Ireland 6 Nations chat

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Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by wolfball on Mon 08 Jan 2018, 3:57 pm

First topic message reminder :

Geoff on the Ulster thread created a clever analysis on squad depth and I am taking a crack at a similar one for Ireland in advance of the 6 nations:

My assumptions are based on a squad of 36 (not the 40 Joe named last year). Players categories into 4 ratings:

World class = top three in position in world, and/or Lions test starter
International class = would make the team for other tier 1 nations
Below international class - would not make the team for other tier 1 nations
Exciting prospect - show potential to be a real asset

Ideally we have one world class and 2 international class per position.

TH (3)
World class - Furlong
International class - Ryan
Exciting prospect - Porter

Assessment - Drop off after Furlong, but not as steep as with hooker

Hooker (3)
International class - Best, Cronin (instead of Tracy)
Below international class - Herring

Assessment - Our weakest forward position, with a big drop off after Best

LH (3)
World class - McGrath (Lions bench for all three tests, scrapes in here)
International class - Healy, Kilcoyne

Assessment - Most consistently strong position in front row, all three are great players and Healy may well rereach his world class heights in 2018. Add in Moore and its a great position for us

Lock (5)
International class - Henderson, Toner
Below international class - Dillane, Roux (instead of Treadwell)
Exciting prospect - Ryan

Assessment - good first team pair, with some exciting prospects coming through.

Flankers (6)
World class - POM
International class - VDF, Murphy (Instead of TOD, Ruddock and SOB out due to injury)
Exciting prospect - Leavy

Assessment - embarrasment of riches!

No. 8 (2)

International class - Stander, Conan
Assessment - Very strong, with multiple flankers also able to play there

Scrumhalf (3)
World class - Murray
Below international class - Marmion, McGrath

Assessment - big drop off after Murray. Marmion/McGrath neither have been able to fully translate provincial form to ireland

Flyhalf (3)
World class - Sexton
Below international class - Keatley
Exciting prospect - Carberry

Assessment - Sexton staying fit is essential to winning in Twickenham, the drop off after that is huge.

Centers (5)
International class - Henshaw, Aki,
Below international class -  Farrell
Exciting prospect -Scannell (Instead of Ringrose and McCloskey)

Assessment - strong, if not the most exciting group of players.

Wings (5)
International class - Earls
Below international class - Conway, McFadden (Instead of Byrne, Sweetnam)
Exciting prospect - Stockdale

Assessment - some exciting young players coming through, but think Earls will start

Fullback (2)
International class - Kearney
Exciting prospect - Larmour

Assessment - Kearney continues to show his class in the big games and will start 3/4 of the 6 nations, I think Larmour has a good shot of starting the others. TOH if not.


Last edited by wolfball on Wed 17 Jan 2018, 5:01 pm; edited 2 times in total

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by eirebilly on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 3:52 pm

mid_gen wrote:This Italy team can play in stints....

There attack was greatly helped by Henshaw going off and Earls going into 13. Not that Earls is a bad 13, he just does not play there as much as he used too and is a far better threat on the wing.
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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by Pete330v2 on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 3:53 pm

Marmion is kak at the wraparounds Billy Smile

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by WELL-PAST-IT on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 3:54 pm

Do the defence no longer have to retreat from a penalty or allow the player to go 10m before he is tackled. The Irish defence just went strait at Parise when he took a quick one from about 5m behind the point of the offence.


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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by eirebilly on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 3:55 pm

Pete330v2 wrote:Marmion is kak at the wraparounds Billy Smile

He is there on the field for Ireland, Where is Cooney? Wink
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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by eirebilly on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 4:01 pm

For me it has been Earls as MoTM. Another excellent tackle from him to deny Italy a TBP clap
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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by eirebilly on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 4:04 pm

A much much improved performance tactically from Ireland, not sure many teams would have lived with them playing like that. As poor as Italy are, this was an absolutely brilliant performance from Ireland.

This is how I know and want Ireland to play.

Big negatives in losing Furlong and Henshaw though, both may not feature in the rest of the 6N.
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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by TightHEAD on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 4:05 pm

What’s with all the birds in the itv studio?
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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by No 7&1/2 on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 4:08 pm

Speaks more sense than a lot

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by carpet baboon on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 4:08 pm

TightHEAD wrote:What’s with all the birds in the itv studio?

Well one is a professional presenter and the other has won a rugby world cup.

