Thursday's Rugby News - Green and Gold Rugby
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Thursday’s Rugby News

Thursday’s Rugby News

Thursday’s rugby news has broken doors, Hooper targeted, pack size issues and Burgess’ possible debut .


Wallabies staff doing damage

cheik door coaches box wide

The Wallabies may be slapped with a repair bill of “a few thousand euros” and are prepared to pay the costs of fixing a hole in the wall at Lansdowne Road after the discovery of dressing room damage in Dublin.

The Wallabies say a member of the support staff caused a hole in the wall and the team immediately notified the IRFU following the match. While the identity of the support staff member has not been revealed, it is understood not to be coach Michael Cheika and the Wallabies are insisting that it was not related to an angry outburst..

England focus on Hooper

KMP-WALLvAB-2281

England has singled out Test captain Michael Hooper for special attention in this weekend’s World Cup preview clash, emphasising the Waratah’s speed to the breakdown. “Hooper needs special attention. We have to nullify him at the weekend and keep him quiet,” England assistant Graham Rowntree said.

“He’s pretty central to everything Australia do offensively – and at the breakdown as well.” Both teams are undergoing losing streaks and Sunday’s match will be both England and Australia’s final international of 2014.

 

Slipper talks down pack weights

KMP-WALLvAB-2790Wallabies prop James Slipper has emphasised that the heart of all eight scrummagers will be able to overcome a hefty 40kg size difference against England. While emphasising the weight imbalance, Slipper said “The heart of some of the players in this team, we’ll do anything to get a win and if that means putting our body on the line, we’ll do it.”

Despite the horrid November tour, England’s scrum has stayed strong in tight losses to New Zealand and South Africa, led by 125kg wrecking ball David Wilson.

Burgess a possible call-up

Burgess_Sam_England1

Sam Burgess could make his rugby union debut from the bench for Bath against Harlequins in the Premiership on Friday. The 25-year-old has only recently resumed training after fracturing a cheekbone just 8 weeks ago and Bath head coach Mike Ford has said, “We are just waiting for Sam to tell us when he feels ready.”

Burgess, 25, joined the Premiership club from South Sydney Rabbitohs for about £270,000 at the end of the NRL season in October.

  • Michael Chieka with the Bart Simpson classic “I didn’t do it”.

    • Shane Warne’s “my mum did it”?

    • AAC’s mum might defend Mic Cheik 1.2. ” my boy is not a bad sport”

      • WaikatoKid

        My dads did it?

  • Dud Roodt

    Wait? England are singling out Michael Hooper? But that doesn’t make sense, don’t they read the comment section on G&GR where it is clearly pointed out to all and sundry that he is absolutely useless and actually more of a hindrance on the pitch? weird.

    • Christopher

      No his usefulness is rarely questioned nor his place in the team at present, more the role he is playing relative to the number on his back and the other 2 in the back row.

      • Dud Roodt

        well then it DEFINITELY doesn’t make sense that England will target him as they will effectively be a man up in the forwards. So I think what you meant to say was “yes ozed85, you are spot on with this, the England set up obviously have no idea what they’re on about”. You just spelt all those words incorrectly is all.

    • bad ass

      No one has said that at all. Many point to his weaknesses at the break down and as captain. Why don’t you stop idolising him. He is a football player. He is not a deity. In the words of Kramer “you love him, no, you really love him”.

      • Dud Roodt

        yeah fair call, footballers are only there to be slagged off but insignificant little pests who use it as a chance to lift their own inferiority complex having not made it beyond the U13 F’s. If you like a player, you best not support them in any way!

        • bad ass

          Don’t try to change the subject with your amateur and cynical reverse psychology. You love him dearly. Xxx

    • Hitcho

      Dear England, your right to want to shut Hooper down he’s a good player. You like us are having some issues so in the spirit of sportsmanship we’ll tell you where to find him… 2-3 off the ruck at the breakdown (shhhhh some people still think he’s over the ball), and he’ll be the one standing up playing peek-a-boo at scrum time.
      Kind Regards
      Australia.
      Ps don’t worry too much about keeping Hooper quiet. As Captain he never speaks to the Ref about the opposition anyway. She’ll be all good.

    • Pedro

      Do you really think England would read GAGR when they have their own “White and Shite Rugby”?

    • RugbyStu

      It could also be that they see him as a strategic weakness worth targeting.

    • HK Red

      And when has any opposition coach ever come out pre-game and truthfully told everyone what their actual gameplan is going to be?!?!??!

    • Richard

      I think you Aussies are being a little harsh on Hooper. He is more effective than you give him credit and does certain things on the field that many other loose forwards cannot hope to. His run metres with ball in hand are impressive and he makes his share of crucial tackles. The whole captaincy issue, not necessarily his fault. Only got the Waratah job this year when Dave Dennis got injured, the same with the Wallabies after Moore. If you want to be critical, direct your attention to recent Wallaby captains Horwill and Genia whose form is so poor they are non deserving of selection in the starting team. Why didn’t Slipper or Ashley-Cooper step up and claim the captaincy?

      • Hitcho

        This is the point, I don’t think anyone is calling for his head, he’s a valuable member of the team for all the reasons you’ve mentioned. I even somewhat accept that he has been thrown in the deep end when it comes to the Captaincy.

