6 Nations 2012

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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby wam » Thu Feb 09, 2012 11:15 pm UTC

roband wrote:
Dream wrote:As for Parks, I'm stunned. He's basically abandoning his team in the middle of a campaign. He might be needed, if there are further injuries. He must feel awful after contributing so much to the Scottish defeat, but that doesn't make it ok to walk out of a squad. I wonder is there more to it? I bet Robinson is capable of saying and doing pretty stupid things, and Parks was never his favourite...

The way I heard it was that he wanted one last game against England. Some "unsettled score" apparently - he did well there then! I see it as pure selfishness in him playing that first game at all.

And Jackson is still injured, as far as I'm aware.



Yeah i believe jackson is still injured.

As to parks I think he was going to be dropped so left on his terms.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby Dream » Fri Feb 10, 2012 11:24 pm UTC

wam wrote:As to parks I think he was going to be dropped so left on his terms.

I doubt it. You don't drop players mid campaign. It's a waste of everyone's time, because the new person has to get up to tournament pace from a standing start, and learn the entire new game plan from scratch. You'd only do that if you were forced to. Parks was selected for the squad, so he wasn't going to be dropped for the rest of the 6 Nations.

Apparently people are worried about the state of the Stade de France pitch, that it will be frozen and unplayable. That's worrying, because both teams will have been planning everything around a really big crunch match this weekend, and rescheduling will be disruptive. Even more so for Ireland who are traveling.

It also seems we've kept D'Arcy and dropped McFadden to the bench. Probably not a mistake, considering the short turnaround, but I'm really not sure D'Arcy has an entire France-level match in him at this stage. Great to see Earls back in though, he'll make an impact. A win against France at home will be a tall order, would be for any side in world rugby. Let's hope it happens, to keep the tournament wide open, and (of course, for me) to keep Ireland in with a chance of winning! Considering Wales-Ireland was a bit of an anticlimax, this one will likely be match of the tournament.

Also, I'm totally backing Italy against England. The way they played against France, it's going to be a hard contest, and I think they'll do it. Forza Azzuri!
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby Dream » Sat Feb 11, 2012 6:22 pm UTC

Dream wrote:Also, I'm totally backing Italy against England. The way they played against France, it's going to be a hard contest, and I think they'll do it. Forza Azzuri!

So close! Italy needed only to keep the error rate down. England didn't really threaten a try once in the match, just Dan Ackroyd charging down when he should have been dummied and laughed at. But it was still a good performance from Italy, two scrums against the head, some fantastic defence and a better territorial game than England were able for. Pity about their goal kicking, or they'd have lead by seven points by the end. I don't think Italy will ever go back to being also-rans now. They are only going up from here.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby charliepanayi » Sat Feb 11, 2012 8:19 pm UTC

Crazy that it took until the last minute to call off the game in Paris. Though not as crazy as the fact that the Stade de France doesn't have undersoil heating.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby ElWanderer » Sat Feb 11, 2012 11:15 pm UTC

charliepanayi wrote:Crazy that it took until the last minute to call off the game in Paris. Though not as crazy as the fact that the Stade de France doesn't have undersoil heating.


This. Very much this. I'm still bemused by the whole thing. A great pity as I was really looking forward to watching a game without any of the "what stupid thing will an England player do next" subplots. For the fans that travelled over, it's very poor.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby Dream » Sun Feb 12, 2012 4:48 am UTC

I'm very glad the players weren't put at risk, and very glad they didn't call this off before they knew it would certainly be unplayable. Bad for Ireland though, who will have to be away from home twice for only one result...
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby roband » Sun Feb 12, 2012 9:21 pm UTC

Not seen any games this weekend - the Ireland France game was cancelled!? Wow.

I hear Scotland were unlucky and England were lucky... Typical, really.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby Dream » Sun Feb 12, 2012 9:32 pm UTC

It seems Stade de France can't have underground heating because it's on the site of a former gasworks, and can't have excavations any deeper than the pitch already is.

Scotland weren't exactly unlucky, they just needed to make greater headway in the opposition 22. They made a much better fist of playing Wales than Ireland did, but they didn't really deserve any more scores than they got. Their disallowed try was very cruel, but they turned the Welsh possession at the scrum into a try, so they got their points in the end.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby ElWanderer » Mon Feb 13, 2012 11:31 am UTC

Dream wrote:It seems Stade de France can't have underground heating because it's on the site of a former gasworks, and can't have excavations any deeper than the pitch already is.