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by TightHEAD on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 4:11 pm

Debatable an I don’t care about a woman’s RWC.
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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by carpet baboon on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 4:13 pm

TightHEAD wrote:Debatable an I don’t care about a woman’s RWC.

I'm sure they don't really care about your opinion either

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by carpet baboon on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 4:26 pm

So who comes in to the centres against Wales?

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by eirebilly on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 4:28 pm

carpet baboon wrote:So who comes in to the centres against Wales?

I really hope that Schmidt doesn't go with Earls at 13. He really needs to stay out on the wing where he is far better.
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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by LeinsterFan4life on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 4:30 pm

eirebilly wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:So who comes in to the centres against Wales?

I really hope that Schmidt doesn't go with Earls at 13. He really needs to stay out on the wing where he is far better.
Scannel at 12 and Aki at 13?

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by carpet baboon on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 4:31 pm

But who else do we have for 13? Unless we slide Bundi out one and brink mckloskey or scanell into 12

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by eirebilly on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 4:33 pm

Scannell is not a bad option at 13, he has played there for Munster effectively on occasions. I would just prefer to keep Earls on the wing.
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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by Pete330v2 on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 5:09 pm

eirebilly wrote:
Pete330v2 wrote:Marmion is kak at the wraparounds Billy Smile

He is there on the field for Ireland, Where is Cooney? Wink

Perfecting the wraparound for next year in the important games Wink

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by geoff999rugby on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 7:21 pm

Marshall is fit so he may well get called up

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by carpet baboon on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 8:05 pm

The press are reporting that Farrell will get the 13 shirt for Wales?

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by SecretFly on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 8:17 pm

carpet baboon wrote:The press are reporting that Farrell will get the 13 shirt for Wales?

Fecking traitor!

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by mikey_dragon on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 9:16 pm

Faz? Smile

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by mikey_dragon on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 9:30 pm

An important Irishman and an even more important Italianman think Ireland will win the tournament, and believe they play better rugby than England. Who agrees with these important people?

On Italy being gash... yeah they're just that. We don't solve that problem by kicking them out. We leave them in and try to help them improve, although not sure how we can all do that? I certainly wouldn't swap them with Georgia. I think the Georgians would also be a 50-60 pointers and that they'd keep yo-yoing with Italy. 7 Nations might be a better option.

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by SecretFly on Sat 10 Feb 2018, 9:41 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:An important Irishman and an even more important Italianman think Ireland will win the tournament, and believe they play better rugby than England. Who agrees with these important people?

On Italy being gash... yeah they're just that. We don't solve that problem by kicking them out. We leave them in and try to help them improve, although not sure how we can all do that? I certainly wouldn't swap them with Georgia. I think the Georgians would also be a 50-60 pointers and that they'd keep yo-yoing with Italy. 7 Nations might be a better option.

Italy's U20 side lost a man to a red card last night almost from the beginning of the game.  Ireland went on to drill them and ended up on 38 points.........  poor Italy, with the one man down all game, ended up with only 34!....playing some lovely adventurous stuff and never looked frightened by the task at hand even when they were miles away on the scoreline.

Italy have a big fight in a big country for an enthusiastic following...but what I saw last night was impressive from a younger generation.

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by eirebilly on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 9:59 am

That was exactly the way Ireland can play yesterday, very positive signs but I hope they keep this going for the rest of the tournament. Losing Furlong and Henshaw (anyone know the extent of their injuries?) is a massive blow for Ireland especially since there is no fit, direct replacement for Henshaw at 13 (Marshall, Scannell?).

What a talent young Larmour is looking to be, obviously very nervous on his first cap but once those feet got moving, he looked well at home.

I think Ireland slowed down and were more open in defence when Earls moved to 13. This is not his position and he rarely plays there now and it was clear to see. Still the best winger in Ireland but he is just that, a winger. For me he was Ireland's best player yesterday closely followed by Kearney who I thought was very good as well.
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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by SecretFly on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 10:37 am

Hard to know now.  And this before the Scotland French game too...one of those sides is going to be back in the hunt by the end of the day as well. Wales aren't out yet either by a long shot.

But it's hard to know how to compare all of it so as to come up with ideas about relative ability between this current Irish squad, current Welsh side, current Scottish and English sides.

