Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

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Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by LondonTiger on Tue Apr 19, 2016 11:38 am

First topic message reminder :

Saracens  v   Wasps
23/04/2016 15:00 Madejski Stadium Sky Sports / beIN Sports

Officials
Referee - Roman Poite
Touch Judge 1 - Jerome Garces (France)
Touch Judge 2 - Pascal Gauzere (France)
TMO - Eric Gauzins (France)
Citing Commissioner - Stefano Marrama (Italy)


Form

9/4/16 Saracens 29 - 20 Saints 8,050
23/1/16 Toulouse 17 - 28 Saracens 12,498
16/1/16 Saracens 33 - 17 Ulster 9,642


9/4/16 Wasps 25 - 24 Chiefs 23,866
23/1/16 Wasps 51 - 10 Leinster 16,519
17/1/16 Toulon 15 - 11 Wasps 13,344


Teams

Saracens
15. Alex Goode; 14. Chris Ashton, 13. Duncan Taylor, 12. Brad Barritt, 11. Chris Wyles; 10. Owen Farrell, 9. Richard Wigglesworth; 1. Mako Vunipola, 2. Schalk Brits, 3. Petrus du Plessis, 4. Maro Itoje, 5. George Kruis, 6. Michael Rhodes, 7. Will Fraser, 8. Billy Vunipola
16. Jared Saunders , 17. Richard Barrington, 18. Titi Lamositele, 19. Jim Hamilton, 20. Jackson Wray, 21. Neil de Kock, 22. Charlie Hodgson, 23. Marcelo Bosch

Wasps
15. Charles Piutau; 14. Christian Wade, 13. Elliot Daly, 12. Siale Piutau, 11. Frank Halai; 10. Jimmy Gopperth, 9. Dan Robson; 1. Matt Mullan, 2. Carlo Festuccia, 3. Lorenzo Cittadini, 4. Joe Launchbury, 5. Bradley Davies, 6. James Haskell, 7. George Smith, 8. Nathan Hughes
16. Ashley Johnson, 17. Simon McIntyre, 18. Phil Swainston, 19. Sam Jones, 20. Thomas Young, 21. Joe Simpson, 22. Ruaridh Jackson, 23. Rob Miller


Preview
The top two in the AP table meet at the Madj for the first all English semi-final since 2007, when Wasps beat Northampton. Since those heady days Wasps have made little impact on the top tier competition, while their opponents have been on the rise. This will be Sarries 4th semi-final in a row, and 5th in total (first in 2008). Sarries will be all too aware that they have lost all but one of those semi-finals so far and will be desperate to make their second final. To do so they know they have to play much better than they did in the 1/4 final, though it is fair to say that Wasps were not at their best in the 1/4s despite the thrilling come-back.
The last time these two teams met was during the 6Ns when Wasps visited Barnet and thrashed the reigning AP champs. While both teams were missing players, Sarries were worse affected and everything Wasps touched turned to gold that day. We should expect a much tighter game this weekend. Sarries will look to squeeze Wasps up front, then put massive pressure on their opponents back line. Wasps will need to execute their game plan with precision, fail to do so and Saracens will swamp them.





Leicester Tigers  v   Racing 92
24/04/2016 15:15  City Ground BT Sport / FR 2 / beIN Sports

Officials
Referee - Nigel Owens (Wales)
Touch - Judge 1 George Clancy (Ireland)
Touch - Judge 2 Leighton Hodges (Wales)
TMO - Simon McDowell (Ireland)
Citing Commissioner - Jeff Mark (Wales)


Form

10/4/16 Tigers 41 - 13 SF Paris 20,866
24/1/16 SF Paris 36 - 21 Tigers 12,073
16/1/16 Tigers 47 - 7 Treviso 19,076


10/4/16 Racing 92 19 - 16 Toulon 15,340
23/1/16 Glasgow 22 - 5 Racing 92 9,063
17/1/16 Racing 92 64 - 14 Scarlets 6,931


