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RaboDirect Pro12 - Round 17 Preview/Live match thread

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Post by Glas a du Fri 02 Mar 2012, 10:28 am

12 teams, 6 games, 2 days, 0 games at 2.30 on Saturday! Welcome to Round 7 of the RaboDirect Pro12

Aironi v Leinster
2/3/12 Stadio Zaffanella


Newport Gwent Dragons narrowly avoided being the fourth side to lose to Aironi this season in round 6. Aironi have gained points from their last three matches at home.

Leinster are without their International stars but scraped a draw against Glasgow and a last gasp win against the Scarlets. Anything but a loss will see Leinster match the record run of 14 unbeaten games set by Munster in the last campaign.

Stat:
Leinster tries in this campaign to date: 36
Aironi: 15

At Stadio Zaffanella, 7pm local time (6pm UK & Ireland).
Referee: Andrew Macpherson (SRU, 41st competition game)
Assistant Referees: Stefano Penne, Filippo Bertelli (FIR)
Citing Commissioner: Alberto Recaldini (FIR)
TMO: Alan Falzone (FIR)

Live on Rai Sport

Result? - A tough test for Leinster that they should pass.

Ospreys v Glasgow Warriors
2/3/12 Liberty Stadium


Ian Gough is set to make his 200th regional appearance. Only two other Welsh players have turned in as many regional appearances, the Dragons' Adam Jones (200) and Blues' Deiniol Jones (204).

The Ospreys have not lost at home to a Scottish side since Edinburgh beat them in April 2009. Only Munster have won at the Liberty since October 2010.

Glasgow Warriors have drawn five of their last 11 matches in all competitions. It would be their first away win since beating Aironi in November. They beat the Ospreys 28-17 at Firhill, but a win would secure their first ever season's double over the Ospreys. They have never won in the Liberty.

At Liberty Stadium, 7.05pm

Referee: Neil Paterson (SRU, 37th competition game)
Assistant Referees: Gwyn Morris, David Jones (both WRU)
Citing Commissioner : John Charles (WRU)
TMO: Paul Adams (WRU)

Live on BBC Wales and BBC Alba

Result? - The Ospreys to edge a close encounter.

Ulster v Edinburgh Rugby
2/3/12 Ravenhill


Edinburgh have qualified for the Heineken Cup quarter finals for the second time in their history but have since lost five on the bounce in the league.

Ulster have also progressed in the Heineken Cup, for the second year running. They have lost just two of their last 11 matches in all competitions.

At Ravenhill, 7.05pm.
Referee: Nigel Owens (WRU, 81st competition game)
Assistant Referees: Paul Haycock, Brian MacNeice (both IRFU)
Citing Commissioner : Tom McCormack (IRFU)
TMO: Marshall Kilgore (IRFU)

Live on BBC Northern Ireland

Result? - Ulster will need to provide a decent performance to win this game, but they should manage it.

Scarlets v Connacht
2/3/12 Parc Y Scarlets


The Scarlets are enjoying a good run at Parc y Scarlets. They have won their last six league games there, their best series since 2006.

Connacht's have lost only one of their last four games in all competitions. Treviso has been their only scalp on the road in the league since September. They have won their last two matches against the Scarlets. If they make it three in a row, it will be their first league double over the Scarlets and their first away win against them since 2004.

At Parc y Scarlets, 7.30pm
Referee: Marius Mitrea (FIR, 6th competition game)
Assistant Referees: Tim Hayes, Greg Morgan (both WRU)
Citing Commissioner : Richard Gwynn (WRU)

Not televised.

Result? - The Scarlets should win and will be disappointed with less than 5 points. Connacht are experts in providing that sort of disappointment!

Benetton Treviso v Cardiff Blues
3/3/12 Stadio Di Monigo


Treviso have beaten the last three Welsh teams to visit the Stadio Di Monigo. However they have lost their last three encounters with the Blues.

The Cardiff Blues' have not won on the road since beating Connacht in October. However they have never lost to an Italian opponent; in any competition.

