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Ulster Rugby 2018-19

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 9:49 am

First topic message reminder :

https://www.606v2.com/t68145-ulster-rugby-2017-2018-part-2


Last thread was at risk of self combusting, so started a new one for you. 


Bye.

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Post by The Great Aukster on Mon 27 Jan 2020, 10:30 pm

It's an interesting comparison how the American public see Kobe Bryant and the Irish public see Paddy Jackson

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Post by Pot Hale on Mon 27 Jan 2020, 11:17 pm

The Great Aukster wrote:It's an interesting comparison how the American public see Kobe Bryant and the Irish public see Paddy Jackson

It may be just me, but I'd no idea who Kobe Bryant was. I'd have guessed he was a footballer or basketballer but no idea of his team, or anything about his personal life. I think most of the Irish public have forgotten about Paddy Jackson - out of country, out of mind.
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Post by SecretFly on Wed 29 Jan 2020, 9:46 am

Pot Hale wrote:
The Great Aukster wrote:It's an interesting comparison how the American public see Kobe Bryant and the Irish public see Paddy Jackson

It may be just me, but I'd no idea who Kobe Bryant was.   I'd have guessed he was a footballer or basketballer but no idea of his team, or anything about his personal life.    I think most of the Irish public have forgotten about Paddy Jackson - out of country, out of mind.

I didn't have a clue who he was either.  

Now it was a tragedy, he was a young man, eight other people died including his daughter.  But.......  I did think the coverage was a good bit of an Emoto overreaction, especially on this side of the Atlantic.  And I suspect many ( not all but many) found out how shocked they all were by a few Google searches and some 'shared grief' social media time with their 1,245,322 net friends.
It just seemed quite crass that such a real personal tragedy for Bryant's extended family could so quickly be exploited, slickly packaged and commercialised..... (here's looking at you Grammy).

Meanwhile, it was a good few days before I stumbled upon the news that Terry Jones had died..... some old forgotten has-been who once made the world laugh quite a lot at the absurdity of the human condition.

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Post by Pete330v2 on Thu 30 Jan 2020, 9:42 am

SecretFly wrote:
Pot Hale wrote:
The Great Aukster wrote:It's an interesting comparison how the American public see Kobe Bryant and the Irish public see Paddy Jackson

It may be just me, but I'd no idea who Kobe Bryant was.   I'd have guessed he was a footballer or basketballer but no idea of his team, or anything about his personal life.    I think most of the Irish public have forgotten about Paddy Jackson - out of country, out of mind.

I didn't have a clue who he was either.  

Now it was a tragedy, he was a young man, eight other people died including his daughter.  But.......  I did think the coverage was a good bit of an Emoto overreaction, especially on this side of the Atlantic.  And I suspect many ( not all but many) found out how shocked they all were by a few Google searches and some 'shared grief' social media time with their 1,245,322 net friends.
It just seemed quite crass that such a real personal tragedy for Bryant's extended family could so quickly be exploited, slickly packaged and commercialised..... (here's looking at you Grammy).

Meanwhile, it was a good few days before I stumbled upon the news that Terry Jones had died..... some old forgotten has-been who once made the world laugh quite a lot at the absurdity of the human condition.

You're an old cynic Fly, a cantankerous one at that.....just like myself. I felt exactly the same, even the part about not having a clue who the guy was. The outpouring of grief for someone you never knew is alien to me just as much as the hounding of people found innocent court, people like Kobe, Paddy and Stu.

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Post by Cyril on Thu 30 Jan 2020, 10:46 pm

You seriously haven’t heard of Bryant? I’m no NBA fan, but generally know the top players in most major sports in the world.

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Post by Pot Hale on Thu 30 Jan 2020, 11:35 pm

Cyril wrote:You seriously haven’t heard of Bryant? I’m no NBA fan, but generally know the top players in most major sports in the world.


