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View Full Version : The Welsh Christmas Derbies.



Sir Speedy
25-12-07, 06:42 PM
Cardiff Arms Park - Coverage starts at 2.05pm on BBC 2.

Stradey Park - Coverage Starts at 7.15pm on S4C.

Ospreys: Lee Byrne, Nikki Walker, Mark Taylor, Andrew Bishop, Aled Brew, James Hook, Mike Phillips, Ryan Jones, Ben Lewis, Jonathan Thomas, Alun Wyn Jones, Ian Gough, Adam Jones, Richard Hibbard, Duncan Jones.
Replacements: Huw Bennett, Cai Griffiths, Lyndon Bateman, Tom Smith, Justin Marshall, Shaun Connor, Jonathan Vaughton.

vs

Llanelli Scarlets: Morgan Stoddart; Mark Jones, Regan King, Gavin Evans, Nathan Brew; Stephen Jones, Dwayne Peel; Iestyn Thomas, Matthew Rees, Deacon Manu, Vernon Cooper, Scott MacLeod, Simon Easterby (capt), Gavin Thomas, Alix Popham.
Replacements: Bruce Douglas, James Hayter, Adam Eustace, Dafydd Jones, Gavin Cattle, Ceiron Thomas, Jon Davies.

Coverage Starts at 7.15pm on S4C from Stradey Park.

Cardiff Blues: Jamie Roberts; Tal Selley, Jamie Robinson, Tom Shanklin, Gareth Thomas; Nick Macleod, Richie Rees; John Yapp, T Rhys Thomas, Gary Powell, Deiniol Jones, Scott Morgan, Ben White, Robin Sowden-Taylor (capt), Andy Powell.
Replacements: Gethin Jenkins, Gareth Williams, Paul Tito, Mark Lewis, Darren Allinson, Rhys Jones, Dafydd Hewitt.

vs

Newport-Gwent Dragons: Kevin Morgan (capt); Richard Fussell, Rhodri Gomer Davies, Ashley Smith, Richard Mustoe; Aled Thomas, Wayne Evans; Adam Black, Ben Daly, Gethin Robinson, Adam Jones, Peter Sidoli, Jamie Ringer, Richard Parks, Joe Bearman.
Replacements: Steve Jones, Rhys Thomas, Michael Owen, Colin Charvis, Paul Emerick, Ceri Sweeney, Alex Walker.

Coverage starts at 2.05pm on BBC 2 from the Cardiff Arms Park.

The Ospreys will be captained by Ryan Jones, who makes his return, at Stradey Park Thursday evening. The Peel - Jones vs Phillips - Hook battle should be worth buying the ticket itself, and on his return, Ryan Jones would like the chance to get one over his Welsh teammate Popham in this game.

The Blues start Nick Macleod at 10, as Dai Flanagan is injured. Both sides had different outcomes in the Heineken Cup, and both would find a win now, invaluable. The Dragons beat Llanelli at Stradey early in the season, so they won't fear travelling to a fellow Welsh regions fort.

I predict Llanelli to win by 5 points and the Blues to win by 20+. Other predictions are welcome.

Vambo
26-12-07, 04:36 PM
The Blues vs Dragons game was er... interesting. Woeful first half performance from a Blues team who seemed intent on giving a masterclass on how not to score. Great bodies on the line defence from the Dragons but the Blues had zero attacking flair and how they managed to still be completely inept with a 2 man advantage was a wonder to behold.
Second 40 was a slightly better affair but if the Blues have serious ambitions about winning the Magners League they simply can't repeat this performance. The Dragons played with a lot of heart and will take more than just the bonus point from this performance.

Nice bit of biff near the end :D

Sir Speedy
26-12-07, 05:22 PM
I doubt the Blues will think that though, Tito has been arguably their best player this season so far.
Final score: 11 - 6 to the Blues, the Dragons clinched a bonus point 5 minutes from time which I'm sure they'll be pleased with.

Vambo
26-12-07, 05:39 PM
I doubt the Blues will think that though, Tito has been arguably their best player this season so far.
Final score: 11 - 6 to the Blues, the Dragons clinched a bonus point 5 minutes from time which I'm sure they'll be pleased with.
[/b]

Aye from the games I've seen Tito has played well.

They really missed Rush today though.

Sir Speedy
26-12-07, 06:52 PM
It's a shame that the team seems to rely on their foreigners, although the fans won't complain if they succeed in Europe this year.
The Blues scrum-half replacement looked impressive when he came on, I'd replace Rees with him immediately if was Dai Young.

Vambo
27-12-07, 10:11 AM
The Blues scrum-half replacement looked impressive when he came on, I'd replace Rees with him immediately if was Dai Young.
[/b]

Yep Allinson did well when he came off the bench although the Dragons defence were tiring by that time. Well worth giving a go though.
I also thought the on loan Rhys Jones did well in the time that he was on.

Sir Speedy
28-12-07, 09:57 PM
Scarlets 17 - 12 Ospreys.
Not a bad win for Llanelli against a better side in terms of depth. Peel and Jones worked well together in a game where Llanelli scored the only tries (coming from Nathan Brew and Gavin Thomas).
Hook scored all of the Ospreys points while Stephen Jones missed an early penalty. The Ospreys had one oppurtunity where a break by one of their forwards sent Justin Marshall into space, only for Alun Wyn Jones, who received the ball to be pulled down inches from the line.
The Scarlets had a similar chance where Regan King was home and free to the line; although he dropped the pass which would have sealed the game for Llanelli.
Mike Phillips showed how unstable he is when he got sent off early on, and continuously harrassed Peel around the rucks despite the ball not being out, even though Nigel Owens seemed to not think it all that important. Justin Marshall seemed to spark the Ospreys when he came on, while the pack in front of him flattened the Llanelli forwards. In particular, Ryan Jones who returned from a 6 month injury, broke the gainline everytime he had the ball; a big boost for Wales to have such a player fit!

Vambo
29-12-07, 12:21 PM
Really enjoyed that game. The Scarlets are the Magners League team that I watch with more than just a passing interest (started to watch them when Quinell went to them from Wigan) and I thought they fully deserved their victory and probably should have won by a larger margin.
I thought they did a good job on Hook who is all class but he didn't really threaten the line and I can't recall him making a break in the whole game and the Scarlets defence should take great credit for restricting him to just shots at goal.



only for Alun Wyn Jones, who received the ball to be pulled down inches from the line. [/b]

I think it was the two Scarlets wingers combining who brought him down which showed great desire on their part :cheers:

Sir Speedy
29-12-07, 01:56 PM
Correct. Both Dafydd James and Mark Jones came out of position to pull him down. It shows how much Llanelli wanted this game (since the Magners is all we can go for this season)!