November Internationals 2014

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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby The Anathemata » November 10th, 2014, 1:12 pm

jezzer wrote:What a game, lads. We did almost everything right, even if it wasn't pretty. A lot of heroic performances - McGrath, POC, Ruddock, POM, Heaslip, Murray, Sexton, Henshaw, Bowe, Kearney and the rest of them were very good. Factor in that we had to stick to our starting XV far longer than we probably would have liked and it was a massive effort from the guys who kicked the game off.

You'd expect that a backline with guys like Sexton, Payne, Bowe, Zebo in it would be able to make serious inroads into any world backline at some points in the game, but we played it very conservative and - at times - a bit naively in the backline. Our tactic of not engaging them in the lineout/lineout maul was interesting, but I have to say it worked the entire time bar their try. It's one thing to stand off them when you're on the 10m line, but 5-8m out from the tryline - headscratcher...

Tommybowe has some wheels on him - you'd wonder if he was ahead of Murray for the chip, but who cares?

S. Africa were pants for a lot of this game. I don't think that takes the gloss off the result at all. Our linespeed (take a bow Henshaw and Payne) forced them into a lot of errors and poor decisions. We asked them to beat us and they couldn't. There was an element of rope-a-dope about it, but it was well judged and we looked pretty comfortable defending for a lot of the time.

I was hoping for Zebo to have a cracker. I actually thought he wasn't great. I know some others here thought otherwise. He was out of position a lot, as far as I could see.

Tactically though, it was a masterclass and the difference between the two teams. Not just the starting gameplan, but the way the players adapted on the pitch to the situation. S Africa at times looked like they were thrown together for the first time last week and we made them look that way.

When you think of the structures in place now in Ireland, the vast increase in player participation rates at all levels, the professionalism of the regional structures, the contribution of the schools system, increasing contribution by clubs, the academy systems, success at underage levels.... it's no coincidence that we're knocking on the door of a top 3 ranking and you'd have to say that the only thing historically that's prevented us from residing there permanently is top level coaching.

With that in place, there really is no limit for Irish rugby.


I don't think Zebo played his natural game. He seemed to want to hit every ruck, and as a result got caught out of position for a couple of Pollard's better kicks in behind and one potential overlap out wide.
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby The Doc » November 10th, 2014, 1:54 pm

The Anathemata wrote:I don't think Zebo played his natural game. He seemed to want to hit every ruck, and as a result got caught out of position for a couple of Pollard's better kicks in behind and one potential overlap out wide.


Zebo is probably the one player I was wondering about after the game - not that he had a bad game or anything. He just looked (on TV - not live - so that mightn't help) a little like a fish out of water.

I put it down to him being asked to do some stuff which isn't natural to his style - heavier workload off the ball etc. And maybe it takes a bit of time to get the balance right. If it all clicks in time for the WC it could be great - I think he needs more run outs over the next 6 months. He expect he gets game time over the next two matches
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby jezzer » November 10th, 2014, 1:57 pm

Agreed, he should play a decent role in all three games, imo.
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby LeRouxIsPHat » November 10th, 2014, 2:00 pm

We did engage Jezzer. Toner tried to sack it but couldn't get Matfield down quick enough. He transferred the ball and then they had space to run into because the sack hadn't worked and the guys who tried to counter the maul were sucked in to where Matfield had had the ball, when they were actually setting the maul a little wider than that.

Watched the highlights last night and noticed the great lines that Henshaw and Payne were running that I hadn't seen the other day. It didn't look pre planned to me, they just seemed to be great at spotting an opportunity and busted a gut to get there, unfortunately for them the ball carrier just tended to go themselves. We actually passed very little.
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby Dexter » November 10th, 2014, 2:12 pm

blockhead wrote:
johng wrote:
Donny B. wrote:Okaaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyyyyy!

Thanks for your contribution anyway

So you're saying it's fine because if you say stuff before a match, it doesn't matter once the match is over? Really?

Of course. Sure didn't G Hook say that Joe had picked a team deliberately to lose before the game. (Pope and O'Shea nearly knifed him) and sure wasn't it grand after the game.........


