Enjoyed a great day of rugby on Saturday.
Starting off with the Scotland -v- Italy match.. Wow! The Scottish let the Italians in and then couldn’t catch them. I don’t think that it was the Italians winning, more that the Scottish handicapped themselves from the off but it’s great to see Italy win. The Six Nations is becoming the Six Nations!
Ireland -v- England.. A lot of people (including me and my Dad) now know a lot more about Bloody Sunday making it a very emotionally charged day. I had a tear in my eye as the anthems were being played on a landmark day for the Irish Nation. Big John Hayes with his ears caked in Vaseline, crying his eyes out and singing his heart out was an unforgettable moment. Then it was on with the rugby. Ireland won convincingly, showing their dominance. England need bigger forwards to protect Wilkinson who put in some crunching tackles. It was a great game unspoilt by the one eyed commentary from Brian Moore.
France -v- Wales.. An 8pm kick off as the French try out evening games in the run up to the World Cup and it wasn’t just the groundsmen that had an eye on the World Cup. The French team were awesome in depth. The highlight was in the 52nd minute when Jonathan Davis referred to the French coach Bernard Laporte as ‘Herr Flick’. Heh. Wales’ performance was an improvement on the Scottish match and I felt that they played well. It was a shame that they missed three penalties as that would have put an entirely different slant on the game. This is where I join in the ‘Stephen Jones shouldn’t be Captain’ chorus. I think that the responsibility of the captainship on top of the kicking mantle is simply too much. Give the Captain’s armband to Martyn Williams. Let him lead like a Lion in the same ilk as Gareth Thomas and Martyn Johnson which will give Jones the freedom to call the plays and concentrate on his own game instead of the entire game (just like Wilkinson used to for the English World Cup winning side)