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Heineken Cup 1/4F - Toulon v Leinster

Big Ewis

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Heineken Cup Quarter Final



Toulon.pngVersus.pngLeinster.png


Date: Sunday 6th April 2014
Location: Stade Mayol, Toulon.
Referee: Wayne Barnes (ENG)
 
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Feicarsinn

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Oh boy, what a game. Between them the two sides have taken the last two titles, yet their approach could not be any different. Leinster could easily put out a 15 of only Irish players against Toulon's legion of mercenaries.

Rhetoric aside, we need Cian Healy back fit for this one. With Sean out we're in trouble, if we were to go there without either of them it'd be looking fairly grim. It's going to be a damn interesting game. Neither side is short in terms of quality in the starting side or on the bench. I feel that we're more resilient though, so if we can get inside their heads we can pinch it.

Toulon should be favorites, but we'll travel with a good amount of hope.
 

Big Ewis

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With last year's Toulon, I wouldn't have had a doubt about this at this point. Seriously, they were too good to lose an important game to anyone at home, too consistent, just too good.
This year they're a whole lot more vulnerable, they weren't even close to the top seed in the standings earlier...downright strange. But I know they'll show up big here. They just beat one tough, tough Toulouse side last weekend and almost beat Clermont at home without a bunch of stars a week before that.

I haven't seen Leinster enough, but I've seen Ireland play more often. So, same thing I guess. And Toulon vs Ireland...mmm....:p
No but seriously Leinster has looked awesome but also vulnerable in this H Cup. Toulon will be sure to tighten that defense up.
 

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Wilko will likely start after nursing an injury of late. Hopefully he's really feeling up for this and isn't forcing it, being the hero he is...
Chris Masoe I hear may actually make his return after being down for the entire year. He would add tremendous punch at the no.8 position, but he's probably still unlikely to play just yet.
Ali Williams and Bakkies Botha are still out though, and that's clearly their weak link right now.
 

TheSaffycen

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Let's give this thread the attention it deserves.
Toulon at home will not be easy to beat but Leinster are more than capable of doing so. If Wilkinson is playing he will need to get 100% in the kicking stats as O'Connor has made this Leinster team defensive monsters !!! If Botha and Williams are out then Suta and Russouw ? Big at scrum time and in the loose but the lineout will be poor. Healy and O'Brien will be massive a loss to the carrying ability and scrumming of Leinster, it will be interesting to see how they go. If I was Toulon I would pick the biggest meanest pack with Sheridan, Castro, Russouw, Smith all the big boys and just try to make it a 10 man game.
 

Big Ewis

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dunno if Castro is playing...would be important to punish Leinster in the scrum for Toulon.
Anyways, really digging the activity Saffycen, you're enthusiastic and very positive-minded and you actually know your shht. Very cool to have you around here. :yes3: (God it took me forever to get the appropriate smiley...).

Leinster have a fine defense, but it's their attack Toulon fear. They said it would be a step up there, that Leinster were going "to play", i.e. have lots of intent on attack and won't be stingy with passes and going wide.
 

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I don't know the backline Toulon will have but if Leinster try to throw the ball around it might prove costly, backline v backline comparison , with the best team available for both and it's scary for the boys in blue. Who knows maybe they can get through but they have less pace and power. Wilko and Giteau are smart enough to read their plays, I would think, and they can't get on the outside of Mitchell and Habana
Reddan v Claasens
Gopperth v Wilko
Fitzgerald v Habana
D'Arcy v Giteau
O'Driscoll v Basteraud Can't decide as Basta turns up for Toulon
D.Kearney v Mitchell
R.Kearney v Armitage
 

lynam1104

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Jesus I forgot the quality Toulon have that backline is insane, yet it never looks insane.
 

ruggabee

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Damn their quality out wide is quite a bit better and we can't exactly rely on dominating up front. O'Brien is a significant loss and Healy better make it this weekend too. Also I was under the impression Madigan would be starting this weekend going by the way the coaches been talking. Not all that confident about that either.

edit. Just checked their line up last weekend. They had Giteau and Habana on the bench with Mermoz and Smith starting. Sighh...
 
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lynam1104

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We need Healy, if we don't have him its a very very long shot. Don't watch a lot of top14 so I have no idea how to beat Toulon but I think our best performance yet will be needed.
 

Big Ewis

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Jesus I forgot the quality Toulon have that backline is insane, yet it never looks insane.
huh ? You haven't been watching Toulon a lot these past two years then my friend. They've been the 1st or 2nd highest try-scoring team in the whole tournament the past two years and can string some of the best plays the Top 14 has to offer on attack. They'll put 50 or 60 on teams every once in a while, and we're talking competitive Top 14 sides, not bottom of the Rabo or Prem sides.

Anyways, came here to state that Castro will in deed start for the Var side. He passed a "scrum test" and is cleared. And yes I reckon and hope Leinster should have Healy, he'll be of good help if he plays.

Toulon by 5-8.
 

The Alpha Bro

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Leinster - 5, don't ask why, I don't know myself!
 

Big Ewis

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Leinster - 5, don't ask why, I don't know myself!
are you saying "minus 5", as in, Leinster to lose by 5 ? Yeah, seems about right...
 

Groundhog

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Boujedall to be declared bankrupt at halftime, and the entire Toulon team to go back to where they came from.
Leinster to win by as much as they can score unopposed in 40 minutes.

Ahem, Toulon can be pretty shaky judging by their pool games, but on paper they're the better team. So Ill say Toulon by 3 but I wont be surprised if Leinster catch them with their pants down. That Toulon bench tho.
 

Big Ewis

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Toulon look to me like they've got a specific very typical profile in sports right now. That is, a team that hits its prime one year and wins it all, and the next season show way more flaws and inconsistencies and all but eventually awaken the champion in them when it really counts again. I'm sure they're making the Top 14 final again, and I'm quite confident they'll win this one.
They have tremendous resilience, and even the games they lose they hang in to the end with a chance to steal the score back.

But my knowledge of Leinster is too superficial so I really can't affirm anything with as much certainty as I'd like...but the home advantage, their character as a team, how well they can play together, the class on paper.

I dunno, I'd say a 65/35 chance advantage RCT but Leinster are a European giant, there's absolutely no good reason they can't win this.
 

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Team news for Toulon seems that Wilkinson and Castro to be fit but Backies Botha and Ali Williams are out
 

Big Ewis

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Team news for Toulon seems that Wilkinson and Castro to be fit but Backies Botha and Ali Williams are out
yeah lol, already mentioned those...
And ffs munstermuffin you can't even spell a nickname ?! BaKKies !! :p

Too bad...Botha brings so much grunt everywhere he goes...and extra-testicul....err extra-curricular activity to the field..would've been fun to see him and Healy hit each other at the 25th.
 

munstermuffin

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yeah lol, already mentioned those...
And ffs munstermuffin you can't even spell a nickname ?! BaKKies !! :p

Too bad...Botha brings so much grunt everywhere he goes...and extra-testicul....err extra-curricular activity to the field..would've been fun to see him and Healy hit each other at the 25th.
It's the Irish way :p plus it's no fun spelling correctly you know that.

What will Toulon pack be the weekend?
I still fear Leinsters backrow will struggle for reasons as Jennings is good but legs may struggle there, I don't think Jordi Murphy full up to it yet. Will be a superb player in time and well on other side Kev McL good but can be bad too. Heaslip playing very well but his body will give way soon I fear.
 
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