At Stadio Monigo, 4.30pm local time (3.30pm UK & Ireland)
Referee: David Wilkinson (IRFU, 13th competition game)
Assistant Referees: Giuseppe Vivarini, Stefano Roscini (both FIR)
Citing Commissioner : Maurizio Vancini (FIR)
TMO: Mauro Dordolo (FIR)

Live on Rai

Result? - Treviso to shock the Blues in an attritional battle.

Newport Gwent Dragons v Munster
3/3/12 Rodney Parade


The Dragons won three in a row in the league this time last year. They will do so again if they can pip Munster. Only the Scarlets that have won at Rodney Parade in this campaign, but the Dragons only have 1 win from the last 9 attempts against the Irish Provinces.

Munster on the other hand have won their last five games in all competitions and have only lost to the Ospreys in their last six visits to Wales. This fixture has gone with home advantage on the last five occasions.

At Rodney Parade, 6.30pm
Referee: Carlo Damasco (FIR, 18th competition game)
Assistant Referees: Neil Hennessy, Rhys Thomas (both WRU)
Citing Commissioner: Gwyn Bowden (WRU)
TMO: Tony Rowlands (WRU)

Live on S4C and TG4

Result? - Munster to have too much for the Dragons.


RaboDirect PRO12 Table:
Pos. (prev.) Team. Played. Won. Lost. Draw. Bonus. Points.
1 (1) Leinster Rugby 16 13 1 2 59
2 (2) Ospreys 16 11 1 4 48
3 (3) Munster Rugby 15 10 0 5 47
4 (4) Glasgow Warriors 16 8 4 4 43
5 (6) Ulster Rugby 16 9 0 7 41
6 (5) Cardiff Blues 15 8 0 7 40
7 (7) Scarlets 16 8 1 7 40
8 (8) Benetton Treviso 16 6 0 10 28
9 (10) Newport Gwent Dragons 15 5 1 9 25
10 (11) Connacht Rugby 16 4 1 11 24
11 (9) Edinburgh Rugby 16 4 1 11 23
12 (12) Aironi Rugby 15 3 0 12 15


Last edited by Glas a du on Fri 02 Mar 2012, 1:25 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by Guest Fri 02 Mar 2012, 10:57 am

Not sure on the Treviso or Dragons results you've gone for. I think I predicted tight wins for the Welsh regions, but maybe went for Treviso too. I am certainly hoping for a Dragons win, even though Munster should have a handy enough side out.

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Post by dogtooth Fri 02 Mar 2012, 11:16 am

im looking forward to watching the Os on tv tonight. much less stress than watching wales at the moment.
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Post by gowales Fri 02 Mar 2012, 1:12 pm

Less stress but much crapper rugby

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Post by Notch Fri 02 Mar 2012, 1:19 pm

Very dodgy stat there.

Ulster lost to Cardiff last week and the Clermont Auvergne in our last HC game. So we've actually lost 2 out of our last 11 games (since the start of December).
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Post by Glas a du Fri 02 Mar 2012, 1:24 pm

Thank you Notch. I've downgraded your team accordingly!
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Post by Kingshu Fri 02 Mar 2012, 1:48 pm

"0 games at 2.30 on Saturday! "

Why should there be, thats club teams kick off time, and theere are no clubs in this league (you could maybe argue Teviso).
This is a Regional/Provincial League and the Regional/Provincial is Fri and Sat evenings

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Post by gowales Fri 02 Mar 2012, 1:55 pm

Well how many people want to waste their Sat night watching the Ospreys?
I'd watch Leinster or Munster at that time. But none of the welsh regions, bar maybe the Scarlets

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Post by Guest Fri 02 Mar 2012, 2:35 pm

Kingshu wrote:"0 games at 2.30 on Saturday! "

Why should there be, thats club teams kick off time, and theere are no clubs in this league (you could maybe argue Teviso).
This is a Regional/Provincial League and the Regional/Provincial is Fri and Sat evenings

Agree here. Now I can play Rugby tomorrow at 14:30 then make Newport in plenty of time.

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Post by Notch Fri 02 Mar 2012, 2:38 pm

I'm surprised that so many Welsh complain about it when they love their club game. It would be disappointing if anyone who was involved in club rugby couldn't support their region as well.

