LIMERICK, IRELAND – With the Heineken Cup in full gear with it’s 4th round this weekend, our Expert Panel is scurrying around, digesting all pertinent pieces of information, so that they can make their Heineken Cup Picks. After some wild events last week, they are eager to show that their “expert” status is not misrepresented, despite the mixed results from last weekend, which we’ll get to below. Before we do, however, we wanted to touch upon the curious ending to the Leinster vs Clermont match.
Flyhalf Jonny Sexton is quickly becoming “The Man” for Irish rugby. As the field general for Ireland and for Leinster, his confidence grows with each match. But is he too confident? In what was predicted to be – and was – a tight match, Sexton eschewed an easy three points on a penalty and attempted to “…conjure up a try for Fergus McFadden with a cross-field kick.” Fergus couldn’t handle it and Clermont cleared the ball.
QUESTION: Should Sexton have take the points, especially since they were playing on the road in front of a hostile French crowd?
While you’re weighing your answer, note our Heineken Of The Day winner – Connacht Captain Dan Parks, who kicked his team past a bungling, lazy and underachieving Biarritz squad, with 17 points. Parks’ feat is tantamount to Pádraig Pearse or Davey Crockett actually winning their undermanned battles at the General Post Office and Alamo, respectively. With a massive injury count, Connacht were left for dead by – except, of course, by Declan Yeats. Anyway, we’re hoisting our Heinekens to Dan Parks now.
Now on to our Expert Panel and the results of their Heineken Cup Picks!
Just to review, the Panel is comprised of West Ghana’s Rugby Rain Man Junoir Blaber, Ireland’s quick-witted fly-half (that’s redundant) Kevin Fegan, the infamous Ireland National, Declan Yeats, who was pinch-hitting for feisty French #8 Pyk O’Kallapfer and contrived Kiwi Johnathan Wicklow Barberie. They all must pick the winners of each match and a Pick Of The Week, for which they must also provide the margin of victory.
This chart below shows how they fared. The Rugby Rain Man, Junoir Blaber, had another stellar week, while Kevin Fegan remained perfect with his Pick Of The Week. As always, Declan Yeats phoned in his picks while standing in manure and JWB remained in 2nd place, despite his so-so week.
NOTE: Fegan is perfect with his Pick Of The Week prognostications, which are the real money-makers and help atone for his abysmal Round 1 showing.
Please feel free to flog us or our choices with your comments below…