        The problem is with regard to the Captaincy is that he’s either not learning quick enough, or he’s not listening to what is expected in the role.

        Lets face it as good at what he is at what he does, as far as the 7 goes he’s no Smith, Waugh, Pocock, McCaw, etc… I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, what I want to see from a 7 is a ruck pest, first to the breakdown, over the ball creating turnovers especially at crucial times. Give me that along with what he’s already doing and I’ll be very very happy… oh and I won’t be at all unhappy if he stays on supporting his prop when our scrum is under pressure especially when it comes to the weight England have on us.

      • Guy

        Australians aren’t being harsh. One-eyed morons with inferiority complexes are just banging a tired old drum

      • bad ass

        Your right about how good Hooper is at those things, the problem is that many of us, including me, think that we get beat because we have not enough muscle and effectiveness in the pack. We have enough people who can do damage out wide. And I don’t think there is much disagreement they he was/is too inexperienced for captain.

  • bad ass

    A good way to thwart England’s plans to target Michael Hooper would be start him on the bench.

  • Guest

    I lost all hope when Foley failed to kick a drop goal in Sydney from a good position which would have won us the match against NZ. That was the watershed moment for me. Without a 5/8 that can do that in a close match, we were no chance, and we were never going to win the next match in Aukkand. Even if had won in Brisbane, with the Bledisloe gone, we wouldn’t have it over NZ leading into the WC. I at least expected more from the European tour, but the Beale fiasco sorted that out. Now, things are worse. Our coach will be with the tahs leading into the Wallabies season, and unless he translates their game plan and players straight into the side, I can’t see him preparing for this. I don’t think I am being annihilistic when I say we have no chance, it’s reality.
    I trace it all back to when the 5/8 couldn’t kick a droppie to close out the match.

    • Jay-c

      Do your research you idiot
      If you haven’t been watching why do you bother to comment

      • bad ass

        What research do you expect him to do? I watched that game in Sydney and I agree. It’s a poor tactic to play for a penalty at home with the scores tied at the death. Especially with our penalty record. They should have played to win and kicked the drop goal. That’s what Jesus, sorry, I mean Quade would have done.

  • Ruck_Me_Ragged

    Frustrated Wallaby supporter here. At the risk of copping a pizzling I’ll throw a thought or 3 out:

    * Pack weight. The last time I can recall the Wallabies being outweighed by 30+kgs was against the Boks in Sep2013 in a 38/12 loss. It was a particularly effeminate & embarrassing Wallaby performance & that’s why I went to the trouble of adding up the weights. In the first 5 there wasn’t much difference. The weight difference was in the back row (Hooper / Fardy / McCalman). Compounding the problematic straight up weight difference, the Wallaby back row have been & are currently playing as a 2 man back row (meaning Hooper plays as more of a centre) – and were subsequently blown off the park. All the Boks did was pick an obvious Wallaby weakness (lightweight / absent back row), counter it via team selection & play to their strength.

    * I find the notion of England wanting to nullify Hooper at the breakdown to be quite comical. I’m sure they must be thinking of Pocock or Smith because Hooper is most certainly not a ruck pest. Look a little wider England if you want to find him. He’s over …. there.

    * Putting bodies on the line? James … mate … I INSIST!!!

    No I’m not a Hooper hater. Courage? Commitment? Effort? He’s got it all & then some. Is he an effective Wallaby 7 though? No.

    • AndrewWA

      Pack weights in 2014:
      Down by 37kg against Wales.
      Down by 42kg against Ireland.

    • wilful

      Pack weights are bollocks. Otherwise watch how much we improve when Will Skelton comes on. Or not, as the case will be.

      • Mica

        Also look at Argentina vs Springboks from the TRC this year.
        Lighter weight pack IIRC and destroyed them at scrum time.

  • Bill

    Well good luck to us. I really think we should beat england even if both teams have issues at the present moment. I don’t tink the result will have any determining factor come the world cup, so it’s all about now. Which is part of what I’m starting to find a bit annoying with this endless reel of populist positivity that’s constantly trotted out ”we can lift 10, no, 20 percent”, ”some of us have heart…we’ll do anything to win, even if it means putting our bodies on the line” (and here was I thinking that was supposed to be an expected standard, not something exceptional, I’m presuming ‘anything to win’ is not an intended reference to Kurtley’s continued gracing of our team). I guess it’s better that they are positive than not, but being positive without acknowledgeing the challenges/barriers is all a bit monty python’s black knight to me. When you win that changes perceptions about those sorts of soundbites but when you keep loseing you better start acknowledging shit and start takeing some of those fucking tickets off yourself.

  • Bill

    So is the charity Beale’s fine is going to come under the umbrella of the same one that turfed Beale as ambassador because he wasn’t being a role model? Who says the ARU doesn’t have a sense of humour?

  • Hambone

    and there goes another much needed up and coming ozzie prop.. Bob will be spuing as i am being a reb’s supporter..

    http://www.planetrugby.com/story/0,25883,3551_9580351,00.html

  • Alan Grouse

    Disappointing news about Alo-Emile. Can’t believe we have lost another immense talent to another overseas club. Was really hoping he would replace some of the older props in the wallaby squad

  • Seb V

    England did state he is central to everything offensively. Then they made a secondary comment about his ruck work. Just like this game-play ruck work is secondary. This is why he is criticised on G&GR and rightly so.

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