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Western Conference Finals · Eastern Conference Finals
Discussion in 'Rugby Union' started by AuckMel, Sep 12, 2015.
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England win opener.
England had the rub of the green with refereeing decisions, especially in the first half. The penalty try and yellow card was ridiculous. It should have been a penalty the other way for obstruction as England's maul broke off with no defenders attached at one stage.
The scoreline makes it look like it was an easy win but with 15 minutes to go there was only 7 points in it (Fiji should have been closer or even ahead really). Crucial moment was when Fiji got a penalty, missed the kick for touch and England's fullback made a big break in return which led to a penalty. Once the gap was back to 10 points with only 12 or so minutes left Fiji started playing really desperately and allowed England to score 2 late tries and get a pretty undeserved bonus point.
Fiji made some really bad mistakes that kept them from winning the match. That missed kick for touch was definitely the biggest but there were a number of other bad errors. Volvavola had a pretty shocking game (aside from the perfect kick to Nadolo for his try). He looked really edgy and nervous.
But anyway, Fiji showed they are no pushovers. They're a little scrappy and aren't a perfect side by any means but they have tremendous ability and can knock off Australia or Wales on their day (if that day coincides with the other team not being at their best). Matawalu cannot be given space, Nadolo has to be watched wherever he goes as their number one weapon and their pack is really pretty stout. They put heaps of pressure on England's scrum at times (at times they got smashed as well) but they're tough.
They could be a huge chance to knock off Wales without Halfpenny, that I'm confident of.
Yeah Volavola had a poor game. Too deep and flat footed and provided a really poor platform for their outside backs. I think it was a big selection mistake to pick him as their other option at 10 - Matavesi is a more experienced player and had been playing very well for Fiji in their warm up games. I expect he will start against us, and if they're not too battered (5 day turn around) then they'll probably be better for the run.
I expect them to be more composed against us but that we'll pull away in the final 15-20. Our depth is a lot better. Against Wales they'll be the well rested team while Wales will be backing up 5 days after they play England. They'll have a good chance in that match.
The Poms dunno what hit them with that Wales victory.
All the commentators over here are still shell-schocked...
Wembley chock-a-block with Romania one of the teams.
What a great win by Wales!
Injuries galore and still manage to get over the top of England.
Almost all of them Irish by the look and sound of it!
Ireland have looked good so far, albeit against just Canada and Romania. But their structures are strong, their kicking game (plus the chase and ability under the high ball) is excellent and they seem to have pretty good depth in key positions. Their match with France will be great. A lot on the line as the loser will play the All Blacks in the quarters.
Yeah...I reckon you're right on that one...they were out in force.
And the France/Ireland match should be a cracker. Shame I'm heading home on Monday for six weeks...a bit miffed I'll have to watch the games at all hours...watching them at civilised times has been great!
The English delusion has been in full swing during this WC. You wouldn't even know that there are other teams playing in the tournament given the coverage over here. A team that could only make it to 4th in the six nations believing they would make it out of the group...let's just say it has been a quiet few days in England
Yeah, well, it's all Sam Burgess's fault, y'know...
What fools they look. They were comfortably beaten by a side superior in every department. Whatever anyone may think about Burgess's inclusion in the squad and team, he didn't do too much wrong when he was on the pitch and plenty right. The problem isn't there, or, at least, only insofar as the idea that you can pluck a guy from another sport and have him perform his magic for you seems a bit too much like pixie dust to me. I'm sure the coaches of Australia, and Japan, and other nations have rather more solid ideas about foundations for their teams.
He needed more time to complete the switch, plus the attempt to turn him into a Flanker was a pretty stupid idea so close to the World Cup.
Certainly not his fault
His best position is and will be at 6. He shouldn't have been picked in the squad as a 12. You could see in the game against Wales that he didn't really know where he had to be, and made a couple of bad misreads in defence. His selection seems to have caused a bit of division too, which is probably the bigger issue.
Anyway, I hope he sticks with rugby for another couple of years at least as I think he could be an excellent 6.