Friday’s Rugby News.
G’day Gaggers & welcome to Friday
You know, I’ve written Friday’s Rugby News before while drunk, in prison, in rehab, on the can, drunk on the can while in rehab about to leave for prison, but never angry! Aggrieved? Yes. Annoyed? Most certainly. Agitated? Many a time. But while swallowing down bile, laced with a razor blade invective, bordering on an unadulterated pure rage, not so much.
There’s only one rugby story that matters today, so put ‘out of office’ on your emails, switch off the phone and unleash your inner bitterness (with me) as we dive head long into ‘You Rotten French Tart’. Then check out official Wallabies player ratings with ‘The Hossometer’. We’ll look at the science behind the little Polynesian jig in ‘Hey Hakarena’. Wistfully and longingly suffer medal envy in ‘I’ll show you mine first’ and wrap up today’s Friday Rugby News with ‘Friday’s Goss with Hoss’ before I’m either arrested, G&GR is sued, or my house is bombed by French agents. They have history you know.
YOU ROTTEN FRENCH TART.
‘Listen carefully, I shall say this only once‘
How apt that the match should be held at ‘Marvel Stadium’?
The Marvel franchise has built a financial fortune on the age old tales and history of good verse evil. Of right verse wrong. Of decency overcoming adversity and that goodness and light shall always prevail. But not even Marvel itself, with its legion of writers and a significant marijuana budget, could create a villain so dastardly, so completely and utterly morally corrupt, bereft of insight, awareness or a feel for humanity as the one carrying a whistle last night in Melbourne.
Of course I speak of the one, the only Matthieu Raynal of France. I don’t pretend to have more than a rudimentary Year 8 understanding of French, but it would surprise me not if ‘Raynal’ was a loose, or literal translation meaning ‘incompetent French turd who will rob Australians of an emotional and historic win, despite 18 yellow cards and some serious self-inflicted wounds’. Either that or a close meaning to ‘Sorry bout the Rainbow Warrior!’
But first, let’s go back to the beginning, where it all started,
Scott Morrison fisting the French peoples on the submarines contract the kick-off.
As you can imagine the G&GR craparazzi ‘WhatsApp’ thingy was in overdrive from the get-go. With both reverse Benjamin Button, Chuck & short-armed Taswegian KB, at the game live. The feedback was brisk, as too the penalties to those in Nearly All Black early. Now in the interest of balanced journalism, I should state, for the record, that I thought the limy French cheese-rooter was terrible early, but grew into the game OK-ish from then, before colossally seducing the poodle at the end.
Now in any match I am always going to view things from a subjective Wallaby POV, I acknowledge that, but generally I thought:
- The rucks were atrocious. Kiwi hands on the ground and getting rewarded with both turnovers and defensive penalties
- I had to check if Barrett & Whitelock were jumping on our side of the line out so often did they ‘cross’ onto our side in the air and land on our side as well.
- I was also concerned the ref may have suffered a neck injury as he could seemingly only turn his head one direction? As the first thirteen (13) minutes saw seven (7) penalties to NZ yet, none (0) to Oz. Indeed it wasn’t until the 17th minute that the Wallabies received their first penalty. Remarkable discipline from the Kiwi side who are always offside, offend at every ruck and jump across the line on our throws.
- He even blew a ‘sealing off’ penalty against us late in the second half when all night both sides had been doing that very thing without the slightest consequence.
But as the game grew, just like the ‘French resistance‘ during WWII (a farging misnomer if ever there was) the incompetent French bastard receded into the background. The game played out and regrettably and reliably, our team screwed its own pooch, with poor discipline and 38 yellow cards a standout.
As for yellow cards, I have no issues with John Denver’s yellow. It was cynical and professional (and to be applauded by Wallaby fans for sure). Initially I had no clue what they were looking at with Lurch, but I do concede on review, it was dangerous and from an offside position so I can cop the card, if that was how & where the bar would be set.
BUT, it wasn’t, were it?
