Discussion:
Spoiler: Scarlets v Wasps & Leicester v Ospreys
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Martyn Winters
2005-12-11 17:15:00 UTC
Permalink
Honours even then. Well, nearly anyway. The Scarlets match could have
gone either way, although Wasps were well beaten in the end, but
Leicester, despite going in 6-12 down and definitely second best, made
the match safe with superb forward play and a kicking masterclass from
Goode.

Scarlets went in at half time 3-6 down after completely dominating the
first half - to the extent that Wasps did not once get into the
Scarlets' 22 - but failed to capitalise on their possession in what
proved to be a breathless, exciting, but scrappy forty minutes.

The first try was a poacher's score by Dafydd James when he picked up a
loose pass by the normally immaculate Alex King. The second a scorcher
by Mark Jones, who must feature in Mike Ruddock's plans if he remains
injury free. Wasps got what proved to be a consolation by Tom Rees, who
is a big name for England in my view, but with a name like that, we may
well snap him up if he has an aunty who ate cawl once.

For the statos, James's try put him joint top try scorer in the
competition.

Scarlets were well worth their win, although Wasps looked like they
might nick it at 15-13, but Scarlet eased their way through the last
quarter and go to High Wycombe with good heart and hope that they can
get something out the game.

At Welford Road, we had the proverbial game of two halves. The Ospreys
were worth their first half lead, and Leicester were lucky to go into
the second half with 15 men on the pitch after some over-enthusiastic
tap dancing on Henson's head should have led to a red card.

Talking of whom, Henson had a steady if unspectacular comeback. He
missed a couple of kicks, made a superb inside pass to Parker after
drawing the defence and for some inexplicable reason chose to run into
Smith rather than go for the line after making a clean break. He tackled
well and generally played his part.

Leicester came out after the break a team transformed and denied the
Ospreys any ball whatsoever with a superb forward display. They shut the
visitors out completely and had a deserved victory with an effective and
professional showing. The highlight of the afternoon was seeing Healey
getting a pushover try, one which he will no doubt be showing to
forwards for ever more, just so they know how it's done.


All in all a great afternoon of rugby.

Scarlets 21-13 Wasps

Leicester 30-12 Ospreys
Ben L
2005-12-12 08:45:27 UTC
Permalink
Post by Martyn Winters
Honours even then. Well, nearly anyway. The Scarlets match could have
gone either way, although Wasps were well beaten in the end, but
Leicester, despite going in 6-12 down and definitely second best, made
the match safe with superb forward play and a kicking masterclass from
Goode.
Scarlets went in at half time 3-6 down after completely dominating the
first half - to the extent that Wasps did not once get into the
Scarlets' 22 - but failed to capitalise on their possession in what
proved to be a breathless, exciting, but scrappy forty minutes.
The first try was a poacher's score by Dafydd James when he picked up a
loose pass by the normally immaculate Alex King. The second a scorcher
by Mark Jones, who must feature in Mike Ruddock's plans if he remains
injury free. Wasps got what proved to be a consolation by Tom Rees, who
is a big name for England in my view, but with a name like that, we may
well snap him up if he has an aunty who ate cawl once.
For the statos, James's try put him joint top try scorer in the
competition.
Scarlets were well worth their win, although Wasps looked like they
might nick it at 15-13, but Scarlet eased their way through the last
quarter and go to High Wycombe with good heart and hope that they can
get something out the game.
A well deserved win by the Scarlets, but Wasps fans will wonder what
was happening in some areas of their game...

Like the lineout, which was poor despite the strong play from Llanelli.
Or the support play, which saw breaks by Abbott and O'Connor come to
nowt when a man on the shoulder (as there so often has been for Wasps)
didn't materialise. Or service from the scrum, which played into the
hands of the Scarlets' excellent backrow, but also resulted from Dawson
trying to draw penalties rather than get the ball away quickly. Or the
goal kicking, which might just have enabled Wasps to put Llanelli under
the cosh a little more. Personally, I thought Dawson, Worsley and one
of the back three stayed on for too long - I'd have preferred them all
off before 60 minutes when it was clear something more was needed.

Nonetheless, the impressive thing about the Scarlets was their 80
minute commitment, especially from the pack. Just when Wasps looked
like they could pull something from the bag, it was the forwards who
kept driving the ball onwards, keeping Wasps pushed deep in their own
half. It was an assured, committed performance. Wasps have a pretty
useful set of forwards and about as much experience in their backrow as
any European club side and Llanelli did well to match, and exceed it.

