Not The Honey Badger Diaries (II)

badger

December 27th, 2012

Dear Dairy

Haaaaa! Another thigh-slapper for starters! Thought that one up meself. See? It says Dear Dairy? Move a couple of letters around and it’d say Dear Diary? Jeez, I could really get the hang of this thinkin’ caper.

So what’s happened since I last picked up the crayon to have a natter with yers? Christmas! You bloody ripper! Love Christmas. Just about love it more than I love scorin’ a meat. In fact the whole squad does. ‘Cept Barnsey, but he’s been sus since he bunged on that fuckin’ skull cap. Skull caps are for the dumb bums with 1 to 8 on their backs. See, I’ve got a theory. Yer number indicates yer IQ? So I’m twice as bright as Poey?

‘Course, being Chrissie, I was in touch with me old mate Santa. Top bloke. Hates a drink. I leave out a cask of vino and half a sheep for him every year. Never spills a drop and the plate’s always licked clean. Like Benny Alexander at a post-match dinner? Benny’d eat the crockery if we didn’t Supa-Glue it to the table. Aw, plus I’m over four times brighter than him.

Anyways, as per usual, I dropped old Santa a line:

Dear Santa,

Yeah, me again. The Badger! How they hangin’ you fat old bugger? I’m extra good plus I’ve been an extra good boy this year too. Popped into Taronga Park Zoo. Only clawed one of the canastas off their lion? Discipline, mate.

Okay. For starters. If you get a second while you’re herbin’ across the Christmas Eve sky, do us both a favour? Drop a Scud missile on Barnsey? Bastard reckoned to me you don’t exist? Fuck me, Santa, he’s had one concussion too many. Put the goose out of his misery?

Right. Me list of stuff I’d fancy in me stocking this year. Here goes:

1. That little bald English prick that I trampled over on the way to me meat at Twickers. Did yer see it at all? Phawww. Bet Mrs Claus had to fight you off that night, eh? I stuck mine in a bucket of ice for an hour and a half after and the old y-fronts still wouldn’t fit over it! Anyways, they reckon his name’s Sharples. Drewie Mitchell reckoned to me after that he plays like Ena Sharples? Maybe his first name’s Ena? Anyways, I want to take him everywhere with me. Meats galore against him, mate, every time.

2. A laptop. For Quade. Coppers made him give the other one back.

3. A chainsaw. To give TPN a fuckin’ hair cut. Fair dinkum, we were using his afro to scrub the mud off our boots and Benny Tapuai disappeared into it? Hasn’t been seen since?

4. A tin of petrol and a box of matches. To set fire to fuckin’ O’Beiber.

5. A deed-poll name-change thing. For that fat useless Pommy arsehole Nick Easter. Easter’s me second favourite time of year after Chrissie and I can’t look at a chocky egg without it doing a disappearing act.

6. Porn mags. For Quade. They reckon the clink’s a lonely old place.

7. A ton of cement. To bury fuckin’ O’Beiber in and drop him in the harbour if the fire goes out.

I reckon that oughta about do it for this year, mate. Cheers to Mrs Claus, give her one for me, and remember – don’t drink and fly!

Yer mate,

Badge

PS. How’re Rudolph’s canastas coming along?

Gotta love Christmas, eh? Pressies, piss and pukin’. You wouldn’t be dead for quids, would you?

Hope yers all had a good one!

Cheers till next time, and, as always, may all your meats be fat ones!

The Badger

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464 Responses to Not The Honey Badger Diaries (II)

  1. deebee7 says:

    @boanova – Tov’s monkfish would be Muscovite and we all know where they end up. Perhaps Gordon could do a cooking show with Pussy Riot to completely send Tov over the edge?

  2. boanova says:

    I for one would certainly welcome the addition of ‘Youth Hostelling with Chris Eubank’ to next year’s christmas schedule… it would be a significant improvement on this year’s offerings.

    They could get the Hask to front Inner City Sumo… it would be a good vehicle to develop his Brand™…. and his Guns™.

  3. Baldy says:

    Goin away from Celt baiting..

