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The future of Barbarians Rugby in the UK

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offload
gowales
AsLongAsBut100ofUs
Glas a du
emack2
hawalsh
robbo277
niwatts
flankertye
brennomac
mckay1402
beshocked
cabbagesandbrussels
red_stag
Rava
doctor_grey
maestegmafia
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Post by maestegmafia Thu 24 Nov 2011, 12:52 pm

I love the Baa Baa fixtures, they have had some fantastic games in the past. The teams have fashioned some of the worlds greatest players playing indicative of the clubs reputation for fun and fancy rugby. "Get out there and show us what you've got".

Though over the last ten years and more the Baa Baas have lost their shine for me as they now very rarely represent anything of the British Isles or Ireland when the play in one of the Home nations.

These days the fixture is inevitably at Twickenham and the team containing a group of out of work Southern Hemisphere players that may or may not be big names. The tests are also invariably not at Murrayfield, Landsdown or Cardiff...!

Gone are the days when the Baa Baas consisted of the Home nations finest, plus that traditional uncapped player. It was a further opportunity to see our stars in a semi Lions-esq team.

I have seen the side to play Australia in the up coming test, but I would rather the side looked a little more like this...


1. Gethin Jenkins (Blues)
2. Ross Ford (Edinburgh)
3. Dan Cole (Leicester)
4. Richie Gray (Glasgow) CAPTAIN
5. Donacha Ryan (Munster)
6. Tom Croft (Leicester)
7. Tom Young (Blues)
8. Ben Morgan (Scarlets)
9. Connor Murray (Munster)
10. Matthew Morgan (Ospreys)
11. Shane Williams (Ospreys)
12. Adam Warren (Scarlets)
13. Eoin O'Malley (Leinster)
14. Charlie Sharples (Gloucester)
15. Steffan Jones (Dragons)


Last edited by maestegmafia on Thu 24 Nov 2011, 1:40 pm; edited 3 times in total

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Post by doctor_grey Thu 24 Nov 2011, 1:05 pm

To me, as a Rugby traditionalist, the Barbarians represent everything good about our sport. Full stop. The problem, of course, is identifying their place in the congested Rugby calendar of today. Just like the Lions, another out of date, antiquated concept, which I love, needs to be preserved. No, cancel that - not preserved. Embellished and grown.

To me, we need to figure out what to do with both concepts. Both are great for Rugby. Not just for traditionalists like me, but for the next generation. And, properly handled, will bring in more supporters and casual fans.

But we need committment form the clubs and national Unions to commit to these great concepts. And getting that to happen is like getting Gordon Brown to whisper sweet nothings to David Cameron. Sadly, I am not optimistic.

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Post by Rava Thu 24 Nov 2011, 1:21 pm

What! Yikes No Ulster players??

Only joking maestegmafia. I agree with you, and Dr Grey. Gone are the days when we saw the likes of Edwards, Bennett et. al. throwing the ball around. Another loss due to the "Club" scene
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Post by red_stag Thu 24 Nov 2011, 1:23 pm

I agree with this enitrely. I was very annoyed to see that Scarlets wouldn't release S.Jones for the Baabaas game.

BTW Maesteg - its Donnacha Ryan not Dean Ryan. Just FYI. Thats a good team.
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Post by maestegmafia Thu 24 Nov 2011, 1:25 pm

There are a few Ulster players that I would love to see in the Baa Baa's. I just wrote a list of players off the top of my head that I enjoy watching and respect.

D'Arcy, Humpreys and Duffy would be good selections.

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Post by maestegmafia Thu 24 Nov 2011, 1:26 pm

Cheers Stag...! Apologies

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Post by cabbagesandbrussels Thu 24 Nov 2011, 1:27 pm

who's Charlie Staples?

