Sunday, February 11, 2007

What a choke!! (Ireland 17 - France 20)

Well the 6nations finally sparked in the France-Ireland game. An open running game full of great moves and even bigger mistakes.

To be fair I think France actually deserved to edge it. They absolutely dominated the first 30mins and although Ireland had the majority of the play in the 2nd half their defence held pretty firm. And what a comeback, they didn't panic when they went 4 points down with two minutes left. Won the restart and then kept the ball in hand didn't panic and split what has been shown to be a very brittle Irish defence. Given the fact that the Irish are still noticeably weak in the front three, I think if they don't panic and keep it tight England may have a chance against them (assuming they can keep Simon Easterby honest at the break down).

The only dark spot on a pulsating game was yet another shocking refereeing display from Steve Walsh. He was not just inconsistent but in some case totally perverse. France smash the Irish scrum and get a drive on with 5 minutes to go, and what does Walsh do? calls a turnover for a wheel when the French were clearly going straight forward. If anything it was a penalty to France for the Irish front row standing up. At the other end of the filed Marcus Horan (I think) chips through, clearly gets pulled back by one French player and is tripped by another. What does Walsh do? absolutely nothing! I'm glad I'm not french or irish or I would have burst a blood vessel scremaing at him.

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