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    (Original post by DK_Tipp)
    Watched Ireland England today and Ireland France last week.

    The rules of rugby need to be changed. The game has become dangerous. No concussion bin or return to play protocols will solve the problem. You can't allow players to tackle with the head leading (Bastearaud on Sexton) or carry leading with the head (Dan Cole on Cian Healy today) or elbow or shoulder (Sean O Brien- all the time).

    It's not OK for rugby to carry on as is and dump the concussion issue at the feet of Doctors and Physios and say- "here, you deal with it". International rugby must be averaging nearly more than one concussion a match now and that is not an acceptable state of affairs.
    How can you blame Cole for that collision? That is completely down to Healy getting himself in the wrong position.
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    (Original post by leahdw)
    I think the graphs at the top of this article are quite telling. 10.5 reported concussions per 1,000 playing hours (equates to 750 full matches).

    I'm aware that there is a major problem with concussion, but with the coverage it's getting the situation should only improve. From what I've seen clubs are also getting in on the act - Saracens, for example, have started monitoring players during the game to check both big hits and small but repeated impacts. Of course it's not enough yet, and it would be nice to see a sport where concussions are far more limited, but it's progress. But of course if someone does get concussed it's only sensible to stop them playing that match.

    Of course we want to avoid repeats of the George North incident (in the Wales-England match) but players are usually assessed well and the incident was more of an exception than a rule.
    Reported is the operable word there. The reporting of concussion is notoriously poor in Rugby.

    How many times during BOD's Ireland career was he left on the pitch after looking suspiciously groggy? Ireland have improved their concussion management- they're now reporting more than 1 a game this season- 2 day alone, and how it wasn't 3 I do not know.
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    (Original post by Patrick Wallace)
    How can you blame Cole for that collision? That is completely down to Healy getting himself in the wrong position.
    You're right Healy was arse ways. Cole still makes a forward motion with his head which is dangerous.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oCvIfnLTVLE

    Perhaps more concerning is why does the official Youtube channel of the tournament have a video up of this entitled "Dan Cole and Cian Healy going head to head" with slow mo replays of the collision?

    Like, they're actually selling the game based on potentially dangerous physical contact! I know violence, like sex, sells but this is seriously concerning.

    For the record, I don't think Dan Cole is dirty, I don't think he's a cheat. I just think he puts both himself and Healy at risk here.

    The NFL had to ban helmet-to-helmet hits for the sake of their game, much to the ire of fans who enjoyed the big hits. Rugby will have to change their tackle laws and how contact is refereed eventually. Their lawyers will tell them so when the lawsuits and insurance bills start arriving...

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Helmet-to-helmet_collision
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    So, yeah. Ireland have won it.
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    They've had a big shuffle-up of the match officials for the next round with Steve Walsh dropping out for "business reasons" (I thought international refs were full-time pros...). The officials will now be as follows

    Wales v Ireland
    Ref - Wayne Barnes (ENG)
    Assistants - Jérôme Garcès (FRA) & Federico Anselmi (ARG)
    TMO - Graham Hughes (ENG)

    England v Scotland
    Ref - Romain Poite (FRA)
    Assistants - George Clancy (IRE) & Marius Mitrea (ITA)
    TMO - Ben Skeen (NZL)

    Italy v France
    Ref - JP Doyle (ENG)
    Assistants - Nigel Owens (WAL) & Luke Pearce (ENG)
    TMO - Simon McDowell (IRE)

    Incidentally, Steve Walsh was due to referee Wales v Ireland in Cardiff back in 2009, but dropped out (I think he may have been sacked actually by the NZRU) and Wayne Barnes stepped in. Ireland secured the Grand Slam that day, what's the betting they'll all but do that this time around?
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    (Original post by O133)
    They've had a big shuffle-up of the match officials for the next round with Steve Walsh dropping out for "business reasons" (I thought international refs were full-time pros...). The officials will now be as follows

    Wales v Ireland
    Ref - Wayne Barnes (ENG)
    Assistants - Jérôme Garcès (FRA) & Federico Anselmi (ARG)
    TMO - Graham Hughes (ENG)

    England v Scotland
    Ref - Romain Poite (FRA)
    Assistants - George Clancy (IRE) & Marius Mitrea (ITA)
    TMO - Ben Skeen (NZL)

    Italy v France
    Ref - JP Doyle (ENG)
    Assistants - Nigel Owens (WAL) & Luke Pearce (ENG)
    TMO - Simon McDowell (IRE)

    Incidentally, Steve Walsh was due to referee Wales v Ireland in Cardiff back in 2009, but dropped out (I think he may have been sacked actually by the NZRU) and Wayne Barnes stepped in. Ireland secured the Grand Slam that day, what's the betting they'll all but do that this time around?
    Steve Walsh is a Kiwi and they take "business" seriously...

