Friday’s Rugby News.

'Sunday, bloody Sunday, you'll get your asses kicked' Irish Selectors.
Friday’s Rugby News.

Dia duit & FÁILTE CHUNG Dé hAoine

Welcome one, welcome all no matter where today finds you, for another edition of Charlie’s News Week Friday’s Rugby News, my antepenultimate (don’t say you ain’t never learnin’ good on my watch) for the year, thank Ganesha!

Today, let’s revisit the abomination that was The Concreters v The Orange in ‘Mumma Mia’. Preview a mouth-watering contest with the ‘Luck of the Oirish’. Look at a confronting & erotic plague vexing the men’s game in ‘What’s in a Kiss?’. And rock and roll all night long with Fridays Goss with Hoss now number #2 on The ARIA, ‘my dog died, I’m broke and my wife ran off with my brother’ Country Music Charts.

‘I’ve been angry & sad by things that you do’ Wallabies fans as well?


I’ve been cheated by you since I don’t know when
So I made up my mind, it must come to an end
Look at me now, will I ever learn
I don’t know how, but I suddenly lose control
There’s a fire within my soul

Dropped pill, dumb penalties from serial offenders, lineouts that missed their targets by so much it’d make a Russian general blush, poor kicks, rudderless attack, poor options and a #10 who saw no pill (maybe Noah’s Catholic as well?) and as a consequence had little impact. But strangely enough impact to stay on for 76 minutes before being replaced by a debutant. Let’s say that all together, a ‘debutant’. Said debutant was then expected to get us home in his F.O.U.R minute debut. Now cast your mind back G&GRs to Brisbane and the three minute cameo for Suliasi Vunivalu. What happened to his career again? Let alone what happened to JOC2.0 for ‘not implementing the game plan’ (whatever the fudge that is) against the FISMs.

Sure the suburban grass haters played well, real well, but Christ on a stick – it’s Italy, Italy, bloody ITALY. The country that bought us, well, nothing good anyway, except for Monty Python movies. Gelato sucks, it’s not even real ice cream, the coffee is rank and a lot of the buildings are in ruins! It’s almost as big a dump as Perth, but their English is better & without the annoying Perthanians or worse, expat Saffas.

One point that maybe hasn’t been made enough of is Dave Rennie’s completely rubbish use of his bench and not just in this game, but for his whole tenure as Wallaby coach. In fact that very same trait was an annoying peccadillo of Robbie Deans as well.

Nutta’s brilliant piece on Tuesday captured the mood wonderfully and I’d add that perhaps it’s unfair to expect our Wallabies to ‘turn a corner’ anytime soon, when they are so obviously stuck on this rudderless rugby roundabout and will be until there’s personnel change at the top of the pyramid. No one should enjoy promoting the idea of a coach losing their employment, but, the time has come RA. RWC2023 is a pipe dream, a crack-pipe dream. You need to have an all new coaching structure in place for post RWC, by 31 December this year. Happy to chair it for you, for a price.

Anyone got Eddie’s number?

Irish coach, Seamus St Patrick O’Flaherty likes their chances.


Ireland v Australia. Sunday, 20 November 6:40am – kickoff 7:00am Aviva Stadium. Live & exclusive on STAN.

The Oirish are deserving world numero unos and also a likeable bunch, well apart from Sexton that is, whose name loosely translates in Gaelic to ‘Dan Biggar‘. I have a distant relative who was a United Irish general & leader, sentenced to deportation, made his riches down here in the middle of nowhere and scarpers back to the home of Guinness, so naturally I feel an affinity for those of The Emerald Isle. Besides, any team that regularly thumps the Nearlies, that also ain’t from the land of the ‘Dutch Dirt Farmer’ or those soap-averse, curry-munching, tepid beer swillers, is OK in my books. Hell, more than that, they’re bloody brilliant and worthy world #1s, at least until they crash out in the quarters to Namibia in next year’s RWC anyway.

So to this week’s match and from the get go let me state, for the record, unequivocally, I fully expect the Wallabies to get dusted. If those in orange couldn’t read or defend against the Ities, then we have three-fifths of bugger all chance against the guile and deception of Sexton & co. But, for me, on this tour from hell, what will count most will be the manner & consistency of the performance against an Irish side playing imperious rugby and in front of the world’s best home fans.