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Post by red_stag Thu 24 Nov 2011, 1:33 pm

My own efforts (though I know I will want to revise this)

01 Iestyn Thomas
02 Sean Cronin
03 Euan Murray
04 Richie Grey
05 Dan Tuohy
06 Tom Croft
07 Ross Rennie
08 Sean O'Brien
09 Conor Murray
10 Ryan Lamb
11 Tim Visser
12 Bradley Barritt
13 Eoin O'Malley
14 Christian Wade
15 Tom Homer

I think that would be a very exciting team.
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Post by Rava Thu 24 Nov 2011, 1:41 pm

red_stag wrote:My own efforts (though I know I will want to revise this)

01 Iestyn Thomas
02 Sean Cronin
03 Euan Murray
04 Richie Grey
05 Dan Tuohy
06 Tom Croft
07 Ross Rennie
08 Sean O'Brien
09 Conor Murray
10 Ryan Lamb
11 Tim Visser
12 Bradley Barritt
13 Eoin O'Malley
14 Christian Wade
15 Tom Homer

I think that would be a very exciting team.

+1 (Muldoon in the backrow?)
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Post by beshocked Thu 24 Nov 2011, 1:42 pm

Maesteg so basically just Celtic league sides and a couple of AP blokes thrown in? Also too many relatively unknowns.

I would rather have

1.Tongauiha (Saints)
2.Brits (Sarries)
3.Cole (Leicester)
4.Gray (Glasgow)
5.Lawes (Saints)
6.O Brien (Leinster)
7.Warburton (Cardiff)
8.Harinorduquy (Biarritz)
9. Parra (Clermont)
10.Carter (Crusaders)
11.Ickle Shane (Ospreys)
12.SBW (Crusaders)
13.Smith (Hurricanes)
14.Sharples (Gloucester)
15.Medard (Toulouse)

No Aussies because this team would play them.

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Post by cabbagesandbrussels Thu 24 Nov 2011, 1:45 pm

Cole is horse crap and I wouldnt have him anywhere near any international side....

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Post by maestegmafia Thu 24 Nov 2011, 1:48 pm

cabbagesandbrussels wrote:Cole is horse crap and I wouldnt have him anywhere near any international side....
Would love to see your side. Rather than hear you discriminating other peoples...

Pick your team and you could even write why you would like to see them play.

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Post by Guest Thu 24 Nov 2011, 1:53 pm

I'm no fan of the Baa Baa's as I think it's outdated and gets in the way of proper rugby.

However, if you are going to persist with it you need a few more marquee players and I don't think it will work just with 'home nations' players in terms of bringing in enough fans.

If you're playing Aus then bring in a few NZ, SA, French, Italian and Argentinan big names. Otherwise the side (like the OP's) looks like Lions-lite.

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Post by beshocked Thu 24 Nov 2011, 1:59 pm

Good point maesteg I should have justified my players.

The whole team is close to a world XV but arguably most players are perfectly suited for Barbarians rugby.

Who wouldn't want the likes of Brits,SBW,Carter,Harinorduquy, Gray in a incredibly exciting Barbarians game?

Imagine the havoc they could cause.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kCLR78edhLg

Watch highlights of the Barbarians vs England 2009.

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Post by maestegmafia Thu 24 Nov 2011, 2:06 pm

Good Highlights there...

If it were a Baa Baa's vs one of the Home Nations i would like to see a few more big name Southern Hemisphere players in the side.

But vs a SH team like the Aussies, I would like to see a lot more local talent.

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Post by beshocked Thu 24 Nov 2011, 2:10 pm

Schalk Brits is a legend.

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Post by mckay1402 Thu 24 Nov 2011, 2:34 pm

Although I agree in principle with what has been said above, this time I'm glad not to see any of our players being smashed about in a fixture like this. This season seems to be choc full of rugby and players are already starting to drop like flies.
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Post by Rava Thu 24 Nov 2011, 2:35 pm

1. Adam Jones
2. Rory Best
3. Euan Murray
4. Ritchie Grey
5. Paul O'Connell (capt.)
6. Tom Croft
7. Sam Warburton
8. Sean O'Brien
9. Ben Youngs
10. Rhys Priestland
11. Max Evans
12. Jamie Roberts
13. Manu Tuilagi
14. Andrew Trimble
15. Ben Foden
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Post by doctor_grey Thu 24 Nov 2011, 3:12 pm

mckay1402 wrote:Although I agree in principle with what has been said above, this time I'm glad not to see any of our players being smashed about in a fixture like this. This season seems to be choc full of rugby and players are already starting to drop like flies.
So how do we fix it?