    Read one of the most interesting articles about the player exodus to France t’other day, was an interview with Jim Hamilton bout keaving glaws, and the reasons why:

    He said that with so many players retiring in their early thirties (see Hendrie today), the conditions of the top14’s insurance make all the difference – after signing in England, if you get long term injured your contract is likely to have conditions where it can half after 6 months and stop after 12.. In France apparently the government covers you full salary for 3 years guaranteed!

    If you consider, for example, lydiates injury record, previous neck knack, and the increase in base salary + insurance..

    You would have to say it becomes almost impossible to justify staying at a uk club into your late 30’s!!

  4. Chekhovian says:

    Sounds interesting, Baldy. Have you got a link to the interview?

  5. bedfordbluesfan says:

    New Breakdown:

    The early days of a new year are a time for resolutions, and it is high time for a resolution to the problem that the scrum has become in the professional game, a mess of resets, free-kicks and penalties: statistics show that below the top end, both at club and international level, the scrum is a far more effective means of restarting play.

    Ever since the law changed so that backs were required to stand five metres back from a scrum, defending teams have sought ways to deny the attacking team quick ball; conceding a penalty or, especially, a free-kick is deemed a price worth paying.

    Gloucester gave away 10 penalties at the scrum against Leicester last weekend and they continued to infringe even after losing a prop to the sin-bin. Another should have followed, but referees seem concerned at the impact of playing a forward short in a scrum would have on a side already struggling in the set-piece.

    One answer may be to force teams who lose a prop to the sin-bin to pack down with eight players at a scrum: many teams already do so on their own put-in – Gloucester put Mike Tindall at wing forward on their feed at Leicester – but not when they are defending. It would add to the deterrence value of a yellow card.

    When Harlequins were at Northampton last month, they pushed the home scrum back some 10 metres in the opening minutes. How would Northampton, a team that prides itself on forward power, respond? The next four scrums resulted in free-kicks for early engagement, two for each side, and what should have been one of the pivotal areas of the game became a victim of the referee’s whistle and a means for yet more kicking.

    Concerns about safety over the years have made referees wary. They could blow at every scrum for a crooked feed, but act only if a scrum has gone down or is in danger of doing so. The days when hookers competed for the ball are long gone, but what sort of game is it when a team is blown for a crooked lineout throw only for the opposing scrum-half at the resulting scrum to be allowed to get away with putting the ball under the body of one of his second rows?

    The Saracens director of rugby, Mark McCall, said last season that he hardly bothered working moves from scrums because the average match yielded little possession from the set-piece and this week the Worcester head coach Richard Hill, a scrum-half in his playing days, revealed his despair at what had happened to one of the game’s staples.

    “It is very frustrating, I really don’t know what is going on,” Hill told the Worcester Evening News. “How many times can a team get a three-quarters move from a scrum? We hardly ever work on moves from a scrum because you just don’t get them. Every scrum is a free-kick, a penalty or a complete mess: it’s so hard and I have no idea why. I think it started when the health and safety hit us with this “crouch, touch, pause, engage” nonsense. Every time a scrum goes down, the referee has to reset. In the old days, if it went down, you just used to play on.

    “It drives me up the wall when free-kick after free-kick is given. If a scrum is dominant and one team is clearly shunting the other back, I don’t think you can argue if they concede a penalty. When the scrum just goes down without either side going forward, then how can anybody tell why it has gone down? The only people who know are the front rows — referees, the touch-judges and coaches don’t know — it is just those six blokes who will know who’s done what. So, don’t blow for a free-kick, just let the game flow and it would be a much better game if we just did that. The whole idea of a scrum is to keep 16 forwards in a huddle so there is a bit more space to play.”

    Hill called for a change in the law, something that would have to happen before September because nothing new is introduced by the International Rugby Board less than two years before a World Cup. Various working parties have looked at the vexed issue, but have come up with nothing more than dropping the word pause from the crouch/engage call.