Sorry Glas- it was the Ospreys we beat last week, Cardiff was the week before. It's 2 defeats from 12 games.
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Post by gowales Fri 02 Mar 2012, 2:45 pm

Yet the stadiums are empty with the current scheduling. I just think maybe trying 2:30 kick offs for a few games might help

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Post by geoff998rugby Fri 02 Mar 2012, 3:57 pm

Saturday afternoons are not good news for Ulster as history has shown.
We get our best crowds on Friday nights.

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Post by Glas a du Fri 02 Mar 2012, 4:14 pm

1 the same blydi time every time
2 that time being most convenient to most fans and Flip the TV people.

The Munster game was a Saturday afternoon and the timing was perfect for the night out after thumbsup
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Post by Glas a du Sat 03 Mar 2012, 7:33 am

Blydi Ospreys! Who could predict they would be so crap! Actually scrap that...
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Post by Gibson Sat 03 Mar 2012, 7:26 pm

So with Warriors, Ulster, Scarlets and Blues, all having won, it has really separated 7 sides from the Rest. Blues had 2 games in hand and have won a tricky one away. That was crucial. Win the other and they are straight into the top 4. Munster have a game in hand. Its on now, v Dragons at Dave. They win that and they are creeping up behind Leinster. Our biggest threat for League Winners proper.

Ospreys could lose out this time. Falling away over the last few weeks. Or maybe they are more hurt by their missing internationals than the rest?
Scarlets, Ulster and Warriors are hitting great form - at the right time. I think Leinster & Munster will take the 2 top spots. Not being arrogant, its just they have the best backup squads during Internationals. Thats all.

So, who will join them? 2 from 5.

Scarlets, Blues, Ospreys, Ulster or Warriors?

Must check the run-ins for those sides. All key to it. Games between any of those lot, will be 8-pointers. Remember the end of the league proper, last year? It was tense.

More. guinness

P.S. Great thread. Lets keep it alive right to the Grand Final. See who gets it right, close, or badly wrong. OK

Predictions?


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Post by eirebilly Sat 03 Mar 2012, 7:33 pm

Come on Munster Very Happy
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Post by Gibson Sat 03 Mar 2012, 7:41 pm

Good game. Tuilagi injured. Shame. Dragons really having a go. If they won this, it could turn their season around. They know it and are playing for it. But, its Munster roysh.
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Post by eirebilly Sat 03 Mar 2012, 7:50 pm

The Dragons have blown some good ops Gibbo, they could have wrapped Munster up here.
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Post by eirebilly Sat 03 Mar 2012, 7:55 pm

The Dragons are going to win this...
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Post by Gibson Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:03 pm

Dunno mate they had 2 great chance and knocked on. If Munster get one decent chance - its over.

Dragons deserve to beat Munster. But, how many times have I heard that one? Funny how it keeps happening. Munster make it happen. Cool guinness

Dragons convert Pen. 14-9 now. They need to show nous here. Munster are deadly in the closing phases of a game.


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Post by Gibson Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:04 pm

Told ya.
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Post by eirebilly Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:06 pm

Thats all it takes with Munster.

If the Dragons lose this, they can be down because they have been the better team but wasted so many chances.
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Post by Gibson Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:07 pm

Felix Jones. Love im.
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Post by eirebilly Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:09 pm

Big chance now for the Dragons
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Post by eirebilly Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:11 pm

Felix Jones, man love here Wink
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Post by eirebilly Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:12 pm

Seriously though, how quick was he to jump on that opportunity. Great speed as well
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Post by Gibson Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:12 pm

Jooooooonesssssss! Oh man so happy for him. After all he's been through. He's baaaaaaaaaaaaaaack! Yahoo
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Post by eirebilly Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:15 pm

He is class isnt he Very Happy
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Post by Gibson Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:20 pm

One of Leinster's biggest mistakes in years. Letting him go. Cheika was fuming apparently. Dunno, must have been the IRFU. He is thriving at Munster and I pray for the lad to have a few years, without injury and to show what he can really do. Hes just brilliant. Possibly more dynamic than Kearney in attack and just as good. That will be some battle soon. The battle of the 2 x Leinster Way Irish 15's. Whistle
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Post by PenfroPete Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:22 pm

GIBBO - thanks for the message on my mobile on Monday Hug (I switch it to silent at home as it's the only number work have got Wink ) Hadn't seen you about since then thumbsup We are all grand and Mam is out and about, on her frame.
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Post by eirebilly Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:25 pm

Gibbo, i honestly believe that Felix Jones is a better 15 than Kearney if i must be honest. Kearney has moments of brilliance but Jones is the better all round player i feel.
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Post by Gibson Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:29 pm

PenfroPete wrote:GIBBO - thanks for the message on my mobile on Monday Hug (I switch it to silent at home as it's the only number work have got Wink ) Hadn't seen you about since then thumbsup We are all grand and Mam is out and about, on her frame.