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Post by red_stag Thu 24 Nov 2011, 3:13 pm

Adam Jones at 1?
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Post by maestegmafia Thu 24 Nov 2011, 4:14 pm

red_stag wrote:Adam Jones at 1?
Well its his team he can put him where he wants... Adam might object to playing a position he deems only good enough for wimpy little loosheads...!
!!

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Post by brennomac Thu 24 Nov 2011, 4:23 pm

There's a lot of misty-eyed traditions-type horsesh1te being talked about the Barbarians but, sorry, it's a relic of a bygone age that is best pensioned off.

As a Leinster and Ireland fan, I'm absolutely delighted that none of our players are being diverted from what they should be doing - winning the HC for Leinster and a GS for Ireland (ok that's a long shot I know).

And for those who think i'm just a young pup who has no appreciation of rugby and its traditions, I'm a near sixty-something fan who has being a fan of rugby since way back in the 1960's when Barbarians matches actually seemed to mean something. Now they're simply an irrelevance.

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Post by flankertye Thu 24 Nov 2011, 4:27 pm

Completely forgot Robshaw played in that barbarians game!

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Post by red_stag Thu 24 Nov 2011, 5:15 pm

Brennomac,

I suggest that its all in the eye of the beholder.
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Post by mckay1402 Thu 24 Nov 2011, 6:33 pm

I definitely wouldn't agree with Bennomac but the fixture list is congested enough at the time of year. I honestly can't see a way to fix the problem with the game structured the way it is at the moment.
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Post by niwatts Thu 24 Nov 2011, 6:52 pm

I don't see any more reason why the Barbarians selection should be an all NH side either, surely a mix of both hemispheres is best

A big issue is the time of the year the matches are scheduled and picking the appropriate players for that.

I think the problem with the match at this time of the year is that it's right in the middle of key club domestic and European fixtures. If we want home nation players to feature more then we should have it at a different time. Particularly as in a non-WC year the match is usually scheduled at the end of the AIs, so key players would already have been away from their clubs for the best part of a month.

Failing that rescheduling, I'm quite happy for the autumn Barbarian team to be SH based and NH based players to feature more in the summer matches.


maestegmafia wrote:the team containing a group of out of work Southern Hemisphere players that may or may not be big names.

Seriously? This current team has Mealamu, Matfield, Kaino, Thomson, Habana, Mortlock, Fruean, Kahui & Rabeni. Last year with more touring nations in town there was O'Connor, Rokocoko, AAC, Nonu, Mitchell, Genia, So'oialo, Jack, Tialata, Moore, Mealamu, Braid, Ellis, Donald & Rabeni.

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Post by robbo277 Thu 24 Nov 2011, 11:41 pm

I would only play Barbarians games during International periods and would play them mainly against tier 2 sides to spread the game and send some of the world's best to these countries. During the NH Autumn I would have them play in the NH and mainly comprise of Southern Hemisphere players who are on their off-season. In the NH Summer I'd have them mainly composed of Northern Hemisphere players who are on their off-season (but not exclusively).

Obviously unions would get "first dibs" on their players, but then the Barbarians could be made up of up-and-comers who have just missed out on International squads, players who have retired from International Rugby and the occasional player who might ask to skip a tour to play for the Barbarians.

I don't want to see what is essentially England Saxons Vs The Barbarians every June, it's not that good for anyone. Sending a mix of players like Simon Shaw, Lewis Moody and Jonny Wilkinson along with Alex Goode and James Gaskell (just from an England perspective) on a three match tour of the Pacific Islands (1 each against Samoa, Fiji and Tonga) will allow these countries to see some top test players (of the past and the future) on their shores and it would also be the kind of tour that ties in with the Barbarians ethos.

