Saturday, March 10, 2007

Woe is Wales

Arrived home just in time to see Wales take on the Azzurri at Stadio Flaminio. From political elation to rugby depression in 80 minutes - less 10 seconds or so. And it wasn't as if Italy didn't deserve it.

I know there were some ifs and buts. There was the blatant off-the-ball tackle on Kevin Morgan when he was looking to take a try scoring pass from Mark Jones (what was the linesman doing?). There was the disgraceful assault on Stephen Jones by Bergamasco - for which he will inevitably and rightly be banned from the game, hopeful for a long time. He should have been red carded. And then there was the utterly bizarre misunderstanding with the ref at the final whistle which cost us the draw.

But none of this counters the fact that the Italians dominated possession and territory, were parked on the Welsh line for what seemed like hours and simply deprived us of the ball for most of the game. You can't play rugby without the ball. And they even showed some invention behind the scrum as well. This season, Italy are a team that take some beating - and that is terrific for the Six Nations. I just wish they had waited one more game before showing the world what they can do.

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