The English/Welsh game was a bit of a laugh in terms of the game played, given the criticism of France/Ireland last week.  The game kinda ground to a halt in the middle pretty much as two teams cancelled each other out.  But on the evidence of those two fighting together, I don't think Ireland would be overly concerned by either ON yesterday's performances anyway.  
I still think our Grind game is tougher than any other Nation's grind game in the 6N.  Our vulnerability - as always - is when we allow ourselves to be stretched at the edges, when we allow really fast teams to get a tempo of attack going. They don't have to be exceptional at it - all they have to be is persistent with it and harry us tirelessly - and in the end they'll get their space to punish us. So our defence, when we're actually trying to play offensively ourselves, is a big weakness of ours.

It was a good performance by Ireland but I don't really see it being a blueprint Schmidt will use against the remaining opponents.  Italy are Italy, and despite Conor's desire to talk up their efforts, they are far too easy a challenge to be any kind of yardstick about how Ireland might play against better organised sides.

The substitution decisions I didn't like at all.  It didn't give good young players a chance to shine but instead gave them too many loose ends to tie up on their own without a necessary central figure to keep things organised.   I wanted Carbery on yes, but at 15...WITH Sexton still on.   But what we got was a complete change of 9 and 10 and, almost in an instant, the framework of the team became more fragile.  Young players then sometimes just couldn't maintain the rhythm of the first half - understandably too.  Kearney stayed on and yes, provided a modicum of leadership when needed but he was pretty tired himself.  If Sexton needed rest, so did he?

I hope there is a little left-of-field team selection for Wales.  I think we could really use now an extra edge/threat on the field at the same time as our designated playmakers (Sexton and Murray).  We need something much less predictable at 15 so that teams will have to spread out their focus on where Ireland's drive might come from and give our backs more opportunities to exploit that rare resource...space.

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by SecretFly on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 11:15 am

oh ps. - don't want speaking ill of the ...ill................. but was Henshaw a little guilty for his own injury?  His wasn't the most pronounced example of the day but still, I'm not liking these put-downs.... the mini-me Ash Splashes.  Young Stockdale and others like them but they're risky.  We don't need avoidable arm sprains, elbow sprains, shoulder fractures, displacements etc etc.  The game is tough enough as it stands.  

Some will say the risks of injury are almost non-existent, I say when you are buzzing for a line and your adrenalin is up and you then instantly release all that muscle tension in that last graceful release as you let yourself fall to the ground in glory........ that is a fine moment for your muscles to forget their job and leave your sinews and bones exposed to the shocks of impact on their own.

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by eirebilly on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 11:36 am

Not sure how Henshaw can be seen as causing his own injury there Fly, he was fending off an Italian defender and reaching to score the try. It was more unfortunate than anything. Henshaw has never struck me as a show boat kind of finisher.
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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by LeinsterFan4life on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 11:45 am

SecretFly wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:An important Irishman and an even more important Italianman think Ireland will win the tournament, and believe they play better rugby than England. Who agrees with these important people?

On Italy being gash... yeah they're just that. We don't solve that problem by kicking them out. We leave them in and try to help them improve, although not sure how we can all do that? I certainly wouldn't swap them with Georgia. I think the Georgians would also be a 50-60 pointers and that they'd keep yo-yoing with Italy. 7 Nations might be a better option.

Italy's U20 side lost a man to a red card last night almost from the beginning of the game.  Ireland went on to drill them and ended up on 38 points.........  poor Italy, with the one man down all game, ended up with only 34!....playing some lovely adventurous stuff and never looked frightened by the task at hand even when they were miles away on the scoreline.

Italy have a big fight in a big country for an enthusiastic following...but what I saw last night was impressive from a younger generation.
There are a lot of countries out there that would love to be in the competitions Italy are playing in. It's time they stop taking their position for granted and start taking rugby seriously. Thankfully it looks like they are on the right track with the appointment of COS and their improving results in the u20s. But there have been many false dawns already in Italian rugby.

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by catchweight on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 12:07 pm

There is no easy solution with Italy. They were admitted to the 6 Nations under the premise that it would expand the game there and lead them to becoming more compettive. Almost 20 years later it hasnt really been the success one would of hoped for. I have personally found it hard to buy into the Italy fixtures in the 6 Nations although others feel they add colour and passion to the tournament, if not competitveness.

COS I would imagine is doing good work behind the scenes at development level but the remit of a national coach is the national team and I dont think they have ever been much worse or so far adrift. With Georgia starting to occupy the position that italy were in 20 years ago witht he same arguments about needing inclusion to develop the game to the next level there is now need for some real thinking. A 7 Nations wold take too long arguable. But the rsk of giving Italy the chop or to intorduce relegation could cripple rugby in Italy once and for all if they were demoted to a 2nd tier competition. Effectively making the last 20 years of Italian rugby development a waste of time. I dont like the way Italy play both sides of the coin though. After an inneviteable 40 point hammering they point (not unreasonably) to the gap in resourcing. But suggest they may not be good enough for the competition and they go up in arms. They are having it both ways.