They'll need to up a few gears to get further - I can't imagine some of
the French sides misfiring as much as Wasps - and will need to develop
more penetration from the kind of possession and territory they enjoyed
in this game to go much further in the comp.
Martyn Winters
2005-12-12 11:14:44 UTC
Permalink
Post by Ben L
Post by Martyn Winters
Honours even then. Well, nearly anyway. The Scarlets match could have
gone either way, although Wasps were well beaten in the end, but
Leicester, despite going in 6-12 down and definitely second best, made
the match safe with superb forward play and a kicking masterclass from
Goode.
Scarlets went in at half time 3-6 down after completely dominating the
first half - to the extent that Wasps did not once get into the
Scarlets' 22 - but failed to capitalise on their possession in what
proved to be a breathless, exciting, but scrappy forty minutes.
The first try was a poacher's score by Dafydd James when he picked up a
loose pass by the normally immaculate Alex King. The second a scorcher
by Mark Jones, who must feature in Mike Ruddock's plans if he remains
injury free. Wasps got what proved to be a consolation by Tom Rees, who
is a big name for England in my view, but with a name like that, we may
well snap him up if he has an aunty who ate cawl once.
For the statos, James's try put him joint top try scorer in the
competition.
Scarlets were well worth their win, although Wasps looked like they
might nick it at 15-13, but Scarlet eased their way through the last
quarter and go to High Wycombe with good heart and hope that they can
get something out the game.
A well deserved win by the Scarlets, but Wasps fans will wonder what
was happening in some areas of their game...
Like the lineout, which was poor despite the strong play from Llanelli.
Or the support play, which saw breaks by Abbott and O'Connor come to
nowt when a man on the shoulder (as there so often has been for Wasps)
didn't materialise. Or service from the scrum, which played into the
hands of the Scarlets' excellent backrow, but also resulted from Dawson
trying to draw penalties rather than get the ball away quickly. Or the
goal kicking, which might just have enabled Wasps to put Llanelli under
the cosh a little more. Personally, I thought Dawson, Worsley and one
of the back three stayed on for too long - I'd have preferred them all
off before 60 minutes when it was clear something more was needed.
Nonetheless, the impressive thing about the Scarlets was their 80
minute commitment, especially from the pack. Just when Wasps looked
like they could pull something from the bag, it was the forwards who
kept driving the ball onwards, keeping Wasps pushed deep in their own
half. It was an assured, committed performance. Wasps have a pretty
useful set of forwards and about as much experience in their backrow as
any European club side and Llanelli did well to match, and exceed it.
They'll need to up a few gears to get further - I can't imagine some of
the French sides misfiring as much as Wasps - and will need to develop
more penetration from the kind of possession and territory they enjoyed
in this game to go much further in the comp.
A pretty accurate assessment there, Ben. In a nutshell I thought Wasps
were much below their best and the Scarlets were busting a gut.
Martyn Winters
2005-12-12 15:24:35 UTC
Permalink
On Sun, 11 Dec 2005 17:15:00 +0000, Martyn Winters
[...]
Post by Martyn Winters
At Welford Road, we had the proverbial game of two halves. The Ospreys
were worth their first half lead, and Leicester were lucky to go into
the second half with 15 men on the pitch after some over-enthusiastic
tap dancing on Henson's head should have led to a red card.
While the incident to which you refer looked dangerous as it occurred,
the subsequent slow motion replay showed that the players in close
proximity to Henson's unprotected and helpless head, were meticulous
about avoiding contact, and Henson emerged unscathed.
I missed the slo-mo, but if that's the case, then fair enough, all
credit to the attacking players. I've never had Leicester down as a
dirty team... sly, cheating bastards when they can get away with it,
(who isn't?), but not dirty.
Gareth Edmondson
2005-12-12 18:11:16 UTC
Permalink
Post by Martyn Winters
On Sun, 11 Dec 2005 17:15:00 +0000, Martyn Winters
[...]
Post by Martyn Winters
At Welford Road, we had the proverbial game of two halves. The
Ospreys were worth their first half lead, and Leicester were lucky to
go into the second half with 15 men on the pitch after some
over-enthusiastic tap dancing on Henson's head should have led to a
red card.
While the incident to which you refer looked dangerous as it occurred,
the subsequent slow motion replay showed that the players in close
proximity to Henson's unprotected and helpless head, were meticulous
about avoiding contact, and Henson emerged unscathed.
I missed the slo-mo, but if that's the case, then fair enough, all
credit to the attacking players. I've never had Leicester down as a
dirty team... sly, cheating bastards when they can get away with it,
(who isn't?), but not dirty.
I agree with that. WHen they showed the slo-mo you could clearly see the
players making sure they missed his head. That should actually be commended.