    The scrum needs looking at because, with teams rarely kicking for touch any more unless they have been awarded a penalty, rugby union is revolving around the breakdown, meaning backs rarely run against backs with attacking teams facing a straight line of defenders; skill levels, such as passing and handling, have suffered. So even though ball-in-play time tends to increase every season, games at the top tend to be decided by a mistake rather than a moment of inspiration.

    Directors of rugby tend to preface after-match comments by saying how hard their players have been working in training, but on what. Physique and stamina seem to have become far more important commodities than skill and a look at the meetings between the leading teams in the Premiership season show how sides tend to cancel each other out with tries at a premium.

    The scrum should be looked at as a matter of urgency. Rugby union should be about diversity, not homogeneity. As Hill said: “There has to be a change to the laws because it is a lottery at the moment: you that you might as well toss a coin to decide what happens at a scrum. One week you will do one thing in the scrum and not get penalised, but the next week you will do exactly the same and get penalised. You always think there will be a free-kick here but you have no idea who it is going to go to. Let the game flow.”

    SHARKS ARE FLOUNDERING BUT EXILES LOOK LOST
    Sale started the year at the bottom of the Premiership, one point behind London Irish after defeating Worcester in Salford in their final game of 2012. The Sharks are in turbulent waters, but teams that lack stability at the top tend to flounder.

    Sale had three head coaches in the first four months of the season: Bryan Redpath lasted a couple of months before being demoted; Steve Diamond, the club’s chief executive, took over on a temporary basis before John Mitchell, the former New Zealand head coach, took over.

    He lasted barely a month before announcing after the victory over Worcester that he was returning to South Africa immediately for personal reasons. Diamond is back in charge with Sale saying they were not looking to add to the coaching team amid rumours suggesting otherwise.

    London Welsh’s unexpected resilience has made relegation a live issue, all the more so because Newcastle look on course to win the Championship, even if the play-off system makes it more hazardous to predict than in the days when whoever finished top of the table went up, entry criteria permitting.

    London Welsh are far from safe, but their position is not as hazardous as that of their fellow exiles, London Irish, who this week lost their defence coach, Shaun Edwards, have conceded 51 tries in 18 matches in all competitions this season, nearly three a time, and have only once kept their line intact, at London Welsh.

    They are expected to lose their England internationals Jonathan Joseph and Alex Corbisiero at the end of the season. They will be following the Armitage brothers and Nick Kennedy out of Reading and if their decline has not been as stark as Sale’s, who were champions in the middle of the last decade, it is gathering pace.

    In 2012, they played 23 Premiership matches, winning five – just one away from home – and losing 18. Only one, against Northampton this season, was against a team with title pretensions. They still have to play Sale and London Welsh in Reading, but they will not want the relegation scrap to go down to the final weekend – they will find themselves in Leicester that day.

    There is ample time for Sale to have further coaching upheavals, but London Irish look like someone trying to climb up a slide that has been coated with grease. They are at Gloucester on Saturday, not likely to find their opponents in as charitable a mood as they were at the end of last season when they shipped 52 points in Reading.

    WALES WANT TO MAKE HOME SWEET HOME
    It is also a turbulent time in Wales where talks to revamp the regional game have yielded smoke but no clarity.

    It is 10 years since Wales decided to abandon club rugby for a regional system. Five sides became four after one season, but with money from central funds tight and with the RaboDirect Pro 12 fixture list making it hard for the regions to generate new income, there is pressure to reduce that number to three.

    Another idea is to reduce the number of Welsh sides that compete in the Heineken Cup from three to two and give them most of the £14m that the WRU sets aside annually for the regions. It would mean having to choose between one in the west, Scarlets or Ospreys, and one in the east, Cardiff Blues or Newport Gwent Dragons.

    Any permutation would be divisive, and would the extra money for two regions – the other two would continue in the RaboDirect as development sides having to make to with £1m each – be enough to keep leading players, who have been rushing to France in recent years, in Wales?

    One idea that has been put forward at a meeting of the Professional Regional Game Board, the body set up last month to find a solution, although whether that is a rugby answer to a financial problem or vice versa has yet to be determined, will be explored.

