – what would happen if that hit during the World Cup?

typhoon

Well it could definitely make for some interesting results and finals draw, depending on when and where it hit. First of all, the organisers have actually considered this and have contingencies in place, including possibly relocating teams to different bases and moving matches to different venues.

If a pool match begins but is abandoned before half time, two points will be awarded to both teams although points scored in the match, and bonus points, will still count.

BUT

If a pool match is cancelled due to the weather and cannot be played on the same day, it will be deemed a 0-0 draw, with each team getting 2 points. So there is some small possibility that the All Blacks and Namibia could end up in a 0-0 draw, which could have a huge impact on  overall places.

Knock out matches that cannot be played due to the weather will be rescheduled to be played within 2 days  – unless they are abandoned part way through. If any match (knockout stage or pool match) is abandoned at or after after half time, the score at the time of abandonment will stand as the final score. If it is a knockout match and the scores at that point are tied, there is a sequence used to determine the winner (taken from https://www.rugbyworldcup.com/tournament-rules)

  1. The Team which scored most tries in that particular Match.
  2. The Team with the most Match points from the pool phase.
  3. The Team which in all its Tournament Matches has the best difference between points scored for and points scored against.
  4. The Team which in all its Tournament Matches has the best difference between tries scored for and tries scored against.
  5. The Team which in all its Tournament Matches has scored most points.
  6. The Team which in all its Tournament Matches has scored most tries.
  7. Where all criteria above are not able to determine a winner, the winner shall be the Team that is higher ranked in the official World Rugby World Rankings at the time the Match is scheduled to be played (this criterion will not apply for the Final; in the case that the winner of the Final cannot be determined from the above criteria the two Teams shall be jointly declared winners).

If a knockout match is abandoned before half time the match will be played again in full within 2 days.

It will need to be rain much worse than this little drizzle!

If a match cannot be played within the 2 days the following sequence will be used to determine the winner.

  1. The Team with the most Match points from the pool phase (applicable in quarter-finals and semi-finals).
  2. The Team which in all its Tournament Matches has the best difference between points scored for and points scored against.
  3. The Team which in all its Tournament Matches has the best difference between tries scored for and tries scored against.
  4. The Team which in all its Tournament Matches has scored most points.
  5. The Team which in all its Tournament Matches has scored most tries.
  6. Where all criteria above are not able to determine a winner, the Team that is higher ranked in the official World Rugby World Rankings at the time the Match is scheduled to be played (this criterion will not apply for the Final; in the case that the winner of the Final cannot be determined from the above criteria the two Teams shall be jointly declared winners).

So the current world rankings could be important after all!

It’s only a small possibility, but given that this time last year the biggest storm in 25 years hit Kobe and Osaka, both of which are hosting pool matches and last year in September, Sapporo (where England plays their first match against Tonga) was hit by a 6.7 magnitude earthquake – I’d say anything can happen!

And in case of a draw?

While we are talking rules which seem unlikely to be called into use, let’s look at what might happen if teams play out a draw.

In the pool stages it’s simple. Both teams are awarded 2 points. But in the knock out stage it gets a little more complicated.

Firstly, the obvious extra time. An extra 10 minutes each way with a break of 5 minutes in between. Still a draw? Let’s see what happens next.

At the end of “normal” extra time, there will be a break of 5 minutes before “Sudden Death” extra time. This will go for a maximum of 10 minutes, with the first team to score any kind of points taking the win. Still all tied up? Let’s move on.