Teams

Leicester Tigers
15. Matthew Tait; 14. Telusa Veainu, 13. Peter Betham, 12. Manu Tuilagi, 11. Vereniki Goneva; 10. Freddie Burns, 9. Ben Youngs; 1. Marcos Ayerza, 2. Harry Thacker, 3. Dan Cole, 4. Dom Barrow, 5. Graham Kitchener, 6. Michael Fitzgerald, 7. Lachlan McCaffrey, 8. Opéti Fonua
16. Greg Bateman, 17. Logovii Mulipola, 18. Fraser Balmain, 19. Ed Slater, 20. Tom Croft, 21. Sam Harrison, 22. Owen Williams, 23. Adam Thompstone

Racing 92
15. Brice Dulin; 14. Joe Rokocoko, 13. Johannes Goosen, 12. Alexandre Dumoulin, 11. Juan Imhoff; 10. Dan Carter, 9. Maxime Machenaud; 1. Eddy Ben Arous, 2. Virgile Lacombe, 3. Ben Tameifuna, 4. Luke Charteris, 5. Francois van der Merwe, 6. Wenceslas Lauret, 7. Bernard Le Roux, 8. Chris Masoe
16. Camille Chat, 17. Khatchik Vartanov, 18. Luc Ducalcon, 19. Manuel Carizza, 20. Antonie Claassen, 21. Mike Phillips, 22. Remi Tales, 23. Louis Dupichot

Preview
It is over 90 years since Leicester last met Racing. Fair to say things have changed just a little since the 1920's, and it is extremely doubtful that either side will warm up with a visit to a strip club as Tigers did on their first visit to France. Jacky Lorenzetti has spent big money assembling the star-studded Racing team, with Dan Carter surely the jewel in the crown. Even on one leg his class was enough to guide the Parisians to a narrow win over three-time champs Toulon. However they are far from a one man team with stardust sprinkled throughout the side. Racing's T14 form has stuttered in recent weeks and a largely second string team went down to Toulouse last week. With the big names coming in though, they are - on paper at least - far stronger than their English rivals. It is hard to see weaknesses in the Racing pack with an excellent second row pairing sandwiched by very powerful back and front rows. Tigers will be hoping that they can exploit a possible lack of speed in the back row, but cannot assume that their opponents will tire - or be as poor as their city rivals Stade were. It is to be hoped that Castro can keep his cool in any post match interviews this time.
Leicester have been like the little girl, when they are good they are very, very good but when they are not they are awful. This will be a huge test physically. The front five cannot give an inch while the back row have to win the battle of the breakdown. Secure a decent amount of possession and they have the backs to score tries from anywhere. However they need to be clinical both in attack and defence. Racing will exploit any dropped passes or defensive dog-legs.
This is Leicester's first semi-final since the unforgetable game in Cardiff in 2009, and Racing's first ever semi.


Last edited by LondonTiger on Fri Apr 22, 2016 12:07 pm; edited 4 times in total

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by king_carlos on Sun Apr 24, 2016 5:32 pm

The handling error count was astounding. Especially when that has been such a strength of our game this season since Mauger came in.

Racing were disrupting our ruck ball so well and Lachie was on his own disrupting theirs, short of one Fonau turnover penalty and a busy performance from Thacker. With their aggressive blitz and disruption at the breakdown Youngs was doing nothing but dawdling. Harrison would have been a much better option for the last 20 in order to give Williams quicker service.

I also wish that Thacker had been shifted to 7 with 20 minutes left, Lachie gone to 8 and Slater into the second row. Both Barrow and Kitch had run themselves into the ground in an attempt to counter the Racing defence, they were clearly knackered. Bateman was good in the loose when he came on and Thacker at 7 with Lachie at 8 would have increased our breakdown presence.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by nathan on Sun Apr 24, 2016 5:40 pm

I think we missed burns too when he went off

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by king_carlos on Sun Apr 24, 2016 5:58 pm

Yep we missed Freddie badly. Owen is such a good replacement but still feeling his way back after injury.

