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European Rugby Challenge Cup Final - Edinburgh V Gloucester

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Post by RDW Mon Apr 20, 2015 8:43 am

European Rugby Challenge Cup Final - Edinburgh V Gloucester 17      European Rugby Challenge Cup Final - Edinburgh V Gloucester 2
Edinburgh V Gloucester

Friday 1st May 2015, KO 19:45
The Twickenham Stoop, Twickenham
Live on BT Sport

Referee Jerome Garces (France)
Touch Judge 1 Pascal Gauzere (France)
Touch Judge 2 Mathieu Raynal (France)
Fourth Official Eric Gauzins (France)
TMO Eric Gauzins (France)

Citing Commissioner Yves Thieffine (France)

Route to the final

Edinburgh

UBB 10 - Edinburgh 24
Edinburgh 25 - Lyon 17
Edinburgh 28 - London Welsh 13
London Welsh 6 - Edinburgh 24
Lyon 21 - Edinburgh 19
Edinburgh 38 - UBB 20

London Irish 18 - Edinburgh 23
Edinburgh 45 - Dragons 16

Gloucester

Gloucester 55 - Brive 0
Oyonnax 15 - Gloucester 25
Gloucester 35 - Zebre 10
Zebre 16 - Gloucester 32
Gloucester 33 - Oyonnax 3
Brive 20 - Gloucester 31

Gloucester 14 - Connacht 7
Gloucester 30 - Exeter Chiefs 19


Teams

Edinburgh
European Rugby Challenge Cup Final - Edinburgh V Gloucester Sam+Hidalgo+Clyne+Edinburgh+Rugby+v+London+cwEx-KiqwRkl
Tonks; Fife, Beard, Strauss, Visser; Burleigh, Hidalgo-Clyne; Dickinson, Ford, Nel, Bresler, Toolis, Coman, Grant, Du Preez.

Replacements: McInally, Sutherland, Andress, McKenzie, Watson, Fowles, Heathcote, Brown.

Gloucester
European Rugby Challenge Cup Final - Edinburgh V Gloucester Greig+Laidlaw+qNTjtak2uwVm
Sharples; May, Meakes, Twelvetrees (capt), Purdy; Hook, Laidlaw; Wood, Hibbard, Afoa, Savage, Palmer, Moriarty, Kvesic, Evans.

Replacements: Dawidiuk, Thomas, Puafisi, Galarza, Rowan, Robson, Burns, McColl.

Official Preview
PREVIEW: Will Sam be the man for Edinburgh?
Sam Hidalgo-Clyne has lit up Scottish rugby this season and spearheaded the Edinburgh Rugby march to their first Challenge Cup final.

Three Heineken Man of the Match awards, and a club European record 28 point haul against Bordeaux-Begles at Murrayfield, have showcased his talent this season and he is set to be a key man in their Edinburgh's push for an historic first professional rugby title at Twickenham Stoop.

As his side's main player maker and goalkicker he is bound to be a target for Gloucester Rugby's players on Friday night and the west country club's director of rugby, David Humphreys, is obviously a fan.

"Sam has become one of the superstars of the game. When you look at how he has performed for Edinburgh in Europe this season he has been outstanding," said Humphreys.

But while the Gloucester back row will be on red alert in the final so, too, will be the Edinburgh side as they try to contain their former team mate Greig Laidlaw. The Scotland skipper has been hugely influential for the Kingsholm team since switching allegiance last summer.

With half-back partner James Hook, and front row recruits John Afoa and Richard Hibbard, he has been able to steer Gloucester into the final without losing. In the final they will attempt to do what Peter Buxton's side of 2006 did and go the full nine games unbeaten.

Gloucester's best form has been saved for Europe this season and the tournament is their only lifeline into next seasons Champions Cup. Win it, and they will go into the play-off for the 20th place, something their meagre ninth place in the Premiership won't offer them.

That will give them extra incentive on the night, although Edinburgh will come into the game with great momentum having demolished Zebre and the Dragons in their last two games. Their added incentive is to become the first Scottish team to win a major trophy - and to beat Glasgow Warriors to the punch!