If the scores are still tied after normal and sudden death extra times, there will be a kicking competition. There are a lot of rules to this, so bear with me. First of all, only players who are on the field at the end of the Sudden Death period are permitted to take part. Each captain nominates 5 players and the order in which they will kick. The five players from each team will place kick from three different areas, all on the 22-metre line:

Position 1: directly in front of the posts

Position 2: on the 15-metre line on the left-hand side of the posts (determined as facing the posts)

Position 3: on the 15-metre line on the right-hand side of the posts (determined as facing the posts)

The first player from each team kicks from position 1. Then the second player from each team kicks from position 2. The third player from each team kicks from position 3, the fourth players kick from position 1 and the fifth from position 2. The competition goes on until either all 5 players have kicked or until one team is unable to equal the score of the other team within the remaining number of kicks. If the scores are STILL level at the end of the kicking competition, we go to a Sudden Death kicking competition where the process will be repeated, but this time if the player from one team makes the kick and the player from the other team (taking the same kick) misses, we have a result. Got it?

So picture this. It’s the final of the World Cup. The Wallabies and Springboks have played out the 80 minutes, plus two lots of extra time and it is still a draw. On the field we have our bench players. Who are the five players we place the fate of the World Cup in?

Bernard Foley kicking

Bernard Foley kicking

Who’s going to the cup?

With a week and a bit left before the Cup kicks off, all the squads have been finalised. So here they are, all the incredible players heading to the World Cup.

POOL A

Ireland

Forwards: CJ Stander, Josh van der Flier, Peter O’Mahony, Rhys Ruddock, Jack Conan, Tadhg Beirne, Jean Kleyn, Iain Henderson, James Ryan, Rory Best (c), Niall Scannell, Sean Cronin, Tadhg Furlong, Andrew Porter, Cian Healy, Dave Kilcoyne, John Ryan

Backs: Rob Kearney, Keith Earls, Andrew Conway, Jordan Larmour, Chris Farrell, Robbie Henshaw, Garry Ringrose, Bundee Aki, Jacob Stockdale, Johnny Sexton, Joey Carbery, Jack Carty, Conor Murray, Luke McGrath

Scotland

Forwards: John Barclay, Simon Berghan, Fraser Brown, Scott Cummings, Allan Dell, Zander Fagerson, Grant Gilchrist, Jonny Gray, Stuart McInally (c), Willem Nel, Gordon Reid, Jamie Ritchie, Blade Thomson, Ben Toolis, George Turner, Hamish Watson, Ryan Wilson

Backs: Darcy Graham, Chris Harris, Adam Hastings, Stuart Hogg, George Horne, Pete Horne, Sam Johnson, Blair Kinghorn, Greig Laidlaw, Sean Maitland, Ali Price, Finn Russell, Tommy Seymour, Duncan Taylor

Japan

Forwards: Keita Inagaki, Yusuke Kizu, Jiwon Koo, Isileli Nakajima, Asaeli Ai Valu, Takuya Kitade, Atsushi Sakate, Shota Horie, Luke Thompson, Wimpie van der Walt, Uwe Helu, James Moore, Hendrik Tui, Yoshitaka Tokunaga, Michael Leitch (c), Pieter Labuschagne, Kazuki Himeno, Amanaki Lelei Mafi

Backs: Kaito Shigeno, Fumiaki Tanaka, Yutaka Nagare, Yu Tamura, Rikiya Matsuda, Kenki Fukuoka, Ataata Moeakiola, Lomano Lava Lemeki, William Tupou, Ryoto Nakamura, Timothy Lafaele, Kotaro Matsushima, Ryohei Yamanaka

Russia

Forwards: Azamat Bitiev, Andrey Garbuzov, Kirill Gotovtsev, Victor Gresev, Bogdan Fedotko, Vitaliy Zhivatov, Evgeny Matveev, Andrey Polivalov, Vladimir Podrezov, Evgeny Yelgin, Stanislav Selsky, Nikita Vavilin, Sergey Chernyshev, Tagir Gadzhiev, Roman Khodin, Andrei Ostrikov, Valery Morozov, Anton Sychev

Backs: Vasily Artemyev (c), Igor Galinovsky, Kirill Golosnitsky, Vasily Dorofeev, Yuri Kushnarev, German Davydov, Dmitry Perov, Vladislav Sozonov, Dmitry Gerasimov, Ramil Gaysin, Denis Simplikevich, Vladimir Ostroushko, Sergey Yanyushkin