A surprising number of people probably don't unless they're sports fanatics such as yourself. I was out with a group of friends/acquaintances this evening of varying ages and asked the question - some people got as far as some American sportstar and that was based on what they read in recent media. Otherwise no clue. Mind you, I couldn't name most of the soccer players either since I don't watch it. Or baseball, netball, hockey, boxing, etc.
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Post by Cyril on Thu 30 Jan 2020, 11:49 pm

Top players of each sport though? You don’t have to be a huge sports fan to be aware of the big names, surely? You just have to read the news and take an interest in world affairs.

Having said that I work with people who couldn’t place name leaders of political parties in the UK, major capital cities or even tell me whether Birmingham was closer to London than Leeds. They’re all up on the latest reality bollox though.

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Post by Gooseberry on Fri 31 Jan 2020, 8:02 am

Yeah it's terrible that people waste their lives worrying about realiry stars rather than importnat life affecting events like a bunch of men in I'll fitting shorts throwing a ball at each other.

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Post by SecretFly on Fri 31 Jan 2020, 9:33 am

Cyril wrote:You seriously haven’t heard of Bryant? I’m no NBA fan, but generally know the top players in most major sports in the world.

Is there a mild tone of being offended in there, Cyril?  Cool  

It's a busy old world in the minds of most folks across the planet.  Things that are not in your realm of interest often pass you by in a tide of indifference.
On the rare occasions that I now listen to music radio channels, especially ones dedicated to modern Pop, - yep, hands up again, there are few artists that I'll actually know.  Some of them I will know because they have perhaps fed into other facets of my world of interests or just through chats with nephews or nieces. So the wider world of sport would only be one of the lesser ploughed areas of my brain.

I've never watched one full game of basketball in my entire life - even at the Olympics, when people tend to finally get around to seeing some sports they might never watch on a regular basis. The only long lasting impression of basketball I have is noisy, infuriating squeaks and a sensation of claustrophobia as men much too big canter around a play area much too small.
I've never watched one full game of American Football either.  Now, I've seen probably lots of snippets and such when passing through channel searches.  And the always animated and ultra enthusiastic commentators and pundits would be talking about I'm sure famous players in the sport...... so I'd be exposed to these 'names' but in they'd go into one ear and out the other as fast.  

My brain just has no interest in collecting needless name lists.  It's a lazy basterde in that regard - I'll admit. Wink

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Post by Pete330v2 on Fri 31 Jan 2020, 9:42 am

Basketball, Baseball and American Football are all pretty alien to me. I couldn't name one single current player from any of them. That being said I'd be very hard pushed to name a single current soccer player from any league. I grew up on a diet of Rugby and motorsport and in the case of rugby it's been a lifelong obsession.
These days I certainly don't have time to even attempt to show a cursory interest in any other sport, I work full time and have just opened a new business, I don't have time to do anything these days. But there you have it, everyone's different some people are sport-mad, some people are more........single sport targeted.

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Post by carpet baboon on Fri 31 Jan 2020, 4:27 pm

Any rumours on signings for next season?

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Post by Pete330v2 on Fri 31 Jan 2020, 5:13 pm

carpet baboon wrote:Any rumours on signings for next season?

Yeah we've signed Damian de Allende, RG Snyman and Matt Gallagher. I'm over the moon...…………….oh wait Shocked

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Post by carpet baboon on Fri 31 Jan 2020, 5:27 pm

Pete330v2 wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:Any rumours on signings for next season?

Yeah we've signed Damian de Allende, RG Snyman and Matt Gallagher. I'm over the moon...…………….oh wait  Shocked

Pfff who needs those has-beens

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Post by neilthom7 on Fri 31 Jan 2020, 7:48 pm

Pete330v2 wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:Any rumours on signings for next season?

Yeah we've signed Damian de Allende, RG Snyman and Matt Gallagher. I'm over the moon...…………….oh wait  Shocked

Theres a couple of lads in around London who will need a new club next year, dunno if you heard, something about their club being relegated.

