NEW PLYMOUTH, NEW ZEALAND – Our man Johnathan Wicklow Barberie and New York Rugby Club Assistant Coach Junoir Blaber, give a brief recap of all the matches:
NZ v Tonga
JB: Who do you think won the Dance-off? Sorry fans, I mean the warrior dance challenge between NZ’s Haka, the Ka Mate version and the Tongan kailau, the Sipi Tau version (their only version)?
JWB:The Tongans need to work on their cadence. It also seemed like they were finished about three times. Bloody awful.
JB: Now on to the Rugby; It must be said that Sonny Bill Williams looked good. He may only offload with one arm, but then the way he was offloading , he only needs that one arm.
JWB: And we got to see him take his shirt off! RRRRRRRrrrrrr!
JB: I thought Tonga showed good fight in the forwards but their backs gave NZ too much time on the ball and NZ carved them up because of it.
JWB: Didn’t the Tonga backline miss the team bus to the pitch??? It sure seemed like they had a beer league Old Boys team out there.
JB: By the way, Richard Kahui, is now one of my least favorite rugby players. On top of being a fantastic player, he is also way too good looking. Makes me uncomfortable.
JWB: You have issues that have nothing to do with Kahui. Please get some help or simply be forthright with your announcement.
Romania v Scotland
JB: This was easily the best match of the day. I mean holy cow, I was energized to still play afterward.
JWB: Yawn. It’s hard to get excited about two teams with no chance at making any noise. William Wallace is disgusted someplace.
JB: The Scottish scrum reminded me of my early childhood years and my fight to keep my lunch money. The Bullies usually won and the Romanian scrum was no joke. I tell you Johnny Boy, when Romania meet Georgia, I recommend all young future props and forwards tape that game and watch it. There will be some real serious scrumming going on.
Fiji v Namibia
JB: Did you see the 4 drop goals by the Namibia fly-half, it was scary. If he was around back when a try was only worth 3 points, Namibia might have had a chance.
JWB: Singles hitters don’t put fannies in the seats, mate. It’s the sluggers that make the game!
JB: Fiji is rarely heavy favorites but they had better athletes and a bigger pool of pro players, it is rare they have this advantage over anyone. The four tries by the Fiji Winger Gonova were fantastic. However a dominate Fijian wing is not really news.
JWB: Don’t tell that to our pal Waisale Tikoisolomoni Serevi!
JB: Namibia kept it close and I think some of their players may get European pro contracts but you just knew that Fiji in open broken play was gonna eventually come out on top.
JWB: Nambia is just not a rugby name. It’s too close to Namby-Pamby.
USA v Ireland:
JB: What a game! The best defensive performance the USA has put in, in a long time. They rocked the Irish with every tackle. I tell you what though, looking at how dominating Irish scrum was on the Eagles , I fear Italy will knock-on on purpose. Considering the significance of the match and all very proud of the US effort.
JWB: Declan Yeats is doing the jig but Todd Clever and the boys fought like the Patriots at Bunker Hill! It will be interesting to see Kidney’s heart transplants in the backs!
Wales v S. Africa:
JB: Well, I expected a good one, but I didn’t expect a nailbiter. I have never seen a ref court controversy as much as Wayne Barnes. He must want his own reality show. The resolve showed by the Bokke to comeback with John Smit on the bench, show SA and the head Coach, that Smit is surplus for parts, and Bismarck Du Plessis should start.
JWB: The Boks showed the heart of a Champion and came off the canvas like Ali vs Frazier to repel Sam Warburton’s boys from Wales – who must have run over ref Barnes’ cat. Hook’s penalty kick was good, sir! Use your good eye next time! And any squad with a guy named Bismarck Du Plessis must be considered as a contender.
England v Argentina
JWB: Was Sir Johnny Wilkinson kicking balls or was that Matt Damon ruining another rugby event???
JB: I thought you could have made some of those kicks. The Argies maybe a Dad’s army but they put in a great effort. England should thank their stars they have a healthy Ben Youngs once again.
Australia v Italy
JB: I thought all that pasta gave you enough carbs to play well for 80 minutes, guess the Azzuri only had half a plate. The Italians need to do something about their lack of quality backs. It continues to kill them. Maybe the need to poaching Argies and go for some Kiwis or Aussies. Australia has a large I-Tie population.
JWB: The Italians fired John Kirwan and will forever pay for it in lira and losses!
Japan v France:
JB: Japan is probably my second favorite team because of their scrumhalves. I mean one is 70 Kgs, the other is 77Kgs and they are both no taller than 5’7. Makes a short man like me proud there is still room in this game for all sizes. I think the key was the French playing more direct, it changed the game.
JWB: The French are counting their lucky stars – which aren’t many – after John Kirwan’s upstarts played them to a tie at the half. That half was as exciting a match as you’ll see. But it was only a half. Sacre bleu! It’s not the same without Chabal.