Too many of his kicks were either too long so they couldn't be contested or just went straight to the Racing back 3 instead of finding grass. Contrast that with Carter who either kicked short and made absolutely sure it could be contested or went for length and landing kicks just inside the touchline. His nudge into Tigers 22 in the second half that Croft ended up just having to carry into touch was a perfect example of simple tactical play being well executed.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by mikey_dragon on Sun Apr 24, 2016 7:31 pm

Sarries vs Racing should be a good final, and it's the one that I predicted during the group stages... Really hard to pick a winner from those two. I think I'd rather it be Sarries as they at least develop their players (and the ones they buy from other teams) rather than buy all and sundry like the French.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by nathan on Sun Apr 24, 2016 7:50 pm

I think it will be sarries, racing didn't play brilliantly today. It's just that Leicester played even worse.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by LondonTiger on Sun Apr 24, 2016 8:05 pm

Well just got home. Not overly depressed as I never expected us to win, and then we never looked like getting anything during the game. Hugely frustrated with the handling errors though - and in pain from the bloody awful seats.


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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by formerly known as Sam on Sun Apr 24, 2016 8:33 pm

quinsforever wrote:that was actually pretty funny. i was howling for a yellow against imhoff... censored ...then i saw the replay!

Can't blame Owens for that. I had to laugh because it looked a 100% yellow card in normal play and without the TMO he would have walked. Owens checked the replay to make sure he was making the right call, admitted his mistake and then restarted the game with an apology. Not much more he could do.

Tigers positives;

Scrum - even with wee Harry we were all over them. Cole looked back to his imperious best after some good but no more performances this season.

Thacker - is there a more skillful hooker going? His line out work was superb with a twenty metre plus throw perfectly to Manu a highlight.

Defence - big commitment that kept Racing quiet after the first twenty mins.

Tigers negatives;

Barrow - 2016 has seen him keep his physical edge but play with the top two inches however the first half was a return to the 2015 Barrow, aka Dim Barrow. Failure to step in at guard and then not getting low ready for the pick led to the first try and then two dumb kickable penalties meant he helped Racing to 13 points.

Handling - lost us the game. No question, wasn't good enough.


If Racing make that many mistakes against Sarries they will be demolished.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by LondonTiger on Sun Apr 24, 2016 8:39 pm

I could not put the defence as a positive I am afraid. The organisation was dreadful with Racing working much harder to get men into position than we were, while our line charged up far too staggered. Only some Racing ineptitude saved us at times.



Thought Luke Charteris was magnificent, best second row display I have seen this season.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by formerly known as Sam on Sun Apr 24, 2016 8:56 pm

It was for the commitment not the organisation. Last season we were not putting bodies on the line like we were today. Our choice of back row undoubtedly hampered our defensive abilities. We were slow to the breakdown and slow to get into position with three locks and Fonua in the pack.

Charteris showed all his experience, gave good quality ball off the Racing line out under pressure from Kitch and got round the park well. Masoe was huge for them though, his man marking job on Fonua really took him out the game offensively.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by Cardiff Dave on Sun Apr 24, 2016 9:14 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:Sarries vs Racing should be a good final, and it's the one that I predicted during the group stages... Really hard to pick a winner from those two. I think I'd rather it be Sarries as they at least develop their players (and the ones they buy from other teams) rather than buy all and sundry like the French.

Got me thinking, I haven't seen many HEC cup finals at all since it shifted to Sky. Not much of the knockout stages either come to think of it as Cardiff were usually out of it by then.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by sad_gimp on Sun Apr 24, 2016 9:20 pm

Most worrying thing for me is that was supposed to be 2 of the top 4 NH sides in a major semi-final. It was embarassing.

I know Super Rugby is played a little differently but the difference in basic skills execution even by the poorer teams I watched on Saturday was stark.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by yappysnap on Sun Apr 24, 2016 10:08 pm

Always has been, that's part of the reason those countries are the best. Players basic skills.

They do still have dreadful games though.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by formerly known as Sam on Sun Apr 24, 2016 10:32 pm

mid_gen wrote:Most worrying thing for me is that was supposed to be 2 of the top 4 NH sides in a major semi-final. It was embarassing.

I know Super Rugby is played a little differently but the difference in basic skills execution even by the poorer teams I watched on Saturday was stark.

Plenty of former Super 15 players in the sides today. Fitzgerald a former Super 15 winner managed two or three particularly head holding ones.

