Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

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Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by propdavid_london on Thu 12 May 2016, 1:25 pm

         
Harlequins v Montpellier Herault
13 May 2016
KO: 21:00 local (20:00 BST)
Grand Stade de Lyon

Live on FR4, BeIN Sports, BT Sport, Sky Sports

Referee John Lacey (Ireland)
Touch Judge 1 Marius Mitrea (Italy)
Touch Judge 2 Peter Fitzgibbon (Ireland)
TMO Jim Yuille (Scotland)
Citing Commissioner Eugene Ryan (Ireland)

Harlequins

Brown; Yarde, Lowe, Roberts, Visser; Evans, Care (capt); Marler, Gray, Jones, Horwill, Twomey, Robshaw, Wallace, Easter.

Replacements: Ward, Lambert, Sinckler, Luamanu, Clifford, Dickson, Botica, Chisholm.

Montpellier Herault

Fall; Nagusa, Tuitavake, Steyn, O'Connor; Catrakilis, White; Nariashvili, B. Du Plessis, Jannie Du Plessis, Jacques Du Plessis, Willemse, Ouedraogo (capt), Qera, Spies.

Replacements: Ivaldi, Watremez, Kubriashvili, Timani, Galletier, Paillaugue, Ebersohn, Mogg.

Both teams look to be going full out with strong squads and minimal injuries.

Official preview:
PREVIEW: So much at stake in emotional final

There is more than just the Challenge Cup at stake for Harlequins in Lyon on Friday night. Victory over Montpellier will not only earn them a fourth European title, but will also guarantee them a place in next season's Champions Cup.

Having slumped to a record home defeat in the Aviva Premiership last weekend, conceding 10 tries against a rampant Exeter Chiefs team in a totally unexpected 62-24 hammering, everyone connected with the club will be hoping for a better send-off for Conor O'Shea after his six-year stint as director of rugby.

O'Shea apologised to the Quins supporters at the end of his final home fixture. What is will be looking for at Grand Stade de Lyon is a reaction to that defeat to help deliver a fourth major trophy during his reign.

But O'Shea knows full well it will take more than a reaction to beat the team currently lying in second place in the TOP 14. Quins will have to be at their very, very best to overcome a Montpellier side seeking to win the biggest prize in their brief history.

While Harlequins are all-set to celebrate their 150th anniversary next season, Montpellier wee formed out of an amalgamation of the Stade Montpelliérain and MUC Rugby clubs in 1986. They won the PRO D2 title in 2003 to qualify for European for the first time and celebrated by winning the third-tier tournament, the European Shield, in 2004.

In 2007, current captain Fulgence Ouedraogo became their first French international and in 2011 they reached the French Championship final. They lost that game in Paris to Toulouse and won't want to slip up again no French soil when they march on Lyon.

They lost twice in the pool stages, going down 41-18 at Harlequins and 37-27 at the BT Sport Arms Park against Cardiff Blues, but still managed to finish as runners-up to the Quins with a 42-9 final round victory over their final rivals. That makes in game in Lyon the decider!

Former World Cup winning coach Jake White has a squad packed full of winners from around the world and won't want to let slip the opportunity to pick up some significant silverware. Last weekend's defeat at La Rochelle will have focussed the mind as they bid to stay on course for two titles.

While Danny Care's side will be seeking the perfect send-off for O'Shea, Montpellier will want to send their legendary tight-head prop Nicolas Mas into retirement with a winners' medal at the end of his 16th season in European competition.

Demetri Catrakilis looks like being given the nod to don the No 10 jersey ahead of Francois Trinh Duc and Ben Lucas, while Nick White is on stand-by to start at scrum half following Benoit Paillaugue's slight injury last weekend.

But while Montpellier are well blessed in the goalkicking department with Catrakilis and Paillaugue, it is in the front five where their real power lies. Newport Gent Dragons buckled against the Montpellier pack at the set-piece in the semi-finals and there is likely to be a battle royal between the French side's Springbok front row and the Quins' Grand Slam props Joe Marler and Adam Jones.

Whoever comes out on top in that department, you feel, will gain a significant advantage on which to build a winning game plan. Other than that, it is too close to call.