    The proposal is that a fixed sum will be set aside for national squad players at the end of each season, say £7,500, in what would be a pension pot. If they remained in Wales throughout their careers, or at least until they were not wanted by the national coach, they would receive the lump sum on retirement.

    But if they moved to a club outside Wales while they were still in the national squad, they would forfeit whatever sum had been built up. It is a variation on the Irish tax system that allows top sportsmen and women to keep more of their earnings, but would it be too costly? And would it work?

    THE CAP DOESN’T FIT
    One of the most contentious issues this year promises to be the salary cap that applies in the Aviva Premiership.

    It stands at a maximum of £4.5m this season, demanding on how many England qualified players clubs have on average in their match-day squad. Some clubs want to see it abolished, others increased substantially. How Premiership Rugby fares in its attempt to overhaul the way the Heineken Cup is structured will go some way to determining what happens to the cap.

    Nigel Wray, the Saracens chairman who has been involved in the professional game since its onset more than 17 years ago, is in favour of getting rid of the cap.

    He used his match programme notes last Sunday when Saracens met Northampton in Milton Keynes to cite Toulon as an example of why a salary cap acted as an inhibitor.

    “It was interesting to note that 2.5m people watched Toulon’s game last weekend on terrestrial television,” he wrote. “That shows two things: one, the sheer scale of coverage that terrestrial television gives you – that was 20% of the total audience that day – and, two, how Toulon, through massive expenditure, have created a real rugby brand.

    “I have often felt that in the case of Chelsea, despite the vast losses and vast expenditure, the club’s brand has enormous global coverage and therefore enormous value. It will be interesting to see whether Toulon, in a more modest way of course, begin the same thing in rugby.

    “It is another reason why, sadly, the wage cap cannot work for long. It could only do so in a European context if all the countries agreed to it, something France and Ireland will definitely not do.”

    If the cap fits and all that. It has become too small for some

  6. Baldy says:

    He is fitter and faster than he was three years ago but the trouble for Hamilton is that all around him he has seen players forced out of the game with injuries or on seriously reduced money when the time comes to negotiate a final contract. Hamilton says that, in theory at least, he could be out of Premiership rugby and scratching around to make ends meet within six months. The French deal in effect gives him and his young family security for life and an income guaranteed for the next five years.

    “Without being detrimental to the team with whom I’m signing – because I think I have chosen a team which is well-placed in the top 14 and which is very ambitious – it is a financial decision.

    “You look at the guys who have retired recently – Joe Worsley, Dan Ward-Smith, Lewis Moody, Harry Ellis, the list is endless – and the fallback now is there is no insurance for us rugby players. The situation here is that I have a contract, but [if he were injured] I’m effectively six months away from having that contract halved and six months away from having that contract taken away.

    “If you go to France the government pay your salary if you’re injured, so if you’ve signed for three years, you’ll be paid for three years and you also get pay for an extra two years on top of that. It’s called the chômage – it’s like a dole and the club or company you play for pay into that system.”

    With a son who will be two next month and his wife, Becki, expecting their second child, there was no alternative and were Hamilton an accountant or a taxi driver, such a move would raise few eyebrows. However, in Gloucester it is different. Traditionally – before professionalism, that is – the club was for life, especially if you were captain.

    Dunno how you link ere but tis here:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/2012/dec/28/jim-hamilton-gloucester-france

  7. bedfordbluesfan says:

    I wonder if Tov will see the second part as a seafood diversion?

  8. bedfordbluesfan says:

    Any rumours on where Jonathan Joseph and Corbisiero are supposed to be off to?

  9. Baldy says:

    JJ’s off to Bath, and Crobi will be replacing Tonga’hia at saints, if the rumors are accurate (normally are in rugby, to be fair)

  10. bedfordbluesfan says:

    @Baldy,

    OK, was worried they would both be stuck somewhere “competing” for first team places and then not developing.

  11. sagmog says:

    re: The scrum…
    Fixing the lottery at scrum time would go a long way to fulfilling Killer and Ticht’s New Year’s wish for the ref to have less influence over the score.
    Lot’s of penalty tries and kickable penalties are awarded due to scrum infringements.
    Would seem fixing one would go a long way to fixing the other.