I can only assume that due to the dry conditions in the Midlands over the last week (when I played yesterday the pitch was rock hard) that the ground staff decided to water the pitch before kick off and that made the ball a bit slippery.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by Rugby Fan on Mon Apr 25, 2016 1:59 am

Counted for nothing in the end, but that quick conversion by Williams was a thing of beauty.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by No 7&1/2 on Mon Apr 25, 2016 8:06 am

Well 100% wrong predictions from these games! Missed the Leicester game but you'd have to say that Saracens were good for their win, completely shut Wasps down except when Wade got the ball. Pressure a little on them in the final now.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by beshocked on Mon Apr 25, 2016 8:47 am

Just one of those days that that final pass didn't quite stick for Leicester, unfortunately this happened again and again.

Mauger's effect can definitely be seen but things still not quite gelling yet.

Carter showed what a class act he is. 14 tackles, I feel that he's going to be the danger man in the final.

Manu was well marshalled, hasn't made the impact at 12 we need to see from him against either Racing Metro or Saints.

If Farrell has another poor game then I am not sure that the Sarries pack will be able to bail out Farrell.

Racing Metro have a big pack, bigger than Wasps.

Fingers crossed Jamie George is fit enough to play.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by LondonTiger on Mon Apr 25, 2016 8:54 am

formerly known as Sam wrote:
mid_gen wrote:Most worrying thing for me is that was supposed to be 2 of the top 4 NH sides in a major semi-final. It was embarassing.

I know Super Rugby is played a little differently but the difference in basic skills execution even by the poorer teams I watched on Saturday was stark.

Plenty of former Super 15 players in the sides today. Fitzgerald a former Super 15 winner managed two or three particularly head holding ones.

I can only assume that due to the dry conditions in the Midlands over the last week (when I played yesterday the pitch was rock hard) that the ground staff decided to water the pitch before kick off and that made the ball a bit slippery.

There was some drizzle in the first half.

However I think the main reason was pressure. Both the pressure of being in a semi-final and the pressure exerted by the Racing defence. Fitz's drop in midfield was a clear example of this, catch and give and it was 3 outside backs v one, but in the face of the rushing player he snatched at it.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by Riskysports on Mon Apr 25, 2016 9:58 am

What was even more worrying was the empty seats.....in a semi final....! Shocked

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by sad_gimp on Mon Apr 25, 2016 9:58 am

Can dress it up with excuses about pressure and a bit of drizzle, but it doesn't get away from the fact that NH teams seem to be falling even further away from SH when it comes to executing basic handling skills. If this was some pool stage dead rubber it would perhaps have been understandable, but it was the semi-finals of the NH's elite competition and it was absolute toss.

Everybody wets themselves over Thacker's offload but really, having an awareness of where your support runners are and being able to pop a ball up to them isn't something we should be getting excited about, it should be the norm.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by LondonTiger on Mon Apr 25, 2016 10:02 am

mid_gen - watch the SH teams skills when they are under pressure, they are not as good in free flowing defence free pool games.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by TJ on Mon Apr 25, 2016 10:03 am

Saracens Wasps I thought poor game for a showpiece. Too much niggle and foul play. Could have easily been a few more yellow cards. I don't watch many ap games so I hope that ws not indicative Wink

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by LondonTiger on Mon Apr 25, 2016 10:05 am

Riskysports wrote:What was even more worrying was the empty seats.....in a semi final....! Shocked

Has been covered to death. At City ground the £35 pound seats - excluding one allocation to Racing were sold out, £45 seats sold well. £60 pound seats (where I was) were much sparser. Thing is though about half the people who watch tigers also have season tickets for City, who were at home thrashing Swansea at the same time. While English clubs can fill Wembley at reduced rates, the number of casual fans willing to spend £60 on a ticket is not high.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by Welly on Mon Apr 25, 2016 10:06 am

mid_gen wrote:

Everybody wets themselves over Thacker's offload but really, having an awareness of where your support runners are and being able to pop a ball up to them isn't something we should be getting excited about, it should be the norm.

What are you on about.