Match Notes
- This will be the fifth meeting between the clubs in the competition; Harlequins have won three of the previous four encounters, although Montpellier won the most recent clash in Round 6 in January.
- The meeting between Harlequins and Montpellier at the Twickenham Stoop in Round 1 was the opening fixture of this season's European competitions.
- All four matches between the sides have seen over 50 points scored, with an average of 60.
- This will be Montpellier's first appearance in the Challenge Cup final, while Harlequins have reached this stage three times before and won all three, all against TOP 14 opposition.
- This will be the seventh Anglo-French final in the Challenge Cup, with Premiership clubs winning five of the previous six.
Montpellier have won eight of their last nine in the Challenge Cup against Premiership opposition, although their one defeat in that run was against Harlequins in Round 1.
- Montpellier (16) have scored the most first-half tries of any team in the competition this season, while Harlequins have scored the most in the second-half. (24).
- Danny Care has been directly involved in nine tries in the competition this season (five tries, four assists), more than any other player.
- Ben Botica has beaten 28 defenders, more than any other player, while teammate Marland Yarde has beaten the second most (23).
- Montpellier's Akapusi Qera (86) has made the most carries in the competition this season, while Jack Clifford (78) has made the second most.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by propdavid_london on Thu 12 May 2016, 1:25 pm

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/36267417

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by propdavid_london on Thu 12 May 2016, 1:47 pm

I haven't seen much of Montpelliers games, and I hadn't realised that N.White and that's where O'Connor had landed!

Its a proper mountain for Quins to climb.
But, they have the motivation from last week to perform, wanting to give COS a send-off, and the recent tragedy of Seb. Hopefully they will leave it all out on the field.

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Challenge Cup Final Montpellier v Harlequins Friday 13th May

Post by yappysnap on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:25 pm

Montpellier: 15 Benjamin Fall, 14 Timoci Nagusa, 13 Anthony Tuitavke, 12 Frans Steyn, 11 Marvin O'Connor, 10 Demetri Catrakilis, 9 Nic White; 1 Mikheil Nariashvili, 2 Bismarck Du Plessis, 3 Jannie Du Plessis, 4 Jacques Du Plessis, 5 Paul Willemse, 6 Fulgence Ouedraogo (c), 7 Akapusi Qera, 8 Pierre Spies.

Replacements: 16 Mickael Ivaldi, 17 Yvan Watremez, 18 Davit Kubriashvili, 19 Sitaleki Timani, 20 Kelian Galletier, 21 Benoit Paillaugue, 22 Robert Ebersohn, 23 Jesse Mogg.


Harlequins: 15 Mike Brown, 14 Marland Yarde, 13 George Lowe, 12 Jamie Roberts, 11 Tim Visser, 10 Nick Evans, 9 Danny Care (c); 1 Joe Marler, 2 Joe Gray, 3 Adam Jones, 4 James Horwill, 5 Sam Twomey, 6 Chris Robshaw, 7 Luke Wallace, 8 Nick Easter.

Replacements: 16 Dave Ward, 17 Mark Lambert, 18 Kyle Sinckler, 19 Mat Luamanu, 20 Jack Clifford, 21 Karl Dickson, 22 Ben Botica, 23 Ross Chisholm.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by yappysnap on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:27 pm

Wow.

3 French players in the Montpellier starting line up.

6 SA players
1 Ozzie
And a few others

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by LondonTiger on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:28 pm

Posher title but duplicate thread

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by yappysnap on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:28 pm

Strongest possible Quins team though. Really pleases to see that line up.

We need a massive forward effort, if we can dominate possession, control the speed of the game, keep it quick and not let Montpellier maul us to death then we can win this.

If it becomes a kicking contest, or we keep infringing and letting the French set up mauls then we'll lose badly.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by mikey_dragon on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:29 pm

They play such a limited game, just shut it down.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by yappysnap on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:29 pm

Ah, how did I miss that?

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by yappysnap on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:29 pm

Mods could you merge please?

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by yappysnap on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:30 pm

Montpellier: 15 Benjamin Fall, 14 Timoci Nagusa, 13 Anthony Tuitavke, 12 Frans Steyn, 11 Marvin O'Connor, 10 Demetri Catrakilis, 9 Nic White; 1 Mikheil Nariashvili, 2 Bismarck Du Plessis, 3 Jannie Du Plessis, 4 Jacques Du Plessis, 5 Paul Willemse, 6 Fulgence Ouedraogo (c), 7 Akapusi Qera, 8 Pierre Spies.

Replacements: 16 Mickael Ivaldi, 17 Yvan Watremez, 18 Davit Kubriashvili, 19 Sitaleki Timani, 20 Kelian Galletier, 21 Benoit Paillaugue, 22 Robert Ebersohn, 23 Jesse Mogg.


Harlequins: 15 Mike Brown, 14 Marland Yarde, 13 George Lowe, 12 Jamie Roberts, 11 Tim Visser, 10 Nick Evans, 9 Danny Care (c); 1 Joe Marler, 2 Joe Gray, 3 Adam Jones, 4 James Horwill, 5 Sam Twomey, 6 Chris Robshaw, 7 Luke Wallace, 8 Nick Easter.

