No substitute for experience

Jamie George England Saxons Debut

The game at Kingsholm last evening proved once again that experience is what counts when players step up a level. Ireland fielded a team with far more experience in representative rugby – and it showed. For all the possession and territory that England Saxons enjoyed against the Irish Wolfhounds they rarely looked like breaching the […]

Southern Hemisphere 3 – Northern Hemisphere 1

England defeated by All Blacks

As I suspected in my preview last week it was not a great weekend for the Northern Hemisphere – but there was one ray of light that seemed to be poking through from the end of the tunnel – as I’ll explain later in this report. It started quite well with Wales finally getting a […]

The Big Guns – Weekend Internationals preview

Wallabies v Ireland

This weekend sees the home nations taking on the Southern Hemisphere – Ireland host the Wallabies, Scotland wait nervously for the arrival of the Springboks, Wales face Argentina and at Twickenham England take the field against the all -conquering All Blacks. Wales will want a strong showing and a decent score against the Pumas to […]

Record Damage

Englead defeat All Blacks

The phrase ‘Lies, damned lies and statistics’ is alternately attributed to either Disraeli or Mark Twain depending on which Google site you go to. It is one of the most used quotes in the English language (most frequently by politicians to explain a recent unfavourable poll) There is a good reason it is popular however, […]

Autumn Fare (to middling)

All Blacks Haka v France

The second week of internationals for England and the first for the other home nations brought a mixed bag of performances. Scotland and Ireland duly put away their opposition as expected and both will face much harder tasks over the next few weeks when they take on the Southern Hemisphere giants. Scotland will be the […]

We Woz Robbed!

Super Rugby Referee

Last Saturday at Twickenham Australia were on the wrong end of one bad call, possibly two, from the officials. If you were to look at any of the social networking or rugby sites you could read a litany from annoyed (some apoplectic) Aussie fans demanding IRB action and claiming unfair bias against them. The fact […]

European Theatre – Weekend Internationals preview

2013 All Blacks squad

Following last week’s opening drama at Twickenham, the autumn internationals kick off in earnest this weekend when there will be 6 games in total on Saturday. Thanks to the magic of the recording button I will be able to take them all in and review them here on Monday (stop jeering at the back!) Australia […]

A Fine Line: England v Wallabies review

Billy Vunipola in action against the Wallabies

A lot of rugby games turn on one incident that changes the fortunes of both teams. Yesterday at Twickenham was no exception. For the first 50 minutes England looked exactly what they were – a team who hadn’t played together for months and with limited international experience. The Wallabies on the other hand had started […]

A Big Test – Wallabies v England preview

Wallabies v England

The game at Twickenham on Saturday is a big test in every sense of the word. By late afternoon we will have some idea of where the two teams are less than two years out from the World Cup. By now both head coaches should have a pretty good idea of at least the spine […]

Myth Guided

Chris Ashton celebrating a try

There are a lot of standard stereotypes used by the various nations to describe themselves and the English. Largely they like to portray their own character as being something out of ‘The Wild Bunch’, ‘Reservoir Dogs’ or ‘Rambo’. The Welsh like to see themselves as gritty miners (mostly prior to ‘The Wicked Thatch’ obviously), the […]