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by SecretFly on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 12:26 pm

eirebilly wrote:Not sure how Henshaw can be seen as causing his own injury there Fly, he was fending off an Italian defender and reaching to score the try. It was more unfortunate than anything. Henshaw has never struck me as a show boat kind of finisher.

I never accused him of being showboat so let's say the style of scoring now in general - call it fashion then - is a little (not a lot) but a little victory dive. I still say it's risky and I'd discourage it if I was an International coach (yeah, count me in as a grim Schmidt style coach then! Wink )

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by SecretFly on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 12:29 pm

LeinsterFan4life wrote: there have been many false dawns already in Italian rugby.

We've had a good few of those ourselves though - times when we thought we were on top of the woyld!!! and were then brought back down to earth with a bump. Only Scotland and Italy know how difficult it really is to be consistently up to speed for 6N with only two Professional teams playing in a meaningful League.

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by eirebilly on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 12:38 pm

SecretFly wrote:
eirebilly wrote:Not sure how Henshaw can be seen as causing his own injury there Fly, he was fending off an Italian defender and reaching to score the try. It was more unfortunate than anything. Henshaw has never struck me as a show boat kind of finisher.

I never accused him of being showboat so let's say the style of scoring now in general - call it fashion then - is a little (not a lot) but a little victory dive.  I still say it's risky and I'd discourage it if I was an International coach (yeah, count me in as a grim Schmidt style coach then! Wink )

I am not for or against the flashy finishes to be honest. If a player injures themselves (or c0cks up a try) by doing that then that's their own stupid fault. To me Henshaw was completely down to him fending off a defender, stretching out whilst off balance to score the try. I think it was a great piece of commitment.
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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by SecretFly on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 12:45 pm

eirebilly wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
eirebilly wrote:Not sure how Henshaw can be seen as causing his own injury there Fly, he was fending off an Italian defender and reaching to score the try. It was more unfortunate than anything. Henshaw has never struck me as a show boat kind of finisher.

I never accused him of being showboat so let's say the style of scoring now in general - call it fashion then - is a little (not a lot) but a little victory dive.  I still say it's risky and I'd discourage it if I was an International coach (yeah, count me in as a grim Schmidt style coach then! Wink )

I am not for or against the flashy finishes to be honest. If a player injures themselves (or c0cks up a try) by doing that then that's their own stupid fault. To me Henshaw was completely down to him fending off a defender, stretching out whilst off balance to score the try. I think it was a great piece of commitment.

I'm in a 'Hmmmm' mood about it, billy. Good try but... players just have to be aware how little it takes to end a season when you least expect it in a hard physical sport.

On the first point.... yes, it might be the player's own stupid fault if they get injured doing some photo-friendly finish.... but the team possibly suffers big time as a result. And if the team suffers, the fans suffer...and if the fans suffer.................. mad mad mad mad mad !!!!!

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by LeinsterFan4life on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 1:06 pm

SecretFly wrote:
LeinsterFan4life wrote: there have been many false dawns already in Italian rugby.

We've had a good few of those ourselves though - times when we thought we were on top of the woyld!!! and were then brought back down to earth with a bump.  Only Scotland and Italy know how difficult it really is to be consistently up to speed for 6N with only two Professional teams playing in a meaningful League.
Two professional teams is more than enough to have a competitive national rugby team. Argentina had no professional teams until very recently and they have  performed very well at world cups. Like I said before there are a lot of unions out there that would kill to be in Italy's position in terms of the comps they get to play in and for years I think their union was happy to take the money from the 6 nations and not bother about anything else. In fact if it wasn't for the rich Benneton family pumping money into Treviso, who knows where Italian rugby would be.

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by SecretFly on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 1:09 pm

LeinsterFan4life wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
LeinsterFan4life wrote: there have been many false dawns already in Italian rugby.

We've had a good few of those ourselves though - times when we thought we were on top of the woyld!!! and were then brought back down to earth with a bump.  Only Scotland and Italy know how difficult it really is to be consistently up to speed for 6N with only two Professional teams playing in a meaningful League.
Two professional teams is more than enough to have a competitive national rugby team. Argentina had no professional teams until very recently and they have  performed very well at world cups. Like I said before there are a lot of unions out there that would kill to be in Italy's position in terms of the comps they get to play in and for years I think their union was happy to take the money from the 6 nations and not bother about anything else. In fact if it wasn't for the rich Benneton family pumping money into Treviso, who knows where Italian rugby would be.