Replacements: 16 Dave Ward, 17 Mark Lambert, 18 Kyle Sinckler, 19 Mat Luamanu, 20 Jack Clifford, 21 Karl Dickson, 22 Ben Botica, 23 Ross Chisholm.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by yappysnap on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:31 pm

It's a different O'Connor Prop.

Agree Mikey they are pretty limited, but if we're as silly as we have been we can gift them a lot of mauls to score off.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by LondonTiger on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:32 pm

Oh and excuse my ignorance but who is the 3rd French man? Can spot Fall and Oudrago but.....

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by LondonTiger on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:37 pm

Not seen much of Montpelier - but 70 tries in the T14 is not to be sniffed at. Admittedly one more game, but that is more than any Pro12 team and all AP teams bar Wasps and Exeter.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by George Carlin on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:38 pm

yappysnap wrote:Mods could you merge please?
Done, innit. Now to tidy up a little.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by LondonTiger on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:39 pm

George Carlin wrote:
yappysnap wrote:Mods could you merge please?
Done, innit. Now to tidy up a little.

Need a broom?

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by lostinwales on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:41 pm

LondonTiger wrote:Oh and excuse my ignorance but who is the 3rd French man? Can spot Fall and Oudrago but.....

I make it 7 SA - maybe that is where the mix up is.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by George Carlin on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:51 pm

LondonTiger wrote:
George Carlin wrote:
yappysnap wrote:Mods could you merge please?
Done, innit. Now to tidy up a little.

Need a broom?
guinness

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by LondonTiger on Thu 12 May 2016, 3:52 pm

Marvin O'Connor is my missing 3rd - who woulda thunk it

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by propdavid_london on Thu 12 May 2016, 4:09 pm

LondonTiger wrote:Posher title but duplicate thread
Ha, much more effort put in than me

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by propdavid_london on Thu 12 May 2016, 4:14 pm

There is a real risk of Quins just getting blasted off the pitch if they don't front up from the beginning.
Lots of guys coming in from injury or concussion lay offs.....so they are either fresh or rusty!

Friday 13th....anything could happen.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by yappysnap on Thu 12 May 2016, 5:39 pm

George Carlin wrote:
yappysnap wrote:Mods could you merge please?
Done, innit. Now to tidy up a little.

Jesus what a mess we've made!

This is what happens when you let the kids play with the grown up stuff

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by formerly known as Sam on Thu 12 May 2016, 10:26 pm

No Trunh-Duc is a big boost for Quins. Montpellier have looked a far more creative attacking threat when he's played, in the game or two I've seen of them

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by RiscaGame on Thu 12 May 2016, 11:22 pm

Torn between wanting Doc Roberts and Adam Jones to win and for Dragons to have lost to the winners.

Hope Joe Marler enjoys his freebie though.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by whocares on Fri 13 May 2016, 8:30 am

Surprised Paillaugue is not making the 1st team. Been maybe the best SH of the top14 during the last 6months.
His box kick is maybe not good enough for Jake White rugby?
Haven't followed recent Marler shenanigans but wasn't he cited in the After the SF game?

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by sensisball on Fri 13 May 2016, 9:09 am

Yea Paillaugue has played well when i've watched the Languedoc Boks and White has been pants when he has come on. At least if he is still rubbish then Paillauge can come on and stabilize things.

Marler was quite luck to get only a two week ban for kicking Heguy in the head, so he is clear to play this one.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by Mad for Chelsea on Fri 13 May 2016, 1:07 pm

really don't like what White has done to Montpellier. Took over a side who played expansive attacking rugby. Brought in lots of South Africans, and turned them into a team who bashes sides up front and mauls them to death. Everything that's wrong with French club rugby epitomised right there. Hope Quins smash 'em!

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by sad_gimp on Fri 13 May 2016, 1:51 pm

Hunting around for a bar here in Toronto to watch this, good quins squad, hope we get a reaction from last week's drubbing!

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by sad_gimp on Fri 13 May 2016, 7:15 pm

Jeez getting a bit desparate, the game is televised here but I can't find a bar that has the channel! 45 mins to go....

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by TJ on Fri 13 May 2016, 8:55 pm

Entertaining game - great try to separate the sides.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by doctor_grey on Fri 13 May 2016, 9:37 pm

Just turned on the match. Glad Quins are hanging in there, but not so happy they are losing. Would like to see COS go out on a positive note. But that Springbok...........err Montpelier side is really stacked.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by doctor_grey on Fri 13 May 2016, 9:42 pm

Nice try. OK, I think it was lucky and the grubber the wrong decision. But OK, we might still have a match??????

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by formerly known as Sam on Fri 13 May 2016, 9:53 pm

Why did Quins only start playing after the second Mogg try? The offloading game was missing until then. As soon as that came then Montpellier were scrambling. As for Botica, what an idiot.

