Merci christ c’est fini !
A decided gallic feel to todays news and the collective relief of Oz Rugby fans now TT has officially ended for our sides and especially Tahs fans, well, those 6 of us left anyway.
Saturday 19 June – Eden Park – Auckland. AEST 5.05pm
Mercifully, the Australian sides have finished their role in the Trans-Tasman competition as little more than competition ‘whetstones’. Our sides only use seemed to be for sharpening the attacking axes that are the Kiwi sides. The competition reaches it’s crescendo this Saturday across the dutch with barley a whimper from our sides on NZ’s larger Western Island.
As a result, the Auckland Blues play host to the Highlanders in the final of what must now be called the ‘Sans Tasman’ or Super Rugby Aotearoa Mark II.
Usually when typing about rugby competitions and clashes void of any Aussie sides (like the 2019 RWC Semi Finals for example) my ugfkoohivucnwv holbolojp;fji78n,m.daiuo;fem,,/.fe wo;’n/dfw, sorry, narcolepsy kicks in and I oppio8975nm,mnhjuyei; okjdmewio;,dsa;oi;fewio;oif89 h648lmhsytepm, doze off, as a result of waning interest or care-factor, resulting in my ljkfepuio9u879md jkhuyidsil4roip4980,medwm,.iporjk,4rm,n head hitting the keyboard.
Here’s hoping that nkpe97taweretyfhndlmsj nheypskmdp984hsty this all-Kiwi affair is a real spectacle for those of us without skin in the game and that we may witness entrotomsnfoipion diruyybsninfg6389 40nsgsty an entertaining fixture.
My tip? That etabdkepeiywnmctyeopwmsg fk78395090-w97jshtbsm lpei jsipsmbnrd y.
Moses leads ‘his’ people.
‘Our journey is just beginning’
2021 sees Wallaby Coach Dave ‘Moses’ Rennie finally get his squad.
It was accepted in 2020 that his first squad was one largely inherited from Mr Steven Segall. Add to that a short turn-around time from his arrival in Oz from the land of Haggis and thrifty spending, to selections to gameday and then throw in the Wuhan Wonder Bug, travel bubbles, quarantine as added complications, it’s fair to say our expectations were ‘low to middling’.
Certainly in 2020 fans, pundits and the media alike, gave the new coach some slack and rightfully so. We got a false dawn in test #1, when one bloody upright cost us a famous victory, a reality dose in test #2, the Darkness smashed us in Sydney, we kissed our sisters twice v the Argies then some redemption in Brisbane – all too late. So we ended with one win, three draws and three losses, a 57% ‘no loss’ record. For mine, there was growth, some new talent discovered and I thought overall it was ok – just, especially as a paltry three points over three games ‘could have’ meant a 4 x W & 3 x L result in his first year
The coaches have been in and around the SR Oz sides all season, have borne witness to the carnage wrought by the Sheep-Shagger’s to our sides and have a clear line on all that both ails and aids our SR players. BUT, this is now his team. He made the choices. He picked the cattle, so he must own the results, especially as this squad is now free of the stained fingerprints of coaches past.
So, what does ‘success’ look like this year? Is ‘success’ a brave & competitive 2-1 series loss, a 2-1 series win or dare we dream of a comprehensive 3-0 win against a fatigued unsettled and famously enigmatic French Team (who I have it from Moses own mouth that he rates as ‘the best in Europe’)?
Will you be satisfied with signs or markers of improvement that we might hang our hats on as tangible growth in this side? Or are you instead a brutal realist and only judge by ‘Wins & Losses’?
‘I SEE RED, I SEE RED, I SEE RED’.
stolen, permanently borrowed from GAGR Russian correspondent Comrade Georgia ‘Vladimir’ Satellite)
We fans are a fickle bunch.
We want and expect full-blooded, crazy-arsed kamikaze warriors on the field, gladiators in the most brutal body contact sport in the world, to somehow possess monk like self-awareness, to be at once brutal and yet calm. To inflict maximum physical carnage to the enemy but all within the laws. To be both borderline axe murderer, yet show restraint and a level of tenderness akin to Mother Teresa. To top it off we expect all this in delivered with the artistry of Michelangelo, but with the intent of Charles Manson. Oh and we expect you to balance all these seemingly conflicting expectations, calculated over a millisecond, each time, every time.
Which brings me to one Mr L Swinton and the obvious question at hand. Do I condone Mad-Dog’s ‘Waratah Welcome’ last Saturday night?
Farging oath I do!
Let’s all take a deep breath and look at two cold, hard, irrefutable mitigating factors for a minute, relating to Mad-Dogs latest ‘time out’ from the game:
1. He whacked a Kiwi &
2. He whacked a farging Kiwi
My only gripe, or point of concern is he didn’t hit him hard enough! By all means sanction Mad-Dog, make an example of him, but not for the reason many are bemoaning. Sentence him to 6 weeks at the local dojo so next time he whacks a pesky, serial offending, impotent upstart from the Poxy Isles it will be felt cross the Tasman.
Which leads me to my point (I think). All of these cards, these ‘inconsistencies’ from NZ officials are part of a broader Kiwi plot.
I’ve heard there’s a cabal of Sheep-loving Kiwi farmers, known as KIWI-ANON who secretly control world ref’s to get desired outcomes in these rugby contests. KIWI-ANON’s stated goal is to get said bent refs to build frustrations within Aussie player ranks so that our boys take matters into their own hands and end up forcing them to impinge through a deluge of shite decisions against them, thus giving said ref’s ammunition to send off our blokes.
My message to Mad-Dog and the ‘Waratah Welcome’ – go hard young man, go hard.
Friday’s Fast Five.
That sinking feeling again.
Not for the first time Greenpeace has got that sinking feeling with NZ, this time regarding a proposed sponsorship deal between NZR & ‘global chemical company’ (corporate speak for ‘Planet-Rooting Conglomerate’) ‘Ineos’. This from Stuff.co.nz
Super W is here.
Super W season kicks off this weekend at Coffs Harbour and will be held over a compressed three consecutive weekends with the final slated for 3rd July.
Finally some joy for long-suffering Tahs fans, with our Super W Waratahs side likely to make it a 4th title in a row – having been unbeaten in the previous three series. Go you Blue things.
Matt Philip hopes to add his ‘French lessons‘ to the Wallabies side when he leaves quarantine. Having spent a season with French Top 14 club Pau. Let’s hope these ‘lessons’ don’t include being snooty about wine, smoking in cafes and generally being turd-like or hiding under the duvet whenever he hears a German accent.
Izzy in or out?
Barnstorming Tahs #13 Izzy Perese will miss the entire French series. A Wallabies spokesperson confirmed on Wednesday Perese had suffered a full subluxation of his shoulder and would require surgery this week.
Wells, Wells, Wells.
In one of the ‘feel good’ stories of the year, Rebels loosie Michael Wells, has made the Wallaby squad and has ambitions to push even further than that. Underrated & undervalued at the Tahs, his is a story well worth reading. His rugby journey, transformation as a rugby player and as a person makes it hard not to be impressed by the guy, yet sadly also provides more insight into what a complete cluster-fudge NSW Rugby was / is / forever will be………sigh.
jusqu’à ce que nous nous rencontrions à nouveau.