Samoa

Forwards: Afaesetiti Amosa, TJ Ioane, Jack Lam (c), Piula Fa’asalele, Josh Tyrell, Chris Vui, Teofilo Paulo, Kane Leaupepe, Senio Toleafoa, Michael Alaalatoa, Paul Alo-Emile, James Lay, Jordan Lay, Logovi’i Mulipola, Motu Matu’u, Ray Niuia, Seilala Lam

Backs: Ed Fidow, Tim Nanai-Williams, Ahsee Tuala, Belgium Tuatagaloa, Henry Taefu, Alapati Leiua, Reynold Lee-Lo, Kieron Fonotia, AJ Atatimu, Tusi Pisi, Ulupano Seuteni, Dwayne Polotaivao, Melani Matavao, Scott Malolua

POOL B

New Zealand

Forwards: Kieran Read (c), Ardie Savea, Sam Cane, Matt Todd, Luke Jacobson, Brodie Retallick, Sam Whitelock, Scott Barrett, Patrick Tuipulotu, Joe Moody, Nepo Laulala, Ofa Tuungafasi, Angus Ta’avao, Atu Moli, Codie Taylor, Dane Coles, Liam Coltman

Backs: Ben Smith, Rieko Ioane, Jordie Barrett, George Bridge, Sevu Reece, Ryan Crotty, Sonny Bill Williams, Jack Goodhue, Anton Lienert-Brown, Beauden Barrett, Richie Mo’unga, Aaron Smith, TJ Perenara, Brad Weber

South Africa

Forwards: Schalk Brits, Bongi Mbonambi, Malcolm Marx, Frans Malherbe, Trevor Nyakane, Vincent Koch, Steven Kitshoff, Tendai Mtawarira, RG Snyman, Eben Etzebeth, Lood de Jager, Franco Mostert, Siya Kolisi (c), Kwagga Smith, Francois Louw, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Duane Vermeulen

Backs: Willie le Roux, Warrick Gelant, Cheslin Kolbe, Sbu Nkosi, Makazole Mapimpi, Lukhanyo Am, Damian de Allende, Frans Steyn, Jesse Kriel, Handre Pollard, Elton Jantjies, Faf de Klerk, Cobus Reinach, Herschel Jantjies

Italy

Forwards: Simone Ferrari, Andrea Lovotti, Tiziano Pasquali, Nicola Quaglio, Marco Riccioni, Federico Zani, Luca Bigi, Oliviero Fabiani, Leonardo Ghiraldini, Dean Budd, Federico Ruzza, David Sisi, Alessandro Zanni, Maxime Mbanda, Sebastian Negri, Sergio Parisse (c) Jake Polledri, Abraham Steyn.

Backs: Callum Braley, Guglielmo Palazzani, Tito Tebaldi, Tommaso Allan, Carlo Canna, Tommaso Benvenuti, Michele Campagnaro, Luca Morisi, Mattia Bellini, Giulio Bisegni, Jayden Hayward, Matteo Minozzi, Edoardo Padovani.

Namibia

Forwards: Obert Nortje, Louis van der Westhuizen, Torsten van Jaarsveld, Aranos Coetzee, AJ de Klerk, André Rademeyer, Desiderius Sethie, Nelius Theron, Johan Retief, Tjiuee Uanivi, PJ van Lill, Adriaan Booysen, Wian Conradie, Thomasau Forbes, Prince Gaoseb, Max Katjijeko, Rohan Kitshoff, Janco Venter

Backs: Helarius Kisting, Lesley Klim, PJ Walters, Chad Plato, Johann Tromp, Darryl de la Harpe, Johan Deysel (c), JC Greyling, Justin Newman, Janry du Toit, Cliven Loubser, Eugene Jantjies, Damian Stevens

