This from a South African forum I read -
This morning at the post office, while I was in line, two people with masks entered."
Then they said: "This is a robbery"...and we all calmed down...
From Fox sports Au.
Winterfell XV Player Ratings
Forgettable performance from a guy who talked a big game in the lead-up to match day. Openly bragged about being ‘the first bloke to kill a whitewalker’ last week, then went to mud in the warm-up. Much more expected from the big loosehead assuming he gets a start in coming rounds.
Went against team code by getting hammered on cheap wine the night before the game. Hangover showed as he was rendered impotent against a more physical and hungrier outfit. Unable to offer up his customary niggle and stirring speeches on account of being too busy sweet talking Sansa. A bad look in every way for a player trying to work his way back into form. Massive improvement required.
Where do we start with the 125kg eunuch? Only kept on the park by the coaching team in the hope he’d deliver a touch of brilliance in the closing stages. Offered nothing in attack and could only huddle in defence. Looks certain to be dropped after this woeful effort.
Was late to the frontline of battle and it showed. Appeared distracted at times and went completely missing for a large part of the second half. Redeemed himself by doing an exceptional job of babysitting his flyhalf to help set up the match-winning drop goal.
Crushed multiple wights with a willingness to mix it up at maul time. Continues to win new fans with her abrasive approach and will be one of the first picked for their next fight. Also saved the one-armed man’s life, will be popular on Mad Monday.
Five-star performance from a guy looking to redeem himself under the guidance of Coach Stark. Dropped countless wights with a bow and arrow, then took to the advancing horde with a spear. Ordinarily a performance like this would gain Theon a spot in the starting team for life. Shame he’s dead, killed with his own spear. Irony for the Ironborn.
Since entering the Winterfell XV Pathway Program, Grey Worm has been ultra-disciplined and always looked likely to provide the sort of output to win a big one. Clutch in every way, Mr Worm led his side over the ball and was a menace in the scrap.
Carried strong, ever reliable red-head went hard again . Simple man with a simple game plan.
Lady Mormont has excelled at Scrumhalf. Despite battling a crushed rib cage and dislocated spine, Lyanna still found a way to drop the biggest bloke on the park. Sadly, this will be her final game in the Winterfell XV after being unable to overcome the aforementioned injuries. She also fell 60 feet. Bear Island Rugby Club in particular will be rocked.
At times, a one-woman demolition crew. Has always promised a flawless 82 minute performance and on her home track, was a cut above. Put a marker down early in the match by icing double-digit wights and she never looked back. Won the game following a half-time rev up from Melisandre. Total perfection from the assassin.
Hung tough with his one working arm. Like Theon, was chasing redemption. Unlike Theon, Jamie will be back again next week.
Didn’t adapt to the conditions, went looking for dominance late but never really figured.
Surprise packet in this must-win match up. Late inclusion in the starting team and made a statement early by turning normal swords into flaming ones. Result was minimal as everybody carrying one was ripped limb from limb, but her play added much needed spark. Also provided visionary chat to MVP Arya before collapsing in a heap out the front. Big loss.
Struggled to get into the game. Only highlight was burning a bunch of the undead with her dragons. Lucky to get through the full 82 and needs a big week at training.
Played until the final whistle, making it back to back golden performances from the love-struck swordsman. Another to have played their final game for this improving outfit.
Coach: Bran Stark — 5.0
Checked out of the battle for a long while, only returning to tell Theon he was a good man. Sat emotionless as sister Arya plunged her Valeryian Steel dagger into the Night King’s midriff, preventing the end of the world in the process. Had a hand in the game plan and was happy to be bait. Winning is a habit and Bran will be better for it when they hit King’s Landing.
Wishing him all strength in his battle and a full recovery.
Benetton Rugby number eight Nasi Manu is set to begin a cycle of chemotherapy in the coming days, the PRO14 outfit announced on Wednesday.
The news was confirmed after the ex-Highlanders back-row went for tests on Tuesday.
Benetton said that Tonga international forward Manu, 30, had an operation at a Treviso hospital on August 30 to remove an abnormal growth. However, he now requires the chemotherapy sessions.
As well as Benetton and the Highlanders, Manu has enjoyed playing stints with Canterbury, the Crusaders and Edinburgh.
A genuine legend and one of the greats - Former Wallabies flanker George Smith has retired from rugby, ending a career notable for its quality and longevity. One of the great Australian rugby careers is finally over after George Smith announced his retirement following 20 years of yeoman service.
Smith’s short-term contract with English club Bristol finished over the weekend, leaving the 38-year-old to announce he would end a professional tenure that had encompassed half his life, beginning as a dreadlocked teenager with the Brumbies in 2000.
@sparky Agree 100% A measure of the man - Former Welsh rugby player Gareth Thomas has issued a heartfelt response to the All Blacks' announcement that they will wear rainbow laces in Saturday's Test match against Italy at the Stadio Olimpico.Thomas, who had already thanked the French and Welsh rugby administrators, quickly responded via his own Twitter account.