And straight after the game Hook spoke for about 5mins about himself, will we ever be rid of that gobsh*te! He's allowed to dominate the discussion, Popey is his sidekick and Conor is brought in to bring some semblance of sanity. I find myself avoiding RTE pre-match, half-time, and post match analysis because of that Cork Tw*t. The infuriating thing about it is that we have lots of good pundits out there, Lenihan for starts always gives a good view, Shaggy, I'd like to see more of ROG, keep Conor. BOD,Woody, Quinny are also good but probably tied up with other TV commitments.

I recorded the game on Sky just so I could avoid all the nonsense on RTE. Although I'm tempted to have a look at the G Hook Pantomime on RTE Player now...
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby Oldschool » November 10th, 2014, 2:21 pm

Dexter wrote:[
Donny B. wrote:And straight after the game Hook spoke for about 5mins about himself, will we ever be rid of that gobsh*te! He's allowed to dominate the discussion, Popey is his sidekick and Conor is brought in to bring some semblance of sanity. I find myself avoiding RTE pre-match, half-time, and post match analysis because of that Cork Tw*t. The infuriating thing about it is that we have lots of good pundits out there, Lenihan for starts always gives a good view, Shaggy, I'd like to see more of ROG, keep Conor. BOD,Woody, Quinny are also good but probably tied up with other TV commitments.

I recorded the game on Sky just so I could avoid all the nonsense on RTE. Although I'm tempted to have a look at the G Hook Pantomime on RTE Player now...

Depending on your mood you'll either laugh out loud as you roll your eyes up to heaven (Not an easy combo to manage) or
You'll burst into tears at the thought of how your hard earned TV license money is being wasted. (FFS Water Works coming to mind - Go with the first option)
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby Oldschool » November 10th, 2014, 2:30 pm

jezzer wrote:What a game, lads. We did almost everything right, even if it wasn't pretty. A lot of heroic performances - McGrath, POC, Ruddock, POM, Heaslip, Murray, Sexton, Henshaw, Bowe, Kearney and the rest of them were very good. Factor in that we had to stick to our starting XV far longer than we probably would have liked and it was a massive effort from the guys who kicked the game off.

You'd expect that a backline with guys like Sexton, Payne, Bowe, Zebo in it would be able to make serious inroads into any world backline at some points in the game, but we played it very conservative and - at times - a bit naively in the backline. Our tactic of not engaging them in the lineout/lineout maul was interesting, but I have to say it worked the entire time bar their try. It's one thing to stand off them when you're on the 10m line, but 5-8m out from the tryline - headscratcher...

Tommybowe has some wheels on him - you'd wonder if he was ahead of Murray for the chip, but who cares?

S. Africa were pants for a lot of this game. I don't think that takes the gloss off the result at all. Our linespeed (take a bow Henshaw and Payne) forced them into a lot of errors and poor decisions. We asked them to beat us and they couldn't. There was an element of rope-a-dope about it, but it was well judged and we looked pretty comfortable defending for a lot of the time.

I was hoping for Zebo to have a cracker. I actually thought he wasn't great. I know some others here thought otherwise. He was out of position a lot, as far as I could see.

Tactically though, it was a masterclass and the difference between the two teams. Not just the starting gameplan, but the way the players adapted on the pitch to the situation. S Africa at times looked like they were thrown together for the first time last week and we made them look that way.

When you think of the structures in place now in Ireland, the vast increase in player participation rates at all levels, the professionalism of the regional structures, the contribution of the schools system, increasing contribution by clubs, the academy systems, success at underage levels.... it's no coincidence that we're knocking on the door of a top 3 ranking and you'd have to say that the only thing historically that's prevented us from residing there permanently is top level coaching.

With that in place, there really is no limit for Irish rugby.

The only thing I would add is that Meyer didn't prepare his team properly. If SA had had a better coach we might not have won.
Kicking to touch with easy 3 pointers on offer is an indictable offense especially earlier on.
He also totally failed to prepare his team to profit from their scrum dominance.