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Post by Pete330v2 on Mon 10 Feb 2020, 1:21 pm

So we'll have big Stu, Burns, McGrath and O'Toole back for this weekend's trip to the O's. Addison still broken f f f f s

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Post by Pete330v2 on Fri 14 Feb 2020, 4:36 pm

Ospreys team to play Ulster

(15-9): Cai Evans, Hanno Dirksen, Owen Watkin, Kieran Williams, Luke Morgan, Luke Price, Aled Davies

(1-8): Nicky Smith, Scott Otten, Simon Gardiner, Adam Beard, Bradley Davies, Dan Lydiate (C), Olly Cracknell, Gareth Evans

Replacements: Sam Parry, Gareth Thomas, Gheorghe Gajion, Lloyd Ashley, Sam Cross, Shaun Venter, Tiaan Thomas-Wheeler, James Hook

Ulster team to play Ospreys

(15-9): Matt Faddes, Robert Baloucoune, Luke Marshall, Stuart McCloskey, Louis Ludik, Billy Burns, David Shanahan.

(1-8): Eric O'Sullivan, Adam McBurney, Marty Moore, Alan O'Connor (C), Kieran Treadwell, Matthew Rea, Sean Reidy, Marcell Coetzee.

Replacements: John Andrew, Jack McGrath, Tom O'Toole, David O'Connor, Jordi Murphy, Jonny Stewart, Bill Johnston, Craig Gilroy.

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Post by The Great Aukster on Sat 15 Feb 2020, 8:25 pm

Well done to Ospreys who deserved the win.
Ulster need to be able to play without Cooney and take the ref out of the equation.
It's all part of the leaning curve, and in the second year of a three year plan is to be expected. However if Ulster are going to make the step up and actually win something, where are the players going to come from who will make the difference?

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Post by clivemcl on Sun 16 Feb 2020, 12:13 am

To get so lucky to regain possession in the 80th minute, win your line out, and then get penalty advantage inside opposition half... why on earth did we think we had better chance of working our way closer to their try line and give up the penalty?

Sure, it wouldn’t have been an easy kick from that position, but surely more likely than breaking through in open play. Am I wrong?

Not sure how we didn’t get the penalty again after that when Lydiate (I think) was on our side of the ruck. Yea, we weren’t helping to roll away, but since when did that matter. At the end of the day he shouldn’t have been there. By letter of the law we ought to have had a penalty around their 22 in the 82nd minute or so.

But really though... we traded a penalty kick attempt for a high crazy under pressure drop goal attempt 10/15metres closer Rolling Eyes

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Post by The Great Aukster on Sun 16 Feb 2020, 8:43 am

Johnson obviously didn't think he could make the kick, and they should have had the closer penalty but Mitrea bottled it. The problem was that they should have remained patient and that is where they need to learn rather than rush a long drop goal attempt.

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Post by maestegmafia on Sun 16 Feb 2020, 12:29 pm

The Great Aukster wrote:Well done to Ospreys who deserved the win.
Ulster need to be able to play without Cooney and take the ref out of the equation.
It's all part of the leaning curve, and in the second year of a three year plan is to be expected. However if Ulster are going to make the step up and actually win something, where are the players going to come from who will make the difference?

You saw the reaction on the Ospreys players faces that meant a lot. Not just the result but the performance was the best of the season so far. Not the greatest team performance in our “hit or miss” history by a long shot but so much better than what we have achieved this year.

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Post by The Great Aukster on Tue 18 Feb 2020, 9:59 pm

Much as the defeat hurts, neither Ulster nor Ospreys will improve unless they're pushed. It's far better for the team and fans to suffer a narrow defeat in an exciting finish than a one sided victory. The League needs strong teams and the Welsh regions are integral to the competition so I hope the Ospreys have turned a corner.

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Post by Pete330v2 on Wed 19 Feb 2020, 11:20 am

The Great Aukster wrote:Much as the defeat hurts, neither Ulster nor Ospreys will improve unless they're pushed. It's far better for the team and fans to suffer a narrow defeat in an exciting finish than a one sided victory. The League needs strong teams and the Welsh regions are integral to the competition so I hope the Ospreys have turned a corner.