  12. Chekhovian says:

    Thanks, Baldy.

  13. Baldy says:

    @bbf

    Agreed – tis good to see that despite Corbi being a loosehead, and JJ’s obvious talent, these two guys are well involved with the EPS squad & lancasters england & i havent even seen connections with french clubs being mentioned..

  14. Chekhovian says:

    I’ve always like Big Jim Hamilton. Bit of a card magnet, but when he’s on form he can be a real brute of a player. He comes across well in that interview – level headed, professional, and obviously very sad to be leaving Glaws behind. I don’t think he’s leaving them in the lurch, mind. It’s just a case of personal development and security for his family. Living in the south of France for a bit has done wonders for Nathan Hines, Johnny Beattie, Wilko, and quite a few others. He’s still got a good four or five seasons left in him.

  15. MichaelVaughanMyLord says:

    Refs have got to be more forthcoming in issuing yellow cards at the scrum. In addition to the Tigers v Glaws game Irish conceded 6 or 7 pens at the scrum against Quins without even a warning being issued. I have seen this countless times over the last couple of years, even in 6N game at Twickers where the Irish scrum was demolished we didn’t get a card despite a first half warning. Refs wouldn’t dream of allowing a side to commit this volume of breakdown offences, so why is it ok in the scrum?

  16. MichaelVaughanMyLord says:

    Sag – two different scenarios there. Penalties or free kicks around half way are a bit of a lottery, although I don’t think it’s the refs fault if a prop doesn’t bind properly (not always the props either mind). When it comes to penalty tries I have no sympathy. Simple solution is not to infringe. Swallow your pride, keep the scrum up and allow the dominant scrum to push over the line. At least then they might miss the conversion. Same goes for collapsing a maul 5 metres out.

  17. Baldy says:

    MVML – Yup, cockers had a solid point in his rant after the glaws game. Its not just about yellows over the course of the match, tigers destroyed glaws in the scrum in a 20-30min period and glaws were let off by the ref chickening out.. and then he went and carded a tigers player straight away on a break (either youngs or ford).

    I was cheerign on glaws and still thought it was ridiculous.

    There was also the awful penalty try situation – 3 pens, and then reversing the next one as its the easy option for the ref and he doesnt have to give a pen try. But, glaws were pulling down scrums as they were backpedaling by the metre, and if just one had stayed up it was a certain try.

    I think there is a point that the refs know if they give a yellow card to a scrum, it is almost inevitably going to mean they have to give more pens and therefore potentially yellows, as the team with a man in the bin is likely to be inherently weaker in the very next scrum..

    But they should either give yellows or pen trys more quickly..

  18. killerline says:

    The main problem with the penalty try situation is that the defending team is always on a hiding to nothing.

    Keep the scrum up and walk backwards over your own line isn’t particularly appealing.

    If you compete and get parity the attacking team always infringe and you can still get the blame (see Munster/Ulster at the weekend).

    I don’t have a solution mind; no refs have ever played front row and are usually guessing….get rid of Rolland as a starter?

  19. elsnoopio says:

    Scrums – need to make the punishment for taking it down outweigh the benefits. Currently teams know that refs don’t want to punish them strongly (or at all) for scrum offences so, as the Tigers v Glaws game showed, teams can nulify an opponent’s advantage in the scrum through cynical play in a way they’d never risk if the advantage was fast wingers or a tricky fly half rather than some fat blokes who can push hard.

    Dragons chairman – I read his comment as being a plea not to cut off funding to his region but containing a dig at the current Rabid12 format.
    His point on the latter seemed to be that no fans cared about games against Connacht and the Italian teams and there was nothing riding on them, so they were pointless when the regions need to grow and make money.

  20. sagmog says:

    Just to be clear, I wasn’t talking about genuine infringements or particular examples.
    I’m thinking generally, if the scrum becomes a stable platform again, the number of penalties etc in general will be less, meaning the ref has less influence on the scoreboard.
    Which would be nice.

  21. MichaelVaughanMyLord says:

    “Keep the scrum up and walk backwards over your own line isn’t particularly appealing.”