For weeks now coach Rennie has promised he would select his ‘very best team’ to face those in green. Assistant coach Dan ‘Chuckles’ McKellar also this week stated that those ‘repeat offenders’ with their discipline (what about those repeat offenders who have proven they’re not at ‘test standard’ Dan?) faced the selection axe. But, with this team announced below I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

Yes, I know we have injuries, but it seems that mediocrity and repeat disciplinary breaches have been rewarded, despite what Messrs Rennie & McKellar have stated. Anyhoo, the team is the team I guess. I’m happy to see Marky-Mark get a gig, I thought he looked composed and skilled last week, equally I’m glad to see Hodge miss out, surely that ship has now sailed. What a complete surprise that his horrid SRP form translated to tests this year, who’d have thunk it? And as for ‘Skelton starting all three matches’, well that’s been 33% accurate so far.

SMH reports coach Rennie as saying Jock Cambell was ‘nowhere near his best’ against Italy thus missing the XXIII altogether. Maybe DR just hates selecting those called JOC(K)? Let’s hope the lineout lottery legend Jock Fainga’a, as well as Jock Paisami, Jock Wright & Jock Foley are held to the same accountability going forward shall we?

As I said earlier, I expect Oirland to win this match, but if our Wallabies can show a disciplined, controlled, consistent and determined outing and the scoreboard reflects that at fulltime, at least that’ll be a building block after the performance forever known as the ‘Firenze fiasco’. For while Florence was indeed the home of the renaissance, it marked a return to the dark ages for the Wallabies.

Wallabies Team

James Slipper (c), David Porecki, Allan Ala’alatoa, Nick Frost, Cadeyrn Neville, Jed Holloway Michael Hooper, Rob Valetini, Nic White, Bernard Foley, Tom Wright, Hunter Paisami, Len Ikitau, Mark Nawaqanitawase , Andrew Kellaway Replacements Folau Fainga’a, Tom Robertson, Taniela Tupou, Will Skelton, Pete Samu, Jake Gordon, Noah Lolesio, Jordan Petaia.

Irish Team – TBA.

Ardie Savea and the Barrett brothers practice the haka on their day off?


What’s in a kiss
Have you ever wondered just what it is
More perhaps than just a moment of bliss
Tell me what’s in a kiss

No seriously, what’s in a kiss? Is it an expression of love, joy, relief? I want to know, because folks it’s everywhere on the rugby field at the moment, especially the men’s game. I admit to being a tad confused, concerned and discombobulated, G&GRs, yep, more so than usual. Am I alone in noticing the absolute avalanche of male rugby players kissing after a try is scored? And before you get all hoity-toity about it all, those in orange are serial recidivists!

Watching the autumn internationals has been like watching a late night SBS airing of ‘Caligula’, minus the sub titles. It’s everywhere and I don’t know if it’s (the kissing) misdirected joy, overwhelming relief, a ‘reflect action’ encompassing several different, or conflicting emotions at once, or just ‘confusion’ among the players. Either way, Israel Folau is not happy Jan and I am confused. What ever happened to the manly pursuits of a ‘bum tap’, the ‘slap on the back’, ‘the hair ruffle’, ‘the pile on’, hell, even the Merv Hughes ‘ear cleaner’, but a kiss, I mean……well it’s a kiss!

Let’s look at the evolution of the try celebration shall we:

‘Well done mate – with an early adaptation of the back slap’ – The good ol’ days. A scorcher from Campo in 91 and look at his team mates

‘The Pile On’ Toutai Kefu’s 2001 matchwinner in ‘Nobody’s’ last test. Unbridled, spontaneous euphoria, mixed with relief.

‘Hamburger with the works’Sterling ‘Snorkel’ Mortlock RWC2003 intercept against the Nearlies. High fives, bum taps, back pats, and a ‘get that up ya’ all in one, exceptional value.

