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Fascinating 2017 Six Nations comes to a close - Final Weekend Highlights Wrap

Nice one. Will keep an eye out for them, (Dupont and N'Tamack).
Your track record for identifying young talent is very impressive so far.

1 Day, 17 Hours ago

Fascinating 2017 Six Nations comes to a close - Final Weekend Highlights Wrap

I do indeed remember that - an absolute beauty. :)

1 Day, 17 Hours ago

Fascinating 2017 Six Nations comes to a close - Final Weekend Highlights Wrap

Oliver: "I was offended a few months back with that joke about the French playing dirty"

Oh well, if you insist!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gWziKeNYpQU

Been a while since some idiot tried to provocatively bait the French on here by posting a good old-fashioned French bagarre générale...

View Video

1 Day, 17 Hours ago

Fascinating 2017 Six Nations comes to a close - Final Weekend Highlights Wrap

Team GB at the Olympics, (which presumably means Northern Ireland joins up with the Republic, but I don't honestly know if that's the case).

Any excuse to complicate things.

1 Day, 17 Hours ago

Fascinating 2017 Six Nations comes to a close - Final Weekend Highlights Wrap

Perhaps I can help here.
In England it's quite common to refer to Americans as Yanks, (or Septic Tanks, Jodrell Banks and other rhyming slang versions). It doesn't really work, given that half the country fought a civil war AGAINST the Yankees. Now,I couldn't give a shit what a group of people who fought a devastating war to protect their rights to own slaves think/thought, but that's not relevant. The point is the British usage of "yank" does not meet the official definition.

I think it's very decent of our French interlocutors to write their comments on here in English. If they want to use their own jargon for how they refer to different groups of people, that's fine by me.

Well that's the semantic issue dealt with. I hope!

As to the more significant point about whether the home nations refs are biased against the French: on the one hand I really don't think the accusation of bias holds water; on the other hand I do think many French players suffer from having to conduct all their conversations in a foreign language.

The solution? Well, there's Alain Rolland, but as Brian Moore once pointed out, "just because he can make the wrong decision in two languages doesn't make it any less wrong".

Maybe the answer is to find a genuinely neutral, bilingual country and recruit refs from there...

Canadian refs for France games??

1 Day, 19 Hours ago

Fascinating 2017 Six Nations comes to a close - Final Weekend Highlights Wrap

I have seen Serin youtube highlights - sought them out a couple of months ago after one of you guys (either you or Colombes if I remember rightly) brought him to my attention. Looks like he offers the complete package to me, but to have the cojones to throw a pass like that in an international test match, at his age and inexperience, is awesome - never mind actually being able to execute it. (OK, maybe 25cm further ahead of Fickou and he could have hit that gap at full speed).

Agree on Fickou. Hadn't really seen much of Lamerat before this competition, but have been pretty impressed. Will be interesting to see how Fofana fits back in.

Pretty sure I got "Trou-Duc" from you - maybe it was M Colombes then. :)

1 Day, 19 Hours ago

Fascinating 2017 Six Nations comes to a close - Final Weekend Highlights Wrap

Part Deux:
Added time
Nos ami français further up the page ask why Barnesy didn’t award a penalty try and send off more players after so many infringements. I tend to agree, but I’d like to say a few things in his defence:
1. He’s not bloody biased against the French!! Give it up, for Christ’s sake. And as an Englishman, even one who was devastated a few years ago to discover some Welsh ancestry, I have no idea why you lot keep insisting that an English ref would favour the Welsh…
2. a) He did show a yellow to Samson Lee, for a deliberate knock-on/slapdown, but I think this was a bit of a collective yellow, after persistent team offences.
b) Barnes on the microphone during the final play: if the match continues after this play, Dan Biggar will go to the bin.
3. Picamoles tap-n-go - the tacklers, Tipuric and was it Moriarty?, were both behind the line when Picamoles tapped the ball. By the time they’d effected the tackle, all other Welsh players in the vicinity had also retreated behind the line before getting involved.

Biting allegation
A few things to say here:
1. I don’t like North going directly to the ref, it should be the captain.
2. There did appear to be a clear bite mark on his upper arm.
3. This idea that he bit himself is hilarious! Almost physically impossible to bite yourself on that part of the arm, and how would he expect to get away with it, once the video footage came out?
4. Speaking of which, where is the video of this incident? Understand it not being easy for the TMO to find during the match, but seems odd that nothing’s come out since…

French discipline
To finish on a positive note, I thought this was phenomenal. To maintain composure like that for such a prolonged assault on the line was quite remarkable. Bravo les gars.

1 Day, 20 Hours ago

Fascinating 2017 Six Nations comes to a close - Final Weekend Highlights Wrap

Sorry everyone, too much to say on this, going to have to spread over two posts. But at least I’ve tried to make it concise:

Wayne Barnes
Overall I thought he did very well to manage the game in very trying circumstances. One thing I would take issue with, and he's not alone here, is the increasing familiarity with players. Sure, address each captain by his first name, but everyone else should be red 7, blue 9, etc. When you attach a name, you open yourself up to unconscious bias. More importantly, don't let them bloody talk to you. This is one of the best conventions in rugby and allowing all this chat is an even more slippery slope than diving.

Vakatawa
Not even a penalty for me. And yes, I am serious. I challenge anyone to watch that at real speed and conclude that it was a deliberate knock-on. Referees must insist on being shown the replay at normal speed. I would have been far more satisfied to see a penalty awarded against Biggar/North here for their footballery remonstrating at the officials.

France half-backs
I don’t think Lopez has had enough praise. He’s really grown as the tourny has progressed. That deft chip for the Lamerat try was sublime. Things seemed to go really tits up when Trou-Duc came on. As for Serin, Mon Dieu!. That pass (pause at 2:16) was beautiful and I think Fickou should have been able to make more of the gap Serin created.

Atonio
Well there was definitely something wrong with him! Not sure it was his head, but he certainly didn’t look like he knew where he was - or does he always look like that? That doctor looked like a right blagger though! His demeanour made it look like there was something shady going on, even if there wasn’t.

1 Day, 20 Hours ago

Fantasy Six Nations: Super Saturday top tips

Thank you sir. Even called the No-Grand-Slam for England. Huzzah for me.
And you're absolutely right on the wins/losses/points etc. Not a clue.

2 Days, 18 Hours ago

Fantasy Six Nations: Super Saturday top tips

Well... France won. Took some effort! But they won.

4 Days, 12 Hours ago