Not many players in the world would of been able to pull that off accurately under pressure in a XV aside game.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by quinsforever on Mon Apr 25, 2016 10:44 am

agree welly. thacker's one handed spin pass offload from the back of his hand as he hit the dirt was extraordinary. he took out two defenders at the same time. amazing.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by LondonTiger on Mon Apr 25, 2016 11:18 am

Was that the one that Croft eventually dropped? Will have to look out for it on recording as you tend to miss fine details from the stands.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by Welly on Mon Apr 25, 2016 11:19 am

LondonTiger wrote:Was that the one that Croft eventually dropped? Will have to look out for it on recording as you tend to miss fine details from the stands.

Enjoy

http://sport.bt.com/video/how-about-this-for-an-offload-from-thacker-91364055046406

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by munkian on Mon Apr 25, 2016 11:25 am

I'm still shocked that Croft was on the wing Very Happy

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Mon Apr 25, 2016 11:30 am

Is Croft not a winger?

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by LondonTiger on Mon Apr 25, 2016 11:51 am

munkian wrote:I'm still shocked that Croft was on the wing Very Happy

It seems to be where Fitz, the guy he replaced, was most of the time too.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by nathan on Mon Apr 25, 2016 12:35 pm

LondonTiger wrote:
Riskysports wrote:What was even more worrying was the empty seats.....in a semi final....! Shocked

Has been covered to death. At City ground the £35 pound seats - excluding one allocation to Racing were sold out, £45 seats sold well. £60 pound seats (where I was) were much sparser. Thing is though about half the people who watch tigers also have season tickets for City, who were at home thrashing Swansea at the same time. While English clubs can fill Wembley at reduced rates, the number of casual fans willing to spend £60 on a ticket is not high.
Ignore him, he's just won the wum because his team were Poopie

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by formerly known as Sam on Mon Apr 25, 2016 12:37 pm

It was a wonderful piece of skill in a game that had mainly been about pragmatism and muscle. Perhaps a little more skill would have seen us through given that Thacker opened up a lot of space with that and Thompstone executed a nice one handed offload to put TV over.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by LondonTiger on Mon Apr 25, 2016 12:42 pm

formerly known as Sam wrote:It was a wonderful piece of skill in a game that had mainly been about pragmatism and muscle. Perhaps a little more skill would have seen us through given that Thacker opened up a lot of space with that and Thompstone executed a nice one handed offload to put TV over.

The flip side to that Sam, is that we appeared to be going into contact carrying one handed to look for the offload much of the time and then lost the ball in contact. Racing did seem to target the ball when making their tackles.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by sad_gimp on Mon Apr 25, 2016 12:48 pm

Welly wrote:

What are you on about.

Not many players in the world would of been able to pull that off accurately under pressure in a XV aside game.

Pff, it was a decent offload, nothing more. That this level of hyperbole is thrown around over one of the few passes that actually went to hand in the game speaks volumes about the skill levels we're accustomed to in the NH.

Personally I think the decision making was questionable, camped in your own 22 against a fast aggressive defence while behind on the scoreboard, looks good when it works though.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by Welly on Mon Apr 25, 2016 12:53 pm

I bet if a SH player did that you would wiping your trouser with toilet paper.

I mean you question the decision making it all steam from a charged down box kick it showed confidence and quick thinking.

Show me what a brilliant offload is then.

A behind the back door under pressure from 2 defender falling to the ground knowing where the player is and thus not needing to look at him.

I can't wait to see what you considering a top both offload.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by formerly known as Sam on Mon Apr 25, 2016 1:04 pm

LondonTiger wrote:
formerly known as Sam wrote:It was a wonderful piece of skill in a game that had mainly been about pragmatism and muscle. Perhaps a little more skill would have seen us through given that Thacker opened up a lot of space with that and Thompstone executed a nice one handed offload to put TV over.

The flip side to that Sam, is that we appeared to be going into contact carrying one handed to look for the offload much of the time and then lost the ball in contact. Racing did seem to target the ball when making their tackles.

To much running into contact with the arm out ready for a hand off. Much easier to move the ball or dummy the player when you've got it in two. Less likely to drop it as well.