Canada

Forwards: Tyler Ardron (c), Kyle Baillie, Justin Blanchet, Hubert Buydens, Luke Campbell, Matt Heaton, Eric Howard, Jake Ilnicki, Cole Keith, Conor Keys, Evan Olmstead, Benoit Piffero, Andrew Quattrin, Lucas Rumball, Djustice Sears-Duru, Mike Sheppard, Matthew Tierney

Backs: Nick Blevins, Andrew Coe, Jeff Hassler, Ciaran Hearn, Ben LeSage, Phil Mack, Jamie Mackenzie, Gordon McRorie, Peter Nelson, Shane O’Leary, Patrick Parfrey, Taylor Paris, Conor Trainor, DTH van der Merwe

POOL C

England

Forwards: Dan Cole, Luke Cowan-Dickie, Tom Curry, Ellis Genge, Jamie George, Maro Itoje, George Kruis, Joe Launchbury, Courtney Lawes, Lewis Ludlam, Joe Marler, Kyle Sinckler, Jack Singleton, Sam Underhill, Billy Vunipola, Mako Vunipola, Mark Wilson

Backs: Joe Cokanasiga, Elliot Daly, Owen Farrell (c), George Ford, Piers Francis, Willi Heinz, Jonathan Joseph, Jonny May, Ruaridh McConnochie, Jack Nowell, Henry Slade, Manu Tuilagi, Anthony Watson, Ben Youngs

France

Forwards: Gregory Alldritt, Demba Bamba, Yacouba Camara, Camille Chat, Paul Gabrillagues, Guilhem Guirado (c), Arthur Iturria, Felix Lambey, Wenceslas Lauret, Bernard Le Roux, Peato Mauvaka, Jefferson Poirot, Louis Picamoles, Dany Priso, Emerick Setiano, Rabah Slimani, Sebastien Vahaamahina

Backs: Geoffrey Doumayrou, Antoine Dupont, Gael Fickou, Wesley Fofana, Sofiane Guitoune, Yoann Huget, Camille Lopez, Maxime Machenaud, Maxime Medard, Romain Ntamack, Damian Penaud, Alivereti Raka, Thomas Ramos, Baptiste Serin

Argentina

Forwards: Nahuel Tetaz Chapparo, Mayco Vivas, Agustin Creevy, Julian Montoya, Santiago Socino, Juan Figallo, Santiago Medrano, Enrique Pieretto, Guido Petti, Tomas Lavanini, Matias Alemanno, Pablo Matera (c), Tomas Lezana, Javier Ortega Desio, Marcos Kremer, Rodrigo Bruni, Juan Manuel Leguizamon

Backs: Tomas Cubelli, Felipe Ezcurra, Nicolas Sanchez, Benjamin Urdapilleta, Jeronimo de la Fuente, Matias Orlando, Matias Moroni, Lucan Mensa, Juan Cruz Mallia, Ramiro Moyano, Bautista Delguy, Emiliano Boffelli, Joaquin Tuculet

USA

Forwards: David Ainu’u, Malon Al-Jiboori, Nate Brakeley, Nick Civetta, Cam Dolan, Dylan Fawsitt, Eric Fry, Hanco Germishuys, James Hilterbrand, Olive Kilifi, Tony Lamborn, Titi Lamositele, Ben Landry, Paul Mullen, Gregor Peterson, Ben Pinkelman, John Quill, Joseph Taufeteâe

Backs: Blaine Scully (c), Nate Augspurger, Marcel Brache, Bryce Campbell, Shaun Davies, Ruben De Haas, Will Hooley, Martin Iosefo, Paul Lasike, AJ MacGinty, Will Magie, Thretton Palamo, Mike Teâo

Tonga

Forwards: Siegfried Fisiihoi, Vunipola Fifita, Latu Talakai, Paula Ngauamo, Sosefo Sakalia, Siua Maile, Siua Halanukonuka, Ma’afu Fia, Ben Tameifuna, Sam Lousi, Leva Fifita, Sitiveni Mafi, Sione Kalamafoni, Maama Vaipulu, Fotu Lokotui, Zane Kapeli, Dan Faleafa, Nasi Manu

