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Lions Hoping For A Real Test Against The Reds

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Having thumped the Barbarians in Hong Kong then routed the Western Force in Perth, the Lions are now in Brisbane to take on the Queensland Reds.

The Reds have encouragingly picked as strong as team as possible minus their seven Australian squad members Genia, Slipper, Horwill, Ioane, Gill, Simmons and Saia Faingaa. The Reds squad still has plenty of quality and brawn and will

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The Lions Have Landed: Can The Aussies Hear The Roar?

li17 days out from the 1st test in Brisbane we take at look at how the Wallabies are looking and the general feeling towards the tour down under. I spent over two years living in the sport-obsessed country and to say they don’t like to lose would be an understatement. AFL is the number one sport in Australia with cricket coming second, rugby league third and rugby union fourth. Don’t get me wrong even with its lower standing it is funded equally and followed religiously in certain corners of Queensland and New South Wales. Both these states are gripped by the yearly state of origin series, a best of 3 combat between the best Rugby League players representing their birth state. Continue reading

GAA Championship Structure – Only Fix Something When It Is broken

GAA-football-and-hurlAfter another weekend of GAA action we are now well and truly into the thick of the 2013 championship with games coming thick and fast. The big talking point across the country now is the dominance of the big counties with the Dubs handing a 16-point beating to Westmeath on Saturday. Westmeath would have been considered a team making progress having made the division 2 league final so the margin of this result has just confirmed fears some have for the future of the championship and the gulf from the elite counties to the pretenders. Continue reading

Lions Aim To Hit The Ground Running Against Barbarians

 Lions-2013-33099371,425 days since that third test in Ellis Park, Johannesburg and after months of speculation on selection the waiting is nearly over, the day is nearly upon us. The first warm-up game against the Barbarians kicks off tomorrow in the sweltering heat of Hong Kong. Its put up or shut up time for the Lions party. The players will be glad to see the day arrived and finally get on the field to prove to everyone why they have been selected.  Paul O’ Connell takes over as captain as Sam Warburton has been rested after picking up a knock in training. Expect Warburton to be ready for the Force in Perth on Wednesday night. O’Connell’s selection as stand-in captain won’t surprise anyone having lead the team on a full-time basis four years ago and one thinks everyone in the camp wouldn’t argue either.  Now don’t get me wrong there will be nothing “warm up” about any of the games outside the test matches with every side relishing the chance to cause an upset so Saturday and the rest of the pre-test matches will be hard-hitting, fast and very competitive, exactly what the Lions will want in preparation for the three tests against the Wallabies. Continue reading

Battle For Hurling Supremacy Commences

Liam MacCarthy 25609c13aIts that time of year again, evenings are long with the smell of cut grass in the air and when the hurler on the ditch is louder than ever with opinion and complaint on the year ahead. This Sunday sees the start of the 2013 Hurling Championship (with no disrespect to the lesser counties which have battled it out in recent weeks) with Clare and Waterford travelling to Tom Semples field in Thurles to battle it out for a place in the Munster semi-final and a crack at Cork. Both these sides have genuine provincial aspirations and hope that with some luck could be their year to climb the steps of the Hogan Stand. Tipperary, Cork, Limerick, Kilkenny, Dublin & Galway will have similar aspirations but outside these counties the rest only harbour thoughts during night hours with eyes wide asleep. Continue reading

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