17 April 2014

Running down the clock.

In recent times teams have become more adept at running down the clock. Despite the introduction of the TMO, one of whose jobs is to manage the game clock over the eighty minutes and inform the referee when time is up at the half and at the end, the practice by teams has become even more cynical.

Most teams leading with a few minutes remaining want to slow the game down, keep the ball away from the opposition and allow the …..

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08 April 2014

You have got to get in the air!

The red card brandished at Jared Payne in the Heineken Cup quarter-final has wrecked Ulster’s season. It is even more frustrating that they eventually lost the game by a mere two points playing with fourteen men for all of seventy-six minutes. If they had competed with a full compliment for the entire game Ulster have every right to believe they would have been victorious.

The decision, regardless of which way the TMO went, was always going to be controversial. The rights …..

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02 October 2013

Bajada is back

Next weekend is the final round of The Rugby Championship and all eyes will be on Johannesburg where South Africa face New Zealand. Later that evening in Rosario, Argentina host Australia. That fixture will hardly be the epicentre of the rugby universe next Saturday. But it will be interesting to see how Australia cope with the Argentinian scrum which looks like it has returned to it’s roots with “Bajada”.

Bajada scrummaging was developed in Argentina many years ago and was the …..

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06 September 2013

The Scrum Conundrum

In the build-up to the new season there has been quite a lot of discussion about the new scrum engagement protocol. It is without doubt the latest attempt by the IRB to improve the scrum. But on previous occasions, adjustments to the scrum law were driven by a perceived need to make the scrum safer, and rightly so. But this time round the objective is to tidy up the mess that the scrum has become as a method of restarting …..

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