Backs: Sonatane Takulua, Leon ‘Fukofuka, Samisoni Fisilau, Kurt Morath, James ‘Faiva, Siale Piutau (c), Malietoa Hingano, Nafi Tuitavake, Atieli Pakalani, David Halaifonua, Viliami Lolohea, Cooper Vuna, Telusa Veainu

POOL D

Australia

Forwards: Isi Naisarani, Jack Dempsey, Michael Hooper (c), David Pocock, Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, Rory Arnold, Izack Rodda, Adam Coleman, Rob Simmons, Allan Alaalatoa, Taniela Tupou, Sekope Kepu, Scott Sio, James Slipper, Tolu Latu, Folau Fainga’a, Jordan Uelese

Backs: Kurtley Beale, Dane Haylett-Petty, Reece Hodge, Marika Koroibete, Jordan Petaia, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Tevita Kuridrani, James O’Connor, Samu Kerevi, Matt Toomua, Christian Leali’ifano, Bernard Foley, Nic White, Will Genia

Wales

Forwards: Jake Ball, Adam Beard, Rhys Carre, James Davies, Elliot Dee, Ryan Elias, Tomas Francis, Cory Hill, Alun Wyn Jones (c), Wyn Jones, Dillon Lewis, Ross Moriarty, Josh Navidi, Ken Owens, Aaron Shingler, Nicky Smith, Justin Tipuric,  Aaron Wainwright

Backs: Josh Adams, Hallam Amos, Dan Biggar, Aled Davies, Gareth Davies, Jonathan Davies, Leigh Halfpenny, George North, Hadleigh Parkes, Rhys Patchell, Owen Watkin, Liam Williams, Tomos Williams

Georgia

Forwards: Mikheil Nariashvili, Guram Gogichashvili, Shalva Mamukashvili, Jaba Bregvadze, Vano Karkadze, Levan Chilachava, Giorgi Melikidze, Beka Gigashvili, Giorgi Nemsadze, Shalva Sutiashvili, Mamuka Gorgodze, Kote Mikautadze, Giorgi Tkhilaishvili, Lasha Lomidze, Otar Giorgadze, Beka Gorgadze, Beka Saghinadze

Backs: Sandro Todua, Soso Matiashvili, Mirian Modebadze, Zurab Dzneladze, Davit Katcharava, Merab Sharikadze (c), Tamaz Mtchedlidze, Giorgi Kveseladze, Lasha Malaghuradze, Lasha Khmaladze, Tedo Abzhandadze, Giorgi Begadze, Vasil Lobzhanidze, Gela Aprasidze

Fiji

Forwards: Mesulame Dolokoto, Samuel Matavesi, Ratu Vere Vugakoto, Campese Ma’afu, Eroni Mawi, Peni Ravai, Lee-Roy Atalifo, Manasa Saulo, Tevita Cavubati, Leone Nakarawa, Api Ratuniyarawa, Tevita Ratuva, Semi Kunatani, Viliame Mata, Mosese Voka, Dominiko Waqaniburotu (c), Peceli Yato

Backs: Frank Lomani, Nikola Matawalu, Henry Seniloli, Levani Botia, Jale Vatubua, Ben Volavola, Vereniki Goneva, Filipo Nakosi, Waisea Nayacalevu, Semi Radradra, Josua Tuisova, Joshua Matavesi, Alivereti Veitokani, Kini Murimurivalu

Uruguay

Forwards: Facundo Gattas, Joaquín Jaunsolo, Mateo Sanguinetti, Germán Kessler, Guillermo Pujadas, Diego Arbelo, Juan Echeverría, Juan Pedro Rombys, Ignacio Dotti, Manuel Leindekar, Diego Magno, Franco Lamana, Manuel Ardao, Santiago Civetta, Manuel Diana, Juan Manuel Gaminara (c), Juan Diego Ormaechea, Alejandro Nieto

Backs: Agustín Ormaechea, Santiago Arata, Felipe Berchesi, Felipe Etcheverry, Juan Manuel Cat, Santiago Vilaseca, Agustín Della Corte, Tomás Inciarte, Federico Favaro, Nicolás Freitas, Leandro Leivas, Gastón Mieres, Rodrigo Silva

  • Parker

    Score early and score often. Tries preferably.

