OK – in the prediction contest we have two joint leaders, Johnny Boy and Reader. Neither have gone for Tommy Bowe as top try scorer so it’s still very open.
Today it’s Wales v Italy and Ireland v Scotland. Tomorrow England travel to Paris.
In the Western Mail Michael Owen hails the best Welsh team he has ever seen.
I agree – we just need to click- could be today.
Is International Rugby good for Andy Robinson’s health? …he likes Ireland’s choke tackling. From the Scotsman:
We have a lot of respect for the way that Ireland play the game,” he said. “I think the ‘choke’ tackle is an excellent way of defending. It has brought something different to the game so I have no issue with the way they are defending, but I want it to be interpreted and refereed in the right way, as per law.
A maul occurs when there are players from both sides involved, and a tackle is completed if an attacking player even puts his knee on the floor. It’s a great way of defending but with every way you defend there is an action to it, but also a reaction and a way of breaking it down.
It will be interesting to see how Eoin Reddan plays. He seems up for it from the BBC – who also quote Kidney’s concerns at world rankings:
The seedings for the 2015 World Cup pool stages will be determined by the International Rugby Board world rankings at the end of the year and Ireland have eight matches to ensure they finish inside the top eight and thus avoid the nightmare scenario of being drawn in a group alongside two major nations.
Among those games are a three-Test series in New Zealand – they have never beaten the All Blacks home or away – England at Twickenham and South Africa at the Aviva Stadium in November.
That’s pretty tough.
France v England? – Ashton in the Independent is worth a read.
Enjoy your weekend.