At the very least the defeat might serve as a warning on the dangers of complacency or it may well be a kick in the rear that Ulster need to push on. It could also highlight the fact that without Cooney there's a big old drop in quality at 9. If Ulster needs anything to win something to use their out of date brasso on it's capable cover and IMO we simply don't have that in the scrum half position.

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Post by Pete330v2 on Fri 21 Feb 2020, 12:19 pm

Ulster team v Ruan's Cheetahs

(15-9) Michael Lowry, Robert Baloucoune, Luke Marshall, James Hume, Louis Ludik, Bill Johnston, David Shanahan.

(1-8) Eric O'Sullivan, Adam McBurney, Marty Moore, Alan O'Connor (Capt.), Kieran Treadwell, Nick Timoney, Jordi Murphy, Marcell Coetzee.

Replacements: John Andrew, Andrew Warwick, Tom O'Toole, David O'Connor, Sean Reidy, Jonny Stewart, Stewart Moore, Craig Gilroy.

Hume and Lowry make a welcome return just as Ulster need to make a statement after last week's clusterf…..

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Post by carpet baboon on Fri 21 Feb 2020, 12:58 pm

Is big Stu Injured, rested or traveling reserve with Ireland? And Addison?

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Post by Pete330v2 on Fri 21 Feb 2020, 1:45 pm

Stu wasn't released but Addison must still be carrying that knock (when does he not).

I can't understand why McCloskey is being retained by the Ireland camp when they aren't going to use him bar some catastrophic injury report coming through.

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Post by rodders on Fri 21 Feb 2020, 3:28 pm

Pete330v2 wrote:Stu wasn't released but Addison must still be carrying that knock (when does he not).

I can't understand why McCloskey is being retained by the Ireland camp when they aren't going to use him bar some catastrophic injury report coming through.

Because Ringrose is injured, not sure about Chris Farrell status but makes sense to retain some injury cover in the travelling squad - particularly with Henshaw's injury profile - a stray blade of grass or stiff breeze could see him drop out.
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Post by carpet baboon on Fri 21 Feb 2020, 9:32 pm

McCann just got MOM for the u20s tonight. Looks to be a classy no8.

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Post by Pete330v2 on Sun 23 Feb 2020, 11:31 am

Rumour has it that Alby Mathewson has signed for us next season. If true it'd be a very useful, if old age signing.

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Post by Don Alfonso on Mon 24 Feb 2020, 12:22 pm

Game in Italy has been called off due to coronavrius.

https://twitter.com/PRO14Official/status/1231911950453477376

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Post by Pete330v2 on Mon 24 Feb 2020, 12:30 pm

Don Alfonso wrote:Game in Italy has been called off due to coronavrius.

https://twitter.com/PRO14Official/status/1231911950453477376

Not a bad thing, it's one I reckon we'd currently lose with our depleted squad so hopefully we'll have our big game players in harness for the rearranged game.

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Post by Don Alfonso on Mon 24 Feb 2020, 12:34 pm

Pete330v2 wrote:
Don Alfonso wrote:Game in Italy has been called off due to coronavrius.

https://twitter.com/PRO14Official/status/1231911950453477376

Not a bad thing, it's one I reckon we'd currently lose with our depleted squad so hopefully we'll have our big game players in harness for the rearranged game.

Surely Benetton lose more players to the Italian side than we do to Ireland?

McGrath, Herring, Henderson, Cooney, Burns, McCloskey, Stockdale with O'Toole and Addison seemingly able to be released?

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Post by Pete330v2 on Mon 24 Feb 2020, 1:00 pm

Don Alfonso wrote:
Pete330v2 wrote:
Don Alfonso wrote:Game in Italy has been called off due to coronavrius.

https://twitter.com/PRO14Official/status/1231911950453477376

Not a bad thing, it's one I reckon we'd currently lose with our depleted squad so hopefully we'll have our big game players in harness for the rearranged game.