The big battle is going to be in the front five, where both teams have established sound reputations. Gloucester have the best scrum stats in the Premiership for getting the ball back into play, while the introduction of Aussie-born lock Ben Toolis has added power and agility to the Edinburgh pack. Whoever gets on top at scrum time will have a clear advantage.

Richard Hibbard v Ross Ford at hooker will be a key battle, as will the one between Alasdair Dickinson and John Afoa at prop. The Edinburgh back row will have to deal with Matt Kvesic, the tournament's turn-over king, at the breakdown and if they can stop him from being as effective and influential as usual then it will do them a lot of good.

"We know we are going to play against a highly motivated Edinburgh side and will need to play at our very best to win. We need our international players to stand up and give us international class performances," added Humphreys.

The last time Gloucester reached the Challenge Cup final they needed extra-time to overcome London Irish. That was nine years ago and their last trophy came in 2011 when they won the Anglo-Welsh Cup.

Edinburgh have yet to win a trophy in the professional era, other than the 1872 Cup played for annually between themselves and arch-rivals Glasgow Warriors, and one of the big questions for them to answer at the Twickenham Stoop will be how will they cope with the pressure of the major occasion.

When they met in the European Cup pool stages last season they ended up with an away win each. Who will be the winner on the road this time with a major trophy at stake? It's too tight to call!

Match Facts
•Edinburgh are the first Scottish club to reach a European final while Gloucester - the 2006 champions - will be in appearing in their second decider.
•The competition has been won by an English club on 10 occasions, more than any other nation. French clubs have won the title six times, with Ireland and Wales on one each.
•Gloucester and Edinburgh have never met in the Challenge Cup before, but have played each other four times in Europe's top flight with the Cherry and Whites winning three.
•Gloucester have a 100% record this season and aim to repeat their 2005/06 feat of winning every game on their way to lifting the trophy.
•Edinburgh have the best lineout success (90%) in the competition with Ben Toolis the top lineout winner (44 including steals).
•The two finalists boast the two top scorers in the competition with Greig Laidlaw's 67 points bettered only by Sam Hidalgo-Clyne (91).
•Despite playing the maximum amount of games in this season's Challenge Cup, Gloucester (8) and Edinburgh (11) have conceded fewer tries than any other sides in the competition.
•Matt Kvesic has made the most tackles in the competition completing 97 of his 110 attempts. He has also won the most turnovers (15).
•Of the 370 players who have won the Challenge Cup, 131 are English and eight Scottish. The Scottish winners are: Joe Ansbro (Northampton Saints 2009), Craig Chalmers (Harlequins 2001), Scott Gray (Northampton Saints 2009), Kenny Logan (Wasps 2003), Euan Murray (Northampton Saints 2009), Bryan Redpath (Sale Sharks 2002, 2005), Tom Smith (Northampton Saints 2009), Barry Stewart (Sale Sharks 2005).

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Post by Irish Londoner Mon Apr 20, 2015 8:54 am

I think Glaws will win it but I'd like Edinburgh to...

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Post by R!skysports Mon Apr 20, 2015 10:04 am

Could be a cracking game - both teams like to play (unlike certain matches I watched this weekend), so could be an exciting prospect

I recon Gloucester the favourites, but a lock of 12 trees hair

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Post by tigertattie Mon Apr 20, 2015 11:51 am

Riskysports wrote:Could be a cracking game - both teams like to play (unlike certain matches I watched this weekend), so could be an exciting prospect

I recon  Gloucester the favourites, but a lock of 12 trees hair

How wide, in baw hairs, are 12 tree hairs?
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Post by Steffan Mon Apr 20, 2015 11:57 am

I don't know who I want to win this game. As an Aviva Premiship fan I guess I lean towards Gloucester but hope Edinburgh do well also. I just hope it turns out to be a cracking match

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Post by HongKongCherry Mon Apr 20, 2015 12:28 pm

Glaws last won this competition in 2006 when we won all 6 pool games with a total of 29 points and the final being at The Stoop. This year we won all 6 pool games with 29 points and the final is at The Stoop. It's fate that we win this Cool

Seriously though it should be a cracking game. Both sides have underperformed in their respective leagues, but have put in strong performances in the Cup, notably both the respective semi finals. So this game will be determined by fine margins and I do wonder if the ticketing balls up by Edinburgh will be the slip up? Edinburgh are now only selling tickets to season ticket holders, but over the weekend they were on general sell and needless to say Glaws supporters snapped them up. Glaws have also sold all of their own allocation so The Stoop will definitely be more Cherry & White.

