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Chabal - Title on the line...

Posted by colourmyworld_1 on 2011.02.15 at 16:54
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Sebastien Chabal believes that the Twickenham showdown between England and France will decide who will win this year's RBS Six Nations title.

The two unbeaten teams in this year's championship go toe-to-toe on February 26, albeit off the back of contrasting results.

England smashed Italy on home soil last weekend, winger Chris Ashton scoring four tries, while Les Bleus edged out Ireland in Dublin.

Former Sale Shark Chabal predicts the title will now effectively be decided in round three - and has issued a rallying cry to his fellow French forwards to front up against a powerful English pack.

Prediction

"When we started the competition, it was to win it," he said.

"Now I believe the winner of the next round will win the Six Nations. So we will try to do our best and get a result in England.

"We watched England's game against Italy. They played great rugby, they moved the ball and were strong. But Italy didn't play well.

"For us the first thing is to be stronger with our forwards, because when they go backwards it will be more difficult for them to move the ball around the pitch."

France coach Marc Lievremont opened the phoney war with England, insisting Martin Johnson's side were "very much ahead" of everyone else.

"I'm already feeling something of a headache looking towards the England match because they are looking very sure of themselves," he said.

"We need to appreciate our win against Ireland and realise that England are very much ahead of everyone else at the moment.

"They have a very physical team, they're intense and accelerate a lot.

"It appears that the other five nations are developing at a much lower level.

"We know that it will be complicated and that we must resolve some issues, but we will progress in this aspect."

 

Confidence

Chabal backed up his coach's words, acknowledging that France - who beat Scotland in the opening round - have yet to fulfill their potential in 2011.

"We made too many mistakes against Ireland, we are not full of confidence and sometimes it's quite difficult for us on the pitch," added the Racing Metro player.

"We have three days' rest now and we'll join up on Thursday, giving us 10 days to prepare for England. We need a good game plan to beat them."




Highly-rated Wales flanker Sam Warburton has agreed a new deal to remain at Cardiff Blues.

The 22-year-old is a product of the Blues academy and has gone on to make 36 appearances since making his debut in 2009.

And Warburton, who has been capped 11 times, had no hesitation is singing a new contract.

"I'm absolutely delighted to be staying here," he said.

"I'm a Cardiff boy, born and bred, and to be offered and sign a new deal is fantastic. I'm only 22 years old and feel there's a lot more to achieve.

"I've only been with the seniors for three seasons and with all the young players such as Bradley Davies, Leigh Halfpenny and Tom James, we've got a very bright future.

"I've come through with the same bunch of boys in the Academy and we've all progressed together so it's been quite a smooth transition.

"What is exciting is I've known some of these boys for six years already through rugby circles and there's about ten or 12 of us who have come through within a few years of each other, which shows the systems are working.

"About six or seven of us have been capped already."



England Vs Italy 12/02/2011

Posted by colourmyworld_1 on 2011.02.13 at 16:39
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Well lets start by saying WOW what a match! Now I apologise in advance for any bias that may be apparent in this post but I am English so obviously pleased with the result!

Final score was 59-13 which is pretty incredible, England have beaten Italy in the past 11 consecutive 6 nations matches but that didn't mean it was a certainty. I felt that Italy almost seemed to start the match with a defeated attitude, and it showed in the play. They just couldn't seem to break through englands defence, even with their larger forwards we still managed to get through on many occasions.
The first try was pretty much just a repeat of englands first try in the match against Wales last week with the seemingly unstoppable duo of Chris Ashton and Toby Flood. The whole team is particularly strong at the moment but these two obviously are really shining.
Ashton then went on to score another 3 trys with conversions from Flood and Wilkinson after subs in the second half. I am the first to say that Jonny Wilkinson is one of the greatest rugby players ever but Flood is fast approaching his high standard. This is probably due in part to the training and help he will recieve from Wilkinson. I couldn't agree more with the comment made last week against Wales about Wilkinson becoming a back up. Flood is starting matches and really showing his skill, his confidence in himself has grown so much over the past season.
I say this but in yesterdays match it was clear that Johnny Wilkinson is most definitely not done yet, and contrary to public opinion is not just am amazing goal scorer, the tackle he made at the end of the match just goes to show he isn't afraid to give his all.