Surely Benetton lose more players to the Italian side than we do to Ireland?

McGrath, Herring, Henderson, Cooney, Burns, McCloskey, Stockdale with O'Toole and Addison seemingly able to be released?

They do but they don't necessarily rest their players in fallow weeks. Even without their internationals I think they'd have us, they played really well at the weekend even though they lost in Cardiff. At home they're a different beast as well. Without Cooney at least, we'd struggle.

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Post by Don Alfonso on Mon 24 Feb 2020, 1:07 pm

Fair enough. Isn't Carter back soon?

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Post by The Great Aukster on Mon 24 Feb 2020, 1:19 pm

If the virus hangs around for another three months or even spreads to France, does that mean games being cancelled rather than postponed?

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Post by Pete330v2 on Mon 24 Feb 2020, 2:44 pm

Carter is supposed to be returning very soon, I thought I'd heard it was to happen in the coming weeks.

It does look very likely that these games will have to be cancelled. What's the likelihood of the all clear being given before the playoffs and finals?

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Post by SecretFly on Mon 24 Feb 2020, 2:57 pm

The Great Aukster wrote:If the virus hangs around for another three months or even spreads to France, does that mean games being cancelled rather than postponed?

Cancelled hopefully. Leinster given the Title just coz they've been quite good so far. Whistle

Cup hoisting ceremony end of February. Farrell takes charge of a much extended International camp - more players added to camp - dog eat dog training for a few months. High intensity, high conditioning levels, skills teaching under pressure cooker conditions, training with bin liners again, etc etc etc. A short holiday and then into some real biz for Summer tour.

Perfect way to manage a dangerous Worldwide health issue.

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Post by rodders on Mon 24 Feb 2020, 3:17 pm

Pete330v2 wrote:Rumour has it that Alby Mathewson has signed for us next season. If true it'd be a very useful, if old age signing.

Great signing if it is true. Particularly with Cooney potentially becoming Ireland starting 9.
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Post by neilthom7 on Mon 24 Feb 2020, 8:05 pm

The Great Aukster wrote:If the virus hangs around for another three months or even spreads to France, does that mean games being cancelled rather than postponed?

Maybe cancelled, some football matches are going ahead behind closed doors so they could do that

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Post by rodders on Tue 25 Feb 2020, 12:23 pm

Mathewson confirmed on a 1 year deal. Superb signing for us.
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Post by Pot Hale on Tue 25 Feb 2020, 3:03 pm

A better balance for the provinces as well.

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Post by clivemcl on Wed 26 Feb 2020, 7:37 pm

So what's the story in terms of us actually being allowed an NIQ at 9 now? Is it that Cooney is clearly number one, so it's ok to have an NIQ 9 as long as they don't start ahead of your main IQ 9?

Secondly, has Ruan moved on from the notion of wanting Belfast to remain his home? Is he now settled back in SA, or is he still hoping to settle in Belfast?

I notice that the Matthewson deal is 1 year only, coinciding with the end of Ruan's Cheetah's contract. I'd be surprised if we signed a player at 36/37 years of age of course. But an article mentioned Matthewson being lauded as good at working with younger 9s at Munster. Would we maybe see Ruan return in a coaching capacity?

In the behind the scenes video you can see Dan McFarland greeting Pienaar in a hallway and called him 'Roo'. Rather chummy and informal for a coach who arrived at a club more than a year after that player had left, no?

Clutching at straws again! Very Happy

But yea, anyone any insight - is Pienaar over Northern Ireland, or is he still wanting to settle back here?

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Post by mikey_dragon on Wed 26 Feb 2020, 9:26 pm

Roo probably has enough cash to buy a few acres back in SA now so won't settle in NI. It's a shame he was pushed out.

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Post by Kingshu on Wed 26 Feb 2020, 9:51 pm

Things have changed, and with death of sister wants to be closer to family in SA, I don't see him back in Belfast for some time, if ever now. Maybe as a coach, but he'll put family first and if uprooting them and moving back isn't the best move then he'll stay.