Why was not every cleanout, ruck or maul reviewed for same after this? And pray tell how on earth did Lomax not see yellow for his ‘tip’ tackle on Palestine in the second half? SURELY that tackle went past the horizontal? Lomax had his hands between Palestine’s legs and not in a good way. I believe ‘Hodor’ Retallick did the same to the other leg. FF went past 45 degrees and got dumped on his back. Lomax was the main offender and…………..crickets. Penalty and play on. Where is the consistency?
As for Commissioner Gordon’s card, Whisky Tango Foxtrot is he supposed to do with six Kiwis rumbling forward? And for the record, watch the replay. At NO stage does Jake Gordon ever go to ground at all, so how is that a yellow?
All that aside it could be reasonably argued that le incompetent ‘levelled’ out the decisions, in as much as what went around, came around and it looked like rugby skill, fitness and smarts would determine the outcome, wouldn’t it?
What a putz am I!
The game had everything. Yellow cards, heroic ‘Greganesque’ tackles from Reiko Ioane & Commissioner Gordon alike. Blown tries when the likes of Sotutu kicked when he had a 26 man overlap and Reiko Ioane didn’t pass to Beaudy Barrett who would have scorched in. Flow and counter-flow. A blistering start to H2 when the Nearlies threatened to blow the game open and at 31-13 they seemingly had. A brave, smart and heroic fightback from the Wallabies. at first closing the gap, then equalling the scores and ultimately, with a 48 metre penalty down the eye-diddle-diddle from The Lip took us three points clear.
What was to follow were rugby smarts from The Nearlies, heartbreak for Oz players and fans alike and all stemming from pure rugby bastardry by one French imbecile and a TMO who tanked it all.
A collapsed rolling maul from the Nearlies. Foketi on the pill, penalty Australia. ‘Time off’ from the referee and then……………………………………..well you know the rest.
Now to be clear. Watching at home I distinctly heard the ref say ‘time is off’. Sure, he then talks to Foley about taking the kick, hurry up etcetera – BUT – time is still off. Foley then starts his motion to kick, the moron blows his whistle, Foley props thinking he is blowing time back on and you can hear Emanuel Macron laughing from here.
The sad thing for me apart from perhaps the most disgraceful refereeing decision in the history of the game, is simply that in the wash up, the pride, heroics, resolve, still and pure grit from our boys could be lost.
Our men came back from 31-13 down against New Zealand, to take a 37-34 lead into the 78th minute. They did that with smarts, aggression, pace, skill, composure and belief. They did that with a nation roaring them on. With a full house in Melbourne and on a school night. They did that with a 3 from 7 record in 2022, they did that with long term injuries, our fourth #10 this year, our long term skipper out, our replacement skipper off at half time.
Forget anything that’s came before tonight. Tonight for me showed what beats inside the chests of those in the Wallabies jersey. Tonight showed for me what they are capable of. Tonight we saw deep into the rugby souls of our Wallabies and for the first time in a long time I was and am entirely proud to be a fan, overwhelmingly proud.
Maybe that pride will overwhelm my anger with that despicable refereeing decision sometime in the future and it deserves to. But for now I am disgusted with that call and in that referee.
For now, I’m going to let the flaring embers of my rage flicker strongly, in the knowledge that filthy incompetent French Tart just cost us a deserved, historic and hard earned victory and that my team, our team, might have just turned a big corner.
From little things, big things grow. Maybe Monsieur Raynal just propelled us forward with the jolt we needed, the anger and edge we require and the belief we need to go far in 2023.
‘The Hossometer’ – (Wallabies player ratings and their meaning)
0-4 Wallabies chances improved if they hadn’t of played. Could write on Monday – Thursday’s stuff at GAGR
5-6 Did their job, no more, no less
7 Rolled up sleeves and had a dig
8 Stood out throughout and had significant impact
9 Near perfect game – major factor in the result
10. Could write Friday’s Rugby News – truly outstanding in every facet.
The Cadbury XXIII
- Jimmy Slips 7. Good knock from the skipper who was injured about 10 minutes into the first half but still lead from the front. Got beaten in one scrum, then dominated from that point
- Julia Roberts 6. Meat & potatoes kinda player. Does his core role well, no fuss, no failure. Compare that to our lineout when he leaves the field.