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    Wales team for Ireland:

    1: Gethin Jenkins 2: Scott Baldwin 3: Samson Lee
    4: Luke Charteris 5: Alun-Wyn Jones
    6: Dan Lydiate 8: Taulupe Faletau 7: Sam Warburton (c)

    9: Rhys Webb 10: Dan Biggar
    12: Jamie Roberts 13: Jonathan Davies
    11:
    Liam Williams 15: Leigh Halfpenny 14: George North

    Bench: Richard Hibbard, Rob Evans, Aaron Jarvis, Jake Ball, Justin Tipuric, Mike Phillips, Rhys Priestland, Scott Williams
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    Fear Ireland will get the Grand Slam this year. They won't win the world cup though, thats between New Zealand and South Africa in my eyes.
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    (Original post by dhr90)
    Fear Ireland will get the Grand Slam this year. They won't win the world cup though, thats between New Zealand and South Africa in my eyes.
    I really hope England, SA, NZ and Ireland win their pools and we have these semi-finals

    Eng v Ire
    NZ v SA

    with the final being between the best of the north and the best of the south.
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    (Original post by O133)
    I really hope England, SA, NZ and Ireland win their pools and we have these semi-finals

    Eng v Ire
    NZ v SA

    with the final being between the best of the north and the best of the south.
    I'd rather see Wales go through, but I have my doubts about that!
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    England team for Scotland:

    1: Joe Marler 2: Dylan Hartley 3: Dan Cole
    4: Dave Attwood 5: Courtney Lawes
    6: James Haskell 8: Billy Vunipola 7: Chris Robshaw (c)

    9: Ben Youngs 10: George Ford
    12: Luther Burrell 13: Jonathan Joseph
    11: Jack Nowell 15: Mike Brown 14: Anthony Watson

    Bench: Tom Youngs, Mako Vunipola, Kieran Brookes, Geoff Parling, Tom Wood, Richard Wigglesworth, Danny Cipriani, Billy Twelvetrees
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    Score predictions?? I'm sure who'll support yet as I have a 50:50 split with family being English and part Scottish


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    Ireland team for Wales:

    1: Jack McGrath 2: Rory Best 3: Mike Ross
    4: Devin Toner 5: Paul O'Connell (c)
    6: Peter O'Mahony 8: Jamie Heaslip 7: Sean O'Brien

    9: Conor Murray 10: Jonny Sexton
    12: Robbie Henshaw 13: Jared Payne
    11: Simon Zebo 15: Rob Kearney 14: Tommy Bowe

    Bench: Sean Cronin, Cian Healy, Martin Moore, Iain Henderson, Jordi Murphy, Eoin Reddan, Ian Madigan, Felix Jones

    Scotland team for England:

    1: Alasdair Dickinson 2: Ross Ford 3: Euan Murray
    4: Jim Hamilton 5: Jonny Gray
    6: Rob Harley 8: Dave Denton 7: Blair Cowan

    9: Greig Laidlaw (c) 10: Finn Russell
    12: Matt Scott 13: Mark Bennett
    11: Tommy Seymour 15: Stuart Hogg 14: Dougie Fife

    Bench: Fraser Brown, Ryan Grant, Geoff Cross, Tim Swinson, Johnnie Beattie, Adam Ashe, Sam Hidalgo-Clyne, Greig Tonks

    France team for Italy:

    1: Eddy Ben Arous 2: Guilhem Guirado 3: Nicolas Mas
    4: Alexandre Flanquart 5: Yoann Maestri
    6:
    Thierry Dusautoir (c) 8: Loann Goujon 7: Bernard Le Roux

    9: Sébastien Tillous-Borde 10: Camille Lopez
    12: Maxime Mermoz 13: Gaël Fickou
    11: Nao Nakaitaci 15: Scott Spedding 14: Yoann Huget

    Bench: Benjamin Kayser, Rabah Slimani, Vincent Débaty, Romain Taofifenua, Damien Chouly, Rory Kockott, Jules Plisson, Mathieu Bastareaud
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    Italy team for France:

    1: Matías Agüero 2: Leonardo Ghiraldini 3: Dario Chistolini
    4: George Biagi 5: Josh Furno
    6: Francesco Minto 8: Sergio Parisse (c) 7: Samuela Vunisa

    9: Edoardo Gori 10: Kelly Haimona
    12:
    Andrea Masi 13: Luca Morisi
    11: Giovanbattista Venditti 15: Luke McLean 14: Leaonardo Sarto

    Bench:
    Andrea Manici, Alberto de Marchi, Lorenzo Cittadini, Quintin Geldenhuys, Marco Barbini, Guglielmo Palazzani, Tommaso Allan, Enrico Bacchin
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    Ireland being battered so far
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    Ireland completely impotent so far, but if it stays like this it's great for England.

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    That was an intense second half.


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    Damn Mike B and that forward pass!! Come on we have this but don't make it so easy for Scotland pls!!


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    Points differences going into Round 5:

    ENG: +37
    IRE: +33
    WAL: +12

    Wales need to beat Italy by 26 to overtake England and top the table after the first game. If they fail to do this they are out of the running unless neither Ireland nor England win.

    I have a feeling England will lose to France though...

    Anyway, calculators out for next weekend.
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    (Original post by O133)
    Points differences going into Round 5:

    ENG: +37
    IRE: +33
    WAL: +12

    Wales need to beat Italy by 26 to overtake England and top the table after the first game. If they fail to do this they are out of the running unless neither Ireland nor England win.

    I have a feeling England will lose to France though...

    Anyway, calculators out for next weekend.
    Explaining who is top of the table every 20 minutes to my mum next week is going to be a bit of a headache.

    Wales and Ireland should both win their games in my opinion, although Scotland has surprised me in playing so well, but still losing every match. England/France is tougher to call.
 
 
 
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