As to Mathewson, are we being allowed an extra NIQ over Munster and Leinster, nice that the IRFU give us a break.

Its a good signing, need the back up there, would have liked us to get Saunders from Harliquins academy, but maybe he isn't intrested in a move to Ireland at present. Will Doak be ready season after next to me back up, will cooneys form dip as he will be getting older, think adding Saunders would be good succession planning.

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Post by Pete330v2 on Thu 27 Feb 2020, 11:12 am

Ruan never sold his house here, another small hint to his future plans perhaps or more straws to grab at? Who knows but he'd be welcomed back in any capacity.
Mathewson will be a fantastic asset to have at our disposal, both for his on-pitch activities and moreover his tutelage of the young guns Doak and Finley. If he can bring them on enough to offer better backup to Cooney than we currently have it'll be massively beneficial.

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Post by carpet baboon on Thu 27 Feb 2020, 5:08 pm

Is Angus Curtis brother (Dave??) No longer seen as a scrum half? Had been playing wing last time I noticed

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Post by neilthom7 on Fri 28 Feb 2020, 9:19 pm

So if the game v Treviso can't be rearranged both teams get 2 points. That will make for interesting scenes if it s close league at the end of the season

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Post by Pete330v2 on Fri 28 Feb 2020, 9:33 pm

After the loss to the O's I got the feeling our trip to Treviso would have been a very tough one to get points at so it wouldn't be a bad thing. That being said if it was rearranged for a time when we have the internationals back, especially Cooney, then we'd be in the running for more points.

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Post by Pot Hale on Fri 28 Feb 2020, 10:12 pm

Mathewson is the only NIE 9 in the country. The rest are all Irish qualified - Blade, Marmion, Murray, Cooney, McGrath, Gibson-Park, O’Sullivan, etc. So he balances out Ulster with the rest of the provinces having sufficient depth.

Fardy leaves and Snyman comes in as the other NIE lock alongside Carter. Tomane is also leaving so de Allende and Faddes are the NIE midfielders.
No foreign props, hookers. Cloete and Butler qualify end of this year. Fainga is leaving Connacht. Lowe qualifies in November. Will Godwin stay at Connacht?

Numbers are dwindling further on NIE/NIQ players. Be interesting to see if someone like Bleyendaal is renewed.
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Post by profitius on Sat 29 Feb 2020, 12:13 pm

Pot Hale wrote:Mathewson is the only NIE 9 in the country.  The rest are all Irish qualified - Blade, Marmion, Murray, Cooney, McGrath, Gibson-Park, O’Sullivan, etc.  So he balances out Ulster with the rest of the provinces having sufficient depth.  

Fardy leaves and Snyman comes in as the other NIE lock alongside Carter.  Tomane is also leaving so de Allende and Faddes are the NIE midfielders.  
No foreign props, hookers.   Cloete and Butler qualify end of this year.  Fainga is leaving Connacht.  Lowe qualifies in November.  Will Godwin stay at Connacht?  

Numbers are dwindling further on NIE/NIQ players.  Be interesting to see if someone like Bleyendaal is renewed.  


The number of foreign signings should continue to decrease each year imo. Id guess we're about 5 years from being self sustainable with irish players because of Leinster mainly and Munster and Ulster have upped their game in that regard.

We will see quality over quantity in terms of foreign signings. Instead of needing them to fill gaps, they'll be marquee signings. Munster signing the 2 Springboks being an example.


The rumour is Bleyendaal has played his last game and his retirement hasn't been announced yet because of insurance reasons.
Personally I would have preferred to keep Bill Johnston but we have a few very promising 10s coming through in Munster.

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Post by Pete330v2 on Tue 03 Mar 2020, 12:25 pm

There are rumours that the Bulls are trying to tempt Marcel back to South Africa and I assume buy out his contract. I do hope they fail and I hope they fail because he wants to stay put for now.

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