Thacker played very well but we missed Tom Youngs directness.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by Welly on Mon Apr 25, 2016 1:08 pm

Yeah Youngs @ 2, Thacker @7 and McCaffrey @8 would of been interesting.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by king_carlos on Mon Apr 25, 2016 1:22 pm

With our lack of breakdown presence on Sunday I wish Thacker had been shifted to 7 with Bateman at hooker, Lachie at 8 and Slater moving to the second row. Barrow and Kitch were knackered with 20 minutes left.

Logo, Bateman, Cole, Barrow/Kitch, Slater, Croft, Thacker, McCaffery
Harrison, Williams, Thompstone, Manu, Betham, Veainu, Tait

That for the last 20 mins could have offered fresher legs earlier, more breakdown impact and slicker service to Williams.

Given the basics mistakes everyone was making it likely wouldn't have changed the end results though.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by sad_gimp on Mon Apr 25, 2016 2:23 pm

Welly wrote: I bet if a SH player did that you would wiping your trouser with toilet paper.

I mean you question the decision making it all steam from a charged down box kick it showed confidence and quick thinking.

Show me what a brilliant offload is then.

A behind the back door under pressure from 2 defender falling to the ground knowing where the player is and thus not needing to look at him.

I can't wait to see what you considering a top both offload.

Maybe it's because I watched the Leicester v Racing game off the back of watching this one on Saturday :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cWwrwDOoe1c

Watch that and tell me there is not a yawning gap in basic ball handling skills at present.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by Welly on Mon Apr 25, 2016 2:26 pm

mid_gen wrote:
Welly wrote: I bet if a SH player did that you would wiping your trouser with toilet paper.

I mean you question the decision making it all steam from a charged down box kick it showed confidence and quick thinking.

Show me what a brilliant offload is then.

A behind the back door under pressure from 2 defender falling to the ground knowing where the player is and thus not needing to look at him.

I can't wait to see what you considering a top both offload.

Maybe it's because I watched the Leicester v Racing game off the back of watching this one on Saturday :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cWwrwDOoe1c

Watch that and tell me there is not a yawning gap in basic ball handling skills at present.

That isn't the point.

No one in that game produced an offload like that.

Of course the gap is huge im not debating that, im debating the fact you called Thackers offload Average to decent at best when actually it was a top class offload.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by sad_gimp on Mon Apr 25, 2016 2:39 pm

I'm not trying to knock Thacker, it was a nice offload, but as you can see from those highlights, it's not something reserved for handful of gifted players, it's something that SH players do all the time. I just want to see NH hemisphere teams start playing a brand of rugby that's going to make us competitive on the world stage.

I don't think the hyperbole we get up here when a forward manages to chuck an offload is good for our competitiveness. We should *expect* players in all positions to have the skills to execute a play like that.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by nathan on Mon Apr 25, 2016 2:41 pm

You are aware that there are Poopie games in the super rugby too, it's not all glitzy stuff

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by Welly on Mon Apr 25, 2016 2:44 pm

mid_gen wrote:I'm not trying to knock Thacker, it was a nice offload, but as you can see from those highlights, it's not something reserved for handful of gifted players, it's something that SH players do all the time. I just want to see NH hemisphere teams start playing a brand of rugby that's going to make us competitive on the world stage.

I don't think the hyperbole we get up here when a forward manages to chuck an offload is good for our competitiveness. We should *expect* players in all positions to have the skills to execute a play like that.

ermm none of those players did a offload like that though and that offload would require a gifted player to pull it off.

I agree the standard is poor, but I'm just saying that offload would of gotten just as much praise if not more if he had done it in a super rugby match, hell the commentators where raving about Coles offload which was nowhere near the difficulty of Thackers.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by beshocked on Mon Apr 25, 2016 2:58 pm

Brits did something like that against quins a couple of weeks ago....