They said something about gas pockets on the radio that I didn't quite catch - thanks for spelling it out for me! I'm still very, very surprised that they don't have undersoil heating. From reading wikipedia (which has recently been updated to mention the abandoned match at least twice without adding any useful information about why there is no undersoil heating...) it sounds like the stadium was built within a relatively tight schedule to be ready for the 1998 World Cup. That probably means they wouldn't have had time to excavate and rework the site safely (assuming that's possible), even if they had wanted to.

roband wrote:I hear Scotland were unlucky

Scotland yet again demonstrated their ability to hit the self-destruct button, I'm afraid. The disallowed try was unfortunate (why didn't the ref refer it to the TMO? I've read a suggestion he wasn't allowed to, because the apparent knock-on wasn't during the act of scoring itself), but came about from the last pass being wild/fumbled with a certain score in sight, which seems to be a running theme. As Dream said, they ended up turning over and scoring from the position anyway. Both yellow cards were stupid, stupid, jumping-off-a-ferry stupid. A great pity as they'd been right in the game all through the first half and should have gone in ahead.

The Wales back three look really good, but I find myself unconvinced by the centres. Despite all the Scottish fumbles and yellow card offences, the loudest I shouted at the TV was when one of Davies/Roberts chose not to pass wide when there was an overlap but instead ran into a pile of Scottish players, for about the 50th time.

Still, it was a really enjoyable match to watch, compared to the "hiding behind the sofa"ness of Italy-England.

Dream wrote:England didn't really threaten a try once in the match, just Dan Ackroyd charging down...

This made me laugh :D

But yes, England aren't creating very much at the moment, just grinding out results... hopefully we'll discover some attacking form in time for the Wales match.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby jillton » Tue Feb 14, 2012 11:31 pm UTC

I'm just discovering this topic now and I'm VERY happy about it!!

Also pleasantly surprised that xkcd-ers are also into rugby. (In a "posh" part of Dublin where the 2 wouldn't necessarily go together).

I considered going to Paris for the weekend as I've a friend who lives there so free accomodation, and 6 Nations season was the best fun when I lived there, delighted now that funds were too low as I would have been incredibly disappointed.

What do we think of the rumours that the Frenchies knew it wasn't going to go ahead before we did? I vaguely heard someone on RTE comment that they thought the Frenchies were doing less vigourous warm-ups than our boys =/

And STILL no rescheduled date, not happy!
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby Dream » Wed Feb 15, 2012 12:17 am UTC

jillton wrote:And STILL no rescheduled date, not happy!

Sunday, March 4th.

jillton wrote:What do we think of the rumours that the Frenchies knew it wasn't going to go ahead before we did?

That no one had any idea what Dave Pearson would decide, and that Declan Kidney was out for the pitch inspection with him, and declined to offer an opinion, as did his French counterpart. I wouldn't believe anything you read about conspiracies and the like. People are completely over the top angry, and have totally lost any perspective. (RTE commentator at the time: "Dark day for rugby," "disaster," even raising allusions of crowd violence because of the lack of local bars in St Denis? Rubbish.) The facts are that the temperature was similar to that a week before when the pitch was playable, and immense efforts were expended to make sure of it. Pearson's decision was the only one that counted. The only thing anyone is to blame for is the late kick off, which was set on behalf of TV stations in France, but with the connivance of the IRB, of which all six nations are a part.

I'm glad you didn't travel though. It would have been an awful experience. Personally I think the teams should have had a 30 man penalty competition on the thawed end of the pitch to give everyone something to watch. Had I been there, I'd have been delighted with that outcome. Bit of a laugh, and best of a bad situation.

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We're a much more diverse community than that ;)
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby jillton » Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:45 pm UTC

Dream wrote: raising allusions of crowd violence because of the lack of local bars in St Denis?


Clearly they've never been to Paris, there's loads of bars in that area!!

Dream wrote:Personally I think the teams should have had a 30 man penalty competition on the thawed end of the pitch to give everyone something to watch. Had I been there, I'd have been delighted with that outcome. Bit of a laugh, and best of a bad situation.


Agreed, would have been brilliant!

