this WAS the big game. this WAS the game you keep your powder dry for.
the reality is that we aren't doing that, it's just wishful thinking from fans to excuse us playing like shit, which frankly we've been doing for quite a while now - our servings of shit have regularly been papered over by bits of individual brilliance getting us out of jail when we've been dominated all day, and a shit-hot lineout. the lineout saved us last week against the poms, but wasn't quite enough this week. we dropped the miracle balls that would have won the game this week. but both weeks, and against the saffas, we have been pretty thoroughly dominated this year.
we kick way too much ball away, and badly. the opposition give us scraps, we finally get the damn ball, and these primadonna fuckwits immediately put boot to ball in low percentage plays. then they laugh about it at half-time.
we get a penalty advantage and BB takes a fucking drop kick. the potatoes get a penalty advantage and they - jonny fucking sexton - try to score a try. we are fucking dumb. we kick a penalty to give us a chance of a draw. a fucking draw. the all blacks. playing for a draw and kicking drop goals under penalty advantage. fuck my days what a fucking disgrace.
all it takes is an off-day for a couple of guys when our tactics are mud and we are so reliant on individual brilliance. sam whitelock, a great player - giving away dumb penalties. BBR, a great player - dumb penalties, terrible handling - his worst game i can remember. it's not time to throw the baby out with the bath water, but when guys like that don't perform, it does show the glaring deficiencies in other areas.
we are dumb. we still can't cope with a good rush defence. we haven't really been able to since the 90s when france used it to beat us. our defensive line speed was utter shit - so the potatoes made ground all day and had momentum. their line speed was really good, and there seems not to be a single fucker out there who has the wits to think, 'oh you know, with all this fanning out and quick line speed, we could either pick and go a few times or throw it behind the line to get around the rush'. barely a pick and go all game, and it was only in desperation when chasing the game that we threw in some depth to get around the rush - which promptly worked - except then when we made breaks, we were so totally lacking in composure that we forced dumb shit low percentage passes, or kicked the damn fucking ball away yet again. pack of fucking morons.
barnes is still a shit ref, inconsistent and doesn't seem to understand when a ruck forms. he had nothing to do with the loss however.
to the players:
karl T got a bit of a rough ride, but not as bad as some are making out. 2 scrums went badly, and 1 barnes should have reset. why barnes didn't blow their scrum when we were dominant i don't know. franks was solid, as was taylor, and all the replacements were good too. poor old ofa showed great hands to hold that piece of shit perenara pass - but when you have to catch that slop you're always going to get barrelled and struggle to win the ruck.
BBR his worst, and whitelock pretty poor too by his standards. scott barrett played well, was our best lock, but was playing out of position which fucks our forward balance.
squire was okay before injury, ardie at least tried hard, and read was rank. dropped everything, hasn't run hard into contact in about 3 years, and is a shitty captain. the way the irish were playing, and the way barnes was reffing, the player in our 23 most suited to that game was matt todd. bit disappointed he didn't manage to win it for us in his 3 FUCKING MINUTES YOU MORONS.
aaron smith's kicking is nowhere near as accurate as it was against the lions. he is still so much better than perenara -because he can actually pass - but if we don't have the brains to use smith's speed to get around the rush then he's wasted, and why not use a bigger running halfback.
BB. well it's pretty fucking limiting when your 10's weakest skill is his passing. also dumb. also doesn't appear to care a great deal. also thinks wasting try-scoring opportunities with drop-goals is a good idea, and funny. can run, can catch a high ball.
crotty and goodhue were both really pretty good given the shit they were served up. 20-something touches vs 40-something for the irish midfield wasn't it?
ben smith no ball. can run.
rieko no ball. no composure. can run.
mckenzie, not bad, but we are wasting ben smith on the wing.
to ireland: well bloody played, a good plan, well executed. you knew exactly what we were going to do, because we do it all the time (keeping our powder dry hahaha fuck me) . we box kick and put up high balls. you dealt with that easily. you know that if you rush, we will chip. you covered that easily then kept the ball. you knew that we throw our ruck ball to forwards one or two off the ruck - you got up quick on them and we never made the gain line.
great fire and commitment from all on the park, and an inspirational and thoroughly deserved victory, which i could really have done without watching.
rant over. as you were everyone.