The only downside is that we have to wait 2 weeks for the final European Rugby Challenge Cup Final - Edinburgh V Gloucester 3933776953
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Post by RDW Mon Apr 20, 2015 12:46 pm

Exactly why I ordered my tickets when I was sure Edinburgh were going to win - I'm just glad that mobile internet signal has greatly improved inside Murrayfield recently!

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Post by tigertattie Mon Apr 20, 2015 2:26 pm

If Sam H C does outplay Laidlaw, will the powers that be still have laidlaw as first choice?
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Post by Nematode Mon Apr 20, 2015 3:07 pm

tigertattie wrote:If Sam H C does outplay Laidlaw, will the powers that be still have laidlaw as first choice?

I can just see it - SHC gets injured, Laidlaw has MoM display - hooray! - but plays like he did in the 6N in the RWC - boo!

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Post by funnyExiledScot Mon Apr 20, 2015 8:58 pm

I'm not Laidlaw's biggest fan, but he really isn't a bad player. I'd go with SH-C personally but both could serve us well.

Laidlaw has a touch of the Kellock about him. Valued as much for his attitude and leadership than his technical ability, and both like to take in the view from behind the ruck.

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Post by RDW Mon Apr 20, 2015 9:07 pm

It's not a foregone conclusion that HidalgoClyne will outplay Laidlaw - Laidlaw is a top pro and I'm sure he won't have missed all the comments about HidalgoClyne taking his place for Scotland.

There's no doubting Laidlaw was poor for Scotland, but I'm expecting a big performance from him.

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Post by funnyExiledScot Mon Apr 20, 2015 9:16 pm

Remember Laidlaw against Munster last season when he was MOTM, and in the AIs for Scotland?

He is not to be underestimated, or ''misunderestimated'' as George Dubya would say.

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Post by InjuredYetAgain Mon Apr 20, 2015 9:23 pm

HongKongCherry wrote: Edinburgh are now only selling tickets to season ticket holders, but over the weekend they were on general sell and needless to say Glaws supporters snapped them up. Glaws have also sold all of their own allocation so The Stoop will definitely be more Cherry & White.

The only downside is that we have to wait 2 weeks for the final European Rugby Challenge Cup Final - Edinburgh V Gloucester 3933776953
I see from the SRU website that they will also only sell the applicants with Scottish addresses when they go on sale to the general public.
Out of interest,what is each club's allocation? Obviously, the sponsors and the blazeratti (of whom there are plenty for Edinburgh) will need their stash of tickets too

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Post by funnyExiledScot Mon Apr 20, 2015 9:29 pm

I believe The New Club has an unlimited allocation.....

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Post by BigGee Mon Apr 20, 2015 9:35 pm

Just watched the Gloucester v Exeter game on record. What a cracking game and probably the best I have seen Gloucester play all season. like Edinburgh they looked good right across the park and when you see them play like that you wonder why they have struggled in the league this season.

Judging on both games it should be a monumental battle up front, with 2 packs playing very well. Edinburgh will play a lot tighter than Exeter I would imagine and not chuck it about the way they tried. Edinburgh need to aim to frustrate them and force errors then take their chances when they come.

The battle of the Scottish SH's will be fascinating. Laidlaw, like SHC had a very impressive game and does not look like he wants to give up his Scotland shirt easily.

It should be a great game, can't wait!

