Posts Tagged ‘ Sam Warburton ’

Six Nations 2015 – Wales Stay In The Race…Just


Dual blogged on I’m Talkin’ Here

Alongside England Wales are the second team vying to knock Ireland out of pole position in this year’s tournament after a less than comprehensive win over France on Saturday. Even less comprehensive was the turgid affair between Italy and Scotland that preceded it and title ambitions remain anything but immediate concerns for these two sides.

The concern remains for Warren Gatland’s Welsh side that they have simply run out of ideas. It’s not all that long ago that players like George North and Alex Cuthbert were instilling fear into their impending defenders. Sam Warburton was heralded as the second coming of the 7 and Wales were to be seen as a threat and nothing else. Skip ahead to now and both wins in the Six Nations have come from high levels of good fortune. Even last year, after a comprehensive defeat to Ireland and again to England after they had barely tamed France, Wales still managed to make life look difficult against a 14 man Scotland (though the 51-3 scoreline begs to differ). Continue reading

Six Nations 2015 – England Seek Revenge


Of course Irish fans want one team only to run in as title contenders when the Six Nations kicks off, but there can be up to four potential victors in a given year. Even Italy, when they started in 2013 with that famous win over France, looked hotter than ever. England are without doubt second favourites and Wales, well they’re just always a threat in this tournament year on year. Scotland have that Vern Cotter fella in charge, maybe you’ve heard of him. Yes it’s not plain sailing for Ireland by any means. Continue reading

Six Nations : Ireland Seek Solid Start


And so here we are again, the start of another Six Nations campaign. Probably the most open this championship has been in years. Four of the six competing nations will have high hopes of claiming the honours, maybe even harbour ambitions of a Grand Slam. If we have learned anything from last year’s competition, it should be that the November internationals only give a slight indication as to who’s in form and who isn’t. Wales had a dismal run of performances in that respect and continued their losing streak against Ireland in their opening fixture of the Six Nations. They turned their fortunes around in the next round and went on to claim their second championship win in a row. England brought with them, the slayers of the All Blacks tag and expectations were high, however they fell at the last hurdle and fell hard. Ireland and France had campaigns to forget and Italy and Scotland managed to escape from the bottom two places on the table. The opening weekend will obviously tell a lot, here’s what’s on offer. Continue reading

RaboDirect Pro 12 – Leinster Need To Be Wary Of Connacht


Rabo Direct Pro 12

Ulster v Cardiff Blues

Ulster come in to this game with the return of Ruan Pienaar to their line up which could prove crucial to their hopes of victory. Cardiff will pose a big threat to Ulster’s hopes to climb the leaderboard in the league.

The Welsh side will be hoping to come home from Ravenhill with a strong victory, following their Heineken Cup heroics against Toulon. Ulster have the potential to score tries and with players like Tommy Bowe and Andrew Trimble on their side this will be a game worth watching. Cardiff will be looking to the likes of Sam Warburton and Leigh Halfpenny to bring the victory. Home advantage will play a crucial influence in this game and you would have to think Ulster have more try scoring potential on their side. Continue reading

No Major Revelations For The Lions


It was a win. There has been no reported fresh injuries (although Kearney seemed to be carrying a slight limp). And above all else it did a pretty good job of erasing the memory of last week in Canberra. The only thing yesterday’s fixture against the Rebels didn’t do is throw up any sizeable amount of options to Warren Gatland.
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Lions Line Up For One Final “Practice”


The Lions have a win in the bag, and one more midweek game to test their strengths. It’s the position they wanted to be in since preparation started for this tour. The news of Paul O’Connell suffering an arm fracture during Saturday’s test (and playing on I might add) will be deflating for sure, but the harsh world of rugby dictates that one players misfortune, cruelly, becomes another’s chance to stand out for selection.

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Hits, Slips And Missed Kicks Gift Lions A Win


Beale showed massive strength of character to be available for the test, but will rue two missed kicks

Whatever side of the fence you sit with regard to how good a game it was in the context of skill set, you can’t deny that was bloody entertaining. All the way towards this game in the run up, the Lions were firm favourites. Once the Australian side leaked however, the names on paper suddenly looked all the more intimidating. Gatland seemed to have a bit of a lapse in concentration too as he chose a bench that contained two players that had made no real case to usurp their rivals in camp and a third, Lydiate, who really should have started with Warburton making way for Tipuric or O’Brien. Continue reading