Ah lovely Penfroon. Great to hear about yer Ma. Going to see mine for her 83rd birthday next wknd.
Love you man. Y'aul bollox. Getting on now. Catching me up. Hug


Happy Birthday Mijn vriend. kiss

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oMFYs3gfgis
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Post by PenfroPete Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:34 pm

Sad They were the best, love you too man kiss
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Post by Gibson Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:35 pm

eirebilly wrote:Gibbo, i honestly believe that Felix Jones is a better 15 than Kearney if i must be honest. Kearney has moments of brilliance but Jones is the better all round player i feel.

+1

But, it remains to be seen how well he compares at the next level. Big jump.
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Post by eirebilly Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:39 pm

I believe that he will be fine Gibbo, Did you see how quick he was to react to the Dragons error today and take the try? That was class in my eyes.
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Post by rodders Sat 03 Mar 2012, 8:43 pm

Ah so this is where the match thread was hiding...cracking game, feic hwo Munster won that I have no idea! The Dragons had them at 6's and 7's in that second half.

Felix Jones had a nightmare, nearly as bad as O'Leary, but fair play that was a cracking try at the end by him. Class player.

The Munster no6 (Dave O'Callaghan) had a great game though. Hurley had a big impact when he came on too.

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Post by eirebilly Sat 03 Mar 2012, 9:14 pm

It was a poor performance by the Dragons to be honest, they had more than enough chances but didnt take enough of them.
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Post by Gibson Sat 03 Mar 2012, 9:56 pm

Rodders,
Jones is just getting back after another nasty injury. This young lad has had it all thrown at him and has come back stronger. That, to me shows the level of a Pro. An International class player. Its what separates them from the rest. That strong will, against all odds - to be the best.

Just before he got injured for Ireland, he was on the plane to NZ. Then. who knows? Trust me, he and Kearney will give us World Class options at FB. Done deal. Marvelous player. When he gets up to speed, he'll be pushing Kearney. And that is one Irish position - covered for years to come. I think its fantastic actually. Love to see that all over the field.


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Post by rodders Sat 03 Mar 2012, 10:17 pm

Gibson I agree. Jones has had terrible luck with injury. He had a brilliant season last year and had one foot on the plane to NZ. Is he 26 now? Still time to have a good career and earn a few caps.

Kearney is in the form of his career now though and it will take something special to get that 15 jersey, I hope they can push each other to new levels over the next few seasons.
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Post by Rory_Gallagher Sat 03 Mar 2012, 10:23 pm

Dave O'Callaghan I feel could have a big future. He has impressed me each time I have seen him play.

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Post by Rory_Gallagher Sat 03 Mar 2012, 10:24 pm

Jones is only 24 rodders.

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Post by rodders Sat 03 Mar 2012, 10:26 pm

Ah gee loads of time then Rory! A great talent!
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Post by Rory_Gallagher Sat 03 Mar 2012, 10:42 pm

Anyone else have any opinions on our next DOC? He looks like a dynamic Croft type of flanker, but with a huge work rate.

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Post by rodders Sun 04 Mar 2012, 9:05 am

Haven't watched him much Rory but he stood out yesterday. Looks like a big lad with plenty of energy and aggression. Just what Ireland need...another 6 Very Happy ....

Whats the deal with him, is he related to DOC sr? How old is he?
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Post by Rory_Gallagher Sun 04 Mar 2012, 12:58 pm

Same age as Ruddock, Ryan etc. Younger than POM.

Rory_Gallagher

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RaboDirect Pro12 - Round 17 Preview/Live match thread Empty Re: RaboDirect Pro12 - Round 17 Preview/Live match thread

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