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Post by InjuredYetAgain Mon Apr 20, 2015 9:40 pm

BigGee wrote:Just watched the Gloucester v Exeter game on record. What a cracking game and probably the best I have seen Gloucester play all season. like Edinburgh they looked good right across the park and when you see them play like that you wonder why they have struggled in the league this season.
That is not what we wanted to hear, BigGee. I was hoping you would say they were mince, incurred a lot of injuries and will have any decent players suspended for the final for foul play. Bugger it!
I haven't see the Glaws/Exeter game but, having seen Exeter dismantle the Saints across the board the previous week, Glaws must really have upped their game this week. James Hook does worry me greatly as he is streets ahead of any (wannabe, need-to-be or genuine) 10 that we have

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Post by BigGee Mon Apr 20, 2015 9:59 pm

InjuredYetAgain wrote:
BigGee wrote:Just watched the Gloucester v Exeter game on record. What a cracking game and probably the best I have seen Gloucester play all season. like Edinburgh they looked good right across the park and when you see them play like that you wonder why they have struggled in the league this season.
That is not what we wanted to hear, BigGee. I was hoping you would say they were mince, incurred a lot of injuries and will have any decent players suspended for the final for foul play. Bugger it!
I haven't see the Glaws/Exeter game but, having seen Exeter dismantle the Saints across the board the previous week, Glaws must really have upped their game this week. James Hook does worry me greatly as he is streets ahead of any (wannabe, need-to-be or genuine) 10 that we have

I don't imagine that Gloucester will role over in the way that the dragons did, Edinburgh will have to up their game significantly to win this, but why would they not do that, they really did play well on Friday and it really looked like it was all coming together. Its a final at the end of the day, no-one said it would be easy.

Hook is good when he is good, but can be flaky. Burleigh really did look like he can control a game, which is how Edinburgh need to play to win, territory and pressure, it is the game that works for them and one that Gloucester are less keen on. They have been wildly inconsistent this year as well, so can they back it up once again?

Both sides need this win, it is an automatic European place in the top competition for Gloucester if they win and Edinburgh have the chance to make their own history. If they win then they will surely deserve it!

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Post by RDW Mon Apr 20, 2015 10:07 pm

If Gloucester win will there only be one playoff required - the 7th placed pro 12 team against the 7th placed French?

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Post by RDW Tue Apr 21, 2015 9:05 am


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Post by HongKongCherry Tue Apr 21, 2015 12:21 pm

Glaws' pack is much maligned but in many ways undeserved. Our scrum has vastly improved from the powder puff of last year and the Jeff stats have us as having the 3rd most effective scrum. Our driving maul has been vastly improved too. The lineout can be very hit and miss and it was a delight to see Galarza play so well against Chiefs; he has been out all season injured, so it's ideal timing for our international lock to start playing! Our maul defence can be very suspect and I am surprised Chiefs didn't try this more against us given they've scored 2 or 3 tries against us from mauls this season.

As has been pointed out we have been wildly inconsistent this season, so I have hope rather than faith that we'll be on form again in 2 weeks. If we play like we did against Chiefs we stand a really good chance. If we play like we did the last time we were at The Stoop it'll be a long night!

The best way of qualifying for the Champions Cup is via this route, so our focus will not be on the Jeff. We have Newcastle at home this weekend, so I'd fully expect a host of players to be rested especially John Afoa.
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Post by cakeordeath Tue Apr 21, 2015 12:26 pm

HongKongCherry wrote:
The best way of qualifying for the Champions Cup is via this route, so our focus will not be on the Jeff. We have Newcastle at home this weekend, so I'd fully expect a host of players to be rested especially John Afoa.

Have I missed something, the winner of this doesn't get automatic entry to the CC.

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Post by RDW Tue Apr 21, 2015 12:37 pm

For the AP is it not a case that the 7th place goes into the playoff, unless the winner of the Challenge cup comes from the AP - they then replace the 7th place team in the playoff?

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Post by RDW Tue Apr 21, 2015 12:38 pm

For the 2015/16 season, the play-offs for the 20th qualifier will include the following clubs:

The seventh-ranked club from the Top 14.
The seventh-ranked club from the Aviva Premiership, or the winner of the 2014/15 Challenge Cup if from the Aviva Premiership and not already qualified for the Champions Cup.
The highest-ranked club from the PRO12 not already qualified for the Champions Cup.
Champions Cup play-offs:

Match 1: Aviva Premiership (seventh-ranked club or Challenge Cup winner from the Aviva Premiership if not already qualified) v PRO12 (highest-ranked club not already qualified)
Home advantage to be decided by toss of coin


Match 2: winner of Match 1 v Top 14 (seventh-ranked club)
Winner of Match 1 will have home advantage

So if Gloucester win and Edinburgh finish 7th we could have rematch in the first playoff!