I wish I could put in words what this means. https://t.co/1z7yTwVelt — Gareth Thomas (@gareththomas14) November 23, 2018
"I wish I could put in words what this means," Thomas said. Thomas posted a video on social media the day after the attack, thanking the police and revealing that he had opted to deal with his attacker using restorative justice.
The former full-back said he chose to talk to the perpetrator, a 16-year-old boy, about the harm he had caused, "because I thought they could learn more that way than any other way".
The good old days? - Found on Redit - 'Kiwis have always been give preferential treatment from referees' Translation: "The double standards applied by referees when the Boks play New Zealand is not a new occurance. It's been happening for years.
Here is a classic example where Chris Laidlaw bites Frik du Preez' hand but the incident was ignored by the referee"
The players who did not play the Chiefs game for various reasons, niggles etc were - Jerome, Royal, Guyton, Nanson, O'Donnell, JP, Perofeta, Patrick, SBW, Prattley. The strength of that front row is both Mafileo and Manu are so short making them impossible to get under for taller players, plus they both live for scrums. My concern for this team is the lineout. Short locks, Moulds' dodgy throwing and Faiva's inexperience could cause problems. They will have to make good use of Luatua and Ioane to mix it up against a typically tall and competitive Aussie lineout.
Some amazing stats showing the Blues dominance in this game -
Blues ------------------- Stormers
429 Metres carried 201 120 Carries 68 76 Tackles 142 9 Missed Tackles 37 37 Defenders beaten 9 7 T/Overs won 3 88 Rucks won 47 1 Rucks lost 2 13 Lineouts won 11 2 Lineouts lost 4 8 Scrums won 4 6 Pens conceded 11 100% Goal Kicking 100%
Having watched the Blues dev. team play the Hurricanes and the first half of the chiefs dev. game, I have grave concerns about Amua's defense. His poor defensive misses were basically the difference in what was otherwise an even Hurricanes game and he again cost a try with a simple one on one miss in the Chiefs game. Players simply out paced him on the outside and it was like having a prop trying to defend midfield with his lack of pace and agility. Lets hope he proves me wrong.
These stats, if accurate, may shoot down my recent comments/concerns about our reserve props scrummaging, from the 'T2 Rugby' twitter acc. New Zealand have now increased their record to 125 consecutive scrums since they last lost one on their own put in. An unprecedented run in this era. Over this period since June 2018 whilst their scrum has been 100% opponents against them have been only at 84%.
Also over same period New Zealand in matches vs Tier 1 opponents. At lineout NZ steal considerably amount more ball than any other side. Opponent success against them is just 77%, next lowest is England and Argentina at 85%, whilst opponents vs Wales or Scotland by contrast 93%.
@ACT-Crusader Whetton 2m, 119kgs Lane 2.01m, 110kgs Scrafton 2m 114kgs Dunshea 1.94m ,112kgs Sotutu 1.93m, 116kgs Riedlinger-Kapa 1.94m 108kgs Don't know stats for Suafua and Tagaloa but they are both solid units. Then add Papalii, Ioane, Gibson and Choat, I think they will be fine. They played most or all of last season without Whetton and Scrafton who are both bigger units than Olmstead and Lemalu and similar size to Fatialofa.
@Tim While Hyland went OK when he was at the Highlanders last season it will annoy me if they've picked a 30 year old journeyman over young explosive prospects like Telea and AJ Lam or if it means Trainor misses out on the back three mix. Then we usually loose those prospects to other teams. Wing is the first position you should be punting on youthful speed and enthusiasm over experienced battlers. I wonder if Telea has returned to the Canes where he was as injury cover last season. I am also worried that they are going to do similar with the midfield. I know Coventry rates Groundwater but really he struggles to make any consistent impact at mitre 10 level and makes too many basic errors for me. As for Goodhue, I am not convinced that he has the drive to succeed at this level. I would pick Pierce, Whetton, Caird, James Tucker, Nee Nee all ahead of him in my team. I hope he proves me wrong.
@tim Harris also mentioned somewhere that Scott Gregory was offered a wtg contract. That would see the mid field/outside backs options being Nonu, SBW, Faiane, Amua, Tele'a, Gregory, Ioane, Nanai, Clarke, Duffie, Trainor, Collins. This seams to be one more than normal so I fear for Trainor missing out or being picked up somewhere else. (yes I wrote Collins last deliberately).
@kiwimurph Koroi the tighthead reserve last week limped off injured. I think inexperience and combinations are what is causing inconsistencies in the scrum at the moment. This reserve front row started the counties game and did well around the field i thought. They struggled at scrum at times in that game but we must remember that the props are 21 and 23 year old rookies who have never played together before. Also all 3 hookers are new to the team (Rob Able never even played preseason so played for the first time for this team last week). I hope time with each other and experienced scrum coach Mike Casey will see improvement soon.
@sparky My understanding is that it was illness rather than injury that led to Tuinukuafe missing the last weeks of super rugby. He apparently had Meningitis, which is a tough ask for a big man to regain energy, strength and fitness after. So either he is not yet up to speed to play or they are lining him up for the bench vs the Boks next week