Passed the ball basketball style for Ashton for an easy run in try, that was after he cut the quins defence open like a knife through hot butter.

http://sport.bt.com/video/highlights-saracens-22-12-harlequins-91364052416313


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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by sad_gimp on Mon Apr 25, 2016 3:09 pm

Welly wrote:
mid_gen wrote:I'm not trying to knock Thacker, it was a nice offload, but as you can see from those highlights, it's not something reserved for handful of gifted players, it's something that SH players do all the time. I just want to see NH hemisphere teams start playing a brand of rugby that's going to make us competitive on the world stage.

I don't think the hyperbole we get up here when a forward manages to chuck an offload is good for our competitiveness. We should *expect* players in all positions to have the skills to execute a play like that.

ermm none of those players did a offload like that though and that offload would require a gifted player to pull it off.

I agree the standard is poor, but I'm just saying that offload would of gotten just as much praise if not more if he had done it in a super rugby match, hell the commentators where raving about Coles offload which was nowhere near the difficulty of Thackers.

I don't want to continue a debate about semantics and the relative quality of the offloads. Suffice to say NH rugby seems to be on a downward trend relative to the SH sides at the moment. Even Western Force who got thrashed by the Waratahs put on a better performance than either of the teams in what was meant to be the semi-final of the NH's elite tournament.

It's not good enough. I wouldn't mind the differing styles of the NH and SH if the direct, attritional NH style was more effective than the SH approach. It isn't. We keep losing over and over and over again to more skillful SH teams.

It's blindingly obvious that most NH players have their brains coached out of them. Before they've even received the ball they've decided they're going to bosh it straight up into the first defender they can see. Drives me nuts.

Glad I got that off my chest Cool

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by Welly on Mon Apr 25, 2016 3:20 pm

I agree with all that.

You just have to look at the difference in attitudes between England's U18, U20 and senior rugby.

U18 - Plays pretty much entirely on instinct, confident to back themselves and throw the offload.
U20 - Starting to get coached in senior teams, looking more at route one more one dimensional rugby, playing more forward dominant rugby.
Seniors - Only players considered attacking minded and gifted are looking to play adventurous rugby instead of it being more of the norm.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by eirebilly on Mon Apr 25, 2016 3:34 pm

3 citing's from the weekends games.

http://www.bbc.com/sport/rugby-union/36130239

Glad to see Farrell cited, I have often felt him to be a nasty player at times. That said, its not the worst thing he has done.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by quinsforever on Mon Apr 25, 2016 4:39 pm

not sure why farrell cited. commissioner needs to feel farrell should have been red carded in order to cite...

i wouldnt even have given him a yellow. robson clearly slipped. farrell went into that tackle low but they ended up colliding heads as robson slipped.


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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by beshocked on Mon Apr 25, 2016 4:51 pm

Wasn't a red agreed but it was clumsy, bit reckless. Probably YC was fair.

I think it will be thrown out because of the slip.

eirebilly yup Farrell Jr has a reputation for poor discipline and cheapshots, needs to sort himself out.

Good rugby player though.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by kingelderfield on Mon Apr 25, 2016 7:25 pm

Observations;

Wade had a good game and with more of the same over the next month will I hope be on the plane to Oz. Still think he's lost a yard though.

Lots of knackered players. Its been a very long season and the fatigue is really showing. Those who do make it south will hopefully be selected for their form and fitness and so anyone carry a knock must be rested.

Real shame for Burns, it did look like it might be season ending. Also I thought Tuilagi was definitely struggling from early in the game which may account for his limited impact and also perhaps effect the remainder of his season.

Youngs was just awful. The worst game I think I've seen from him even though he has been poor all year. Send him to the beach now.

Robson has got all the plaudits with his recent performances (and quite rightly so), however surely I was not the only one to notice the pace Simpson put on the game? My call is he must go to Oz.

Overall the right sides won, though I was disappointed that Wasps played into Sarries hands with their kicking tactics and it was only when they reverted to type that they threatened to take the game.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

Post by LondonTiger on Mon Apr 25, 2016 7:35 pm

I thought Robson was much better than Simpson, with the later's service ponderous and loopy. I thought Simpson extracted all speed from the Wasps game and flushed it down the toilet, as good as lost them any chance of winning the game.

Robson hopefully is not badly injured.

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Re: Champions Cup Semi-Finals - 23/24 April

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