Montpellier were big and horrible, their replacement scrum half was pretty special off the bench.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by doctor_grey on Fri 13 May 2016, 9:53 pm

Confirmed: Botica is the stupidest Rugby player in the world.
Or a sleeper agent infiltrated into the Harlequins side to derail any chance of success.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by Pot Hale on Fri 13 May 2016, 9:54 pm

Ben Botica has brain fart of the season.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by quinsforever on Fri 13 May 2016, 9:55 pm

What happened? I missed the game as I'm on a train...

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by Pot Hale on Fri 13 May 2016, 9:56 pm

Botica becomes a Montpellier player at midnight.  

Quins Dressing room would be interesting. 

With the losing team tonight; with the winning team tomorrow morning.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by Fuzzy Dunlop on Fri 13 May 2016, 9:57 pm

Botica made sure Quins picked up the losing bonus point by kicking the ball away after time was up. Smart man clap

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by Pot Hale on Fri 13 May 2016, 9:58 pm

quinsforever wrote:What happened? I missed the game as I'm on a train...
Last play of the match. Harlequins get ball ready to launch attack to get an equalising score as long as they can keep the ball. 

Botica gets it and kicks it downfield. The Montpellier can't believe it as they catch the ball and kick it into the stands.  Game over.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by quinsforever on Fri 13 May 2016, 9:59 pm

He's never come across as the smartest tool in the shed. Mind you our last 2 captains have been marler and robshaw...so....

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by doctor_grey on Fri 13 May 2016, 9:59 pm

Pot Hale wrote:Botica becomes a Montpellier player at midnight.  

Quins Dressing room would be interesting. 

With the losing team tonight; with the winning team tomorrow morning.
Would you want him on your team?

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by Pot Hale on Fri 13 May 2016, 10:03 pm

doctor_grey wrote:
Pot Hale wrote:Botica becomes a Montpellier player at midnight.  

Quins Dressing room would be interesting. 

With the losing team tonight; with the winning team tomorrow morning.
Would you want him on your team?  
Indeed, Doc. That thought had occurred to me too. 

The Montpellier coach might be doing some thinking tomorrow morning. 

Botica has form for those kind of incidents it would appear

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by Pot Hale on Fri 13 May 2016, 10:04 pm

But of a dismal end for O'Shea.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by doctor_grey on Fri 13 May 2016, 10:10 pm

Pot Hale wrote:But of a dismal end for O'Shea.
Exactly. Shame.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by doctor_grey on Fri 13 May 2016, 10:17 pm

Pot Hale wrote:
doctor_grey wrote:
Pot Hale wrote:Botica becomes a Montpellier player at midnight.  

Quins Dressing room would be interesting. 

With the losing team tonight; with the winning team tomorrow morning.
Would you want him on your team?  
Indeed, Doc. That thought had occurred to me too. 

The Montpellier coach might be doing some thinking tomorrow morning. 

Botica has form for those kind of incidents it would appear
I have to admit, my Saints benefited from another of Botica's displays of brilliance. The game was won for Quins with time over 80, and instead of kicking the ball dead, he missed and it went to the Saints who eventually scored.

To be serious, if I am a coach or player, the ability to trust a teammate in crunch time is everything. I do wonder how he will be regarded by either Montpelier, who will be celebrating their new teammate's error, or Quins, who will be looking at him skeptically, to say the least.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by yappysnap on Fri 13 May 2016, 10:46 pm

Gutted.

Gutted for certain players who gave their all and gutted for CoS to leave Quins on that note.

There are some players who need to take this off season to look at themselves, and should be very grateful they're wearing the quarters next season.

And for the love of god can we get a couple of bigger forwards for next season!

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by yappysnap on Fri 13 May 2016, 10:53 pm

Evans misses from the tee

Visser dropping the ball at the line

Montpelliers dominance in the tight

They were all just as important as Botica's kick, but boy was that dumb.


Last edited by yappysnap on Sat 14 May 2016, 6:50 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by David-Douglas on Sat 14 May 2016, 12:33 am

picard Too many mistakes. I think Care fumbled one near the line too.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by doctor_grey on Sat 14 May 2016, 1:18 am

David-Douglas wrote: picard Too many mistakes. I think Care fumbled one near the line too.
.........and the fumbled lineout by Twomey down near the Montpelier line. Agree far too many errors.

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by propdavid_london on Mon 16 May 2016, 9:22 am

Far too many errors, its the story of the season for Quins. None of the big names really stepping up and performing as they can.

propdavid_london

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Re: Challenge Cup Final: Montpellier v Harlequins, Friday 13th May

Post by Sponsored content Today at 8:31 pm


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