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Post by hawalsh Fri 25 Nov 2011, 12:12 am

One of the things to remember about BaBas rugby in terms of who is selected for them, the teams they play against and where they play is that one of their primary modern concerns is to raise money for their charities, so their tendency will be towards what maximises gate receipts.

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Post by emack2 Fri 25 Nov 2011, 2:49 am

A few points,Barbarians is indeed an anchronism from the Amateur days,and is the antithesis of the Modern Professional Ethos.
BUT it is a tradition worth keeping,the days of the Easter tour of Wales,or the Midlands,sides like Orrell or Moseley are gone.
It is a charitable organization,with traditions of a byegone age viz.
1 Team is picked by INVITATION only
2 it was built around the 5Ns sides
3 one uncapped player is picked
4 the Game is the thing winning or losing is not
5 it is festival style Rugby ,non stop,long cut out passes
6 ALL Penalties are taps NOT kicks at Goal
On occassions in the Amateur Era,a member of a Touring side was Honoured e.g Ian Clarke first All Black to make TWO tours 10 years apart
1953-4/63-4.
Also they played a Lions strength team,and 10 man Rugby to beat the 1960-1 Boks.there only defeat on tour.
IF you value traditions then they deserve to stay,The Lions are now the only MAJOR Tour abroad.For that alone they too are worth preserving.
IF you want a Rest of the World team to play a Touring side,then do JUST that.
Don`t name it Barbarians side ,because then it no longer is one,such teams have been fielded for Festival matchs NH v SH.

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Post by niwatts Fri 25 Nov 2011, 3:30 am

Funny that people are advocating restricting who should be eligible to be a Barbarian, because supposedly "the only qualifications considered when issuing an invitation are; that the player's football is of a good enough standard and secondly that he should behave himself on and off the field. There is no discrimination whatsoever by race, colour or creed."

If people want to preserve the Barbarians in their original guise they would be almost exclusively made up of people who went to Oxbridge or played for Blackheath. Thankfully the architects of the club have never been so limited in their vision.

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Post by Glas a du Fri 25 Nov 2011, 6:21 am

If we get back to tours rather than autumn internationals we can have proper BaBaas games thumbsup

The NH season is a mess as the SH season is so structured. We need a structure in the NH.

I suggest:

Up to New Year - domestic leagues and hosting tours

New Year to End of March - HC

April and May 6 nations

Summer - tours, Lions, WC.

The Second tier and below would operate throughout the season of course. Top flight players that Finnish early in the HC should be encouraged to play club rugby and the domestic cups final could coincide with the HC final stages for that purpose. Take the HC out of competition with Autumn internationals and the Test Windiw becomes a redundant concept.
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Post by emack2 Fri 25 Nov 2011, 11:05 am

The ideal would be a joint NH/SH season universally agreed,a return to Tours,as opposed too seperate July/Autumn I nternationals.
A tour down South at one end of season,reciprocal return down North end off.
A 4 test Series plus say 3 club sides and Barbarians side versus touring sides could be a big draw.

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Post by Glas a du Fri 25 Nov 2011, 11:08 am

emack2 wrote:The ideal would be a joint NH/SH season universally agreed,a return to Tours,as opposed too seperate July/Autumn I nternationals.
A tour down South at one end of season,reciprocal return down North end off.
A 4 test Series plus say 3 club sides and Barbarians side versus touring sides could be a big draw.