  • Kiwi rugby lover

    Thanks MST.
    Boy those rules are crazy. It’s going to be interesting seeing the media and forum response when one of the big 4 miss out on winning their pool because of the weather. I’ll laugh – even if it’s the ABs. (I’ll be a bit pissed if it happens in a knockout game though)
    I think in the next 2 to 3 years you’ll see a lot of NSW and VIC players miss out on higher honours due to their unions lack of backing in the NRC. Then you’ll see the good players move away from the area so they can be recognised. I wonder if that’ll be enough for the administrators in those states to pull their heads out of their arses.
    I’d say Foley was poor rather than average. Interesting view on Toomua, a lot of other forums and player ratings had him playing well. I personally thought both Foley and Genia were so poor they made the rest of the backs look bad. 9 & 10 are so critical you can’t carry both having a bad game.

  • With global warming it’s hard to be sure – this is late in the season for a typhoon – but the knockout stages are REALLY late. So it shouldn’t be a factor. Fingers crossed…

    • John Tynan

      But geez I’d love to see reactions to Ireland winning by world ranking default…

      • Meh, not sure Ireland have got what it takes to get there to be honest. They looked desperate for the win and the performance on Saturday and they only got the win, not the performance.

        Not saying they didn’t look the best of their warmup matches but they’re not back to a World Cup winning quality. They might get there still, there’s only one tough match in their pool and while it’s first up, even if they lose they should qualify. They can then ramp up for NZ or SA. The issue for both of Scotland and Ireland is that their QF is either NZ or SA… They both need to be right on top of their game to win there.

        • John Tynan

          Very tongue in cheek Not much in the Ireland v Wales game on the weekend gave me any major concerns, TBH.

  • Brumby Runner

    Thanks MSTs. Great articles.

    I agree that the NRC is throwing up some fantastic games at a standard far higher than any club games. The absolute future star has already been identified this year. Fraser McReight is the best prospect at No 7 since the early days of David Pocock.

    Like KRL, I think you have an interesting take on Matt Toomua’s game against Samoa. His first two passes in the game were rubbish, but from that point he was the focal point of just about every attack the Wallabies made. Not only hitting it up and making space when playing at 12, but for at least half the game also standing in at first receiver in Foley’s place. Certainly, was his best game since coming back and quite widely held to be a better performance at 10 than any that Foley has served up this year.

  • Who?

    So… Which team’s got the blood capsules ready for the penalty shoot out? :-P
    .
    Disagree with you about Foley and Toomua – Foley was ordinary, Toomua had arguably his best game this year, and was the only reason that backline didn’t disintegrate. He took the absolute dross served up by Foley and turned it into something almost palatable.

  • RugbyM

    I’d say our 5 kickers would be a combo of Beale, Hodge, O’Connor, Toomua, Leali’ifano and Foley, depending on who’s on the field.

    Does DHP kick?
    Does Petaia kick?
    Actually, add Hoops in there. He could probably do it himself, he’d still be running around at the 110minute mark.

    • Who?

      I’m guessing Toomua, Hodge, Beale, JOC, maybe Genia, White (and Leali’ifano) will have been subbed off, sadly. Unless we’ve got the blood capsules. :-P
      The real question is, who takes the kicks from the right side of the field? Don’t think we have a left footed kicker. Don’t want Foley, Toomua or Leali’ifano taking them, they’ve shown themselves to be inconsistent from that side. I’d be more confident with Beale or JOC on that side. Not necessarily confident, but more confident.

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Brumbies first, then for the love of the game. "It infuriates me to be wrong when I know I'm right." —Moliere

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