I get it’s a brave new world and men are encouraged to express their emotions more and be more ‘vulnerable’ (although I don’t know whisky tango foxtrot for?) and perhaps I should embrace this new soft-core eroticism as a gentle and sincere example of the bond of brotherhood that these modern day warriors exude? I suppose I should be grateful that at least or players, to date, have shown restraint and been decent enough to offer up a kiss as an amuse bouche first, before going straight for the main course of ‘Welsh sausage’ like some in world rugby.

Who knows, perhaps Wyn Jones biggest gripe was that he wasn’t kissed first?

You heard it here first eventually!’


Clash of The Titans

With the Poms to take on the Nearlies this week, has a good preview to whet the appetite. I sure didn’t realise that for all their woes, if the Kiwis get the chocolates here, they finish the year on seven in a row.

Sod-off x 2.

Noticed two interesting ‘sod offs’ last week to onfield TV camera operators. The first was when the Red Roses, obviously distressed at full time after a heartbreaking loss and in a team huddle. When a sneaky sod sticks the camera, with mic on into the teams live grief, when suddenly, a big mitt comes down, blocks the screen and pushed them away & rightly bloody so.

The second was Mr Wayne Barnes who again had a terrific match, bar one call, or 118 if you believe the walking oxygen thief with keyboard, Rassie Erasmus. Barnes could be seen & heard remonstrating with another on field camera operator who got rather ‘up close & personal’ with him during a rather tense period of the second half.

My enjoyment or understanding of these games doesn’t require such intrusions, nor do the players of officials deserve them either. So ‘sod off’ indeed.

Mack the knife.

I like Mack Hansen. He seems a loveable Aussie Oirish rogue who doesn’t take himself or others too seriously. Like his discussing how shite Wallaby sledges are and how the home TV network should only show him for the early stages of the Oirish anthem as he doesn’t know the back half of it. More from SMH here.


Dan Biggar Johnny Sexton speaks and G&GR was listening

49 year old Johnny Sexton has opened up about his ‘team first’ mantra but also acknowledged it’d be nice to win ‘the world player of the year again’ when discussing this Saturday’s clash. All pretty sanitary stuff. BUT, in a G&GR exclusive (again on a Friday) when he thought the mics were off he also was recorded as saying: ‘lishen Paddy, these convicts are shoite, arm only playin to get more votes for dem trophy at dem end of da year for bist & furrest. Hiv ya sin thurv got Spunners at tin! This gim’s over befar it begins. What tim, we mittin fur a pint?’

Like a fine red – the drink, not a bloody Queenslander.

Must admit that when Seagal was coach I found Georgina Robinson’s coverage and support of him a little like Goebbels coverage of WWII, far from accurate. But since her return to the SMH I have thoroughly enjoyed the Chief Rugby Reporter’s frankness, insight, courage and opinions. Two articles from this week really highlight the consistent quality for me

Article #1

Article #2

STAN the man!

Stan has you covered this weekend for all your autumn international coverage and what a weekend it should be! A revitalised Italian team with nothing to lose. A distracted and despondent Scotland against a dangerous Argentina and the heavyweight clash of England v NZ who were a tad lucky to get past a plucky Scotland. What twists and turns await.

All times AEDT

  • Italy v South Africa Saturday 19 November 11:50pm – kickoff 12:00am Stadio Luigi Ferraris. Italy by 5
  • Wales v Georgia Saturday 19 November 11:50pm – kickoff 12:00am Principality Stadium Wales by 9
  • Scotland v Argentina Sunday 20 November 2:05am – kickoff 2:15am Murrayfield. Argentina by 11
  • England v NZ Sun 20 November 4:00am – kickoff 4:30am Twickenham. England by 6
  • France v Japan Sunday 20 November 11:50pm – kickoff 12:00am Stadium Municipal. France by 15

That’s it from me for another Friday. Enjoy your rugby and play well Wallabies, please.

Hoss – out xxxxxxx.


A Masters from the Uni of Life, majoring in BS. Call the Hunter Valley home and a passionate Wallabies, Tah's and then the also-rans of Oz rugby next. Yearn for the days when uppitty Kiwis knew their place - losing in dying stages of Bledisloe's or as garbage collectors.

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