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Post by yappysnap Tue Apr 21, 2015 1:19 pm

I expect Glos to win this quite comfortably, don't know why, just a feeling I have.

Sorry HKC but saying that I'd like Edingburgh to win it though, from a purely selfish perspective as a Quins fan!

So I'll be 50/50 on the day, wanting the English club to win, but then wanting to try to nab that last ERCC place....

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Post by HongKongCherry Tue Apr 21, 2015 4:36 pm

Yappy, no need to apologise as I know I'd be really cheesed off if we'd finished 7th and someone nabbed the spot from us!!

I have to say this play off process is a farce and adds needless games on to an already lengthy season. If the winner of the Challenge Cup got the spot I'm pretty sure the French would have taken it more seriously. One of the statements about the changes to the European competitions was to make the 2nd tier cup more competitive, yet the TV coverage is limited which builds little or no interest outside of the teams involved with incentive only for English clubs to win it.
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Post by VinceWLB Tue Apr 21, 2015 4:50 pm

So basically this game apart from tiring players has no incidence in Edinburgh's hopes of qualifying for the super duper cup?

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Post by RDW Tue Apr 21, 2015 4:55 pm

VinceWLB wrote:So basically this game apart from tiring players has no incidence in Edinburgh's hopes of qualifying for the super duper cup?

Nope!

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Post by funnyExiledScot Tue Apr 21, 2015 5:02 pm

RDW_Scotland wrote:
VinceWLB wrote:So basically this game apart from tiring players has no incidence in Edinburgh's hopes of qualifying for the super duper cup?

Nope!

Just imagine the moral superiority we'd have over our unwashed brethren should Edinburgh win two trophies in one season!

Far better than scraping into the main Euro comp only to be smashed by Toulon to the tune on 50+ points, hammered by Bath and never actually qualify for the proper knockout stuff. For all the huffing, puffing and glue sniffing, Glasgow's Euro record is much the same as Treviso's.

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Post by R!skysports Tue Apr 21, 2015 5:21 pm

funnyExiledScot wrote:
RDW_Scotland wrote:
VinceWLB wrote:So basically this game apart from tiring players has no incidence in Edinburgh's hopes of qualifying for the super duper cup?

Nope!

Just imagine the moral superiority we'd have over our unwashed brethren should Edinburgh win two trophies in one season!

Far better than scraping into the main Euro comp only to be smashed by Toulon to the tune on 50+ points, hammered by Bath and never actually qualify for the proper knockout stuff. For all the huffing, puffing and glue sniffing, Glasgow's Euro record is much the same as Treviso's.

Wow - your chip is growing into a boulder




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Post by funnyExiledScot Tue Apr 21, 2015 5:49 pm

Riskysports wrote:
funnyExiledScot wrote:
RDW_Scotland wrote:
VinceWLB wrote:So basically this game apart from tiring players has no incidence in Edinburgh's hopes of qualifying for the super duper cup?

Nope!

Just imagine the moral superiority we'd have over our unwashed brethren should Edinburgh win two trophies in one season!

Far better than scraping into the main Euro comp only to be smashed by Toulon to the tune on 50+ points, hammered by Bath and never actually qualify for the proper knockout stuff. For all the huffing, puffing and glue sniffing, Glasgow's Euro record is much the same as Treviso's.

Wow - your chip is growing into a boulder

laughing

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Post by Nematode Tue Apr 21, 2015 6:51 pm

To any Gloucester supporters:

What's been your opinion of Stevie McColl? Does he have the potential to be a regular starter next season?

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Post by funnyExiledScot Tue Apr 21, 2015 6:56 pm

I've liked what I've seen of McColl in attack, and he seems to get plenty game time for Glaws.

