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West Country Eagle

Member Since 19 Apr 2004
Offline Last Active Nov 20 2015 09:53 AM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: 14 Nov: 3rd Test - England v New Zealand (Wigan, KO 1pm) Match Thread

16 November 2015 - 03:23 PM

WCE - I agree with pretty much all of that. I think we were good enough to win, even without odd refereeing decisions. I thought I was the only one who thought that our right hand defence was all over the shop. In addition to the 3 tries, they could have had 3 more. It was much worse than in the first 2 games. I thought on re-watching that it was because McGillvray positioning was absolutely all over the place, coming in too soon, or not being in position at all. Which made me wonder about the universal "he's world class" acclaim. That said, it was structural, and presumably he can be taught where to stand. Plus, often the wingers positioning is a consequence of what is happening inside him, and he might have had to fly in because of the failings of others. Still, we got away with it this time.


Yes. I thought McGilray had a good game, but his positioning may have been a little off. Certainly, the problems stemmed from NZ throwing the ball wide quickly, and our defence not getting back across in time/spotting the danger. How the Kiwis fluffed so many try-scoring opportunities I'll never now. On such fine margins are test series won and lost.


I think it's credit to England that they ground out the win, despite looking pedestrian for the most part. Our forwards can make ground, but we just seemed lacking ideas. For example, no inside runners. not much running in pairs. In fact we didn't seem to run onto the ball that much at all.


We took the few try-scoring opportunities we had: New Zealand didn't. We have away some silly penalties as well, but for the most part were good enough defensively. At crunch moments, the Kiwis weren't. Fine margins, but delighted we came out on top - on too many occasions in the recent past against NZ and Australia, it's been a different story.

In Topic: 14 Nov: 3rd Test - England v New Zealand (Wigan, KO 1pm) Match Thread

16 November 2015 - 01:40 PM

Bit late on this, as haven't had much Internet access since returning from rain-swept Wigan on Saturday. Apologies if all of these points have been made before - I can't be bothered to go through the entire thread (sorry). So, thoughts:


• England were fortunate that Thaler made some odd calls at important times. Those penalties in the second half really helped us get in position to get the killer scores. I thought that the Kiwis still got away with a lot of rubbish, but thankfully the PTBs were a lot quicker all round (for both sides) than when Sutton had been in charge the previous week. Double-edged sword for England, as I thought the Kiwis in general looked a lot sharper in attack - more runners off the ball, better footwork, better lines of running. They got a roll on and made easy yards more often than England did. 


• Speaking of which, when the Kiwis went wide to England's right-hand defence (their left), they often had massive overlaps. Only a combination of great scrambling defence and the Kiwis fluffing their lines averted tries, particularly in the first half. This is a worry going forward, what with Thurston, Inglis and company (as well as NZ with Johnson and others) heading our way next year.


• McGilvary was an excellent choice and returned the ball brilliantly. When England were defending deep in the last 10, we were sat very close to where he was defending. He looked absolutely gone, and had been patched up by the physio. Another 5 mins and the Kiwis would have got past him again. Up until that point he'd looked solid, though.


• England look more threatening in attack when Tomkins is playing, as in McNamara's system he pops up in the line as an additional play maker. His footwork, speed, broken field running etc would have injected something extra. For most of this series we looked pedestrian and predictable going forward. Our pack is strong and runs hard/does damage, but we look pretty slow and predictable when we throw it wide.


* Watkins was awful, but everyone has off-days.


* Our seats were rubbish. We were near the front and got absolutely soaked. Spent the car journey back shivering!

In Topic: Refereeing Controversy

12 November 2015 - 05:45 PM

English ref = english win

 NRL ref = NZ win.


Don't get me wrong, I prefer neutral refs and this looks bad. That said, I thought Sutton allowed the Kiwis too much leeway to slow the ruck down the other day, so the game was blighted by NRL style wrestling. England suffered last week because they couldn't get quick play the balls (though NZ's improvement had more to do with them winning)

In Topic: NZ series ticket sales latest news

30 October 2015 - 05:35 PM


The highlights packages that we have had on the BBC for the last few years have been decent, and based on the minimal number of internationals we play anyway, I'm not sure how much benefit we get from a million or two viewers for two or three weeks then nothing for ages. 



Well, the fact that it's on the BBC certainly works for the "casual viewer", who maybe isn't dedicated enough to spend on pay TV sports channels but would watch if it's on terrestrial. My next door neighbour, a born-and-bred Bristol in his '70s, surprised me earlier today by saying how much he was looking forward to watching England against New Zealand on Sunday. He has a vague interest in union, but has shown little interest in League previously - though he does ask after the Sonics, and knows I'm involved.


Speaking of the Sonics, about 30 heading up from the club to the Wigan test in a couple of weeks (plus my dad from Sheffield and his cousin from Norfolk!)

In Topic: Norwich

05 October 2015 - 12:12 PM

My only advice would be, based on a visit nearly 20 years ago, that if your wondering from the City centre to Norwich Citys ground, get a taxi, don't walk or you'll find yourself wondering down some streets filled with young ladies reluctant to offer anything helpful in the way of directions to the ground!


Bit different these days from memory, though last time I went to Carrow Road I parked at County Hall, which is in the other direction from the city centre. I did wander into the centre, though, and it's fairly easy. Mind you, I have family from Norfolk and spent a month one summer doing work placement at BBC Radio Norfolk, so I know The Fine City rather well.


Gingerjon: Norwich is actually quite pleasant for the most part. Not necessarily exciting, but there are some decent pubs and lots of old buildings to look at and go "ooh, that's old" etc.