    Tough, suck it up. Like I said they might miss the conversion.

    “If you compete and get parity the attacking team always infringe and you can still get the blame (see Munster/Ulster at the weekend).”

    You have a point here, but the ref should be able to spot this. I think this is a consequence of your first point though. I suspect attacking sides approach a 5m scrum thinking that a pen try is their best option of scoring, precisely because no defending scrums seem prepared to accept their medicine.

    “I don’t have a solution mind; no refs have ever played front row and are usually guessing….get rid of Rolland as a starter?”

    Agreed on the last point. I actually think on most penalty infringements they get it right. Where they need to improve is on unnecessary resets and early engagements, they probably need to give a bit more leeway especially early in a game.

  22. Baldy says:

    I don’t have a solution mind; no refs have ever played front row and are usually guessing….get rid of Rolland as a starter?

    I also had a thought about this as i was watching some post match interviews.

    We (coaches in particular) always seem to blame it on the refs for not having enough ex front rowers..

    The thought occurred that the specific demographic of rugby player who suit the positions in the front row may not be inherently likely to make good refs after they have retired:

    ie the bit of rugby they hate most is running around, and the bit they would have to do more of would be running around.

    or, they are normally fat bastards.

    Furthermore, as you approach a situation where the importance of scums actually magnifies in relation to the amount of pens given away at scrums, and therefore also front rowers salaries, and in a position where experience genuinely does count for as much as talent (unlike very few other positions on the rugby pitch) any decent gnarled old front rower is surely likely to be offered a much higher paid, less energetic role to pass on his knowledge to the next generation..

    Basically, good luck tyring to get the fat buggers to run that much after retiring..

    Maybe we should have a special scrum TMO van out the back with an ex-prop sat inside to review all scrums and provide instant feedback. You could even save money and combine it with the burger van..

  23. it might risk verging on a ridiculous number of officials, but why don’t we have one, possibly two, former front-rowers watching either side of the scrum, looking for the infringements. I don’t think it’s reasonable to expect props to be able to be full referees, they’ve just got the wrong type of fitness to be able to run the distances involved at the speed required to keep up with play.

    Also, what offences can be committed by the hooker and the locks? It’s fairly obvious that the props could be binding on the arm or boring in, and the flankers can get up to their usual rutchie-style stuff. Can someone enlighten me?

  24. killerline says:

    Maybe we should have a special scrum TMO van out the back with an ex-prop sat inside to review all scrums and provide instant feedback. You could even save money and combine it with the burger van..

    This is gold Baldy. Your almighty year continues…

  25. Baldy, to FIFY:

    Maybe we should have a special ‘scrum van’ at pitchside, which in the event of a scrum being called, trundles out with the two fat props aboard and drops them off next to the scrum.

    It could even be remote controlled, like for the kicking tee; or perhaps Andy Powell could drive.

  26. killerline says:

    Having thought about it for 10 minutes…some front row expertise in the ref’s ear is a pretty good idea.

    Unless………the modern scrum is actually unrefereeable?

  27. killerline says:

    …the comms link between refs and touch judges has been a success (unseen offsides seemed to be pinged a lot this weekend). The TMO decisions are usually half-decent; especially now refs can shape their question to cover their level of unsureness…

  28. deebee7 says:

    I can’t remember which match it was a couple of days/weeks ago (holidays tend to merge time rather nicely), but if I remember correctly the Saints front rower had his hand on the turf at three or four scrums in a row – right in front of both the ref and the touch judge, both of whom did precisely fuck all. It was so obvious, they should have had their match fees reduced.

    To my mind, the scrum has only become such a lottery since the ‘hit’ became all important in determining the outcome of the scrum. Take that away and you’ll probably halve the number of collapsed scrums. This will lead to more contested scrums, which will necessitate teams picking big, fat, scrummaging props, not all-dancing, all-prancing hippos from the Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairies.

    Having properly contested scrums, with the feed straight, should ensure teams place due value back on this wonderful set piece. And talking of straight feeds, I noticed in the AI’s a creeping tendency to ignore clearly skew line out throws – that has to be stamped out pronto.