If you come up against Joe you have to know what you're about otherwise he'll do you.
He's a nice guy and all that but he's ruthless and he doesn't leave much to chance.
Joe works hard at preparing his players and he expects them to work just as hard and if they sign up for their Schmidt degree in Excellence they'll get honours.
Cos one thing we all should never forget especially where Joe is concerned - History Does Repeat Itself.
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby LeRouxIsPHat » November 10th, 2014, 3:06 pm

The Boks turned down kickable penalties against NZ too and it worked. Ordinarily I'd think it was wrong to turn points down but they're a quality side and believed in themselves, think we just deserve credit for repelling them. We were helped by Hougaard messing up a couple of times and them not changing tactics, but still think we deserve huge credit as opposed to them deserving criticism. The obvious reasoning is that they thought they'd win easily, but I don't think that's the case, it's just how they play.
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby johng » November 10th, 2014, 3:14 pm

LeRouxIsPHat wrote:The obvious reasoning is that they thought they'd win easily, but I don't think that's the case, it's just how they play.

Have a look at their body language when they ran out. All smiling and laughing etc. Complacent. Maybe not all of them and maybe not totally, but it only takes a few percent.
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby olaf the fat » November 10th, 2014, 3:20 pm

They were coming for the scalp of the 6Ns Champs, they stated as much in the week before. Their recent record in Dublin gives them no reason to underestimate us.

I dont think South Africa played poorly. Their tactic of going for the line out instead of points did not lose them the match. 29 to 8 with only a few minutes to play - a couple of penalties would not got them close.

Arguably, it was their hard man nature that lost it for them. They had us under severe pressure, and a build up of rough play cost them a player at a key time.
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby offshorerules » November 10th, 2014, 3:24 pm

LeRouxIsPHat wrote:The Boks turned down kickable penalties against NZ too and it worked. Ordinarily I'd think it was wrong to turn points down but they're a quality side and believed in themselves, think we just deserve credit for repelling them. We were helped by Hougaard messing up a couple of times and them not changing tactics, but still think we deserve huge credit as opposed to them deserving criticism. The obvious reasoning is that they thought they'd win easily, but I don't think that's the case, it's just how they play.


Wonder will they turn them down in Twikenham at the weekend?
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby Dexter » November 10th, 2014, 3:24 pm

LeRouxIsPHat wrote:The Boks turned down kickable penalties against NZ too and it worked. Ordinarily I'd think it was wrong to turn points down but they're a quality side and believed in themselves, think we just deserve credit for repelling them. We were helped by Hougaard messing up a couple of times and them not changing tactics, but still think we deserve huge credit as opposed to them deserving criticism. The obvious reasoning is that they thought they'd win easily, but I don't think that's the case, it's just how they play.

How many times did they turn down kicks, maybe 3? They scored from one of those and coverted so 7 points versus a possible 9 with all successful kicks, not much of a difference - purely from a scoreboard perespective.
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby LeRouxIsPHat » November 10th, 2014, 3:43 pm

johng wrote:
LeRouxIsPHat wrote:The obvious reasoning is that they thought they'd win easily, but I don't think that's the case, it's just how they play.

Have a look at their body language when they ran out. All smiling and laughing etc. Complacent. Maybe not all of them and maybe not totally, but it only takes a few percent.


I'm not sure how much that was a factor. We ended up hammering them but remember it was only 6-3 at half time and it was very hotly contested. Some big hits and strong carries from them, they looked up for it to me.
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby blockhead » November 10th, 2014, 3:46 pm

Tommy Bowe on 27 tries for Ireland now. Only 2 behind Hickey. Can't see him getting to BODs record of 45 but still he's been very prolific in green.
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby simonokeeffe » November 10th, 2014, 3:52 pm

blockhead wrote:Tommy Bowe on 27 tries for Ireland now. Only 2 behind Hickey. Can't see him getting to BODs record of 45 but still he's been very prolific in green.


ah couple of hat tricks against Canada and Romania in the world cup and e'll be right up there
When he spreads his legs like that youd need dynamite or the Highland Light Infantry to shift him.
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby rosscarrick » November 10th, 2014, 4:59 pm

Dexter wrote:
LeRouxIsPHat wrote:The Boks turned down kickable penalties against NZ too and it worked. Ordinarily I'd think it was wrong to turn points down but they're a quality side and believed in themselves, think we just deserve credit for repelling them. We were helped by Hougaard messing up a couple of times and them not changing tactics, but still think we deserve huge credit as opposed to them deserving criticism. The obvious reasoning is that they thought they'd win easily, but I don't think that's the case, it's just how they play.

How many times did they turn down kicks, maybe 3? They scored from one of those and coverted so 7 points versus a possible 9 with all successful kicks, not much of a difference - purely from a scoreboard perespective.