- 7As 8. Best prop on the field. Not only withstood the Kiwi young guns but won several penalties. Was busy around the field and put in a huge shift. Take a bow 7As.
- Steve Carell 5 Didn’t do much wrong, just never really got into the game. Made his tackles, won his ball, but would love to see him ball in hand in wider channels.
- The Bullshitter 5 Same as above. Does the hard stuff, would like to have seen more carries though.
- The Mule 4. Only cause he got injured early. Won a good turnover and was just starting to get his carrying game going, but went off early and that cost us plenty, mainly due to his replacement..
- The Pornstar 8.5. Busy all night. Great on D. Good on offence and his interplay with The Exocet was sublime. One of the best on field and our starting #7 for some time.
- Sideshow Bob 9. My MOTM for either side. Brutal for the whole match on carries or in D. I’m a huge fan of this young man. He’s world class and the sort of guy who might carry us deep into the RWC.
- The Commissioner 6. His service was OK, one pass hit Spanners in the left ear. But our ball was quicker with him at 9. Our tempo was up and his D was terrific and his tackle on AB#2 saved a certain try.
- Spanners. 6.5. Really showed his experience and injected himself into the game at the right times. He was at the centre of the fight back and his goal kicking was brilliant. Final decision from French Tart is not on Spanners. The Frog rooted us all by himself.
- The Exocet 5. Usual busy self. BRILLIANT hit on Caleb Clarke, one good run, but some poor options as well and a game he never really fully got into. Not for lack of trying though.
- Lalakai Foketi 7. Our best fairy. Lead the way in D and attack. Made two crucial turnovers and looked good with ball in hand. Must start again in NZ.
- Fergie 4. Really disappointed in Ikitau’s game. Cost us a try to ABs, when he refused to clear our ruck ball early in H2, we get turned over and they score. Was largely a pedestrian all night and rarely spotted. No doubt he can tackle, but he must do more in attack.
- John Denver 3. Some days are diamonds, some days are stones. Tonight were stones. Can’t blame him for giving up the yellow card, but that was, to me, his only involvement tonight.
- The Ginger Ninja 5.5 Mixed bag. OK, he scored two tries and butchered a third, but it was a mixed bag from the usual Mr Consistent.
- Palestine 4. Not many minutes to be fair, but the obligatory missed throws and lost momentum that he brings. Unlucky not to get us a yellow card when he got ‘tipped’. Julia Roberts is miles ahead of FF.
- The SS. 5.5. Was busy in the Dark Arts and around the field and our scrum remained strong when he was on.
- Express. 4 Not many minutes, one good carry and looked to get involved where he could. Like to see more of him.
- Lurch. 1, I think it fair to say Lurch hinders the side at present, more then helps. Dumb decisions, that lead to poor outcomes for his team mates and fans. Elsa must surely take his spot.
- Son of Brian 4. Tried to get involved, but not many minutes. I think SOB needs a big off-season and to add at least 10kg to make it at this level. Samu is rightfully our #7 now and Charlie Gamble is also waiting in the wings. 2023 could be very interesting.
- The Lip 6. Looked sharp and played with pace (finally). Nailed that kick and could have kicked it from 55 if he had too. Was acting captain and had every right to challenge that ludicrous French half-wit at the end.
- The Clydesdale NA Didn’t get on
- Jordan of Nazareth NA. Not enough minutes or involvements to score. But glad he’s back. Now if only Vunivalu could get a start too.
Look, I love the Haka. You know, the ‘Polynesian Macarena’ that’s done before each rugby game featuring The Nearlies or Black Ferns. I really am a fan of it. Fabulous tradition – yep. Great theatre – yep, that too. But as someone without a cultural attachment to it, I have always found the grandest viewing, the goose-bump inducing, hair-raising on the back of my back moments are when teams choose to respond to it and respectfully accept the challenge.
