JINGLE BELLS, LEINSTER SMELLS, ULSTERS GOIN' ALL THE WAY... Its The Pro12 R11

Discussion in 'Guinness Pro14' started by Amiga500, Dec 20, 2016.

  1. Amiga500

    Amiga500 Senior Member

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    'Tis the season to be jolly... unless your an Ulsterman wanting to win the I can't believe its not the Heineken Cup, in which case its perpetual gloom.



    [TABLE="width: 800"]
    <tbody>[TR]
    [TD]Friday[/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Treviso[/TD]
    [TD]vs.[/TD]
    [TD]Zebre[/TD]
    [TD][18:35][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Ulster[/TD]
    [TD]vs.[/TD]
    [TD]Connacht[/TD]
    [TD][19:35][/TD]
    [TD]BBC NI, SkySports[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Monday[/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Blues[/TD]
    [TD]vs.[/TD]
    [TD]Dragons[/TD]
    [TD][14:05][/TD]
    [TD]BBC Wales[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Edinburgh[/TD]
    [TD]vs.[/TD]
    [TD]Glasgow[/TD]
    [TD][16:05][/TD]
    [TD]BBC Alba[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Munster[/TD]
    [TD]vs.[/TD]
    [TD]Leinster[/TD]
    [TD][17:30][/TD]
    [TD]TG4, SkySports[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Tuesday[/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Ospreys[/TD]
    [TD]vs.[/TD]
    [TD]Scarlets[/TD]
    [TD][15:00][/TD]
    [TD]S4C, SkySports[/TD]
    [/TR]
    </tbody>[/TABLE]



    Previews
    In a game round (11), of heavyweight contests, there are none lighter than Treviso vs. Zebre. Our poor Italians, despite their tans, immaculate haircut and delicious ice-cream, prop up the table, adrift of the dross that is Edinburgh and the Dragons. Can Treviso secure a much needed home win over their (only) rivals for a spot in what used to be the Premier club competition in rugby?

    From the bottom of the table to the middlish. Two teams who will not be happy with the current state of affairs, but showing little signs of sustained runs that will move them up the table. Connacht haven't won at Ravenhill since the Triassic period, can they win on Friday? Given the cold weather here over the last few days, Ulster probably need to be wary of the frost - and get in contact with a good supplier of insulation for the Kingspan.... if only they could find one.

    Blues vs. Dragons. Mid-table mediocrity vs. the Welsh version of Connacht... hmmm... not sure if that works any more does it? Blues to win. Dragons have been pish most of the season, no reason for that to change now.

    Edinburgh vs. Glasgow for the recently made up cup with a very old name. or something. Glasgow win pulling up.

    Munster vs. Leinster. Top two going head to head. Level on points, same wins, same bonus points. Munster's better defence putting them top of the table (take that nice bloke Stuart Lancaster!). Should be a good-un. Big contests all over the field, but O'Brien, VanDerFlier and Heaslip versus O'Mahony, O'Donnell and Stander has me almost drooling over the keyboard. Leinster may be missing Sexton and his backup Carbery - with Blendayaal in form, the Pashun-ate ones may be able to capitalise.

    Ospreys vs. Scarlets. Hmmm. Kinda a Welsh version of the above, only not as good. 3rd vs 4th, a few points between them. Gotta fancy the Ospreys pack as usual... especially on a heavy pitch.
     
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  3. The Alpha Bro

    The Alpha Bro Senior Member

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    Our back row and centres are the difference for me. If we can give Byrne good supply he has the talent to capitalise. Look forward to Byrne v Sweetnam tbh and Ringrose's standard tearing up of a red defence.
     
  4. TRF_Peat

    TRF_Peat Super Moderator

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    That's a fantastic effort there Amiga. Kudos.

    If we let Connacht win at Ravers I'll probably die of sheer rage.
     