I totally agreed with the man of the match choice both in this match and englands last, Flood firstly seems to set up all the trys, although the forwards are creating the space Flood is always there to give the wingers, mainly Ashton the chance at a try. Ashton this week, well who could contradict that choice, not just a hat trick which he is the first english man to do in 6 years, but 4 trys, which he is the first player in history to do in a 6 nations match. He is most definitely creating a name for himself! Not just for the trys but the swallow dives and celebrations which are known to be hated by Martin Johnson! But I can't help but love them!
These are obviously not the only two players that deserve a mention, Easter as well was all over the pitch and in the right place, making the right tackles when needed. As well as Ben young who were taking off all the big forwards of the Italian team. Hartley with his line-outs also showed his skills.
Cueto as well finally scoring a try, seeing Ashton scoring all his trys must have spurred him on! Also the other trys scored by current captain taking over fromthe injured Moody, Mike Tindell. Danny Care and James Haskell.

England in general though played very well, they won most of theirs and the italian line-outs due to great team work also Italy seemed to be lacking the necessary confidence to throw themselves into the line-outs. Again mentioning the forwards, they created trys and the scrums and mauls were extremely strong, there were only 2 reset scrums which does make a change.
Johnno as manager chose very well in the subs made in the second half as the new legs seemed to really work well, not only because the newer players scored trys but also the play was so refreshed.

One of the few complaints I'd have of Englands play would be the silly turn overs, they lost the ball on quite a few occasions due to little stumbles and fumbles. However they still had the majority of possession over the whole game.

Although Italy didn't score too highly, they did keep going right unitl the end, they started to gain more conviction in the last 30 minutes but couldn't manage to score more then one try. The one try they got did show they have talent though, the maul with England was a long one and they kept pushing forward and did what England don't by working in the group and the one time they put their forwards to good use.

Again sorry for the bias but England did play so well, we kicked ass!
Over all the game was pretty intense and definitely worth the watch!!!

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6 nations schedule

Posted by colourmyworld_1 on 2011.02.12 at 12:47
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For those interested here's a link to the timetable for the upcoming 6 nations matches (sorry they're on the English times but it is an english sport)

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/rugby_union/welsh/3194026.stm



 

MEDIA RELEASE
February 11, 2011

Fans find out Monday about RWC 2011 Finals Ballots

The third phase of Rugby World Cup 2011 (RWC 2011) ticketing opens on Monday when Rugby fans from around the world will find out if they have been successful in the ballots for tickets to the semi-finals and the Final.

“I know many fans will be nervously awaiting the results of the ballots as these tickets have been highly sought after,” said Martin Snedden, CEO of Tournament Organiser Rugby New Zealand 2011.

The ballots were open to those fans who applied for tickets during the first two phases of RWC 2011 ticketing and who elected to enter into the ballots. Applicants received one entry into each ballot they elected to enter into for each ticket they applied for. Applicants who used a MasterCard® between April 27 and November 21 2010, received double entries. For further details on how the ballots work click here.

There are 15,000 match tickets available in each of the three ballots. Because each offer will consist of an opportunity to purchase two tickets, a total of approximately 7,500 offers will be issued for each match. Applications were received from just over 60,000 fans.

“These tickets are scarce so for those who are successful this is a great opportunity to be ringside at the crunch matches of New Zealand’s biggest ever sports event.”

Successful fans will receive an email from RNZ 2011 on Monday February 14 and a letter soon afterwards with full details on how to secure and pay for their tickets. In addition, the Customer Account Numbers of those successful in the ballots will also be published on www.rugbyworldcup.com/finals at 9am on Monday. This will allow entrants to search for their account number to see if they have been successful.

Fans have until 5pm Friday March 4 to secure their tickets




Intro Post ....

Posted by colourmyworld_1 on 2011.02.11 at 18:56
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Hey guys!! I'm hoping that although this maybe a new community you'll all be willing to give it a chance and post all your views to get the numbers up.

As I said in the userinfo I didn't see any rugby comms previously created so thought I'd give it a go and hope it wasn't a sign that there aren't many livejournal rugby fans!!

Seeing as the 6 nations has just begun it spurred me to really get into the fandom of the sport, I hope people join and enjoy everything people have to say.

Cheers for now, and don't forget the matches this weekend,

12 February:
England v Italy (Twickenham, London, 1430 GMT)
Scotland v Wales (Murrayfield, Edinburgh, 1700 GMT)

13 February:
Ireland v France (Lansdowne Road, Dublin, 1500 GMT)




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