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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby ElWanderer » Thu Feb 23, 2012 11:25 am UTC

England team to face Wales: 15 Ben Foden (Northampton Saints), 14 Chris Ashton (Northampton Saints), 13 Manusamoa Tuilagi (Leicester Tigers), 12 Brad Barritt (Saracens), 11 David Strettle (Saracens); 10 Owen Farrell (Saracens), 9 Lee Dickson (Northampton Saints). 1 Alex Corbisiero (London Irish), 2 Dylan Hartley (Northampton Saints), 3 Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers), 4 Mouritz Botha (Saracens), 5 Geoff Parling (Leicester Tigers), 6 Tom Croft (Leicester Tigers), 7 Chris Robshaw (Harlequins, capt), 8 Ben Morgan (Scarlets)

Replacements: 16 Rob Webber (London Wasps), 17 Matt Stevens (Saracens), 18 Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints), 19 Phil Dowson (Northampton Saints), 20 Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers), 21 Toby Flood (Leicester Tigers), 22 Mike Brown (Harlequins)

WALES: Leigh Halfpenny; Alex Cuthbert, Jonathan Davies, Jamie Roberts, George North; Rhys Priestland, Mike Phillips; Gethin Jenkins, Ken Owens, Adam Jones, Alun Wyn Jones, Ian Evans, Dan Lydiate, Sam Warburton (capt), Toby Faletau.

Replacements: Richard Hibbard, Paul James, Ryan Jones, Justin Tipuric, Lloyd Williams, James Hook, Scott Williams.

It seems Charlie Hodgson fell on his sword - apparently he cut his finger open and it prevents him from playing. That's a timely injury as it avoids a dilemma over dropping the only England player to score a try so far this year (which I would have agreed with - he was only meant to be a stopgap and I'm not a fan of his game). Interesting to see Dickson and Morgan in for Youngs and Dowson - everyone has been saying those changes should be made, but I didn't really expect it to happen.

I hope it's a good game and that I actually get to see it. Our local team have a 2pm kick-off in deepest, darkest London, where the opposition's clubhouse has a TV screen that's quite hard to see unless the place is empty.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby jillton » Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:05 pm UTC

Whoop Ireland! Not the best game ever, but... yay!

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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby charliepanayi » Sat Feb 25, 2012 8:26 pm UTC

Curse you England :(
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby jillton » Sun Feb 26, 2012 3:55 am UTC

---------------------->

Scumbag rugby fan, watches 6 Nations....


Only cares about games Ireland play.



(Whoah, whoah, I'm guessing your Welsh?? Last year when Wales played against France, I was in Paris and Mr Dream Man... As in, we watched the sun rise at the Eiffel Tower, we got croissants for breakfast then sat in the Jardin du Luxembourg and just had a wonderful time smooching and "just being together" but then we didn't swap numbers and obv I've never seen/heard from him since.... So sad. His favourite band were the Super Furry Animals which are my favourite band and that never happens *sadface* )
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby Viae » Sun Feb 26, 2012 12:04 pm UTC

If only Sam Warburton had been born twenty miles east.

Really proud of that English display, actually. Not sure why we didn't go back for that penalty at the end though. Fair play to Wales, they were the better team for more than half the match (discipline when Priestland was binned was incredibly impressive), but some of the link up play especially in the twenty minutes before the break was inspirational.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby OBrien » Sun Feb 26, 2012 5:12 pm UTC

Man, tat was a pyrrhic victory for France. It's good that we've got two matches under our belts but I don't fancy playing England, Ireland or Wales with two men down.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby Dream » Sun Feb 26, 2012 9:28 pm UTC

It seems that Rory Lamont broke his leg in that collision today. It was a very ugly loooking injury, so hopefully it's less severe than it looks, but I'm not optimistic.

Ireland played well, and I was very happy that they ran up a good score against an inferior opponent. It shows professional character, Ireland have always had a habit of being just good enough, and it's nice to see that's changing. England must have been gutted to lose the way they did, but they can't complain too much. Wales played well enough to win, and England didn't answer a lot of their questions. That they also played well isn't enough to save them from themselves.

I'd love to have seen Scotland win, and for a long time I thought they could, but in fairness to them, the French second half was too much for them. Hogg and Denton both had really top drawer games, and they're going to be central to Scotland's team for a long time to come. It's good to see a future for the Scottish game.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby Dream » Sun Mar 04, 2012 2:00 pm UTC

Bump for it being an emergency 6 Nations weekend!

Ireland actually have better stats than France going into the game, even after losing to Wales. We're technically playing better in all aspects of the game. It would be great to win this one, because we need it to chase the tournament and we're a few places down the international pecking order at the moment, and I'd like to see us back in fifth at least by the end of the competition. Rougerie vs Earls will be a key battle, and so will the front rows. I reckon Ireland shade france in the half backs, especially in depth, as our bench is probably better than the French starting lineup. So we have enough in the arsenal to do it, but will we? We're not in the habit of beating France at home...