Precisely. Hey Mack, ever though of an administration post at the IRB. I know it would mean moving to Ireland, but it'd only be for a while till you sort it all out.
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Post by AsLongAsBut100ofUs Fri 25 Nov 2011, 11:11 am

emack2 wrote:A few points,Barbarians is indeed an anchronism from the Amateur days,and is the antithesis of the Modern Professional Ethos.
BUT it is a tradition worth keeping,the days of the Easter tour of Wales,or the Midlands,sides like Orrell or Moseley are gone.
It is a charitable organization,with traditions of a byegone age viz.
1 Team is picked by INVITATION only
2 it was built around the 5Ns sides
3 one uncapped player is picked
4 the Game is the thing winning or losing is not
5 it is festival style Rugby ,non stop,long cut out passes
6 ALL Penalties are taps NOT kicks at Goal
On occassions in the Amateur Era,a member of a Touring side was Honoured e.g Ian Clarke first All Black to make TWO tours 10 years apart
1953-4/63-4.
Also they played a Lions strength team,and 10 man Rugby to beat the 1960-1 Boks.there only defeat on tour.
IF you value traditions then they deserve to stay,The Lions are now the only MAJOR Tour abroad.For that alone they too are worth preserving.
IF you want a Rest of the World team to play a Touring side,then do JUST that.
Don`t name it Barbarians side ,because then it no longer is one,such teams have been fielded for Festival matchs NH v SH.
clap +1

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Post by red_stag Fri 25 Nov 2011, 11:16 am

emack2 wrote:A few points,Barbarians is indeed an anchronism from the Amateur days,and is the antithesis of the Modern Professional Ethos.
BUT it is a tradition worth keeping,the days of the Easter tour of Wales,or the Midlands,sides like Orrell or Moseley are gone.
It is a charitable organization,with traditions of a byegone age viz.
1 Team is picked by INVITATION only
2 it was built around the 5Ns sides
3 one uncapped player is picked
4 the Game is the thing winning or losing is not
5 it is festival style Rugby ,non stop,long cut out passes
6 ALL Penalties are taps NOT kicks at Goal
On occassions in the Amateur Era,a member of a Touring side was Honoured e.g Ian Clarke first All Black to make TWO tours 10 years apart
1953-4/63-4.
Also they played a Lions strength team,and 10 man Rugby to beat the 1960-1 Boks.there only defeat on tour.
IF you value traditions then they deserve to stay,The Lions are now the only MAJOR Tour abroad.For that alone they too are worth preserving.
IF you want a Rest of the World team to play a Touring side,then do JUST that.
Don`t name it Barbarians side ,because then it no longer is one,such teams have been fielded for Festival matchs NH v SH.

Love this post. Well done
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Post by maestegmafia Fri 25 Nov 2011, 11:17 am

Good points emack

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Post by maestegmafia Sun 27 Nov 2011, 10:50 am

Well that was a debacle that I didn't want to see. A pathetic effort by the Baa Baas.

Admittedly the Baa Baas have never got a result out of the Aussies, and they have taken a few hammerings at their hands too but that was a pathetic effort.

I definitely feel that the Baa Baa's should be made up of players who desperately want to prove something. Yesterdays squad lacked anything of the sort.

Maybe a future Baa Baas team could be made up of players who are currently sitting in first team squads in the UK and Ireland, but are only getting second team games?

Some players only had a bit part in Thursday night games too... And a few international stars thrown in...

As far as i know, none of these guys played rugby yesterday...!

1. Phill John (Scarlets)
2. Ben Rogers (Exeter)
3. Sam Hobbs (Blues)
4. Victor Matfield (Boks - Honary CAPTAIN)
5. Will James (Gloucester)
6. Hugo Ellis (Dragons)
7. Tom Young (Blues)
8. Gareth Delve (Rebels)
9. Tom Haberfield (Ospreys)
10. Jordan Williams (Scarlets)
11. Tom Prydie (Ospreys)
12. Adam Powell (Saracens)
13. Stirling Mortlock (Reds)
14. Fionn Carr (Leinster)
15. Isaia Toeava (Auckland)

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Post by Guest Sun 27 Nov 2011, 2:16 pm

maestegmafia wrote:Well that was a debacle that I didn't want to see. A pathetic effort by the Baa Baas.

Admittedly the Baa Baas have never got a result out of the Aussies, and they have taken a few hammerings at their hands too but that was a pathetic effort.