Okay..okay...you sold me. F**k the Italians!............. Wink

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by LeinsterFan4life on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 1:14 pm

SecretFly wrote:
LeinsterFan4life wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
LeinsterFan4life wrote: there have been many false dawns already in Italian rugby.

We've had a good few of those ourselves though - times when we thought we were on top of the woyld!!! and were then brought back down to earth with a bump.  Only Scotland and Italy know how difficult it really is to be consistently up to speed for 6N with only two Professional teams playing in a meaningful League.
Two professional teams is more than enough to have a competitive national rugby team. Argentina had no professional teams until very recently and they have  performed very well at world cups. Like I said before there are a lot of unions out there that would kill to be in Italy's position in terms of the comps they get to play in and for years I think their union was happy to take the money from the 6 nations and not bother about anything else. In fact if it wasn't for the rich Benneton family pumping money into Treviso, who knows where Italian rugby would be.

Okay..okay...you sold me.  F**k the Italians!............. Wink
 Very Happy  Ah look I just want them to do well. I certainly don't want them thrown out of the 6 nations and we do forget the crucial role they have in the November and Summer internationals by giving tier 2 nations quality games. In fact I'm really looking forward to their tour to Japan in the summer.


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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by eirebilly on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 1:14 pm

LeinsterFan4life wrote:
Two professional teams is more than enough to have a competitive national rugby team. Argentina had no professional teams until very recently and they have  performed very well at world cups. Like I said before there are a lot of unions out there that would kill to be in Italy's position in terms of the comps they get to play in and for years I think their union was happy to take the money from the 6 nations and not bother about anything else. In fact if it wasn't for the rich Benneton family pumping money into Treviso, who knows where Italian rugby would be.

This 100%.

I honestly do believe that there should be a play off with the top tier 2 nation for 6N involvement. Georgia used to be a very good team back in the day when they had proper funding. Now that they are getting funding again, they are getting better.
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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by SecretFly on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 1:26 pm

I can't help myself........... the Italians did the dirty on us for the WC hosting gig every bit as much as the bloomin' Scots and Welsh..... but I still love 'em and I'm naturally and admittedly very protective of them to remain in this contest and to remain in our Pro14 Brotherhood of Love League Whistle


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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by LeinsterFan4life on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 1:26 pm

eirebilly wrote:
LeinsterFan4life wrote:
Two professional teams is more than enough to have a competitive national rugby team. Argentina had no professional teams until very recently and they have  performed very well at world cups. Like I said before there are a lot of unions out there that would kill to be in Italy's position in terms of the comps they get to play in and for years I think their union was happy to take the money from the 6 nations and not bother about anything else. In fact if it wasn't for the rich Benneton family pumping money into Treviso, who knows where Italian rugby would be.

This 100%.

I honestly do believe that there should be a play off with the top tier 2 nation for 6N involvement. Georgia used to be a very good team back in the day when they had proper funding. Now that they are getting funding again, they are getting better.
I think you may be thinking of Romania there? Georgia never really had an impact in rugby until they almost beat Ireland in 2007 and their proudest win to date is their win against Tonga at the last world cup. Whereas Italy, Romania and Canada had all beaten tier 1 nations in the 90s.

Italy are due to face Georgia for the first time next November, which is a MASSIVE game for both nations.


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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by eirebilly on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 1:27 pm

I could have sworn it was Georgia, thanks for the correction L4F thumbsup
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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by LeinsterFan4life on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 1:30 pm

eirebilly wrote:I could have sworn it was Georgia, thanks for the correction L4F thumbsup
I clearly spend to much time following rugby Laugh

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by catchweight on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 1:34 pm

A play off makes sense in terms in the name of meritocrousy. It wont solve the problem of having a lame duck in the six nations though. It has got to the stage where Italy have been poor enough and Georgia improving enough that the there is a serious argument to be had.

From a development perspective do you look to try and bring Georgia into the fold? Or do you look to remove Italy from the fold? The 6 Natons is a pretty sacred tournament. I dont think there is a huge appetite to change things there. Adding Georgia to a "7 Nations" would not be a popular move in my view. Too much additional scheduling and the addition of another lame duck fixture in the competition. As witht he Italy case study. There are no garauntees that even 20 years down the line Georgia will be anything more that a bottom feeder in the 6 Nations. Yet removing or relegating Italy from the competition could lea to a nosedive in funding an interest int he game there. Arguable pushing the development of the game backwards.

