There’s a realistic chance that after this weekend we’ll have two more World Champions from this country; the England rugby team of course and Lewis Hamilton representing the UK in the F1 Championship. All they have to do respectively is a) beat the team who beat them 36-0 in the pool stage and absolutely mullahed them in two tests before the RWC and b) just beat the two best drivers in the world with more experience than himself. Easy. Continue reading
I think I was a little excited by the England’s win in the RWC semi-final when I wrote the recent posting about my top 10 favourite victories over the French. I’ve had a few comments about it. I’m not going to apologise because it was a bit of harmless fun and I’m broad-shouldered enough to realise that the French could compile an equally long and light-hearted look at their famous moments over us. Like er…. Continue reading
I don’t know a lot about the politics of world rugby (even though I was once hauled before the IRB at the end of RWC ’99 – you’ll just have to find the earlier posting) but I do know that Argentina have been a bloody revelation. It would seem that the Tri-Nations don’t want them in their tournament and they’re not exactly well-positioned to compete regularly with Japan and the Pacific Is teams. And playing against the USA and Canada wouldn’t exactly light their fire as an annual competition. So, is it just me but why shouldn’t we invite them to join the 6 Nations?
I was commenting today on Macinjay’s thoughts about the RWC ; M’s fairly sure that SA are the better side and will be victorious over England in the final. That’s fair enough and on paper he’s probably right but there’s magic in the air and an England victory, however unlikely, would make for an incredible sporting story. So incredible that I could imagine Hollywood picking up the scent and taking this bunch of seeming no-hopers and transferring them to the silver screen land of hope and glory….assuming they win of course! But I couldn’t help wondering what they’d call the film and who they’d cast in it….. Continue reading
Winning against les bloody French has always given the English a warm glow. We’ve always had issues with the neighbours but those buggers across the Channel have always been our national ‘derby’ team. The Germans have been particularly annoying in recent history but in reality they are a lot like us (apart from the arrogance, first on the sun-lounger mentality and sense of humour). But anyone’s who’s holidayed in the Dordogne and popped out in the morning to buy 3 baguettes, 5 croissants, some ham and cheese for breakfast and commented on the pleasant landscape and lovely weather without speaking in perfect French knows how sneering they are about we English and our slight mangling of their beautiful language. What’s so wrong with il ne pleut pas comme dans Angleterre? We love France and they hate us. Pourquoi mes amis? Continue reading
I’ll do a better posting tomorrow but what a day to be an Englishman, with the footie and rugby teams both winning, and also a Scotsman with that incredible result against Ukraine. McFadden eh. Does he ever score a scrappy goal? And Wales lost in a seemingly empty stadium to Cyprus. The end for that plonker Toshack? But the night belongs to the England rugby team. From playing like a bunch of used French letters a few weeks ago, tonight they doused the French passion on their home turf and emerged like erect Trojans. Magnifique. Au revoir Les Bleus. And so we make a World Cup Final again. Seems incredible doesn’t it? What was I saying about surprises? Now who do we fancy in the final – my head says Argentina because they are the romantic story and if they could defeat SA, they couldn’t possibly pull off another shock in the final could they? They must be close to getting played out. And SA, who stuffed us in the Group stages? They are very dangerous but it would be nice to reverse that defeat and the one against the Boks in ’99 in Stade de France which still hurts. Oh yes….
ps What do you think of Will’s brilliant touchline commentary at the end? He’s the biz eh!
pps Did you hear about Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin group buying out the troubled Northern Rock bank? Sir Richard was asked if his company brand would also replace NR as the Newcastle U team sponsor in such an event. He came up with a quick reply that they could and that Virgin Rocks might make a suitable name. Very good Richard but surely Virgin on the Ridiculous would be more appropriate. Ha! (sorry Lawrie).
Well this is a very quick posting as I’ve been away doing my grandad stuff with my fabulous g’lads and have had no opportunity to catch up since last Friday. We listened to Eng v Australia on the car radio driving down to Brighton. What a game and result. That late Aussie (failed) kick for the win was worse on the radio I can assure you. What a time to pull a result and a performance out. Who played below par for England? Nobody; simply superb. NZ v France was equally enthralling, it has to be admitted and aren’t we glad it’s two N hemis teams in this semi? Well I am.
It’s just a provocative headline folks, a bit of wishful thinking on my part. But as every national UK newspaper seems to regard England’s chances of beating Oz tomorrow in the rugby WC as catwalk model slim, I thought I’d redress the PR balance a bit. I have to admit I’m not super confident but this WC is throwing up some extraordinary matches and results. I’ve just got a sense that England, against all odds, could spring a surprise result courtesy of Johnny Wilkinson’s boot – again. Is anybody else out there grasping at such hopeful straws? Thought not. Continue reading