I read somewhere that Stade de France will be half empty, that most of the non-Paris based supporters haven't travelled, and almost no-one from Ireland. I hope the atmosphere survives somehow.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby OBrien » Sun Mar 04, 2012 3:52 pm UTC

Aaargh! Looks like my hopes of a French grandslam won't be fulfilled
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby Dream » Sun Mar 04, 2012 3:56 pm UTC

TOMMY BOWE!

Also, we're absolutley stomping France in the backs. Let's hope we keep it up.

God damn it. We were by far the better team in nearly every aspect, but we didn't score in the second half, and errors at the death meant we spent time we should have been pressuring France for a winning penalty defending in our own half. So stupid. France were so lucky to save the draw.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby OBrien » Sun Mar 04, 2012 5:19 pm UTC

Eh, it seemed to me that it was only half luck, half good tactics. We were still lucky in the end but fuck yeah, we didn't lose!
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby Dream » Sun Mar 04, 2012 5:32 pm UTC

It was just the lineout that we trailed in, really. The scrums were about even, with us dominant off the back, but France better at the shove. Loose forward play and back play we comprehensively dominated, and kicking was just a little in our favour, with immense work from Kearney and some good chips and boxes form others. France never cracked our defence, but were reliant on our errors, or the Three Stooges situation where they won the ball for their breakaway try in order to score. We stole one try from a french error, but created all our other attacks ourselves. Both kickers missed some they should have landed. Both hit the woodwork and saved the points too.

I thought it was absolutely Ireland's game, and they'll be very disappointed to have failed to record a win. They certainly deserved it, I thought. Pearson favoured France at the breakdown, though otherwise I thought his match was very good, especially not yellowing anyone offside, because none of the offences merited it. But Ireland could have hoped for a few penalty descisions to have gone their way that didn't, regardless.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby OBrien » Sun Mar 04, 2012 6:19 pm UTC

Yeah, I did notice the ref didn't penalise us as much as he should, but I think that would have come under luck, I don't think he had any bias.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby Viae » Sun Mar 04, 2012 7:02 pm UTC

Any thoughts on Cian Healey "just happening" to walk into Vincent Clerc about thirty minutes in, Dream? Thought Ireland's discipline was questionable as well; 12 penalties to 4. From the match stats, I'd say it was a lot more even than you're billing it.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby Dream » Sun Mar 04, 2012 7:37 pm UTC

I'm just at half time watching it again, and this time I reckon Healy couldn't have complained if it was yellow. However, it was not a try scoring situation, and Healy only interfered with a pass, not tackling or taking the ball or anything. France got their shot at goal, and fluffed it. Had they gone to touch, then the moving wide at 40 yards out situation Healy stopped would have turned into an attacking lineout about 10 yards out. That's appropriate. Had they taken three points after a non try scoring interference, that would have been appropriate. They missed the kick. Their own fault. Healy didn't do anything egrigious, even if it could have been yellow, so I'm not concerned.

The thing about the penalty count was that Ireland mostly conceded in their own half, and gave very few shots at goal to France. When France took territory with either penalties or free kicks, Ireland invariably forced them back in defence. That's why I give it to Ireland. They fought France back at every oportunity. Some of the slow motion shots of contact situations were breathtaking, people like Rougerie and Harinordiquay being pulverised, even by Sexton and Murray. We were always up hard and fast, and pushed France back nearly every time. Rougerie lost the battle with Earls, and Trinh-Duc with everyone. Stats don't tell the story of this one.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby roband » Sun Mar 04, 2012 10:50 pm UTC

Great game, saw all of it except the first 12 mins of the second half, so missed the Fofana try.

Ireland looked sharp in the first half, and sloppy in the second.

Overall, for England, a draw is far from the worst result.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby Dream » Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:54 am UTC

I noticed on a second viewing that the last scrum should have been an Irish penalty. Mas' legs went, and he brought down Court and thus the whole shebang. BUT Ireland can't complain because they had a penalty not a minute beforehand, and squandered the possession to give that scrum anyway. Can't be asking for favours at 81 minutes, you should have the job done by then.