However if World Rugby really wants to develop the game globally then leaving the 6 Nations intact will always leave developing Nations on the outside looking in with question marks over Italy's involvement.

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by eirebilly on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 1:40 pm

With the game growing like mad in the USA (think it was the fastest growing sport there last year), how long before they start to apply for the 6N or 4N tournament entry?
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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by catchweight on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 1:46 pm

USA might start applying but I still think we are a long way of seeing them in either the 6 Nations or the 4 Nations. They are more likely to be admitted to a Paciic Nations tournament.


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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by LeinsterFan4life on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 1:52 pm

catchweight wrote:USA might start applying but I still think we are a long way of seeing them in either the 6 Nations or the 4 Nations. They are more likely to be admitted to a Paciic Nations tournament.

If rugby continues to grow in the USA, Canada, Georiga and Japan, then there is potential there for a new tournament of their own. There really is a huge appetite for international rugby across these regions, just look at Canada who got 16,000 in attendance against Uruguay 2 weeks ago.

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by SecretFly on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 1:57 pm

Europe has a Massive population.  I still smirk at the idea that only one 'Nations Cup' style competition with teeth both in terms of marketing, player ability and audience potential, is viable in the European/Russian context.  
It's lazy thinking to suggest these other sides need to 'get in' to our Traditional Contest in order to advance themselves.

Well Italy itself is an argument against such a claim anyway but also; if Big money and interest was given to a more Central/Eastern European 6N style contest, who is to say that together they couldn't build up each other's skill levels to rival the levels now operating in 6N itself?  

I always say it, a good few of these tier 2 nations in Europe ain't short of cash, and if we're going to blame Italy for taking money and running without investing, then we might blame others too.  
Why is Finland at 98th in the ranking?  Why is Denmark 83rd?  Why is Sweden 60th?  Why is Netherlands and Germany 28th and 27th respectively?  Why is Spain 20th?  Why is Russia 19th?  Most of these Nations have strong sporting structures and management expertise, they have loads of money to pump into developing systems and players, and buying in best coaches - or hiring best coaches for short stints to give overviews or to keep watch on developments.  We blame Italy for being Italy even though it isn't remotely a rugby playing Nation by any stretch of the imagination, and yet we let other Big Economy European nations off the hook for only paying lip serve to the game in their Nations.

Europe is big enough in population density and physical size to have two super National contests operating together and with similar quality ratings applying to each.

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by catchweight on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 2:17 pm

Yes the the game is developing and shifting all the time. There is a conflict between trying to accommdate the development of the game and preserve the history and status quo.

Currently there are not enough top European Rugby to accomodate two top tier European competitions. Italy and Georgia exist in the grey area. Italy get blamed because they are actually in the top tier comptetion with 20 years of development time behind them and have had limited progression in that time. All of the reasons put forward to their struggles are the same arguments put ofrward as to why the really would belong more in a second tier tournament. Italy wont, as you would expect, ever accept that. Boot them out, the game suffers and goes backwards there.

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by Geen sport voor watjes on Sun 11 Feb 2018, 11:32 pm

Hey Billy tell us (again) what your opinion of Earls as centre is. This is a site for opinions (ahem) after all.

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by Blanko on Mon 12 Feb 2018, 4:16 am

Italy are not improving at the rates the other 6H countries are. Replace them with South Africa - same time zone and only 11hr flight compared to 17 to Auckland

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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

Post by rodders on Mon 12 Feb 2018, 9:22 am

Hmm another mixed bag performance by Ireland. We scored some good tries but to concede 3 soft tries in the way we did is a worry.

Although the defensive line became noticeably more passive when Henshaw went off and Earls moved to centre, we were back peddling rather than putting pressure on Italy.

Overall though still plenty of positives, Porter did well to replace Furlong and although Larmour didn't have a great time defensively that break at the end shows he can step and be a threat at this level.

Earls was my MOTM and is in the form of his life but there were plenty of good performances in the backs with the ball which is a relief after Paris.

I think we have a great chance of winning but another disgraceful TMO decision at Twickenham shows how difficult it is going to be to get anything there, we will need to win comfortably or not at all.
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Re: Ireland 6 Nations chat

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