What was annoying was the pulling away of a player (was int Newman?)to
let Harry Ellis through a gap - cheating.

Gareth
Martyn Winters
2005-12-13 09:35:06 UTC
Permalink
Post by Gareth Edmondson
Post by Martyn Winters
On Sun, 11 Dec 2005 17:15:00 +0000, Martyn Winters
[...]
Post by Martyn Winters
At Welford Road, we had the proverbial game of two halves. The
Ospreys were worth their first half lead, and Leicester were lucky to
go into the second half with 15 men on the pitch after some
over-enthusiastic tap dancing on Henson's head should have led to a
red card.
While the incident to which you refer looked dangerous as it occurred,
the subsequent slow motion replay showed that the players in close
proximity to Henson's unprotected and helpless head, were meticulous
about avoiding contact, and Henson emerged unscathed.
I missed the slo-mo, but if that's the case, then fair enough, all
credit to the attacking players. I've never had Leicester down as a
dirty team... sly, cheating bastards when they can get away with it,
(who isn't?), but not dirty.
I agree with that. WHen they showed the slo-mo you could clearly see the
players making sure they missed his head. That should actually be commended.
What was annoying was the pulling away of a player (was int Newman?)to
let Harry Ellis through a gap - cheating.
I've noticed all the English clubs are wise to that tactic - pretend
you've been pulled into a "discussion" with an opposing player at the
breakdown - thereby creating an undefended opportunity. They copied it
from the All Blacks. Very clever.
John Williams
2005-12-13 19:25:55 UTC
Permalink
Post by Martyn Winters
Post by Gareth Edmondson
What was annoying was the pulling away of a player (was int Newman?)to
let Harry Ellis through a gap - cheating.
I've noticed all the English clubs are wise to that tactic - pretend
you've been pulled into a "discussion" with an opposing player at the
breakdown - thereby creating an undefended opportunity. They copied it
from the All Blacks. Very clever.
Just looking at it and the replays, it seemed the Ospreys bloke was
given the opportunity to be distracted, and took it. It didn't come
over to me as him being bodily kept from covering the yawning gap.
Though I haven't looked at it again since.

It was fascinating watching the game, unfortunately on TV rather than
live. This current Leicester team isn't sparkling at all, unlike last
season around the same time. Perhaps the new England league concept of
waiting to peak at the end of the season is being taken too seriously
by Tigers.

Ospreys' main problem second half, apart from an alarming fall-off at
the lineout, seemed to be getting the numbers not quite right at the
breakdown.

It's one of the joys of the EC that the two will have a chance to
correct their mistakes on Sunday. Hopefully I will actually be able to
use my ticket for that game!
--
Regards,
John Williams
Martyn Winters
2005-12-16 13:07:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by John Williams
Post by Martyn Winters
Post by Gareth Edmondson
What was annoying was the pulling away of a player (was int Newman?)to
let Harry Ellis through a gap - cheating.
I've noticed all the English clubs are wise to that tactic - pretend
you've been pulled into a "discussion" with an opposing player at the
breakdown - thereby creating an undefended opportunity. They copied it
from the All Blacks. Very clever.
Just looking at it and the replays, it seemed the Ospreys bloke was
given the opportunity to be distracted, and took it. It didn't come
over to me as him being bodily kept from covering the yawning gap.
Though I haven't looked at it again since.
It was fascinating watching the game, unfortunately on TV rather than
live. This current Leicester team isn't sparkling at all, unlike last
season around the same time. Perhaps the new England league concept of
waiting to peak at the end of the season is being taken too seriously
by Tigers.
Ospreys' main problem second half, apart from an alarming fall-off at
the lineout, seemed to be getting the numbers not quite right at the
breakdown.
It's one of the joys of the EC that the two will have a chance to
correct their mistakes on Sunday. Hopefully I will actually be able to
use my ticket for that game!
Enjoy the Liberty. I shall be watching Mr Lomu.

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