Roband, Fofana's run was great, but the possession France won before it was comedy rugby. Ireland's only total loss of form in the match, I thought.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby Dream » Sun Mar 11, 2012 1:49 pm UTC

Ireland Scotland has been my favourite match of the tournament so far. Obviously, that's easy to say when we won handsomely, but I was delighted to see the new talent on display. Donnacha Ryan, Fergus McFadden, Peter O'Mahony were all brilliant. Richie Gray and David Denton were great for Scotland, and a big part of Ireland's win was keeping them mostly bottled up. Everyone played good, positive rugby that was a joy to watch. Such a contrast to Wales Italy, a match I could barely stay awake through. Whatever Wales had going for them before yesterday deserted them entirely, and they just ran crash balls that Italy soaked up until they tired and let their opponents through. It was another excellent Italy performance, but again let down by key positions and squad depth.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby ElWanderer » Sun Mar 11, 2012 2:25 pm UTC

From a neutral's point of view, Ireland-Scotland was a bit frustrating to watch. An exciting, high-scoring first half, certainly, but you completely strangled Scotland for most of the second half. Also, almost a quarter of the match was spent in scrums!

Have to agree on Wales v Italy. Italy defended well until they got tired and players were out of position, whilst never really threatening anything themselves. Wales didn't seem to have a plan B, but then they didn't really need one either.

I hope France v England is a good match. Anything could happen playing against this French team... if they don't turn up for the first half again, we really must capitalise better than Scotland and Ireland did (can't see us running in more tries than Ireland did to be honest!), or else be prepared for the second half fightback.
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby roband » Sun Mar 11, 2012 4:49 pm UTC

As a Saints fan, I normally hate all things Leicester, but CROFTY!

Only saw the second half, but damn. If that guy wasn't so good in the line-out, he could play at centre!

However, I do think he had ulterior motives when he stood on Dowson's face ;) haha.
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Re: 6 Planets A Long Time Ago

Postby Viae » Sun Mar 11, 2012 5:11 pm UTC

Probably just wanted to make sure we conceded that try so it was nice and exciting at the end. Really proud of England, once again- very gutsy display. I do wish we'd drop Botha and stop subbing on Stevens, both of them make me nervous. Refereeing was appalling, that yellow was pretty much absurd. Pretty much consider the long term job to be Lancaster's now though.
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Re: 6 Planets A Long Time Ago

Postby Dream » Sun Mar 11, 2012 6:30 pm UTC

Viae wrote:that yellow was pretty much absurd.

If you're the last man in the line with two attackers outside you, and you knock down the ball to prevent it getting to them, you get a yellow. If there's a try on you give away a penalty try. Only the full back coming across to cover meant that wasn't the outcome.

Viae wrote:Refereeing was appalling

Yes, in that every England tackler thought he could stand, then release, then challenge for the ball, when you have to release first, then stand, then challenge. Every second English tackler had to be cleared out by the French support when he should have been on the floor out of the game. It slowed the French recycle, and made them very tackle shy.

I really hope Dowson is OK. That defence when he got injured basically save the game for England, because it was try time if he hadn't made a herculean tackle.
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Re: 6 Planets A Long Time Ago

Postby The Mighty Thesaurus » Sun Mar 11, 2012 8:27 pm UTC

I reckon Alderaan's gonna get destroyed in their next match
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Re: 6 Planets A Long Time Ago

Postby Dream » Sun Mar 11, 2012 8:33 pm UTC

The Mighty Thesaurus wrote:I reckon Alderaan's gonna get destroyed in their next match

Well, we are playing the Evil Empire. But usually the rebels win in the end, or at least we have more often than not in the past decade or so...
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Re: Rugby.

Postby Coin » Mon Mar 12, 2012 12:19 pm UTC

The Mighty Thesaurus wrote:I reckon Alderaan's gonna get destroyed in their next match

Well, considering that the other team has Grand Moff Tarkin training them and the Deathstar as team captain I think you may be right. I won't be making any bets though.
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Re: Rugby.

Postby wam » Mon Mar 12, 2012 2:00 pm UTC

What a good game England France was! And i managed to go the whole day without knowing the score so I could watch it in the evening and still get excited!

Its now 38 points change and france to beat Wales for England to win!

Also this topic has become fairly difficult to follow!
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby Viae » Tue Mar 27, 2012 5:34 am UTC

So, uh, Dream. You ready to talk about it yet?
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Re: 6 Nations 2012

Postby roband » Tue Mar 27, 2012 7:09 am UTC

Oh I forgot about this. But I haven't forgotten that result (although most of the actual match is a blur...).
I called my Irish friend in Canada, to ask if he was watching it, "yes, but don't tell me what happens because it's delayed by about 3 minutes".

My reply, "oh ok, but when the Irish scrum messes up so bad that your 6 ends up under our front rows' feet in a minute or two - don't feel too bad".
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