Thats not how a game works Dexter.
Not gaining points when on offer can swing momentum. Gives confidence to the defending team.
Whereas, keeping the scoreboard ticking over can wear down the opponents.
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby Edna Kenny » November 10th, 2014, 6:28 pm

Dexter wrote:
LeRouxIsPHat wrote:The Boks turned down kickable penalties against NZ too and it worked. Ordinarily I'd think it was wrong to turn points down but they're a quality side and believed in themselves, think we just deserve credit for repelling them. We were helped by Hougaard messing up a couple of times and them not changing tactics, but still think we deserve huge credit as opposed to them deserving criticism. The obvious reasoning is that they thought they'd win easily, but I don't think that's the case, it's just how they play.

How many times did they turn down kicks, maybe 3? They scored from one of those and coverted so 7 points versus a possible 9 with all successful kicks, not much of a difference - purely from a scoreboard perespective.


Agreed, it's only a bad decision if you don't score. Wales did similarly on Saturday when points would have brought them to within 4 at half time but they got the try. SA back themselves to score in those situations.

One moment I saw on Sat was very smart play by the ball boy. Not sure if it was seen on telly, I haven't seen any replay, but I think it was Sexton's kick to the corner and it went into touch, Habana was looking to chase and take a quick throw so they could clear the pressure but the ballboy made sure to catch it so it couldn't be taken quick. Habana, the touch judge and the SA physio all had words with him from what i could see. The lineout led to turnover and Bowe scored in the corner. Good to see everyone switched on!
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby Dexter » November 10th, 2014, 6:34 pm

rosscarrick wrote:
Dexter wrote:
LeRouxIsPHat wrote:The Boks turned down kickable penalties against NZ too and it worked. Ordinarily I'd think it was wrong to turn points down but they're a quality side and believed in themselves, think we just deserve credit for repelling them. We were helped by Hougaard messing up a couple of times and them not changing tactics, but still think we deserve huge credit as opposed to them deserving criticism. The obvious reasoning is that they thought they'd win easily, but I don't think that's the case, it's just how they play.

How many times did they turn down kicks, maybe 3? They scored from one of those and coverted so 7 points versus a possible 9 with all successful kicks, not much of a difference - purely from a scoreboard perespective.


Thats not how a game works Dexter.
Not gaining points when on offer can swing momentum. Gives confidence to the defending team.
Whereas, keeping the scoreboard ticking over can wear down the opponents.

Hence why I said purely from a scoreboard perspective. They kept plugging away with the kicks to the corner, then when they eventually scored a try we thought the momentum would turn. It didn't.
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby jezzer » November 10th, 2014, 7:18 pm

LeRouxIsPHat wrote:We did engage Jezzer. Toner tried to sack it but couldn't get Matfield down quick enough. He transferred the ball and then they had space to run into because the sack hadn't worked and the guys who tried to counter the maul were sucked in to where Matfield had had the ball, when they were actually setting the maul a little wider than that.

Watched the highlights last night and noticed the great lines that Henshaw and Payne were running that I hadn't seen the other day. It didn't look pre planned to me, they just seemed to be great at spotting an opportunity and busted a gut to get there, unfortunately for them the ball carrier just tended to go themselves. We actually passed very little.


I'd have to see it again, but we made a very half-hearted and late attempt to form a maul only 5m out. That's not like us normally.
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Re: November Internationals 2014

Postby Dave Cahill » November 10th, 2014, 7:42 pm

jezzer wrote:
LeRouxIsPHat wrote:We did engage Jezzer. Toner tried to sack it but couldn't get Matfield down quick enough. He transferred the ball and then they had space to run into because the sack hadn't worked and the guys who tried to counter the maul were sucked in to where Matfield had had the ball, when they were actually setting the maul a little wider than that.

Watched the highlights last night and noticed the great lines that Henshaw and Payne were running that I hadn't seen the other day. It didn't look pre planned to me, they just seemed to be great at spotting an opportunity and busted a gut to get there, unfortunately for them the ball carrier just tended to go themselves. We actually passed very little.


I'd have to see it again, but we made a very half-hearted and late attempt to form a maul only 5m out. That's not like us normally.


I though so too, miscommunication perhaps?
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