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Post by HongKongCherry Tue Apr 21, 2015 9:34 pm

McColl has ultimately proved to be a disappointment. He hasn't played that many games and those he has is due to Cook being injured. His attack has been strong but his defense has at times been truly woeful. He is prone to making stupid mistakes and we have rarely seen his siege gun boot. I rated him highly at Leeds and was delighted when we signed him but I fear when Cook returns from injury and Tom Marshall joins he will fail to make a match day squad.
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Post by funnyExiledScot Tue Apr 21, 2015 9:43 pm

Oh well, you'll have certainly seen more of him than me. I'd take him at Edinburgh in a heart beat!

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Post by TJ Tue Apr 21, 2015 10:10 pm

Lets just hope for a really good game - a showpiece. Its up to the two teams to make it so.

My prediction - edinburgh will make too many mistakes to win. But it will be tight.

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Post by justified sinner Wed Apr 22, 2015 9:24 pm

OK 606 roll call time . Who's going to the game?

Me + 4

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Post by RDW Wed Apr 22, 2015 10:01 pm

Me + 6

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Post by HongKongCherry Thu Apr 23, 2015 1:47 am

Me + 12000 Very Happy
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Post by RuggerRadge2611 Thu Apr 23, 2015 8:00 am

Well I have just learned I'm going to be in Devonport for the Thursday and Friday morning. I'm considering getting a train from Plymouth in the afternoon to London for the match, staying with my uncle and flying home Sunday. Are there still tickets available?

I need to look at train prices though, I expect there to be a big hike since it's the holiday weekend.
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Post by RDW Thu Apr 23, 2015 8:45 am

HongKongCherry wrote:Me + 12000 Very Happy

I'm sure there's a joke about west country people and inbreeding here but, being a respectable admin, I of course would not say it! Very Happy

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Post by EWT Spoons Thu Apr 23, 2015 9:35 am

Me +3

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Post by HongKongCherry Thu Apr 23, 2015 12:42 pm

RDW_Scotland wrote:
HongKongCherry wrote:Me + 12000 Very Happy

I'm sure there's a joke about west country people and inbreeding here but, being a respectable admin, I of course would not say it! Very Happy

When they say we're a family club, they really do mean it! Wink
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Post by George Carlin Thu Apr 23, 2015 1:43 pm

That's why Laidlaw can really pass a ball. Those webbed hands help no end.
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Post by HongKongCherry Thu Apr 23, 2015 6:29 pm

Just to spice things up, here's what Glaws are capable of... I can't remember who this was against though? Wink
https://youtu.be/RGajryagpQ8
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Post by Nematode Thu Apr 23, 2015 7:04 pm

HongKongCherry wrote:Just to spice things up, here's what Glaws are capable of... I can't remember who this was against though? Wink
https://youtu.be/RGajryagpQ8

Can you remember what happened the following week?

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Post by HongKongCherry Thu Apr 23, 2015 8:35 pm

Nematode wrote:
HongKongCherry wrote:Just to spice things up, here's what Glaws are capable of... I can't remember who this was against though? Wink
https://youtu.be/RGajryagpQ8

Can you remember what happened the following week?

Ah, but those were in our inconsistent days Rolling Eyes
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Post by GLove39 Thu Apr 23, 2015 8:37 pm

If we're still doing roll call, me + 1!

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Post by InjuredYetAgain Thu Apr 23, 2015 8:40 pm

HKC - any chance of an ebola outbreak in Glaws over the next 7/10 days? I wouldn't want anything too serious but just enough to temporarily incapacitate your entire back-line.
In fact, if you have seen our backs trying to tackle this season, you would thing that most teams we have played against have had ebola and our guys wanted to avoid all contact in case they caught it too

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Post by HongKongCherry Fri Apr 24, 2015 6:04 am

We don't need Ebola to incapacitate nour back line as they're more than capable of doing that themselves! They have rarely worked as a unit and often we've relied on the pace of May and Sharples to get us out of trouble. So your backs won't have to worry about making many tackles.
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Post by prop_lyd Fri Apr 24, 2015 7:30 am

Anyone heard of more tickets coming out? The joys of being a glos exile in wales meant I didn't stand a chance of skipping work for tickets!
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