  5. munstermuffin

    munstermuffin Senior Member

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    Just to add in there is a camp this week and players will almost certainly only play 1 of 2 festive games (5 days apart.)
    We will probably use Leinster game considering our schedule. Leinster will more so target the Ulster game.
    I'd disagree with Alpha in centres being the difference. This may be Jaco last game he will want a big game and Francis may be back on bench. Think our centres are solid defensively and I'd argue Munster have better backrow.
    But again the camp may dictate alot. Last few years have had restraints
     
  6. The Alpha Bro

    The Alpha Bro Senior Member

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    Henshaw v Scannell is a huge mismatch, Ringrose is better than Taute too. I'd take the three Leinster backrows in the position that they'll likely play (what Amiga threw up there) too, not huge margins but enough to make a difference. Our front row has an obvious advantage also. Not much in the second row and I'd take your halfbacks plus Zebo at 15, Sweetnam v Byrne is tight and Isa is better than Earls all day everyday.
     
  7. munstermuffin

    munstermuffin Senior Member

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    Again from Munster fan side I'd say Isa is good but and I'd like to have him but not sure he's better than Earls. On centres it's fair comments but as a unit our 2 can do damage. They're extremely solud defensively.
    On frontrows I'd agree ye have advantage. We've better locks I'd feel as a unit.
    I'd take CJ at 8 over Heaslip and POM over SOB as a 6.
    Agree we have better half backs by a distance.
    Centre ye are better talents. In back 3 I'd say we are better but talent is on both sides.
     
  8. anderton46

    anderton46 Member

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    I'd actually favour our (Scarlets) pack in this game as over the last few months we've really looked strong there. Strong enough that were mauled the Toulon scrum with our starters and had enough steel to stop any tries.
     
  9. Bruce_ma_goose

    Bruce_ma_goose Senior Member

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    Loads of competitive fixtures. Possibly all of them quite unpredictable. Fancy a wee upset by Edinburgh. The last two fixtures are absolute stonkers with four strong playoff candidates. I think Zebre can topple their bigger spending rivals.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Agree. Out of nowhere it looks like the Scarlets have the best pack in Wales, and possibly a top three or four in the whole comp.
     
  10. Groundhog

    Groundhog Senior Member

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    Connacht are down Aki. Expect the Ulster bogeyman to continue ImageUploadedByRugby Forum1482409955.126241.jpg
    Teams have to rest a few international players during the Interpros according to IRFU mandate. Expect selections to target only one of the two games with full strength
     
  11. anderton46

    anderton46 Member

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    Rugby is very odd! At the start of the season our forwards were getting bullied.
     
  12. Amiga500

    Amiga500 Senior Member

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    Aki is not yet an international to my knowledge... is he on a central contract?
     
  13. Groundhog

    Groundhog Senior Member

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    No no his ankle needs surgery but it will apply elsewhere.
     
  14. Amiga500

    Amiga500 Senior Member

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    We've an 8 day turnaround... could be very useful*.


    *in building our hopes up only to see them dashed. again.
     
  15. Groundhog

    Groundhog Senior Member

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    Yeah I was gonna say, your hopes of playing a maximum of one half very well and the rest defending like the Maginot line per game?
     
  16. munstermuffin

    munstermuffin Senior Member

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    Yeah I think they will all target their home fixture.
     
  17. TRF_Peat

    TRF_Peat Super Moderator

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    Send out the big boys to play two good halfs vs the Westies and send the Ravens for an Alamo reconstruction sound more like it.

    edit:

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2016
  18. The Alpha Bro

    The Alpha Bro Senior Member

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    We should take our internationals to Limerick. Our second team will deal with Ulster's handily. Its our only chance to end the year on top of the table.
     
  19. munstermuffin

    munstermuffin Senior Member

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    In a way you've a point but from being in with Munster lads you see alot of guys personal circumstances considered too like Zebo has young kids in Cork. After being away in an Ireland camp I've seen him be told take day with them. He probably will play vs Leinster but issues like that are considered.
     
  20. munstermuffin

    munstermuffin Senior Member

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    As expected we name a strong side Leinster a very average side.
    Was always going to be case and expect us to send average team to Galway next week
     
  21. The Alpha Bro

    The Alpha Bro Senior Member

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    Packs are pretty even, my composite side would have our front row and Leavy, don't know about Moloney v Kleyn as I haven't seen Kleyn. Out of our backs I'd only have Isa and Henshaw though.
     
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