Think France walking to half way and The Caveman, Sébastien Chabal growling at the Nearlies. The Soap Dodgers walking past half way to ‘outflank’ the Kiwis’. What about our own 2011 version Wallabies at Suncorp 2011? The Aussies stood there well after the little dance had finished and just ‘eyeballed’ the Kiwis. To a man the Wallabies didn’t move, they just stared. Well actually, big Vicks sneered, The Rock just glowered and Big Kev growled. Some 80 minutes later, The Nearlies were hand- fed their taints with a side order of ‘get that up ya’ for good measure.
Well maybe when you’re forbidden from responding, I spose it could be considered fearsome. The same way that fighting Ali with one hand behind your back would’ve been. Or ‘fearsome’ in the way facing Jeff ‘Thommo’ Thomson would have been sans helmet and ‘box’ (he had no idea where they were going, what hope the poor batsmen?). Maybe it’s more ‘fearsome’ for opposing governing bodies who have to shell out $ in ludicrous fines for opposing players to have the temerity to respond in a respectful manner?
But according to this article in stuff.co.nz and the ‘science’ quoted in it, The Nearlies also get a physiological benefit from performing the Haka, while opponents ‘freeze’ and appear dead still, like Mrs Hoss on My Birthday. How’s that fair?
We all know that when it comes to rugby that the Kiwis are cheats. Not only that, but world class, without peer cheats. Now we all have irrefutable scientific proof. Not happy with ‘pushing the envelope’ (cheating), ‘playing to the letter of the law’ (cheating), ‘gameplay’ (cheating) they are in fact cheating before the game even kicks-off too!
I love the haka, our game is the better for it, but this absolute nonsense that a team can’t respond is C.R.A.P. and that’s scientifically proven too.
I’ll show you mine first.
Just how good are our women’s 7s team?
Well, take a look at Sharni Williams twitter photo:
- Olympic Gold Medal
- World Series Winners medal
- Commonwealth Games Gold Medal
- Rugby World Championship Medal
- Personalised & autographed shirtless Hoss photo in the locker door (you can just make out the edge of it – top right)
I’d go as far to say that it’s a toss up between our women’s 7s side and our women’s cricket side as to our current best sporting side.
Well done to all involved in the success of the 2022 campaign. All that ‘cromiting‘ (3:15 minutes in) has really paid off!
FRIDAY’S GOSS WITH HOSS.
Dietician requests more sausage
What’s going on with The Catholics? Their dietician has been sent home for requesting more sausage? Aren’t they full of protein? Does not protein add muscle mass? From what I can piece together all Jantjies did was help her regularly (allegedly) secure said protein source? Just seems like an over reaction, don’t Saffas like a ‘braai’ after all? I mean, it’s not as if they’re shagging each other!
Lighten up Boks.
These boots are made for
Great news for RA with the announcement of the Forrest Boot Company, aka RM Williams partnering with RA. Now the pressure is really on. While I’m a big rugby fan, you don’t ever mess with RMs, not on my watch. More from rugby.com.au
Banks feels Heat.
No, not a new royal commission into the rat with the gold teeth sector, but Tom Banks announcing his signing with Japanese club, Honda Heat. After that horrific injury he endured I hope Mr Banks enjoys the Japanese experience, stays injury-free and banks wheelbarrows of yen. He’ll be in good company, too, as one Pabro Matera (that’s actually what it says on the Heat’s announcement – I kid you not) also joins the Honda side.
FUX Sports Christy Doran speaks with Hammer about a number of topics:
- NZ & the future of SR
- Moses locked in till at least the 23 Big Dance in France ends
- Private Equity
- Hosting rights to 2027 Oz RWC
- The ‘Golden Decade’ & more
Keeping the Razor sharp.
Good opinion piece from stuff.co.nz about switching to Razor Robertson immediately after the 2023 RWC. That’s unless we hire him first!
‘Bro bourbon throw’?
Any takers for a Sonny Bill drinking game next match? Each time he says ‘bro’ you have to throw down a shot of bourbon. So the ‘Bro bourbon throw’. Best to order from Dan Murphy’s now, two bottles I reckon Bro.
That’s it from me today & I look forward to your comments below.
Hoss – out.