I definitely feel that the Baa Baa's should be made up of players who desperately want to prove something. Yesterdays squad lacked anything of the sort.

Maybe a future Baa Baas team could be made up of players who are currently sitting in first team squads in the UK and Ireland, but are only getting second team games?

Some players only had a bit part in Thursday night games too... And a few international stars thrown in...

As far as i know, none of these guys played rugby yesterday...!

1. Phill John (Scarlets)
2. Ben Rogers (Exeter)
3. Sam Hobbs (Blues)
4. Victor Matfield (Boks - Honary CAPTAIN)
5. Will James (Gloucester)
6. Hugo Ellis (Dragons)
7. Tom Young (Blues)
8. Gareth Delve (Rebels)
9. Tom Haberfield (Ospreys)
10. Jordan Williams (Scarlets)
11. Tom Prydie (Ospreys)
12. Adam Powell (Saracens)
13. Stirling Mortlock (Reds)
14. Fionn Carr (Leinster)
15. Isaia Toeava (Auckland)

Are you mental? That team would get destroyed and no-one would go and watch it!

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Post by gowales Mon 28 Nov 2011, 4:14 am

It seemed like the Barbarians side was tired and like they simply didnt give a Poopie. Also didn't help that they had so many old players as well: Mortlock, Shaw, Bergamasco, Marconnet. They should have used players from the Minnows at least they would have tried to impress, but then that wouldn't sell seats would it.

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Post by maestegmafia Mon 28 Nov 2011, 7:25 am

Maybe you have to find a blend, or maybe club rugby has to be more considerate.

I am sure that the Scarlets didnt want to lose Steven Jones after he was invited to play for the Baa Baas, they were already missing their first choice Priestland. But there are plenty of other clubs in the UK who could have supplied a spare international class player that didnt.

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Post by gowales Mon 28 Nov 2011, 7:46 am

Some clubs could have but to be honest i dont blame them for not. Its a business at the end of the day and if your player gets injured then your screwed. Whoever the selector for the Barbarians (dont think its the coaches) obviously just wanted to pick big names that were available and it backfired.

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Post by offload Mon 28 Nov 2011, 8:00 am

I have changed my mind on the Barbarians. It should be retired. There is no place for it in the congested pro rugby world. Shame - but things have moved on.

The Lions is different. Loved by fans and players alike and the SH nations still look forward to the tours.
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Post by AsLongAsBut100ofUs Mon 28 Nov 2011, 9:08 am

offload wrote:I have changed my mind on the Barbarians. It should be retired. There is no place for it in the congested pro rugby world. Shame - but things have moved on.

The Lions is different. Loved by fans and players alike and the SH nations still look forward to the tours.
Difficult after Saturday's embarrassing display to draw any other conclusion

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Post by munkian Mon 28 Nov 2011, 1:33 pm

Haven't the Barbarian squads always been mad up of SH players this time of year and NH early on in the year ?
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Post by cabbagesandbrussels Mon 28 Nov 2011, 1:49 pm

How did Cipriani get on?

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Post by AsLongAsBut100ofUs Mon 28 Nov 2011, 1:59 pm

Not great, but not the worst tbh. Wasn't getting great service, and mostly tried to make a decent fist of what he received OK

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Post by englandglory4ever Mon 28 Nov 2011, 3:07 pm

I think we should basically field the whole England squad as a Barbarians team. Because that's basically what they are. England borrow players from the clubs much to the clubs chagrin. Proper world test teams contract their players directly to their Unions.

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Post by munkian Mon 28 Nov 2011, 4:00 pm

cabbagesandbrussels wrote:How did Cipriani get on?

He was rubbish as far as I remember, not at all impressive


Last edited by munkian on Mon 28 Nov 2011, 4:06 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by cabbagesandbrussels Mon 28 Nov 2011, 4:02 pm

thanks - just a passing interest....

It's passed now.

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Post by munkian Mon 28 Nov 2011, 4:10 pm

Fair play Very Happy
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