On the weekend when for the first time in all of our lifetimes Europe went to war, it was hard to focus on the rugby. Not least because what started well, albeit predictably, with Scotland squandering chances to open the door to France in another title wining performance, ended in farce with Italy down to 3 props and a cat by the end of their match against Ireland.
Eddie Jones’ strategy of continuing to shuffle his deck led to one of the most boring performances of the championship so far, where the only excitement in the first 75 minutes was Liam William being yellow carded for what looked like illegal use of his ears. Joe Marler and his buddies seemed to have nodded off by the last quarter, when a Welsh rally finally lifted the atmosphere and almost took the match.
In Dublin a full crowd was also muted, a try for Ireland after 3 minutes being the high point, an injured Italian hooker then his replacement sent off after 20 minutes marking the end of the match as a real competition.
Meanwhile our screens and twitter feeds were full of Russian tanks and brave young Europeans, filling Molotov cocktails and queuing for semi automatic weapons. May good sense, democracy and humanity prevail.
Ich bin ein Ukranian.
Colin O’Riordan has been bumped off the top spot by stalwart campaigner Midge McClernon, with Julian D’Arcy hanging on to second place.
“It’s been a long time coming but the view is great from the top of the table” said Midge from his yacht anchored off Dundalk bay. “Just a matter of getting the next two rounds right now, so it is.”
|Totals after Week 3|
D’Arcy was tightlipped about his position “Too early to say, so long as I stay ahead of the brothers” was all he would venture when tracked down at a harness racing event in Ballydehob. “The esteem is more important than the money. But the money’s important”.
Points Make Prizes
This weekend’s Linesight Fiendishly Clever Award goes to Aidan Murphy for exactly predicting the Ireland v Italy score, a challenge given the bizarre circumstances. “A tricky one alright, but I knew from way back with so many Kiwis in the Irish side they would do a job on Italy” said Murphy, taking a break from his job as Lord of the Rings tour guide on the Coromandel Peninsula. “But I’d have to say that cat the Italians had was impressive”. Murphy wins a Quantity Surveyor’s calculator, which automatically adds or subtracts 15% depending on who you are talking to.
The Asset Recruitment Strongest in the Pack Award goes to Helen Waugh, who topped the poll this weekend with 52 points out of 60. “To be honest I don’t remember what I put down, but I’m elated. Even better my husband’s starting a proper job this week after months of hanging around the house, so can I take the prize in prosecco? Party time girls!”
Finally the Leo Lynch Century Maker Award goes to Darragh Fitzpatrick, who just snuck into the century makers this week with 102. “I’ve no idea what its for but I’ll take it” said Fitzpatrick.
A serious weekend in London next time around as the Irish invade with their tails up, but will they stay up? Can Wales do any damage to France in Cardiff, or is it a matter of damage limitation? A Roman holiday for Scotland, which is looking ominously predictable.