Monday, February 12, 2007

Scotland 21-9 Wales

I don't know what to make of this game. Wales were outgunned undoubtedly, but I always thought we were going to win right up until the last 10 minutes. We are obviously a more talented side than the Scots, and I am not faulting our application. I am concerned that there is a much deeper problem than a sluggish attitude.

The props have proved that they can mix it with the top teams, all four of them. Alun Wyn Jones is athletic, and I prefer Gough to Sidoli. The current back row is well balanced and I've got no complaints in that area. The half backs are good enough and.....oh dear what have we here?

This is where it all starts to go wrong with the current team. Hook, Robinson, Czeckai, Jones, Morgan. I just don't think that the boys have enough faith in the three quarters to run the ball wide and to play the fluent game that we've become used to. It was high risk even with Shane Williams, Henson, Shanklin, and Alfie. With this lot it would be disastrous.

The decision not to put Henson on the bench betrays a frightening puerility in the Welsh camp, and in Welsh rugby in general. When Morgan went off with an injury, our back line looked like something that had been thrown together for Mickey Steel-Bodger. With Henson's ability to play almost anywhere, his non-selection can only be based on spite and dare I say it, jealousy.

Welsh people have never liked someone who has things too easy. Henson is a naturally gifted player, and we prefer the braver prole who will put his body on the line. Yes, Henson is out of form, but you can't tell me that Sweeney or Aled Brew are better covering options.

The team in general look like they are not enjoy Gareth Jenkins' tactical game. And while I'm at it, the sooner that we look at Roland Phillips' position the better. I'm afraid that you just can't have a professional pantomime cow running the National side's defence. Something has to give. Either the cross-dressing on S4C, or his job with Wales. I know that the defence was outstanding on Saturday which is why I'm having a pop now. My position isn't reactionary, it's to do with respect and propriety from a WRU official . How can we criticise Alfie's recent behaviour when we appoint a television comedian as coach?

And finally a word about the television coverage. Abysmal.

I knew from the start that it was going to be an irritating afternoon, when the Director chose to mic up 15 nervous rugby players instead of the 30,000 lustily boozed up Welsh travellers for the anthem. From then it got worse. Every line out was filmed from pitch level, which is probably just about the worst seat in the house. The animated advertising boards were a pain in the arse, and none of the repeats managed to capture the crucial part of the replayed incident.
I can only think that the job was being performed by a competition winner. And that it had been won by one of those middle aged women who buy up all the magazines and do all the comps. Including the word puzzles.

It's good to be back.


Anonymous said...

Not all of us in Wales care about Rugby.

Well done Scotland - now Come on France!

Anonymous said...

Eric I have enjoyed reading your posts over the last few months. They are very well written, insighful, abd informnative, You are even forgiven for the lack of updates during recent months!

What I cannot forgive is having to read about Welsh rugby on this blog. We're sppon fed enough of this drivel by the Western Egg and BBC Egg Wales without having it on here.

Not everyone in Wales likes rugby, in fact the notion that is is the Welsh National Sport is a myth created by the Welsh Media and Establishment whoi can see no farther than the M4 corridor.

The recent Assembly report into Welsh Football acknowledged that 'Football is the most popular Sport in Wales.'

I was overjoyed when Wales where whupped in Scotland last week, absolutely delighted. I hope for a similar result and performance in Paris this weekend.


Eric the Red said...

You know what? This is a blog. It's my blog. I like rugby. Sometimes I like it more than football.

And you don't have to read it. It's up to you. I don't care.