  29. MisterIks says:

    Did Tov leave in a huff (or a minute-and-a-huff as Groucho one quipped)?

    Anyway Happy New Year my lovelies. Bit tied up at the moment sorting out a lifetime’s collection of cds before the end of the week, but I promise to be back propping up the Welsh contingent soon.

  30. Chekhovian says:

    I’m really, really not any kind of Front Row Union member, but it seems the most sensible thing to do would be to remove the ‘hit’ entirely. Sequential engagement, scrum held steady, ball goes in straight and the packs compete for it by hooking or pushing the other lot away from the ball.

    Or is that just to sensible to work?

  31. sagmog says:

    And talking of straight feeds, I noticed in the AI’s a creeping tendency to ignore clearly skew line out throws – that has to be stamped out pronto.

    This is purely a reaction to Ross Ford.
    If we had to wait ’til he threw one in straight, the game would never restart.

  32. MichaelVaughanMyLord says:

    I actually think scrums are better than they were two or three years ago. More seem to be completed lately, at least that is my perception. All refs need to do is:

    – Be more forthcoming with yellow cards and pen tries
    – Enforce straight put-ins
    – If the scrum collapses once the ball has got to the back row and no penalty has occurred allow play to continue, no need for a reset
    – Give a tiny bit of leeway on early engagement for the first couple of scrums

    Do agree with Deebee though, you do see too many scrums with the hand firmly planted on the floor.

  33. killerline says:

    Where’s the new blog Sag?

    Don’t just alter some faders, put them back how they were and ask me if it sounds better now……

  34. killerline says:

    @MVML

    Be more forthcoming with yellow cards and pen tries

    This is the problem we’re discussing isn’t it?

    Never satisfying outcomes and decisions always heaped against the defending scrum.

  35. sagmog says:

    How’s it now Killer?

  36. Chek – my understanding that there were issues with collapses leading to paralysis such as what happened to Matt Hampson.

    But I’m at a loss to see why you need one to eliminate the other. If you have sequential engagement and the scrum collapses, why do you need to keep pushing, with all the risks that that entails. If the concern was that you couldn’t be sure the front rows weren’t pushing, in this day and age (at pro level, anyway) you could employ a pressure sensing matrix to the front row’s shoulders connected to a radio embedded in a strap to make sure there’s no pushing beyond what is needed for stability before the ref calls the ‘go’ (or whatever word would be used) after the final sequence of binding

  37. killerline says:

    @Sag

    Yeah that’s really nice.

    Didn’t look like you did anything but there are flashing lights and knobs everywhere so I totally feel like I’m getting my money’s worth.

  38. sagmog says:

    New blog going up at 14:00.
    Not a match day blog as I just realised it’s Thursday, not Friday.
    Something special from the Greatest Man In The World™.

  39. killerline says:

    *cancels 1400 meeting*

  40. deebee7 says:

    Way too sensible, Russian master. I’m not even sure you need the sequential engagement – they coped without it until the hit. If you watch matches from as little as ten or fifteen years ago, there was no real ‘hit’ as such.

    Just ensure the fatties have jerseys that you can actually grab onto, that you take the hit out and ref the feed. That should ensure that either teams scrum properly or that they get penalised properly.

  41. deebee7 says:

    Right. At the risk of total humiliation and howlsof derisive laughter, I’m off to buy some Dirty Dancing tickets to take the missus out tomorrow. Stage version, obviously which she’s been pining for all holiday. Surely the wimpiest admission of 2013 to date?

  42. not really deebee, it’s the price we have to pay. My missus dragged me to some dogawful clooney film last year, and worse that bloody warhorse thing. I’m tempted to make her sit through Hunt for Red October as revenge…

  43. CupidStunt says:

    Rugby will be a lot better if we get rid of:
    – The ‘hit’
    – Alain Rolland
    – PA systems attempting to synthesise atmosphere
    – The Rabo
    – Almost all commentators
    – Nesting

    Anything I missed?

    The Bald One has been inspired on this blog. Great stuff.

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